Guthrie County REC has been bringing electricity to rural Iowa for over 75 years. It is hard to believe, that in the 1930’s, nearly 90 percent of the urban dwellers had electricity, compared to only ten percent of the rural population. Private utility companies, who supplied electric power to most of the nation's consumers, argued that it was too expensive to string electric lines to isolated rural farmers. In 1935, under the Roosevelt Administration, the Rural Electric Administration (REA) was created to bring electricity to rural areas like the remote counties in Iowa.
In 1938, nine area farmers; Bugbee, Cordis, Harlan, Jordan, Laughery, McLuen, Phillips, Rosenbladt, and Weigel represented the first Guthrie County REC Board of Directors. They adopted Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, and policies that have governed your electric cooperative over the years. Then and now, members gather every year for the Annual Meeting of Members, where they have a voice in choosing their cooperative directors and in how Guthrie County REC is governed.
Today, electric cooperatives nationwide own and maintain more than 2.5 million miles of line and serve an area covering 75 percent of the U.S. landmass. These same electric cooperatives serve over 18 million farms, homes, schools, churches, businesses and industries and provide electricity to 42 million people in 46 states.