Hugh Cook, Youth Leadership Council spokesperson and Wyoming Rural Electric Association member, addresses the 2012 NRECA Annual Meeting.
San Diego, CA.; March 6, 2012 — Today Hugh Cook, a freshman at Central Wyoming College from Rozet, Wyo., addressed more than 8,000 electric cooperative leaders from across the country at the 2012 Annual Meeting of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA).
Cook was sponsored by the Wyoming Rural Electric Association to represent Wyoming on NRECA’s Youth Leadership Council (YLC) in July 2011, during which he was chosen as this year’s national spokesperson for the 42 member YLC.
In his speech, Cook recounted his experience with the Electric Cooperative Youth Tour, a group of more than 1,500 high school students who are sponsored jointly by NRECA, local electric cooperatives and statewide associations in 45 states to meet in Washington, D.C. in June of each year. The students meet with their elected representatives and senators, attend educational seminars, and visit historic landmarks.
Cook reflected on his grandfather’s service in WWII and noted that our nation is strongest when Americans forget their political differences and unite with common a common purpose.
“When I look out into this audience, or see my fellow Youth Leadership Council members on stage, I see thousands of electric co-op leaders. I don’t see individual states. I don’t see political parties. I see one, united electric cooperative family. It is that unity—that strength of purpose—which drives our strength of service,” Cook said in his speech.
Each state attending the Youth Tour selects a representative for the NRECA Youth Leadership Council. The YLC delegates attend a weeklong summer Leadership Conference in Washington, D.C. A national spokesperson is selected during the conference to address both the NRECA Annual Meeting and the Youth Tour delegates the following summer.
Hugh Cook is the son of Shawn and Vicki Cook. He is a freshman at Central Wyoming College in Riverton, Wyo. where he is majoring in Radio and Television Production.
The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association is the national service organization that represents the nation’s more than 900 private, not-for-profit, consumer-owned electric cooperatives, which provide service to 42 million people in 47 states.
More than 8,000 representatives from cooperative electric utilities across the nation are attending the NRECA Annual Meeting March 4-7 in San Diego, Calif., during which they will set NRECA’s legislative and organizational agenda for 2012. In addition to considering and acting upon policy resolutions, delegates receive reports from NRECA officials, hear addresses by key public figures and business experts, and attend educational forums on major issues affecting electric cooperatives and their consumer owners.