On July 18, 1940 a large number of people met at Tom's Hall to hear Mr. Lee Lloyd tell about the REA plan to procure electricity for Washington Island.
A temporary Board of Directors was elected consisting of William C. Cornell, Charles O. Hansen, Andrew Cornell, Conrad A. Anderson, Martha Stelter, Theodore Gudmundsen, Anna Gunnlaugsson, George O. Mann, George Hansen, Robert Gunnerson and Arthur Hansen. These same eleven people became the incorporators of the Washington Island Electric Cooperative. The original Articles of Incorporation were accepted and filed by Secretary of State Fred Zimmerman on July 31, 1940.
Article III of the Articles of Incorporation states that the conduct of the business of the Cooperative shall be upon the Co-operative plan and the purposes for which it is formed are:
(a) to generate, manufacture, purchase, acquire and accumulate electric energy for its members and to transmit, distribute, furnish, sell and dispose of such electric energy to its members only, and to construct, erect, purchase, lease as lessee and in any manner acquire, own, hold, maintain, operate, sell, dispose of, lease as lessor, exchange and mortgage plants, buildings, works, machinery, supplies, apparatus, equipment and electric transmission and distribution lines or systems necessary, convenient or useful for carrying out and accomplishing any or all of the foregoing purposes.
Article III, Section 1 of the Cooperative By-Laws states that the business and affairs of the Cooperative shall be managed by a Board of seven Directors which shall exercise all of the power of the Cooperative except such as by law or by the Articles of Incorporation of the Cooperative or by the by-laws, concurred upon or reserved to the members.
Article X of the Cooperative By-Laws states that the Board of Directors of the Cooperative shall have full power and authority, without authorization by the members of the Cooperative, to borrow money from the United States of American, or any agency or instrumentality thereof, or from a national financing institution organized on a cooperative plan for the purpose of financing its member's programs, projects and undertakings.
We are a Cooperative. A Cooperative is people working together, not for the purpose of increasing wealth, but to provide products and services at a fair price. Our purpose for being, is to provide adequate, reliable electric service for our members. We should remember this in all decisions we make.