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Message from the President

Bruce Nuzum, NREDA President

Reflection, goals for the new year
and a curiosity

Happy 2018! I hope the year is off to a great start for you and your economic development efforts!

For those that don't know me, I work for the Iowa Area Development Group (IADG) which is the economic development organization for the electric cooperatives, a select group of municipal electric companies and the independent telephone companies of Iowa. I have had the pleasure of working on rural economic and community development for our members as well as being an involved member of NREDA for over 20 years. I consider it an honor and privilege serve as your NREDA President this year. Please know I will do my best to further the board's overall goal of bringing value to you, our member, as the only national association for rural development issues.

On a personal note, one of the New Years traditions that I have is to take a few moments on New Year's Day to write down thoughts, goals and questions about the upcoming year and then seal those up in an envelope until the next New Year's Day. It's far from formal, but it helps me to reflect on the year past and what I hope to accomplish in the new year. Then I open up the sealed envelope with notes from the prior years to see how much has changed in my life. This year I took a little extra time so I could also reflect and organize for my new role with NREDA. So as I pen my first President's Brief, I want to share a few of those reflections and seek your input for goals for the new year.

First, I want to start by thanking Jim Vermeer for his leadership and hard work as NREDA's 2017 President. I also want to thank NREDA's Board and Committee Members for all of their volunteer efforts which make our organization so successful. There are some great things for 2018 just getting underway which we'll talk about in future articles. All of these efforts, past and present, make me so appreciative of the time and energy that everyone devotes to NREDA.

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NREDA Leadership Awards

In recognition of outstanding leadership in the field of rural economic development, the NREDA seeks to honor deserving individuals across America. Nominees may be economic development professionals or rural electric cooperative/rural telephone staff or board members. Nominees are those who have demonstrated outstanding leadership in an economic development project resulting in the improvement of the quality of life, creation of new jobs, and opportunity for growth and development in rural America.

Click here for a list of previous NREDA Award winners.

2017 Rural Economic Development Leadership Award was presented to Dennis Mingyar, Director of Economic Development, Ohio's Electric Cooperatives, Columbus, OH (2nd from left). Presenters included ( L to R): Jim Vermeer, (Dennis), Linda Salmonson and Mike Meissen.

Jim Vermeer presents Charlie Walker, President & CO, Chippewa County Economic Development Corporation, Chippewa Falls, WI the 2017 Rural Economic Development Leadership Award

Accepting the 2017 Organization Excellence Award is Clancy Courtney for South Carolina Power Team, Columbia, SC pictured with NREDA President Jim Vermeer.

The 2017 Organization Excellence Award was also presented to Kossuth/Palo Alto County Economic Development Corporation, Algona, IA. Picture L to R: NREDA President Jim Vermeer, Nominator Jed Skogerboe, Iowa Lakes Electric Cooperative, Maureen Elbert KPACEDC, and Norm Fandel, Midland Power Cooperative.

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