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Mentoring The Next Generation of Co-op Communicators

 Mentoring The Next Generation of Co-op Communicators

Chief Communications Officer Keith Stapleton and Communications Specialist Rachel Frey helped welcome 43 new communications professionals to the cooperative family.

The New Co-op Communicators Orientation (NCCO) is a unique opportunity for new employees to learn about the Cooperative industry, electricity basics and communications tools. Attendees represented statewide associations, generation and transmission cooperatives and distribution cooperatives, like Sam Houston EC, from all corners of the nation.

“This was the third NCCO I have attended,” Frey said. “I was invited back as a past attendee to mentor the new communicators and help them translate the information they receive this week and make it applicable to their respective cooperative. It is also so amazing to see the new ideas the attendees bring to the table. I learn a great deal from them as well.”

Demand to attend this conference has been high, so NRECA has announced a second session. Stapleton was selected to lead the fall session, so attending the spring orientation allowed him to see the new communicators in action.

“NCCO is one of NRECA’s most popular training sessions,” said Stapleton. “Rachel has served as a mentor the past two years, and I was very proud of her as I watched her in a leadership role with this year’s class of 40-plus co-op communicators.”

During their time at NCCO, Stapleton and Frey advised new communicators by helping conduct media training exercizes, sharing recent examples of the Communication Department’s publications and digital communications tools.

“As we look to the future of NCCO, I am excited about stepping into my new role as host and chair for the fall session, beginning this September,” Stapleton said.

[PHOTO] Pictured with NRECA CEO Jim Matheson (third from right) are NCCO Committee members Jonathan Farmer of Consumers Power in Oregon, Hayley Leatherwood of the Oklahoma Association of Electric Cooperatives, Keith Stapleton, Laura Hengstenberg of Crawford Electric Cooperative in Missouri, Rachel Frey and Mike Wilson of Eastern Illini Electric Cooperative in Illinois. Matheson also spoke about the state of the electric cooperative industry.

Posted by Communications Specialist Rachel Frey, CCC