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February 1, 2023

2023 Annual Meeting

Mark your calendar! We invite you to join us on Saturday, April 1, 2023, for Pioneer’s 2023 Annual Meeting. The event will include a complete recap of the work accomplished in 2022 and what’s to come in 2023. Those attending will be provided a warm breakfast. The meeting will take place at Upper Valley Career Center in Piqua and is open to all members of Pioneer Electric Cooperative. Registration is required and seating will be limited to the first 300 registrants. Door prizes will be awarded. Individuals must be present for a chance to win. Click here to register Agenda...

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January 30, 2023

Five Ways to Fight the Winter Chill & Save Energy

We all have our favorite season. Some people love crisp, cool weather and bundling up under a favorite blanket, while others prefer the warm temperatures summer brings and all fun outdoor activities that go with it. But there’s one thing we can all agree on: high winter bills are never fun. Pioneer is here to help you find ways to manage your home energy use and keep winter bills in check. Here are five tips to help increase your home’s energy efficiency this winter: Mind the thermostat. This is one of the easiest ways to manage your home energy use....

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January 12, 2023

6th Annual Student Art Contest

It’s that time again – Pioneer’s Annual Art Contest! This year’s theme is “Cooperative Principles.” The art contest is open to children K–8th grade. Categories: K–2, 3–5, 6–8 grades. Submissions should depict one of Pioneer’s seven cooperative principles. Artwork should be completed on an 11- x 14-inch or smaller sheet of white paper. Entries will be judged on creativity and overall artistic ability according to your age category. Winners will be announced at Pioneer’s Annual Meeting and published in our May issue of Ohio Cooperative Living magazine. Please include: name, grade, parent’s name(s), Pioneer account number, city, and phone number...

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September 26, 2022

Outage Communication Switching from Facebook to TextPower

Since we started TextPower in December, you have been overwhelmingly supportive of the real-time, personalized status updates at your service address(es). Targeted text messages allow you to get real-time information on your outage including when a crew has been assigned, your estimated time of restoration, updated estimates, and the current status of your outage. You may also report an outage via text. For this reason and because we are able to reach more of you, starting on October 1st we are updating our communications process. Moving forward we are using TextPower to communicate most non-major storm outages instead of our...

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June 9, 2022

Storm Safety: Protecting Your Business

Sudden storms can endanger your staff, damage your building and interrupt operations. While safety is your first order of business, you also want to minimize building damage and get back in business quickly. To protect your employees and your business, it’s important to keep ahead of the storm and develop an emergency action plan. Storm preparedness These steps should help keep your staff and building safe from harm in the event of a storm: Create an emergency action plan that includes evacuation procedures, contact information for local first responders and emergency contact information for all employees. Put together an emergency...

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June 8, 2022

Your Business: The Hidden Costs of Summer

You’ve had your air conditioning system cleaned and inspected by a qualified professional. Now you’re ready for a summer of lower energy bills, right? Well, some summer energy costs are easier to spot than others. Take a look around your facility. You’ll likely spot some “hidden” sources of energy waste that are putting the heat on your operating budget. Unadjusted thermostat Maintaining comfortable temperatures on hot summer days is critical to maintaining a productive business environment. Maintaining those same comfort levels after hours, however, is a waste of energy. Raising thermostat temperature settings after hours is one the most cost...

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May 10, 2022

Helpful Hints in Selecting Windows

E.E. Cummings once said, “the earth laughs in flowers.” Now is the perfect time to gaze out your windows to see the great outdoors and all its wonders. When selecting windows for a home there are a few things you need to pay attention to in order to increase your energy efficiency.  Windows are less resistant to heat flow compared to the walls, ceiling, and floors in your home meaning they will allow more outward heat flow in the winter and more inward heat flow in the summer.  Even though windows typically comprise a small surface area of a home,...

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May 3, 2022

Tips to Help You Save on Your New HVAC

One of the most dreaded phrases when it comes to home repair is, “you need a new heating and cooling system.” If you’re like most people, we push our systems to the very end hoping to make it one more season. Inevitably, that phrase seems to come at the most unwanted time: a holiday, when relatives are in town, or during some other special event. But when emergencies happen, you don’t always have the time to think through the process. Here’s where a little advanced planning can go a long way. When looking at a new system, energy efficiency is...

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March 30, 2022

2022 Annual Meeting Recap

Pioneer Electric Cooperative held its 86th annual meeting on Saturday, March 26th at Upper Valley Career Center in Piqua, OH, and streaming online. The hybrid event featured an innovative digital scavenger hunt to engage new member segments. Member feedback from the event was overwhelmingly positive with many commenting on the hybrid setup, brief business meeting, and fun digital engagement. The meeting was led by Terrence Householder, Board of Trustees Chair, who presented an overview of the cooperative’s accomplishments in 2021. Mr. Householder focused on Pioneer’s local communities highlighting safety, broadband, Pioneer’s new strategic initiatives, large projects, and ongoing system maintenance....

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March 11, 2022

Does Daylight Saving Time Really Save Energy?

Every year, we move the clock forward an hour in spring and back again to standard time in the autumn. How is changing the clock supposed to save energy? The idea behind Daylight Saving Time (DST) is to provide us with an extra hour of daylight in the evening, giving us the opportunity to spend more time outdoors. When we spend more time outdoors, we tend to use less energy for lighting, watching television or operating appliances. That all sounds good, but does it really work? What research says about Daylight Saving Time Although DST has been in use for...

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February 18, 2022

2022 Annual Meeting

Pioneer’s 2022 Annual Meeting will be held on Saturday, March 26, 2022. This year’s event is hybrid with limited in-person seating. Tickets are required to attend. We are providing a variety of health and safety precautions for this year’s meeting including boxed pastries, limited in-person seating, no high-touch areas, and the availability of livestream and recorded viewing. In 2021, Pioneer moved forward with many projects focused on safety, reliability, and member service. We continue to focus on you, our members, as we strategize and plan for the future of your electric cooperative. For a complete recap of the work accomplished...

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February 11, 2022

Pioneer 2022 Tree Line USA Utility

Arbor Day Foundation Awards Recognition to Pioneer Electric Cooperative as 2022 Tree Line USA Utility Pioneer Electric Cooperative earns the Tree Line USA recognition for our commitment to urban forestry in our community Pioneer Electric Cooperative was named a 2022 Tree Line USA by the Arbor Day Foundation to recognize our dedication to proper urban forest management in our service area. Tree Line USA, a partnership between the Arbor Day Foundation and the National Association of State Foresters, recognizes public and private utilities for pursuing best practices that protect and cultivate America’s urban tree canopy. In addition, Tree Line USA...

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January 7, 2022

Broadband in Pioneer’s Service Area FAQ

Message from our President and CEO Pioneer believes the extension of broadband service into underserved areas of our service territory would enhance the opportunities and quality of life for our members. To best protect and serve our members, we are encouraging deployment of broadband to underserved areas through offering access to our poles for new attachments. We are offering this at a lower-cost, temporary incentive rate to financially assist cable, phone, and other companies who may provide this service to our members. This temporary incentive rate would not result in an electric rate increase to our members. This offer is...

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January 3, 2022

Would You Rather: Space Heater or Outdoor Pizza Oven?

That winter weather is finally here, and the Department of Energy recommends setting the thermostat to 68 degrees or cooler in the winter months. When the temperature drops, we can be tempted to use additional plug loads to help warm our fingers and toes. Plug loads are electrical devices or appliances that draw power through an electrical outlet. Common examples include cell phones, microwaves, televisions, laptops, and video game consoles. And yes, the space heater. If you run a space heater eight hours a day, 30 days a month, for four months, you are looking at an annual operating cost...

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December 18, 2021

January Ohio Cooperative Living Magazine

Just the Highlights Pioneer offers broadband help through new pole attachment incentive rates and engineering assistance. In 2020, Pioneer kept the lights on 99.98% of the time. In fact, Pioneer has not fallen below 99.9% reliability since 2013. Political action starts as little as $2.08 per month on your electric bill. Today’s energy landscape is an increasingly complex topic and your voice matters. In cooperation with our power supply cooperative, Buckeye Power, we made changes to our distributed generation rate structure to comply with present requirements. SAVE THE DATE! The 2022 Annual Meeting is happening on March 26 at 8:15am.

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December 1, 2021

Pioneer Sets Strategic Goals: December Magazine Digital Issue

Just the Highlights President & CEO Ron Salyer and all Pioneer employees wish everyone a happy holiday season! Pioneer Electric Cooperative offices will be closed Dec. 23, 24, and 31. Emergency service is always available. Pioneer’s scholarships are open! New this year: specific trade school scholarships. If you have a current address for former members, we are looking to refund capital credits to them. Please review the list. Do your research on smart thermostats and see if they will save you money on your electric bill. Outage Text Alerts are rolling out this month. Until you receive a welcome message,...

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November 23, 2021

True Cost of Thanksgiving Dinner

Your Thanksgiving meal costs more than the turkey, potatoes, and green beans you buy from the store. It also costs money to prepare your menu. What appliances will you need in order to store, prepare, bake, roast, and warm all of the items on your menu? Some appliances use more energy than others to accomplish the same task. Appliances that are very energy efficient are labeled ENERGY STAR. As you are completing the activity below, make sure to mark which of your appliances are ENERGY STAR and which are not. Consider buying an ENERGY STAR appliance to replace older models...

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November 11, 2021

Breaking Down the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act

Congress has passed a wide-ranging, bipartisan infrastructure bill which includes billions of dollars for broadband deployment, electric vehicle infrastructure, cybersecurity, grid resiliency, clean energy development including Carbon Capture, Utilization, and Storage, and Research, Design, and Development programs at the Department of Energy. Between July and September 2021, all three of the main national lobbying organizations for electric utilities increased their efforts. This included the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) who “pushed for policies like allowing nonprofit utilities to get clean energy incentives equivalent to tax credits. It also lobbied on various issues surrounding the transition to clean energy, including...

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November 1, 2021

5th Annual Art Contest

It’s that time again – Pioneer’s Annual Art Contest! This year’s theme is “Shining Community.” The art contest is open to children K-8th grade with the following categories: K-2, 3-5, 6-8 grades. Submissions should show what shines bright in your community – this could be your favorite person/place, a drawing of someone or something that makes you smile, or any other creative rendering. The artwork can be created on any size paper. Take a photo, or video if needed, of your entry and send it to us at member@PioneerEC.com and include “art contest” in the subject line. Make sure to...

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October 31, 2021

Gratitude is a Quality Similar to Electricity

Just the Highlights President & CEO Ron Salyer and all Pioneer employees wish everyone a happy Thanksgiving! Pioneer Electric Cooperative offices will be closed Nov. 25 and Nov. 26. Emergency service is always available. Tribes such as the Shawnee and Miami made their homes here in west central Ohio and left lasting testament to their homelands. Today we erect public art or construct great buildings, but they left something far more fundamental: identity. Since 2018, Pioneer employees have donated $11,454.75 to charities through the Powering Possibilities committee. Save on your energy bill this holiday season by cleaning your oven burners...

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October 26, 2021

Warding Off Vampire Loads

Many consumer electronics continue to draw power even when they are switched off. This is known as a vampire load. The primary culprits are chargers, set-top television boxes, instant-on televisions, and gaming systems. According to the National Renewable Energy Lab, vampire loads cost $200 every year in the average home. Luckily, there are some easy steps to ward off these energy ghouls and goblins! Unplug devices and chargers you aren’t using. This includes anything with an LED display like microwaves. Turn off all devices when they are no longer in use. Sleep modes do not stop electricity from flowing. Use...

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October 1, 2021

Hess Promoted to Piqua Leader Lineman

Pioneer is very pleased to announce the promotion of Mike Hess to Piqua Leader Lineman effective September 22, 2021. Mike joined Pioneer in July of 2005 as a Lineman Trainee. Mike completed his apprenticeship training at the AEP training school and was promoted to First Class Lineman in August of 2009. In March of 2012 Mike took on the role of Lineman First Class Service. In this role Mike worked independently during the day. Prior to joining Pioneer, Mike worked for Champaign Landmark performing various duties. Mike is always looking for ways to improve and has taken advantage of training...

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August 31, 2021

Powering Labor Day Celebrations

Powering Labor Day Celebrations Always the first Monday of September, Labor Day celebrates the community and economic achievements of American workers. Here in the Miami Valley, our region has embodied the American spirit through our resilience, ingenuity, and our collaboration. We think of the community response to the 1913 Flood which paved the way for growth and success in our downtowns, the accomplishments of our inventors including Clayton Brukner and Warren G. Grimes, and our farmers who banded together to bring power and prosperity to the rural people of the Miami Valley. Recognizing that existing utilities companies weren’t interested in...

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August 30, 2021

Wintrow Promoted to District Member Service Supervisor

Pioneer is pleased to announce the promotion of Deanna Wintrow to District Member Service Supervisor effective August 30, 2021. Deanna joined Pioneer in April 1994 as a Member Service Representative. She was promoted to Member Service Representative Senior in November 2009. Deanna has proven herself in interactions with members including sometimes difficult conversations and in high-pressure situations such as lengthy storms. She has keen analytical skills and is process-oriented always looking for ways to improve and become more efficient whether it’s in billing calculations, rate and revenue validations, or in member-consumer care. She has also trained many others in the...

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August 16, 2021

Elizabeth Connor Joins Pioneer Electric Cooperative

We are pleased to welcome Elizabeth Connor to Pioneer. She has been hired to fill the position of Manager of Communications and Marketing. Previously, Elizabeth was the Director of Marketing and Communications for the National Aviation Heritage Area located in Dayton. Her career path has taken her to several non-profit organizations focused on building tourism and support for the destinations, including the Miami Conservancy District, the Lake County History Center and the Lake County Visitors Bureau. Elizabeth has been recognized by various professional and trade associations for her communication and marketing strategies and campaigns. She has experience in web design...

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August 16, 2021

Richard Promoted to Manager of Safety & Construction

Pioneer is very pleased to announce the promotion of Matt Richard to Manager of Safety and Construction effective August 16, 2021. Matt joined Pioneer in May of 2006 as a Lineman Trainee. In September of 2010, he was promoted to First Class Lineman. Matt took on the role of Lineman First Class Service in September of 2017, operating as a one-man service truck during the day. Matt has a great track record regarding safety performance with only one recordable injury in his career, which was over a decade ago. In addition, Matt has an excellent driving record with zero vehicle...

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August 11, 2021

Is Your Contact Information Up-To-Date?

Have you recently changed your phone number or added a cell number? Have you changed your email address? Let us know! Without up-to-date information, we can’t reach you when we need to! When we have a scheduled MAINTENANCE outage, we contact our members. Keep your account information up-to-date so you can be contacted! That goes for former members too! Keeping your address updated with every move you make ensures that you receive your capital credit refund.

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August 11, 2021

Searching for 2022 Candidates

As a member-owned, democratically governed business Pioneer encourages member participation. Members, just like you, have the opportunity to run for, and be elected to serve on, the Pioneer Board of Trustees and three district boards of Champaign, Miami and Shelby County. Even if you have little or no experience in the electric industry, there is still an opportunity for you to represent your fellow members and serve on one of Pioneer’s boards.

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August 11, 2021

Johnson Promoted to Human Resource Coordinator

Pioneer is very pleased to announce the promotion of Kris Johnson to HR Coordinator effective August 9, 2021. Kris joined Pioneer in 1995 as Operations Clerk and became Operations Coordinator in 2000, a position which she has held for 20 years. Kris has done an excellent job as dispatcher for Pioneer coordinating planned and unplanned outages with crews, cleansing the data in OMS for accuracy, working on the Work Management project, and assisting with many safety related program components including trainings, tracking, and reporting. Kris has a very acute attention to detail which is critical in her new role. In...

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June 30, 2021

New Option for Estate Capital Credit Retirements

A new option for Pioneer members Pioneer is now offering members the option to designate a Pioneer Payable on Death (POD) Beneficiary. As with a trust, it enables a member to make choices about the capital credits prior to their death. A member can complete a POD form designating both primary and secondary beneficiaries. Under this method, the discounted, net present value of the capital credits will be distributed equally in the name of each primary beneficiary. For example, if a member has designated three primary beneficiaries, each will receive one-third of the discounted amount. If one of the three...

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June 9, 2021

McClay Promoted to Director of Operations & Safety

Steve McClay has become part of the management team of Pioneer Electric Cooperative with his recent promotion to Director of Operations and Safety. In this position, he will be responsible for all aspects of the co-op’s operations and safety functions. Steve first joined Pioneer in 1998 as a groundman trainee and became a first class lineman in 2002. During his career he has taken on greater responsibility and challenges on the path to his new appointment. Steve’s leadership abilities, along with his dedication to Pioneer and its members make him an excellent choice for this new role.

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May 17, 2021

Capital Credits Being Returned

We are happy to report that this year, for the 40th consecutive year, we will be returning capital credits to our members through the general retirement process. Each year, the Pioneer Board of Trustees evaluates the financial condition of the cooperative to determine if they can retire capital credits. Members entitled to a capital credit refund will see a bill credit in May or June. Capital credits reflect a member’s ownership in the cooperative and are retained within the cooperative to maintain financial flexibility and strength and to finance capital improvement and expansion projects, which helps keep the cost of...

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May 6, 2021

Do Not Remove Flags

If flags and markings have been placed in your yard for upcoming work, please leave them alone. These flags indicate where utilities are buried and are needed to safeguard the equipment and prevent possible service interruptions. When the work has been completed, the contractor will remove the flags. If damages occur because the flags have been removed, you will be responsible for repair costs.

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March 27, 2021

Pioneer Electric Holds 85th Annual Meeting Virtually

Pioneer’s 85th Annual Meeting of Members was held virtually on March 27. Pioneer Electric Cooperative is a not-for-profit distribution utility focused on providing service to its consumer-members, primarily in rural Champaign, Miami, and Shelby Counties, as well as portions of the eight surrounding counties. The meeting was led by Board of Trustees Chair Terrence Householder, who presented an overview of the cooperative’s accomplishments in 2020 including the completion of Haas Substation. The new substation will improve reliability to nearly 750 members in southern Miami County. Householder also highlighted the return of more than $3.5 million to current and former members...

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March 15, 2021

Beward of Third-Party Payment Options

Members have many options when it’s time to pay their bill, but Pioneer recommends avoiding third-party payment processing websites. The co-op has received calls regarding a third-party payment processing website called doxo. If a member clicks on the doxo site, they are taken to a website that has Pioneer’s contact information including address, phone number, e-mail, etc. Doxo, despite having accurate co-op information, is not affiliated with Pioneer in any way. Often, third-party sites, like doxo charge additional service fees and do not always make the payment on the same day, which could result in your payment being late and...

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March 8, 2021

Pioneer Announces 2021 Scholarship Recipients

Ten area high school seniors have been selected to receive Pioneer Electric Cooperative’s 2021 scholarships. The ten scholars, all children of Pioneer members, were chosen through an application and interview process. The judges for the competition were not affiliated with Pioneer. Forty-eight applicants who attend 19 high schools and three home schools throughout Pioneer’s service territory applied for the scholarships. Winners include: $2,000 – Aislen Setty, Graham; $1,500 – Benjamen Romie, Covington; $1,000 – Selena Weaver, West Liberty-Salem; and $500 — Grant Albers, Fort Loramie; Audrey Ayars, Mechanicsburg; Clayton Boberg, Sidney; Jaden Humphrey, Sidney; Lisa Sebastian, Bethel; Phillip Trzaska, Minster;...

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February 22, 2021

Pioneer Members to Vote on Code Changes

In 2021, Pioneer members will vote on code changes outlined in the attached pdf. Members are asked to review the changes in preparation for voting. Ballots must be returned on March 27, 2021 between 10 a.m. and noon to the Piqua or Urbana office. Due to the current code language any votes received outside of this period of time are not valid and will not receive the $10 bill credit. One of the changes being voted on will allow members to vote for Code changes by means other than in person during the annual meeting. View 2021 Code Changes

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January 13, 2021

Who’s on the 2021 Pioneer Board Election Ballot?

Don’t miss your opportunity to participate in Pioneer’s annual board election! One of the most unique benefits of being a member of Pioneer — or any cooperative — is your ability to democratically elect fellow members to represent you on the Pioneer boards. All of the candidates, trustees and county board members, are consumer-members of Pioneer and your community and are concerned with the issues you face every day, because they face them as well. Board election packets will be mailed out to all members on Friday, Feb. 19. This year there are three options for voting, by mail, online,...

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January 12, 2021

Avoid Solar Energy Scams

Solar energy is booming, and the future is brighter than ever. Through the use of rooftop solar panels, many homeowners can now harness the sun’s natural rays to produce their own electricity that’s environmentally friendly and cost effective. But with the increasing popularity of solar, unfortunately, some businesses are taking advantage of consumers who are interested in generating their own energy through rooftop panels. While many solar companies are genuine and truly want to help consumers with a successful solar installation, there are the occasional bad apples. You’ve likely heard a story or two about solar vendors that promised rooftop...

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January 12, 2021

Move Over for Roadside Crews

Every year, workers along the sides of roads are injured or killed when a car crashes into the crew’s site, even though it’s marked with bright cones and warning signs. There’s an easy way to reduce those incidents that harm police officers and other first responders, road construction workers, and utility crews. Ohio’s Move Over law was passed in 1999 to reduce risk to law enforcement officers and other emergency responders. In 2013, the law was expanded to include every stationary vehicle with flashing lights, including tow trucks and utility vehicles. There are slight differences in each state’s Move Over...

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December 23, 2020

Focused on Health

Terah Stewart has something for everyone — 101 different products, to be exact. Terah, a Pioneer member, is the owner of Spot On Nutrition, a new, versatile, upbeat nutritional shake and tea bar in downtown Sidney. Spot On Nutrition focuses on the health and nutrition of each individual. “This isn’t like work to me. I enjoy this — talking to people and helping them find what works for them,” says Terah. “There are people who can’t have dairy, or people who can only do plant-based, so I help them find what works for them.” Health and wellness are important to...

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December 4, 2020

Pioneer Holds 4th Annual Student Art Contest

Reliability + Dependability Art Contest The art contest is open to children K–8th grade. Categories: K–2, 3–5, 6–8 grades. Submissions should include an item that you rely and depend on each day that uses electricity — this could be a scene, a drawing of the item, or any other creative rendering. The artwork can be created on any size paper. Take a photo, or video, if needed, of your entry and send it to us at member@pioneerec.com and include “art contest” in the subject line and include name, grade, parent’s name(s), Pioneer account number, city, and phone number in the...

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December 4, 2020

Making Magic Happen

Do you believe in magic? Tammie Rafferty, executive director of Project Believe, sure does. Tammie’s life changed in 2002 when she agreed to take in and eventually adopt a 10-year-old girl named Mary who suffered from mental challenges due to childhood trauma. When Mary was only 14, she had a psychotic break, and it became evident that she would face unique challenges throughout her life. Mary was eventually diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia. She spent 15 months hospitalized at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital–College Hill Campus in an attempt to find the correct combination of medication and therapeutic support to allow her to...

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November 19, 2020

Pioneer 2021 Scholarship Form Now Available

Each year, Pioneer recognizes outstanding seniors in the Pioneer service area. Pioneer offers 10 scholarships to area seniors — awards include one $2,000 scholarship, one for $1,500, one for $1,000, and seven for $500 each. Eligibility is determined based on the following criteria:* Must be the son, daughter, or legal ward of a Pioneer member Must have at least a 3.8 GPA (4.0 scale) Must score at least 25 on the ACT *Additional rules and regulations can be found on the rules page. The 2021 scholarship competition is now closed to applicants. Please check back in December for the 2022...

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October 28, 2020

Protecting Our Utility Poles

Most of us drive by rows of utility poles every day. But how much do we really notice them? These often-overlooked watchmen play an important role in delivering reliable power to the members of Pioneer Electric Cooperative. Wind and storms have an obvious effect on utility poles — sometimes snapping them right in half — but other elements of nature can also have negative consequences. Excessive moisture, insects, and woodpeckers can cause poles to deteriorate. People can be harmful to poles as well, even if they don’t intend to. Anytime a nail, staple, or other fastener is attached, it creates...

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October 28, 2020

Quilting: Hobby Turned Business Venture

Pioneer member Kari Roberts started sewing when she was a young girl. She was involved in 4-H, and her mother, grandmother, and many family members sewed and quilted, building her interest and enjoyment. So, it may not come as a surprise that her retirement hobby turned business venture involves both sewing and quilting. She opened Kari’s Custom Quilting just over a year ago on Sept. 5, 2019. Prior to starting her new venture just outside of Anna, Kari worked at Honda for 24 years. In March 2017, she decided to retire early after losing her son to cancer in 2016....

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October 28, 2020

Pioneer Celebrates 85 Years

Pioneer Electric Cooperative is celebrating 85 years as a not-for-profit, member-owned electric distribution utility. In the early to mid-1930s, rural residents all over the country were unable to obtain electric service for their homes and farms. It was very uncommon for investor-owned utility companies serving neighboring residential cities and towns to offer rural consumers electricity, because of the strong belief that they would not be profitable. In 1935, with the help of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal, Congress approved the passage and appropriation of a $100 million loan fund. Among the programs funded was electric service to rural areas....

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October 5, 2020

Providing Support in Times of Need

Fifteen years ago, when Pioneer member Kristyn Campbell of Mechanicsburg was just 37 years old, she received a diagnosis that no one wants to receive. She had breast cancer. With three young children at home and her husband soon to be deployed to Afghanistan, she began her battle. Her successful fight would lead her down a road of helping others and giving back through her involvement with Breast Friends Forever of Champaign County, a support organization for individuals who are at risk or are currently battling breast cancer. The Campbells moved to Mechanicsburg in 1999. “We didn’t really know many...

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September 16, 2020

Pioneer Electric Celebrates Local Heroes in the Fifth Annual #WhoPowersYou Contest

Pioneer Electric along with Touchstone Energy® Cooperatives, is pleased to announce the fifth annual #WhoPowersYou Contest celebrating local heroes. It’s a chance for Pioneer members and employees to nominate someone making a difference in the community and an opportunity to celebrate the power of human connections. In addition to being nationally recognized, nominees can win up to $5,000 for the cause they champion. To nominate a local hero members and employees or Pioneer Electric can go to whopowersyou.com and submit their nominee’s name, photo and a brief description of how they make a difference locally. Nominations opened on September 8,...

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August 27, 2020

Keeping Your Landscape Green

By: Danny Bagwell, Pioneer Vegetation Manager As vegetation manager, I receive calls from members for a variety of reasons throughout the year, but this year I’ve received more calls than normal about evergreens in members’ yards losing their green color. You may have noticed that your evergreens don’t look as healthy as they once did. Pine needles are turning brown, and spruce trees are becoming sparse instead of full and lush. Many of these trees that have been in yards for over 30 years are suddenly in a condition that means they’ll likely need to be removed (at the homeowners’...

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July 10, 2020

It’s Peak Demand Season

It’s that prime time of year, May through September, for Buckeye Power, Pioneer’s generation supplier, to be controlling electrical load due to peaks in demand on the cooperative’s electric system. Those extremely hot days with nights that do not cool off create conditions that require load control on water heaters and air-conditioning systems. Those extremely hot days with nights that do not cool off create conditions that require the co-op to control the use of water heaters and air-conditioning systems. The maximum or “peak” amount of electricity used determines Pioneer’s future costs of power. So, when the peak goes up,...

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July 9, 2020

A Glimpse Inside Pioneer Board Meetings

Inside Pioneer’s boardroom, the Pioneer chair of the board of trustees taps the gavel against the table to call the meeting to order. Nine board members are seated at a v-shaped table, and the board secretary calls the roll. It’s 8:30 a.m. on the last Tuesday of the month, the day of the week selected by this year’s board for their monthly meetings. President and Chief Executive Officer Ron Salyer and a staff liaison, a position that alternates each month, find extra seats at the boardroom table. This scene is repeated each month when the board meets to discuss cooperative...

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July 2, 2020

Pioneer’s Haas Substation is Fully Operational

Pioneer Electric is pleased to announce that southern Miami County’s Haas Substation became fully operational on June 30. The new 138 kV substation will improve outage reliability to the 729 consumers previously served by the 12 kV Lower Miami delivery point by dividing them between three feeders, which means an outage would affect a smaller number of members. The new substation will provide backfeeding capacity for another 484 members when East Casstown substation has a transmission outage or maintenance needs. Haas Substation was named after former Pioneer President and CEO Doug Haas, who also served as Pioneer’s manager of engineering...

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June 5, 2020

An Unforgettable Experience: Electrifying Tierra Blanca Sebol

On March 9, 16 linemen from all across Ohio, including Pioneer’s Leader Lineman John Holcomb, set out to electrify Tierra Blanca Sebol, a small Guatemalan village in the mountainous northern region of the country. Project Ohio, a collaborative effort between Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives and the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association International, previously electrified two other villages in Guatemala. This was the third trip for the project and the first year a Pioneer lineman participated. John set out to make the most of the trip. He and his wife spent nights and weekends on Google Earth, looking at the village’s territory...

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June 5, 2020

Pioneer Returns Capital Credits and Additional $1.2 Million to Members as Pandemic Relief

Pioneer is returning more than $2.2 million in capital credits to its consumer-members as part of our annual general retirement process. But this year, there’s more: The Pioneer Board of Trustees approved an additional $1.2 million bonus capital credits refund to assist our members during this unprecedented time. General Retirement Each year, the Pioneer Board of Trustees evaluates the financial condition of the cooperative to determine if they should retire capital credits. The Pioneer Board of Trustees has embraced a general retirement plan that will allow current, active members, as well as former, inactive members to receive a portion of...

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May 18, 2020

Pioneer to Hold Virtual Annual Meeting on June 11

Register Here Deadline to register is June 8, 2020 The March 28, 2020, annual meeting was postponed due to Ohio’s ban on large gatherings during the COVID-19 pandemic. It was our plan to hold the meeting at a later date; however, as there is uncertainty about how long the ban will remain, the Pioneer board has decided to host an electronic virtual meeting instead. Members can register for the meeting here or by sending an email to rsvp@pioneerec.com or calling the cooperative at 800-762-0997. We will need the following information: Name, account number, phone number, and email address. Please use...

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May 15, 2020

Don’t Fall Victim to Scammers

People lose a lot of money to phone scams — sometimes their life savings. Scammers have figured out countless ways to cheat individuals out of their money over the phone. In some scams, they act friendly and helpful. In others, they might threaten or try to scare you into paying them or giving them personal information. One thing you can be assured of is that a phone scammer will try to get your money or your personal information and commit identity theft. Don’t give it to them. Remember, at Pioneer we will not ask for your personal or payment information...

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May 14, 2020

Pioneer Electric’s McMaken Wins National Award

Pioneer’s Vice President and Chief Communications Officer Nanci McMaken was awarded the LaBerge Award for Excellence in Strategic Communication. The LaBerge award, administered by the Council of Rural Electric Communicators and the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, recognizes one electric cooperative communicator throughout the country who demonstrates excellence, influence, and impact in co-op communications, both as a practitioner and contributor across the network. “I’m honored to have been nominated and selected for the 2020 LaBerge award. It will certainly stand as a highlight in my career,” says McMaken, who has worked in communications at Pioneer for nearly four decades. LaBerge...

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April 21, 2020

Pioneer Electric Announces 2020 Board of Trustees and County Board Election Results

Pioneer Electric is excited to announce the results of their board of trustees and county board elections. The elections were held between February 17 and March 20. Consumers-members of the democratically run organization had the opportunity to participate in the election by mail or online. Each year, three trustees, one from each district, is elected to a three-year term and can serve up to seven-consecutive terms. The board trustees elected are: John Vulgamore of Champaign County, Wade Wilhelm of Miami County, and Roger Bertke of Shelby County. The board of trustees, which oversees the President/CEO, sets company policy and monitors...

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March 23, 2020

COVID-19: Here For You, Working With You

As we navigate the days and weeks ahead together, we want to assure our members that we will not disconnect services for non-pay due to the current challenges. If you are affected by hardships related to COVID-19, we ask that you please call our office at 800.762.0997, so that we can work with you on a case by case basis. Please understand, each member is still responsible for paying the balance on their account and continuing to pay what you can will help you avoid a larger balance in the future. One of our member service representatives would be happy...

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March 13, 2020

Pioneer Electric Sets Plan to Help Protect Members, Employees Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Pioneer Electric Cooperative has been proactively planning for the current COVID-19 situation. The following plans have been put in place effective Tuesday, March 17, for the protection of our members and employees and to help do our part, as requested by Governor Mike DeWine and local and national public health officials, to prevent the spread of the virus. The inside lobbies and drive-thrus of the Piqua and Urbana facilities will be closed. The Piqua kiosk and the Piqua and Urbana drop boxes will remain available for payments. Pioneer’s Annual Meeting on March 28 has been postponed. Non-essential face-to-face meetings and...

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March 9, 2020

Pioneer Electric Cooperative Awards 2020 Scholarships

Piqua, Ohio — Ten area high school seniors have been selected to receive Pioneer Electric Cooperative’s 2020 scholarships. The ten scholars, all children of Pioneer members, were chosen through an application and interview process. Judges for the competition were not Pioneer affiliated. Forty-five applicants from 19 schools throughout Pioneer’s service territory applied for the scholarships. One judge summarized this year’s applicants by saying, “If these kids are any indication of what our future holds, we are in good hands.” Winners include: $2,000 – Blake Holthaus, Fort Loramie; $1,500 – Elizabeth Michael, Anna; $1,000 – Caleb Baughman, Anna; and $500 —...

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March 5, 2020

Bair, Clark to Retire from Board After 21 Years

Ron Bair of Casstown and Ron Clark of Urbana will retire from the Pioneer board of trustees on March 28 at Pioneer’s 84th annual meeting of members. They have reached their term limits, each serving the cooperative for 21 years as a board trustee. Ron Bair became aware of the Pioneer board when he was 23 years old. His father, Paul Bair, was elected to the Miami County board (1972–73) and served 24 years on the board of trustees — that was before term limits were put in place. “My dad would often talk about what it was like to...

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March 4, 2020

Consider These Three Things When Purchasing a Furnace and Air Conditioner

Selecting a new heating and cooling system is not a fun task or expense. Many times, it’s very overwhelming: where to start, where to look, what type, what brand — the list goes on. You may end up just choosing the cheapest option out of convenience. But when 48% of energy used in a typical U.S. household comes from heating and cooling systems, it’s crucial to carefully research and consider this investment as you would a car or house. Energy efficiency ratings: Energy efficiency ratings of air conditioning systems (measured in SEER: seasonal energy efficiency ratio) and gas furnaces (measured...

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March 4, 2020

Member Feature: Providing a Second Chance at Clear Creek Farm

When Chad Gessler worked as a juvenile probation officer in Shelby County, he tried to be a strong male figure for the troubled youth he worked with — someone who they could talk to. It wasn’t long until he discovered his natural ability to get on their level and understand them. He found himself wondering what life would be like for these kids if he could change their environment. Years later, he would have the opportunity to do just that. Gessler was serving on the board of trustees for Clear Creek Farm, a nonprofit children’s home for emotionally or physically...

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February 6, 2020

Bulcher, Lair to Attend Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives Youth Tour to Washington, D.C.

Piqua, Ohio – Felix Bulcher from Fort Loramie and Nelson Lair from Casstown have been selected to represent Pioneer Electric Cooperative on the Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives Youth Tour to Washington, D.C. Bulcher, son of Cletus and Bernice Bulcher, is a sophomore at Seton Home School and Lair, son of Andrew and Melinda Lair, is a junior at Troy Christian High School. The Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives Youth Tour, scheduled for June 19-25, is an annual youth leadership program for high school sophomores and juniors from families served by electric cooperatives. On the trip, delegates will visit the nation’s capital and its...

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February 3, 2020

Pioneer Electric Cooperative Named 2020 Tree Line USA by Arbor Day Foundation

Lincoln, Neb. – The Arbor Day Foundation has named Pioneer Electric Cooperative a 2020 TreeLine USA® recipient in honor of its commitment to proper tree pruning, planting and care in the provider’s service area. Tree Line USA, a partnership between the Foundation and the National Association of State Foresters, recognizes public and private utilities for pursuing practices that protect and enhance America’s urban trees. Tree Line USA promotes the dual goals of delivering safe and reliable electricity while maintaining healthy community forests. “Trees are a critical part of urban landscapes all across the United States,” said Dan Lambe, president of...

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February 3, 2020

Who’s On the Pioneer Board Ballot for 2020?

Pioneer Electric Cooperative members should be receiving their 2020 board of trustees and county board election ballots via mail in mid-February. If you have not received your election packet by Feb. 26, please call our Piqua office at 800-762-0997 to have a new one sent to you. Voting must be completed by March 20 to be included in the final count. Click here to vote! Candidates who have been nominated for each respective board are as follows: Board of Trustees Champaign County Mark Petty, DeGraff John Vulgamore, St. Paris Miami County Levi Long, Troy Wade Wilhelm, New Carlisle Shelby County...

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February 3, 2020

Join Us For Pioneer’s 84th Annual Meeting of Members

Saturday, March 28, 2020 @ Upper Valley Career Center in Piqua For a complete recap of 2019 and what we look forward to in 2020, we invite you, as a member of Pioneer Electric Cooperative, to join us for our 84th annual meeting of members on Saturday, March 28, from 8:15 to 10:30 a.m. at Upper Valley Career Center in Piqua. We will announce the election results for your board of trustees and county boards, recognize the retirements of Ron Bair and Ron Clark, and vote on the proposed changes to the code of regulations. If you’re not familiar with...

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