Bringing Electricity to Rural Southwest Missouri
White River Valley Electric Cooperative (WRVEC) origins are traced back to 1935 when the Rural Electrification Administration (REA) was created. This New Deal agency was created to bring the same comforts to rural Americans - like electric lights to extend the day and electric motors to ease the daily workload – that city residents enjoyed.
The rural desire for electricity was passionate, however the means elusive. The vast distances between members made stringing lines and setting poles costly, generating little, if any, profit for electric utilities.
The Rural Electrification Administration (REA) opened the door to bringing electricity to rural America through electric cooperatives - private partnerships owned and controlled by the people they serve – which emerged as the principal borrowers of REA funds. By the end of 1936 nearly 100 electric cooperatives in 26 states had been formed. Today, 1,000 electric cooperatives in 47 states serve 37 million Americans, or 10 percent of the population, and maintain nearly half of all distribution lines in the country.
Soon after WRVEC first flipped the switch in 1939, 505 members stepped into the modern age. Since then, WRVEC’s service area has grown to cover 2,400 square miles in five counties - Ozark, Taney, Stone, Christian, and Douglas - with more than 48,000 services in place and over 5,000 miles of energized line.
Bringing electricity to this area of Southwest Missouri was the founding goal for WRVEC and we continue to provide our residential and commercial members with reliable, low-cost electricity, and superior customer service.
If you have questions about WRVEC, or need more information about our services, we’re here to assist you. Click here to contact us or call 1-800-879-4056.