Pat Hecox, Dawson PPD Board President and Nebraska Rural Electric Association Board President
Area served: Dawson County Subdivision
Years of service: 24 years
- National Rural Electric Cooperative Association Credentialed Cooperative Director
- National Rural Electric Cooperative Association Board Leadership Certificate
- National Rural Electric Cooperative Association Director Gold Credential Program
What do you do outside of serving on Dawson PPD’s Board of Directors?
We farm, ranch and live where our family homesteaded in 1888. I also serve as president of the Nebraska Rural Electric Association Board of Directors, serve on a couple of other boards, and I am active in our church and am a member of Gideons International.
What made you want to serve on the Dawson PPD Board of Directors?
A friend once told me that we can’t live in a vacuum. We should leave the world better than how we found it. I’ve volunteered and served on many boards because it is what I feel I should do – be a part of making it better for others.
When a seat became available on the board, I was encouraged by our late family friend and Dawson PPD Board Member Dale Clark. He shared a lot about what the board does, and the time involved. It piqued my interest because I’ve always enjoyed learning. I then met with former board member Paul Neil, current board member Joe Jeffrey and former general manager Ed Darby and learned more about the district. After exposure to the purpose and function of Dawson PPD and the rural electric system, I had a desire to be a part of this organization and was appointed to fill the vacant board seat. Then I filed for the next general election.
What is your favorite thing about serving on the board?
It has been enjoyable serving on this board because every meeting I go to – whether it’s Dawson PPD’s monthly board meeting or a regional or a national one – I always learn something new. Now that I have a more in depth understanding of electric utilities and public power, I realize that Nebraska is a special place. Public power is not for profit. It is locally controlled by people who live within their power provider’s service territory. You see and hear that a lot, but the more involved I am the more I understand the value and importance of public power.
It’s also rewarding to help those that we represent and to make their dollars count. We strive to provide value to our customers beyond electrifying their home.
What goals for Dawson PPD do you have during your term?
To utilize the studies conducted during the proposed merger between Dawson PPD and The Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District when evaluating situations that may be additional opportunities in the future.
To continue to provide reliable and affordable electricity for our customers. This involves continually looking for secure, sustainable, and economical sources of electricity. It includes maintaining infrastructure and utilizing technology that improves safety, efficiency, reliability, and customer service.
I feel that it’s also important that the board rotates its officers and continues its education on the everyday practices and policies of Dawson PPD, as well as what is on the state and national landscape for our utility. It makes us a stronger, well-balanced board. There will be some transition in the next two years with new faces around the board table, and we need to have a balance of knowledge so that every board member can vote with confidence.
Of course, the quality employees of Dawson PPD are our greatest resource and providing the necessary tools and environment for them to do their jobs safely and efficiently is paramount.
Three youth selected to attend Youth Energy Leadership Camp
Dawson PPD is sponsoring three local students to attend the Nebraska Rural Electric Association Youth Energy Leadership Camp. The camp will be held at Camp Comeca near Cozad July 9-13, 2023.
Between the lines: Technology, the grid and Dawson PPD. (Part 1)
Dawson PPD’s electric distribution utility system is a complex network of wires, transformers and other equipment that delivers electricity from power plants to substations to homes and businesses. In recent years, there have been several new technologies that have been developed to improve the efficiency, reliability and security of the electric distribution system.
Dawson PPD’s swift response to tornado demonstrates commitment to service
Dawson PPD quickly made repairs after May 5, 2023, tornado at Johnson Lake, Nebraska