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Powerful Living


Oklahoma Association of Electric Cooperatives unveils new conference center


Christmas Lights? Editor’s Words I


The Oklahoma Association of Electric Cooperatives has completed its new conference center adjacent to the organization’s existing headquarters in Oklahoma City. The expansion will enable electric cooperative member- systems to hold meetings and training events as well as host partnering organizations.


Photos by Hayley Leatherwood


f you haven’t already, you will probably soon put up a Christ- mas tree in your living room, adorning your home with the joy of this season. Many of us have treasured ornaments and family tra- ditions we look forward to when it’s time to put up the tree. In my home, putting up the Christmas tree is a joyous occasion; much anticipated each year by my two little helpers. But, to them, and prob- ably to many other children and adults alike, the “icing on the cake” is when we turn on the tree’s Christmas lights at night and delight in its shining beauty. I recently interviewed a longtime Oklahoma woman for


Anna Politano Editor,


Oklahoma Living


Merry Christmas


The Oklahoma Association of Electric Cooperatives & Oklahoma Living magazine wish each co-op member-owner a joyful and safe holiday season.


a story. During the interview, I learned that her family’s farm in Luther, Okla., received electricity for the fi rst time when she was 19 years old. As a child and young woman, she helped her parents with laborious chores inherent of households that did not have the conveniences of electric- ity. Still, her childhood was fi lled with happy moments. Her family’s farm was electrifi ed in 1943. When I asked her what she anticipated the most about having electricity she said, “What I really wanted was to have lights on our Christmas tree.” I was at a loss for words when I heard her answer. At that moment, I was reminded of how much I have, how much my children have and how much we take for granted. In our reality, having lights on a Christmas tree is normal; we don’t think much about it anymore—just like we don’t think much about it when we fl ip the light switch on every day to enjoy our modern-day luxuries. The “darkness” that was found in rural Oklahoma back then is still a reality for millions of families across the globe. Believe it or not, nearly 1.3 billion people in the world live without electricity. It’s a distant reality for you and me, but it couldn’t be more real to others. Oklahoma Living readers have once again done a fantastic


job in submitting photos for our annual Calendar Contest. The 2015 OKL Calendar, which contains stunning photos taken in Oklahoma, is now available for $10. Funds raised from the sales of this calendar will go to the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s International Foundation, a not-for-profi t organization committed to bringing electricity to the world, one village at a time. I encourage you to buy a calendar for yourself—and perhaps a few more to share with family and friends. By doing so, you will be helping someone else light up their Christmas tree. Merry Christmas!


Scan here to place your calendar order or visit


www.ok-living.coop/store/ DECEMBER 2014 5


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