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P R I


Z E S


ENTERTAINMENT


F O O D


ENTERTAINMENT


F O O D


P R I


Z E S


ENTERTAINMENT


F O O D


Your Role in the Co-op Nation There is a reason we say member, not customer


Oklahoma Electric Cooperative is connected to


a network of cooperatives. You might be thinking, “Really? How does that work?” OEC is a member of the Oklahoma Association of Electric Cooperatives (OAEC). We do this to keep in close contact with our ‘sister’ co-ops in the state and to stay up to date on how to best serve you. OAEC assists with local training, lobbying on legislative issues aff ecting us at the state capitol, and if we have a severe outage, we can call on them to assist our power restoration work. T is is one of the ways we live up to our seven cooperative principles, which includes “cooperation among cooperatives.” OEC is also a member of Western Farmers Electric


Cooperative (WFEC). T is is the organization that produces the power we buy at the wholesale level and enables us to provide safe, reliable, and effi cient power to you at the lowest possible cost. OEC board president Rusty Grissom sits on the WFEC Board of Directors to represent your interests there. But wait—there's more! OEC is also a member of


the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA), which unites electric cooperatives in the 47 states we serve. NRECA provides important benefi ts, such as representing our interests with federal lawmakers and the Administration (the executive branch of our government). NRECA also provides health and retirement benefi ts to our employees and training for board members and employees. NRECA is a member of both the National


Cooperative Business Association and the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA), which is made up of a wide range of cooperative businesses including those in agriculture, banking (credit unions), health care, housing, purchasing, and many others in more than 80 countries. Many of these businesses represent some of the best known global brands in the world.


8 www.okcoop.org August 2014 In 2013, the ICA released the “Blueprint for


a Cooperative Decade” designed to promote the cooperative business model as the best way to meet both the economic and social needs of individuals and communities. T e report (available at www.ica.coop for


free) describes the fi ve key areas all co-ops emphasize:  Participation (member engagement)  Sustainability (how we help our communities prosper)


 Identity (making sure people understand and showcase the cooperative business model)


 Legal Framework (making sure laws and regulations help, not harm, our ability to operate for your benefi t)


 Capital (ensure we have the money we need to fi nance our operations) Member-owners like you have a role to play in all of


these areas, but it is Participation (member engagement) that is critically important. We strive to have members actively participate in our governance through voting or running for our board of trustees. In the early days, OEC never could have existed


and thrived without the active participation of all our members. While technology and reliability have improved, we still need you to be involved. In many ways, it is more important than ever that you feel like you belong to your co-op. Margaret Mead, the cultural anthropologist, once


said, “Never doubt the ability of a small group of people to change the world, indeed it is the only thing that ever has.” OEC is connected to a world full of people who believe in cooperative principles and values, and we need you to be connected to us by more than just the electric line. So, get involved. Come to our annual meeting on Aug. 8, and make your voice heard. Together, we can make Co-op Nation stronger than ever.


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