Manager’s Message — December 2020

Not the Year We Expected

Dear Co-op Community Members:

Debi Wilson

As we wrap up 2020, I reflected on this time last year. There was hope and excitement for a new year and decade. Each new year brings a feeling of opportunity and optimism, yet we all know 2020 has not been the year any of us expected!

Who knew on March 13—Friday the 13th to be exact—so many changes would happen in our communities? Life as we knew it began to look a lot different; offices closed, schools closed, community meetings and activities were canceled, and sadly our graduates celebrated in very different ways. While many of these things were difficult, there was still positivity around us.

This year, I witnessed the flexibility and dedication of our staff and our members. Staff had to make many adjustments throughout the year on where and how they worked. Work had to be completed from a distance, and many of our service processes had to be adapted to maintain social distancing. Members had to adjust by completing all communications electronically with our team; we are hopeful for the day we can meet again in the office for a payment or a quick hello. Serving our community is what makes us smile. Thank you to everyone for your understanding and flexibility these past several months.

This year, we also got to watch our community step up in creative ways and support one another. Zoom was used for meetings and celebrations. Our schools came up with creative ways to celebrate graduates. Then, during the devastating fires, we watched our community rally around those who had lost so much. I am also proud of the donations Lane Electric made to our five local food pantries during this time of need. We gave $1,250 to each pantry for a total of $6,250. Added to that, one of our lenders, CoBank, matched the donations, giving an additional $1,250 to each food bank. We are a community of givers, and even during difficult times, it is amazing to witness the hearts and perseverance of others.

In closing, it is with a heavy heart I share the passing of a beloved Lane Electric employee. On November 9, Dave D’Avanzo passed away. He retired from Lane Electric in 2018 after 16 years of dedicated service. Dave was kind, generous, and loved serving others. He will be greatly missed by our employees, members, industry associates, and our community. We will have a tribute to Dave in a future Ruralite magazine. Our hearts are with his family.

I wish you and your families health and happiness during this holiday season.

Debi Wilson