People. Power. Purpose. IAEC 2022 Annual Meeting celebrates achievements
The Iowa Association of Electric Cooperatives (IAEC), the trade association for Iowa’s electric cooperatives, conducted its 2022 Annual Meeting at the Sheraton West Des Moines Conference Center on December 1 and 2 with more than 350 registered attendees. Board directors and employees from Iowa’s locally owned electric co-ops received informative updates from the IAEC board and staff in addition to learning about industry trends and current events.
“Our theme of People. Power. Purpose. really sums up what electric cooperatives are all about,” remarked Roger Solomonson of Heartland Power Cooperative, who has completed his first year as IAEC board president. "Iowa's electric cooperatives should be proud of what their statewide association has accomplished on their behalf this year."
IAEC Executive Vice President and General Manager Chuck Soderberg covered several topics during his executive report including cybersecurity resources available to member co-ops and the importance of embracing an “all-of-the-above” power generation strategy to ensure reliability for member-consumers.
During the business meeting portion of the annual meeting, two directors were elected to the IAEC Board: Deena Moore of Southwest Iowa REC was elected to serve a three-year term representing District 4 and Bruce Amundson of Iowa Lakes Electric Cooperative was elected to serve a three-year term representing District 7. The IAEC Board would like to thank outgoing director Neal Heldt of Iowa Lakes Electric Cooperative and outgoing managers’ representative Brian Krambeer of MiEnergy Cooperative for their leadership and service to Iowa’s electric cooperatives. They were presented with commemorative plaques during the business meeting in recognition of their service.
Following the Annual Meeting, the new slate of directors reorganized and announced the following officers:
- IAEC Board President: Roger Solomonson, District 3 director from Heartland Power Cooperative
- IAEC Board Vice President: Gordon Greimann, District 6 director from Franklin REC
- IAEC Board Secretary/Treasurer: Kenneth VandenBerg, District 1 director from Chariton Valley Electric Cooperative
- IAEC Board Assistant Secretary/Treasurer: Deena Moore, District 4 director from Southwest Iowa REC
The IAEC Annual Meeting is also an opportunity for attendees to learn more about the electric industry and future trends that may impact rural Iowa’s economy and quality of life. IAEC presented several educational sessions, including:
- Electric cooperative cybersecurity panelists walked attendees through their response to a cyber incident that impacted their Colorado co-op in 2021 and how to take steps now to ensure business continuity.
- Maddie Schmitz, a student at Pella High School and the 2022 Iowa Youth Leadership Council Representative, talked about her experience attending the 2022 National Electric Cooperative Youth Tour in June and how it has inspired her.
- Energy expert and author Dr. Scott Tinker talked to attendees about the global challenge of providing affordable and reliable energy while also protecting the environment. Founder of the Switch Energy Alliance, Dr. Tinker works to bring industry, government, academia and other organizations together to address major societal challenges in energy, the environment and the economy.
- John Carr, VP of strategic growth at Dairyland Power Cooperative, along with CEO Brent Ridge, discussed the cooperative’s experience as it explores small modular nuclear reactor technology for power generation.
As part of the Annual Meeting program, IAEC coordinated an auction of personally donated items which raised $21,460 for the Iowa Friends of Rural Electrification (Iowa FORE) political action committee. The funds will stay in Iowa to aid state legislators and candidates who support electric cooperatives.
The Iowa Association of Electric Cooperatives is a trade association which represents the interests of locally owned electric cooperatives in the state, including 39 distribution co-ops and nine generation and transmission co-ops. Formed more than 80 years ago, IAEC provides many vital functions for its members including legislative representation, regulatory oversight, training and education services, safety programs, and communications support. Learn more at www.iowarec.org.
For More Information:
Erin Campbell, IAEC Director of Communications