Oklahoma’s electric cooperatives have sponsored the Electric Cooperative Youth Tour, a fully funded, weeklong trip to Washington, D.C., for over 50 years. As not-for-profit community-based organizations, we believe it’s our duty to invest in the next generation of leaders.
The current delegation of more than 70 winners representing more than 25 of Oklahoma’s electric co-op distribution systems can be found on page 6 of this edition. This experience goes beyond a mere trip to Washington, D.C. The Youth Tour is a transformative opportunity for high school juniors, showcasing the power of democracy and the importance of leadership.
In addition to learning about electric co-ops and the co-op business model, delegates will spend a day on Capitol Hill, engaging in face-to-face meetings with Oklahoma senators and members of Congress. They will also establish lifelong friendships with other young leaders from across the country.
These young men and women will make our communities better places to live and lead businesses that will provide good jobs and valuable services. Our young members will bring fresh perspectives, innovative ideas and boundless energy to the table. Their ability to adapt quickly to changing circumstances, coupled with their digital fluency and natural inclination toward collaboration, make them valuable contributors in today’s fast-paced, interconnected world.
Participant eligibility, application processes and selection criteria are determined by each electric co-op. Please consult your local co-op for more information and to prepare for next year’s selection. Remember, investing in young leaders is not solely a responsibility; it is our opportunity to shape a better future.