February 28, 2023

Mission Driven: Celebrating The Cooperative Difference


It’s 6am and the alarm clock chirps. You reach over, shut it off, and turn on the lights to go downstairs. For breakfast, you start the coffee maker and heat up some instant oatmeal in the microwave using milk from the refrigerator. While waiting, you unplug your smart phone or iPad from its charger and read the morning headlines.

Then it’s back upstairs for a hot shower. While getting ready for work, you and your spouse use an electric shaver, a curling iron, or a blow dryer as your favorite podcast plays in the background. You tell the kids to turn off their smart phones, on which they are playing a game with friends from Arizona, and get ready for school.

You go back downstairs to reset the security alarm and, before getting into your car, you hit the garage door opener before backing out and going to work.  It’s 6:57am. You’ve been awake for less than an hour and yet you have already used electricity more than a dozen times, probably without ever thinking about it. And if we’re doing our job right, that’s how it should be. In fact, electricity has become inseparable from modern living, so much so that we barely even notice it’s there.

In the long history of humanity, electricity is a very recent miracle. For those in our rural counties, the hope and benefits of an electrified life only became possible 83 years ago, when they banded together to form Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association.

They did so because the investor-owned utilities of that day wouldn’t extend lines to their area because it cost too much and returned too little. So, in the ultimate act of gumption and self-reliance, PVREA members each chipped in some money and organized their own electric utility around the simple, powerful idea that it be run by and for whom it serves.

From those humble origins, look at what has been accomplished. PVREA now serves nearly 53,000 meters and generates more than $140 million in annual revenue.

More than these numbers however, PVREA is your partner in delivering the quality of life you need, want, and expect – the quality of life that makes everything from entertainment, to work, to the realization of personal dreams possible.

And that quality of life is being delivering from an organization you own and govern. In a nutshell, that’s the Cooperative Difference, and this year we celebrate PVREA being Mission Driven in all that we do!