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Cooperatives participate in Youth Day

SPRINGFIELD - Sen. Dale Righter and Rep. David Reis met with students representing Clay Electric Co-operative, Inc. during the Illinois Electric and Telephone Cooperatives Youth Day on Wednesday, April 13 in Springfield. More than 225 students from around Illinois had an opportunity to visit the State Capitol, view state government in action and question their legislators on key issues. They also were invited into the office of Secretary of State Jesse White.

            During lunch, Treasurer Michael Frerichs addressed students and chaperones and challenged them to take an interest in the political process and encouraged them to follow their dreams and do what interests them because life can take interesting turns and twists. Jyostna Bitra, the 2015-16 Illinois Youth Leadership Council Representative from Corn Belt Energy Corporation, spoke about her experience on the Youth to Washington tour and challenged attendees to maintain an interest in their cooperatives and the political process. While in Springfield, the students also visited the Supreme Court, Old State Capitol, and the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum. 

            Shown (L-R) are: Edward VanHoose, Executive Vice President/General Manager, Clay Electric Co-operative, Inc.; Evan VanHoose, Justice Robey, Sen. Dale Righter, Wakiko Ezaki, Rep. David Reis, Sam Larch and Chyanne Plumb.

            Youth Day is designed to introduce young rural leaders to state government. There were 24 co-ops from across the state represented at the event. 

            Clay Electric Cooperative is a member of Touchstone Energy - an alliance of 750 local, consumer-owned electric utilities around the country. Clay Electric Co-operative serves more than 3,233 meters over 923 miles of line in parts of Clay, Effingham, Fayette, Jasper, Marion, Richland and Wayne counties. For more information, visit