If it feels like our partner program just keeps growing, that’s because it does.
We’re super excited for the latest addition to our efactory partner family – Associated Electric Cooperative, Inc.
Rural America in the dark
Once upon a time, electric service was a luxury enjoyed only in cities, where the concentration of people was high enough to make it economical. Meanwhile, in sparsely populated rural areas where electrification wasn’t profitable, people were left in the dark — and left behind.
Finally, the federal government realized that if rural America were ever to be electrified, the country as a whole would have to lend a helping hand. So in 1935, Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed an executive order creating the Rural Electrification Administration.
A year later Congress gave the agency the money and power needed to promote rural electrification by providing low-cost loans to build transmission and generation facilities.
Rural cooperatives formed rapidly to take advantage of the favorable financing. Farm by farm, village by village, the lights went on across rural Missouri and rural America. Eventually, AECI’s major generation facilities, built primarily during the 1960s and 1970s, were financed with help from the REA.
Turning on the light
The electrification of rural America is often described as the single most dramatic event to touch the daily lives of this country’s farming families. It helped make this nation’s agriculture industry the most productive in the world and enabled the rural economy to grow in even more unexpected ways.
As late as 1961, the year Associated was formed, a large majority of its electric consumers were involved in farming. Today, about 10 percent claim to receive their principal income from agriculture. Meanwhile, business and industrial customers have grown to more than 30 percent of member energy sales, although they make up only 8 percent of cooperative members.
Since its formation in 1961 by six generation and transmission cooperatives, Associated Electric Cooperative has grown under the leadership of its member-directed board and management.
Today, Associated Electric has a strong financial position, diverse power supply, integrated transmission system and is positioned as one of the lowest-cost generation and transmission cooperatives in the nation.
The cooperative is committed to embracing technology and innovation in order to continue effectively serving members.
Let’s be partners
The efactory’s partner program is designed for organizations interested in supporting entrepreneurship and innovation throughout southwest Missouri. Partners receive exciting annual benefits in addition to the warm fuzzies that come with supporting the efactory.
Interested in learning more about what it means to be a partner? Contact us today to learn more! There’s always room at our table.