Southern Pine Electric celebrates 80 years of service

Southern Pine Electric celebrates 80 years of service

TAYLORSVILLE, MS (WDAM) - Southern Pine Electric is one of the largest electric cooperatives in the country, providing power for 11 counties throughout central and south Mississippi. Thursday, the cooperative held its annual membership meeting to celebrate a milestone in its decades of service.

A celebration of sorts was held at Southern Pine Electric’s facility in Taylorsville to commemorate 80 years of service.

“We’re here to celebrate 80 years of Southern Pine Electric and tell its members what they mean to us,” said Drummonds McAlpin, Southern Pine’s vice president of administration.

McAlpin said it’s a way to keep in touch with the folks the cooperative has built strong relationships with over the years.

“The members are invited, families, friends of the co-op. Venders are showing up, folks that we’ve had relationships over the years,” said McAlpin. “But, this is mainly about the members, a chance for them to see what we do, see their cooperative and to see our employees to meet with them and talk to them about the work we do here at Southern Pines.”

McAlpin said the annual meeting is also a means to reinforce the standard that the cooperative is held to.

“This is an accountability measure, so this is something we do to be able to show what we’ve been doing over the past year, report to the membership, give them a chance to speak as a democratic controlled cooperative and vote for their board of directors who oversee the membership of this cooperative,” said McAlpin.

The big event also featured a live demonstration of how electric lines work, so those who attended could see first-hand how they operate.

“We take that thing around and deal with different communities, different fire departments, and our first responders just to show them how dangerous electricity can be if you don’t treat it the right way,” McAlpin said.

The co-op also announced its adopt-a-school program for the second year. The school that will be sponsored this year is William J. Berry Elementary School in Jasper County.

“We’re excited about that. It’s a chance for us to give back to the children, to get them involved and let our employees get involved with the future of those kids,” said McAlpin.

Officials say Thursday’s event was held to celebrate the success of the 80-year cooperative.

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