From the January issue of The Tennessee Magazine, "Between the Lines" is written by SVEC President/CEO Mike Partin.
As I prepare this column, a tumultuous year is coming to a close, and I’m looking forward to the promise and opportunity that 2021 holds. The beginning of a new year is a time I pause before a blank slate, review the accomplishments and trials of the previous 12 months and look ahead to my next goals.
Last year certainly presented challenges unlike any we’ve ever seen. A global pandemic led to economic hardship, and combine those factors with a divisive political climate and it’s easy to let those struggles drag us down and dim our outlook on the days to come. However, in reassessing how we’ve met these challenges, I’m certain that brighter days are ahead.
Here at Sequachee Valley Electric Cooperative, our dedicated employees have risen to the occasion. We adjusted our hours and policies to keep everyone safe. We continued our outreach to our communities — our hometowns — helping struggling neighbors in these uncertain times. Folks at the co-op buckled down in adopting new safety practices while continuing to provide the high-quality service our consumer-members expect and deserve.
It hasn’t always been easy, but our goal continues to be to go above and beyond in service to our communities. It’s not enough to simply supply electricity. At SVEC, we think of ourselves as craftsmen. That means we’re not simply building something; we’re building it well — with pride and purpose.
It’s not enough for us to pick up the phone when you call with questions. We give you options for engaging with your electric cooperative so you can use the method that’s most convenient for you. We ensure your safety in our lobbies and in the community where our employees work outside the office. We provide opportunity for our future members, encouraging the area’s youth to dream big and helping them develop the skills they need to join tomorrow’s workforce. We provide energy-saving information so you can get the most out of your energy dollars.
I can’t express how proud I am of our entire team for showing such resilience. Like linemen who brave the fiercest weather or overcome long odds to string lines to the most remote reaches of our service area, all our employees are craftsmen with keen eyes and uncommon skills earned through busted knuckles and sleepless nights. Through service and sacrifice, we’re the people who build stuff — artisans whose work in wood, wire and steel light the countryside and energize our communities.
SVEC takes great pride in the work we do, the infrastructure we build and the communities we serve. We are crafting the future of our rural and suburban areas — investing in comfort and connection, in energy and opportunity, in people and places.
This year, we will also be building up our locally owned and operated independent businesses by featuring one each month in the SVEC section of The Tennessee Magazine (pages 20-21). Get to know the bold, innovative entrepreneurs whose big ideas are building up our small towns in our 2021 Small Towns, Big Ideas series.
We’re building a brighter Tennessee.