Over 500 members attended the 80th Annual Meeting of Wood County Electric Cooperative, Inc., (WCEC), held Friday afternoon at Governor Jim Hogg City Park in Quitman. Prior to the meeting a free concert featuring the fun and entertaining Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Bluegrass Band was a real crowd pleaser.
WCEC Board President and WCEC District 1 Director Pat Lindley announced the results of the board of director’s election, which was conducted by mail and tabulated by accounting firm Knuckols, Duvall, Hallum & Co. He reported the reelection of Brent Glenn for District 4, as well as himself for District 1.
Lindley also announced that the board of directors voted to retire capital credits, saying, “We will retire $1 million in capital credits which is 39 % of 2017 margins. In total, over the last 28 years over $26 million dollars has been returned to our members. We appreciate you supporting our electric co-op and in turn our ability to return capital credits to you.”
After updating members on regular cooperative business, Debbie Robinson, CEO/General Manager of WCEC, introduced the the Wood County Electric Charitable Foundation Board. President Wiley Vonner, from Hawkins along with Vice President Robin Johnson of Quitman, handed out the foundations second disbursement of checks. The WCECF is funded by WCEC members through Operation Roundup. The recipients of these 6 checks, totaling $43,000, were the Van Zandt Veterans Memorial in Canton ($2,000), the Fouke Community Center in Hawkins ($3,000), the Quitman Arboretum ($3,140), the Midway Volunteer Fire Department of Van Zandt ($5,000), and the Kindness Kottage of Mineola ($5,000).
About these donations, Robinson said, “Today marks one year since we kicked off Operation Roundup at the 2017 Annual Meeting. Our members are to be congratulated on their overwhelming support. With today’s grants, their generosity has allowed over $91,000 in grants to be given locally. This money will build wheelchair ramps, uplifted seniors, improve meeting spaces, fill the shelves of food banks, and fund many other worthy causes. Together, our members are infusing our communities with these gifts that matter to us all.”
After the business meeting closed, the cooperative held the annual prize drawing. Jack Baucum, second grade student at Mineola ISD, 8-year-old son of Chuck and Terri Baucum, of Mineola, assisted with that by pulling the tickets. In all, over 90 prizes were handed out, made possible through generous donations by WCEC’s vendors. During the prize drawing, the winner of the grand prize, a 60” HD flat screen TV was Robert and Lorene Jones of Ben Wheeler.
The 10-members who won $100 in electricity credit were also announced. They are:
Sarah Ammons, Ben Wheeler
James Knight, Mineola
Lena Bush, Red Springs
Richard McDowell, Alba
Julia Inman, Lindale
Larry Patterson, Lindale
Ada Jones, East Point
Robert Pendergrass, Mineola
Patricia King, Van
Kenneth Scott, Ben Wheeler