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Today is July 15, 2020


Supporting your local cooperative to serve you better

By Michael Callahan

Michael Callahan
Michael Callahan,
Executive Vice President/CEO
EPAs of Mississippi

The true power of locally-owned electric cooperatives are the consumer-members living and working in the communities they serve – and when those cooperatives are connected, their collective energy gives them statewide reach.

The Electric Cooperatives in Mississippi (ECM) serves in this “connector” role, supporting Mississippi’s cooperative members. On a statewide level, ECM’s main objective is to complement what Mississippi’s electric cooperatives do at the local level. By amassing this collective – and important – work under one association, we ultimately form a stronger, unified voice. This voice, in turn, supports strategic efforts that aim to positively impact all of our members across rural Mississippi.

ECM represents and serves 26 electric cooperatives, helping provide electric services to nearly 800,000 meters – that translates to more than 1.8 million Mississippians served, covering 85 percent of the state’s landmass.

In our statewide capacity, it is our commitment to both facilitate and lead efforts in safety, education and training, economic development, legislative affairs, public policy, tax and regulatory matters and regional planning – all of which help each Mississippi electric cooperative run more smoothly, successfully and serve its members better. 

In addition to the “business” side of our operation, ECM also takes a leadership role in programs supported by local electric cooperatives, such as youth outreach. One of those is the Electric Cooperative Youth Tour, a national program that sends more than 1,800 high school students from 43 states to Washington, D.C., every June. This year, 81 students from Mississippi, representing 20 local cooperatives, participated. 

The Youth Tour, which you can read about in the following pages, provides students an inside look into state and federal government operations as well as incredible opportunities to learn leadership skills and build relationships that will serve them for a lifetime. Another significant outcome of the program is that these students develop strong relationships with their sponsoring electric cooperative and often speak or volunteer at annual meetings and other cooperative events. The results are meaningful community service hours and experiences that often inspire college application essays or can lead to technical or member services career opportunities after graduation.

ECM’s role as “connector” also includes publishing Today in Mississippi. Through this monthly publication, we work hand-in-hand with your electric cooperative to bring our 470,000-plus readers stories celebrating life in Mississippi and our rich culture as well as important local industry news. And, don’t forget that next month’s issue will debut in the new magazine format, which we are excited to share with you! 

These are just a few of the many ways that ECM supports local electric cooperatives across the state, and everything we do is focused on this one goal: working alongside our cooperatives to better serve you, our communities and Mississippi. 

Visit us at to learn more.

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