Cooperatives Build Community
October 7, 2021
The cooperative business model has a history of building community from the ground up. Nearly a century ago when utilities chose not to serve rural areas of America, it was farmers and ranchers who banded together to create the electric cooperatives that would power not only their homes and businesses, but also opportunities for the communities they live in.
That’s because while the main product electric co-ops like Stearns Electric supply is energy, that isn’t our sole business purpose. More than just power lines, co-ops build jobs, trust, communities and hope. We work to improve the quality of life for those we they serve. We donate time, energy and resources to organizations that help those in need and take a leadership role in community development projects.
“Our co-op was built by our community and continues to belong to the community,” said CEO, Robin Doege. “Since we’re a member-driven organization, we listen, adapt and grow over time to meet the needs of those we serve. The more viewpoints we hear, the better we are able to reflect the needs of all corners of our community.”
In addition to delivering safe, reliable and affordable electricity to members, electric cooperatives adhere to seven guiding principles that reflect core values of honesty, transparency, equity, inclusion, and service to the greater good of the community.
These values are demonstrated when Stearns Electric presents scholarships to students on a path to receive higher education, when we help coordinate loans for small businesses to expand in the area and when our employees volunteer for local organizations.
As a member, you contribute to the success of our communities, too, by participating in Operation Round Up®. This voluntary program rounds up your electric bill to the next dollar, which the Co-op pools into a trust fund until it’s disbursed to a variety of charitable, educational, community and youth-related programs and events.
Maintaining a thriving community is a team effort — neighbors helping neighbors. You built us, and we’ll continue working to serve you.