January - Rock Energy Cooperative

You’re not alone in the dark
Nearly everything we do depends on electricity and we understand how frustrating it is
when you are left in the dark. When your power goes out, we are out there in all kinds of
weather working to restore your electricity as quickly and efficiently as possible.
The next time you lose power, please remember to be patient because your cooperative’s
linemen are on their way risking their lives to make yours more comfortable.
That’s what we’re here for, and you are our most important priority!
This message is brought to you by the
Touchstone Energy Cooperatives of Illinois.
Illinois Country Living • January 2015 •
More Power to You
Co-ops Invest in Future
with Youth Programs
Shane L. Larson,
Chief Executive Officer
t Rock Energy Cooperative, we take great pride
in highlighting the value of cooperative membership to young people. After all, they’re our
We provide a wide variety of programs that benefit
youth, from safety demonstrations for elementary school
students to scholarships for graduating high school seniors. We also sponsor the annual Youth Tour to Washington, D.C., which you can read about on page 16a.
In June 2014 we were proud to sponsor two students from our area on
the trip—Wyatt Reid,
a Hononegah High
School student, and Julia Kaster, who attends
Clinton High School.
During Youth Tour,
Wyatt was chosen by
his peers to represent
Illinois on NRECA’s
Youth Leadership
Council. This is the first
time Rock Energy has
had the honor of seeing
one of our young members on the council, and
we are delighted that
Wyatt was selected.
Our members from the Rockton area might have
seen Wyatt riding on our decorated bucket truck in the
Christmas Walk parade in December. Wyatt also plans
to come to our annual meeting on Monday, March 30. If
you are able to attend the meeting, perhaps you’ll have an
opportunity to meet a truly outstanding representative of
the cooperative.
The Youth Leadership Council helps young co-op
members develop strong leadership and presentation
skills and gain a broader understanding of energy cooperatives. It is a joint effort of energy cooperatives, statewide
associations, and the National Rural Electric Cooperative
Association. Wyatt is among 44 students chosen from
16a • Wisconsin Energy Cooperative News
energy co-ops throughout the country. It’s definitely an
honor, and we are proud to have him represent us.
For those members who weren’t aware, funding
for Youth Tour, college scholarships, and other youth
programs comes from the Federated Youth Foundation,
which receives money from unclaimed capital credits
and other contributions. When members move out of our
service territory, we make every effort to continue delivering capital credits checks to them for three years. But
when we don’t have a forwarding address and can’t locate
the former members, we
have the statutory option of using the money
to fund youth/educational programs. What a
wonderful legacy those
unclaimed capital credits
have provided.
Much has been said
or seen about the problems with youth throughout this country, but there
are many like Wyatt,
many young people who
are doing the right things.
They are not making the
news for all the wrong
reasons. For that, we
are grateful and pleased that we can play a small role in
helping educate and develop our future leaders.
I want to remind members about adjustments to
electric rates that are taking place Jan. 1. The co-op’s
board of directors approved these changes at its September meeting to deal with increased energy costs associated
with state and federal mandates.
Details about the adjustment are available by visiting www.rock.coop and clicking on the link in the lower
right corner of the page. If you have any questions about
the new rates, please give us a call. We are honored to
serve your energy needs and always look forward to hearing your suggestions.
Your Touchstone Energy® Cooperative
‘Our Futures
are Destined
for Greatness’
Wyatt Reid on Youth Tour with the
U.S. Capitol in the background.
Hononegah Student Represents Co-op on National Youth Leadership Council
hen Wyatt Reid hopped on a bus in Springfield,
Ill., with the Youth Tour to Washington, D.C.,
he had no idea he would be returning to the
nation’s capital the next month to represent Rock Energy
Cooperative and Illinois on the Youth Leadership Council.
“I am honored and overjoyed to continue this journey that began back on a bus to D.C.,” said Wyatt, a
senior at Hononegah High School in Rockton.
“As I continue my larger journey as a Youth
Leadership Council member, I can only
hope that the lessons and the fortunes that
I gained on the tour will stay with me as I
move on into the future.”
Rock Energy Cooperative sponsored
Wyatt and Julia Kaster, a senior at Clinton
High School, on the June 2014 trip to Washington, D.C. The 75 students on the Illinois trip joined
more than 1,600 students from across the nation to learn
about the important roles electric cooperatives play in
their communities. They also gained a personal understanding of American history and their role as citizens by
meeting with congressional representatives.
Students from Illinois selected Wyatt to represent
them on the Youth Leadership Council of the National
Rural Electric Cooperative Association. He returned to
Washington in July for a leadership workshop focused
on electric co-ops. This is the first time Rock Energy has
been represented on the council.
Council members will play an important role during
NRECA’s annual meeting this spring. Not only are they
recognized on stage, but they also have a hands-on experience with virtually every facet of the meeting, including
the resolutions process and helping members communicate with their legislators.
Wyatt met what he hopes will become
many lifelong friends on Youth Tour. “It’s a
great experience to be with so many like-minded
people,” he said.
The trip also filled him with a new sense
of patriotism. “The memorials we visited tell of
those who fought for our freedom, of those who
protected America’s bright future, of those who gave
us our chance at expanding the American legacy,” Wyatt
said in a speech at the annual meeting of the Association
of Illinois Electric Cooperatives.
“Visiting these memorials allowed us to pay our respects, but it also motivated us. The monuments we visited
illustrated America’s past and present glories. The memorials made us aware of the price of freedom and motivated
(Continued on 16c )
Rock Energy Cooperative • 16b
Rock Energy Cooperative
Youth Leadership
(Continued from page 16b)
us to not waste the liberties that we
have been given. Together, the monuments and the memorials compel
us to be outstanding citizens and to
carry the torch that lights the future.”
Wyatt also returned home with
a new respect for the function of
cooperatives in our society.
“Before I began this trip, I’ll
be honest, I knew little about cooperatives,” Wyatt said. “My dad paid
energy bills to our cooperative, and
that’s pretty much all I knew. But as
I learned more about the non-profit
democratic system of cooperatives,
I began to see them as simple and
practical. Cooperatives are so simple
that they can succeed anywhere. And
they’re so practical, so efficient, that
they can succeed everywhere. This is
the true cooperative difference that I
kept hearing so much about.”
When he graduates from
Hononegah High School in June,
Wyatt plans to attend the University
of Alabama at Tuscaloosa where he
will study environmental or electrical
engineering. Before Youth Tour, Wyatt said he was interested in pursuing
a career in engineering or law, but
the experience helped him focus on
the specific form of engineering to
pursue as an undergrad.
Wyatt encourages students to
submit their Youth Tour applications
so they also can experience what
many have called a trip of a lifetime.
“If connecting the future leaders
of the NRECA was the main purpose
of the trip, then it succeeded beautifully,” Wyatt said. “But the setting
itself, the nation’s capital, defined the
trip as well. It made us feel that our
futures are destined for greatness.”
16c • Wisconsin Energy Cooperative News
How to Apply for 2015 Trip
Rock Energy Cooperative will fully sponsor two high school juniors to participate in the 2015 Youth Tour to Washington, D.C., which
will take place June 13–19.
Representing the co-op during the 2014 trip were Julia Kaster of
Clinton High School and Wyatt
Reid of Hononegah High School.
Applicants must be children
of Rock Energy members and
reside in the co-op’s service territory. The all-expense-paid trip
includes transportation, lodging,
meals, and admissions to events.
Round-trip travel is by motor
coach from Springfield, Ill. Travel
to Springfield is not included.
Current high school juniors
who would like to be considered
for Youth Tour can get an application form at either our Janesville
or South Beloit offices or online
at www.rock.coop.
Applications must be
submitted to the co-op by Feb.
20. If you have questions,
please call Barbara Uebelacker,
communications specialist, at
(866) 752-4550. You can also
Julia Kaster and Wyatt Reid
on Youth Tour.
email her at [email protected].
Rock Energy Participates in Rockton Christmas Parade
Rock Energy
employees and
their families
participated in
Rockton’s Lighted
Christmas Parade
on Saturday, Dec.
6. Crowds lined
the parade route,
which started at
Hononegah High
School and ended
Get Connected
Last Chance…
Check out these great deals
offered with your Co-op
Connections Card.
Dodd Roofing, 1011 Third Ave. E., Brodhead –
(608) 897-4547 – www.doddroofing.net
Roofing, siding,
and windows.
All roof pitches,
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rubber, steel, tear-offs, new roofs. Licensed and insured.
It is our goal to ensure the complete satisfaction of every
customer, offering knowledgeable and friendly service at
competitive rates.
Free Ridge Vent on Complete Reroof
OR Buy 10 Windows, Get 1 Free
Dave’s Ace Hardware, 430 S. John Paul Rd., Milton,
(608) 868-2843, and 755 Brown School Road,
Evansville, (608) 882-4646 – www.davesace.com
Retail hardware and rental
store. Your Mosquito
Magnet distributor. Extensive
list of rental equipment.
Professional repair on
screens, windows, and
acrylics. Our commitment to you: Your Satisfaction
Guaranteed, Period!
$5 Off Any Purchase of $50 or More
Jan. 12 is the deadline to apply for Rock Energy
Cooperative scholarships for 2015. Go to
www.rock.coop for details or call (866) 752-4550.
They’re out of sight, but don’t
forget about your air ducts.
Taking care of them can save
money and energy. Check
ducts for air leaks. Take care
of minor sealing jobs with
heat-approved tape, especially
in attics and in vented crawl
spaces. Call the pros for major
ductwork repairs.
Healthy Savings Discounts
The same program that offers discounts at local merchants
and has saved Rock Energy members $105,000 on prescriptions also provides significant savings on dental, vision,
hearing, lab and imaging services, and chiropractic work.
To locate providers that participate in the Healthy Savings
program, call (800) 800-7616 or go to www.rock.coop,
click on the Co-op Connections Card, and look under the
Healthy Savings tab. Be sure to have your Co-op Connections Card handy.
Add Up Your Savings!
Tell us how much you have saved
by using your Co-op Connections
Card. If you have a story you’d like
to share, e-mail Barbara Uebelacker
at [email protected] or call her at
(866) 752-4550.
Source: U.S. Department of Energy
Shane Larson, CEO
Barbara Uebelacker,
P.O. Box 1758
2815 Kennedy Rd.
Janesville, WI 53547
P.O. Box 126
15229 Willowbrook Rd.
South Beloit, IL 61080
(608) 752-4550 • (866) 752-4550
Rock Energy Cooperative • 16d