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The North Dakota Association of Rural Electric Cooperatives (NDAREC) recognized Slope Electric Cooperative with the Cooperative Community Development Award at its 77th annual meeting on Jan. 21, 2020. The award recognizes the cooperative’s collective contributions in community leadership and economic development.
“Slope Electric Cooperative has significantly impacted Southwestern North Dakota through its contributions to the communities it serves,” says NDAREC General Manager and Executive Vice President Josh Kramer. “The cooperative — together with its employees and board members —  works hard to promote jobs creation and workforce development; provide assistance with essential services; and offer economic development tools to support community development. It is an honor to celebrate their efforts.”

Slope Electric Cooperative is an active participant in the USDA Rural Economic Development Loan Program, which helps rural businesses expand and emerge. Over the years, the cooperative has secured several zero-interest loans to enhance rural economies. These loans funded remodeling and construction projects for a variety of businesses, including medical facilities, a veterinary clinic and a minimum-security housing facility. 

The cooperative has also done an exceptional job promoting rural development tools available through the cooperative network to advance the communities it serves. By leveraging resources available through the Rural Development Finance Corporation (RDFC), the cooperative has helped keep essential services in its communities, including a local grocery store and a dental office. 

In addition, the cooperative operates its own revolving loan fund. This fund has provided zero-interest loans to the New England Community Grocery Store and Riverside Lodging, helping ensure essential services remain in the small town of New England. 

Slope Electric Cooperative also encourages its employees to be involved in their communities. Co-op employees serve on city council, the ambulance board and local chamber committees. They also volunteer for a local fire department, church groups and schools.

North Dakota’s electric cooperatives congratulate the directors, managers and staff of Slope Electric Cooperative on receiving this recognition and thank them for their years of service to their cooperative and community.

Every year, NDAREC recognizes individuals for their generous contributions to North Dakota’s electric cooperatives and the communities they serve. An eight-member committee of the NDAREC board of directors selects award recipients from nominations submitted by NDAREC’s members, which includes 16 electric distribution cooperatives and five generation and transmission cooperatives. 

NDAREC is the statewide trade association for 16 electric distribution cooperatives and five generation and transmission cooperatives operating in North Dakota. The distribution cooperatives provide electricity to nearly 250,000 North Dakotans. NDAREC services include legislative advocacy, line worker safety training and professional development services, cooperative business development and communication services including publication of the North Dakota Living magazine.