It’s October, and that means cooperatives across the United States are observing National Co-op Month 2022. It’s a time to celebrate the cooperative way of business, which values people and empowerment over profits. Cooperatives are formed by groups of people who aren’t motivated by making money, but by a specific need for products and services. They pool resources to obtain the needed product or service as efficiently and affordably as possible.

In the Guadalupe Valley of 1938, the needed product was electricity. The farmers who founded GVEC understood that if they didn’t bring electricity to rural communities across the Guadalupe Valley, no one else would. To this day, GVEC remains a not-for-profit cooperative specializing in affordable electricity. We’ve grown not only in terms of the geographical area we deliver electricity to, but have expanded to offer AC/heating products and services, electrician services, internet, and home solar and battery storage.

Cooperative Partnerships for National Co-op Month 2022

The word “cooperative” is close to “cooperation.” This is no coincidence. Cooperation happens when people work together towards a common goal that benefits the entire group. This is the essence of the cooperative way of business. And that spirit of cooperation extends beyond the members of an individual cooperative. GVEC, for example, is itself a member of a business-level cooperative called Texas Electric Cooperatives (TEC), which we joined in 2018. TEC is made up of numerous other electric cooperatives across Texas, each of which depends on this not-for-profit organization to help purchase supplies and equipment as affordably as possible. We maintain numerous other relationships rooted in such interorganizational “cooperation” too. These include ongoing involvement with community-based nonprofit organizations across our service territory—such relationships are the driving force behind our Power Up™ grant program.

A Star-Worth Partnership in Energy Efficiency

We’re also proud to participate in the EPA’s nonprofit Energy Star® program. The Energy Star label certifies that, through third-party testing, a given product uses less electricity than comparable non-certified models. This saves consumers money—a goal all cooperatives work towards in serving members. Energy Star saves electricity, too, an aim that serves GVEC and its membership perfectly. This is why GVEC has proudly been an Energy Star partner since 2008. It’s also why that, as we think about National Co-op Month 2022, we’re pleased to also acknowledge National #EnergyStarDay on October 12 as part of the celebrations.

For more information on the Energy Star program, visit energystar.gov.

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