Tri-State’s board and management staff greeted nearly 400 member cooperative representatives, industry officials and other guests at the association’s 60th annual meeting held yesterday (April 4) in the Hub Thompson Conference Center. This year’s event carries a theme celebrating “the cooperative spirit” and the seven cooperative principles that guide and govern Tri-State and its membership of 44 electric cooperatives and public power districts.
Tri-State’s annual meeting agenda, which follows the regular monthly board meeting, is formatted into two half-day sessions, with the first afternoon (held yesterday) devoted to a formal annual meeting program of presentations and reports and today’s morning session, which is a forum for the membership to hear about last year’s accomplishments, progress on board goals and initiatives and updates on future plans and challenges facing the organization.
This year’s guest speaker at the annual meeting was Congressman Cory Gardner, who represents Colorado’s 4th Congressional District. Congressman Gardner, who serves on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, discussed his recognition of the potential impacts of proposed environmental rules that could jeopardize continued reliable and affordable power. “The EPA is proposing regulations that could put a stop to coal-fired power,” he said. “I will continue to defend regulations that make sense and preserve your rural consumers’ access to electricity that they can afford.”
Also making a brief appearance at the annual meeting was Congressman Ed Perlmutter, who represents Colorado’s 7th District.
In keeping with the meeting’s cooperative spirit theme and recognizing that 2012 is the “International Year of the Cooperative,” executive vice president and general manager Ken Anderson’s report was keyed on the seven cooperative principles, which are: 1) voluntary and open membership, 2) democratic member control, 3) member economic participation, 4) autonomy and independence, 5) education, training and information, 6) cooperation among cooperatives and 7) concern for community.
Board chairman Rick Gordon’s report focused on a year wrought with challenges and accomplishments. “This past year was without a doubt the most complex year that I have experienced during my 18 years of service on the Tri-State board,” he said. “But I am proud to report that your board has done an excellent job of stepping up to meet those challenges and we have made a lot of progress toward meeting our goals of securing long-term resources and ensuring financial stability for the future,” said the board chairman.