CEO’s Message — April 2020

Posted: April 10, 2020

Here to serve you

CEO Michael S. McWaters
Michael S. McWaters
Executive V.P./CEO

The last month has been difficult for people across the state and throughout our country. As the seriousness of the coronavirus threat has become more clear, I know many of our members have faced a rapid change in their day-to-day lives. Maybe you have found yourself suddenly out of work, concerned for your health or that of your family and friends, or are just learning to deal with the isolation that comes with social distancing.

We have also felt the impact of these changes here at Suwannee Valley Electric Cooperative. We have changed the format of this year’s annual meeting, and on April 25, will hold a virtual meeting that will be live streamed on our Facebook page. We have also been forced to postpone popular events like the Suwannee Valley Cornhole Tournament.

These were difficult decisions to make, but as a cooperative, SVEC has always put the needs of our consumer-members and community first. While we will miss these opportunities to gather together as a cooperative, we believe it is important to make everyone’s health and safety the top priority.

One thing that won’t change, however, is our dedication to bringing you reliable electric service. During a time when many members are spending more time at home and working remotely, that service has become even more critical. SVEC will continue to maintain our system and respond to outages while also taking steps to ensure that our employees are able to work safely.

A key part of that electric system, which many members have probably seen but might not fully understand, is the network of substations. These facilities play an important role in helping SVEC transform the electricity we get from Seminole Electric Cooperative into energy we can distribute to each of our members.

If you’ve ever been curious about how substations work or where they fit into our electric system, I encourage you to spend a few minutes reading about them in this newsletter. SVEC staff put in a great deal of time to maintain and inspect the cooperative’s substations, and I know we all appreciate their efforts.

You’ll also find a Q&A with our newest trustee, Cynthia Boyette. Before her retirement, Cynthia spent 30 years serving her neighbors while working at the Suwannee River Water Management District and the Florida Department of Transportation. I know she’ll fit right in on the board and be an excellent representative for our consumer-members in District 8.

And if you’re looking for some good news in our local community, you can also find a quick rundown of what SVEC has been able to accomplish for students through Operation Round Up® so far this year. While these are challenging times, community efforts like this give me confidence that we can work together to get through them.

Until next month, stay safe, and thank you for the privilege of serving you.