Annual Meeting

The Annual Meeting is not only a chance to visit with other members of our co-op community – it’s also a great opportunity to learn about co-op news and events, get to know your co-op staff, and vote in-person for the Director Elections. Our annual meeting makes it possible for us to gather feedback from you by providing a forum where you can let us know how we can better serve you, our member-owners.

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87th Annual Meeting minutes.

Annual Report Archives.

Attendance Grows at 88th Annual Meeting

The 88th Annual Meeting for Oakdale Electric Cooperative (OEC) was held on Saturday, April 29, at Tomah Recreation Park. Attendance increased from last year to 172 registered members with 227 total attendees.

General Manager & CEO Chris Tackmann spoke on the rate study being conducted and the rate challenges associated. “Since we are a distribution co-op, 65% of our operating costs goes to wholesale power from Dairyland Power Cooperative,” stated Tackmann. “To work toward a lower carbon footprint and offset high demand costs, we are currently building two solar gardens.” Tackmann expanded on the new solar gardens located in Mauston and New Lisbon. Including the current solar garden in Necedah and the two under construction, the gardens will be able to power approximately 856 homes annually.

Guest speaker Jeremy Browning, Vice President of Generation at Dairyland Power Cooperative (DPC), continued with Tackmann’s statement, “Market volatility with natural gas, de-carbonization, and congestion are the primary causes for rates to inflate.” “However, if you can build strategically in your system something like solar to combat peak energy usage times, you’re drawing less energy from DPC to combat those peak energy times,” Browning added. He went on to say that DPC operates in the lower 25% of wholesale rates in the Midwest area, including investor owned utilities that are prominent in urban areas. Browning stated, “It is a challenge at DPC and by its board to operate in the most efficient and reliable way to stay in that lower 25% for our member distribution co-ops like Oakdale Electric and you, the members.”

Tackmann added that $1.2 million will be going back to the membership in the October timeframe this year.  The floor was opened up for member comments and questions. Much of the discussion related to the transition to clean energy and peak energy usage times.

Cooperative members had equal voting rights and three options this year to vote by mail-in, electronic or in-person to bring a total of 1,786 ballots cast in the contested director election. Incumbent Robin Craker ran unopposed for district 7 and was re-elected. In district 1, incumbent Robert Hess was re-elected against opposing candidate Patricia Stanislawski.

One $250 bill credit and five $100 bill credits were drawn and the winners are as follows: Robert Troka, Lyndon Station ($250); Joan Burkhalter, Tomah; Pat Johnson, Warrens. Robert Pedersen, Warrens; Richard Raith, Mauston; and Raymond Russell, Necedah.

New this year, five members were drawn to rent OEC’s Electric Vehicle (EV) for a weekend to provide members’ access to the EV experience. Those winners are as follows: Raymond Drew, Warrens; Lawrence Hagemann, Mauston; Pat Johnson, Warrens; James Phillips, Tomah; and Kanda Vopelak, Necedah.

Two members were drawn to receive a maple tree that will be planted by co-op employees. Those winners are Nana Griffin and Pat Johnson, both from Warrens.

Special guests in attendance was OEC’s attorney John Behling; guest speaker DPC’s Vice President of Generation Jeremy Browning; Wisconsin State Representative Nancy Vandermeer; and Wisconsin Electric Cooperative Association representative Dana Kelroy.

At the reorganizational meeting, all officer positions remained unchanged. They are as follows: board chairman, Richard Barrett; vice chairman, Gregory Eirschele; secretary, Jonathan Williams; treasurer, James Van Wychen; assistant secretary, Deana Protz; DPC director, Robert Hess; and alternate DPC director – Richard Barrett.

Refreshments and donuts were served prior to the meeting. Following the business meeting, members were given a $10 Culver’s gift card and ice cream token.

View the 2022 Annual Report