Cooperatives participate in Youth Day

Senator Jil Tracy and Representative’s Norine Hammond and Randy Frese met with students representing McDonough Power Cooperative and McDonough Telephone Cooperative during the Illinois Electric and Telephone Cooperatives Youth Day on Wednesday, March 29 in Springfield. More than 240 students from around Illinois had an opportunity to visit the State Capitol, view state government in action and question their legislators on key issues.

During lunch, Comptroller Susana Mendoza addressed students and chaperones and challenged them to take an interest in the political process and encouraged them to use their voice and reach out to their representatives and senators. Sophia Marcolla, the 2016-17 Illinois Youth Leadership Council Representative from Adams Electric Cooperative, spoke about her experience on the Youth to Washington tour and the importance of leadership. While in Springfield, the students also visited the Old State Capitol and Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum.

At the end of the day the students were interviewed for the chance to participate in the Youth to Washington Tour from June 9-16, 2017. Those selected to represent McDonough Power Cooperative on the week-long all-expense paid trip to Washington D.C. include Ethan Hunt of West Prairie High School and Darrin Ross of United High School. Mariah Garzee of Bushnell-Prairie City High School will serve as an alternate if one of the others is unable to attend.

Youth Day is designed to introduce young rural leaders to state government. There were 25 co-ops from across the state represented at the event.

Pictured with the legislators is Daniel Prefountain, Addison Crum, Madison Ruiz, and Madeline Groenewold of Rushville-Industry High School; Noah Cox, Mariah Garzee, Matt Rauschert, and Emma Bradford of Bushnell-Prairie City High School; Samantha Weidman, Jared Bolon, Madison Glasgow, and Tyler Lewis-Bresnahan of Monmouth-Roseville High School; Ethan Hunt, Nate Blankenship, Courtney Butterfield, and Samuel Blackledge of West Prairie High School; Nicholas Torrance, Theodore Li, Emily Hance, and Erbin Zejnuloski of Macomb High School; Darrin Ross of United High School; Kevin White and Annie Sholl of Illini West High School; Tori Olson and Nathan Wetzel of West Central High School; Kelly Hamm of McDonough Power Cooperative and Les Fowler of McDonough Telephone Cooperative.