You Own Your Cooperative

You Own Your Cooperative
By Steve Foss, CEO

October is cooperative month, and I wanted to take this opportunity to talk about how special it is to be part of a cooperative. 

The generations before were a part of something extraordinary and ground-breaking. More than 75 years ago folks gathered to form a distribution cooperative that would empower them to better their lives and make living in rural Kansas just a little bit easier. They solved the problem of getting electricity to places investor-owned utilities weren’t interested in serving. Being a member of FreeState is an investment. 

FreeState is not-for-profit. When we make more money than we need to serve our purpose, it goes right back to our members in the form of capital credits. Instead of profits in shareholders pockets, we return that money to our members because we are a rural electric cooperative and profit does not drive us. Members drive us. We exist to provide you with safe, reliable, and affordable electricity and we accomplish this in a way that is beneficial and improves the quality of life in our territory. 

A board of trustees you elect locally controls FreeState. Also, the staff that works here at the co-op are the same friends and neighbors you’ve known for years. We all take pride in serving you. Many of our employees are also members. They live and work and serve their communities right alongside you. 

We understand that you don’t have a choice when it comes to who powers your home, but you do have a choice in how you engage with the cooperative. You are a member-owner. You aren’t just a customer. You aren’t only an account number. You own a portion of the utility that powers your home. Your neighbors who are powered by municipal entities or investor-owned utilities can’t say that. 

We invite you to have a conversation with the board, and the staff behind the scenes – because we all work for you. Your membership matters to us because we are not just providing you with power, we are providing you with a better quality of life. As always, if you have questions about this content, we encourage you to contact us at 800-794-1989 or email