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For Electric Cooperative Members

Our Favorite Stories of 2021

The staff of Texas Co-op Power shares their top reads of 2021

A co-op crew works to restore power near Lake Charles, Louisiana, after Hurricane Delta.

Chad Simon | Sam Houston EC

‘That’s What Co-ops Are For’, June

It was harrowing to hear from co-op lineworkers on the frontlines of extreme weather for this story. Their dedication to restoring power and commitment to co-op members everywhere is an important part of what makes electric cooperatives incredible.

Chris Burrows, editor


Robert Hinkle played many roles during his career in Hollywood. Today he lives in Leander, outside Austin, and is a Pedernales Electric Cooperative member.

Wyatt McSpadden

Texas Talk Man, June

The photos are fantastic, and Hinkle sounds like such an interesting character who has seen and done it all. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about how close he got with James Dean while filming. Author Jessica Ridge’s descriptions really bring the story to life, and I can picture those two hunting and goofing off together when not on set.

Grace Fultz, production specialist


John S. Chase with his sons in front of the family’s Houston residence, circa 1959.

African American Library at the Gregory School | Houston Public Library

An Unlikely Blueprint, July

Michael Hurd’s story celebrates the life and legacy of architect John Saunders Chase, who broke ground in more ways than one.

Travis Hill, communications specialist


Hunter Beaton has delivered some 45,000 bags since he started his project in 2016.

Eric Pohl

Easing Life’s Baggage, August

This story shines a light on some of the experiences of children in foster care—and offers a meaningful way to lend support. A heartfelt thank-you to our readers, who were moved by this story to donate nearly $50,000 to Day 1 Bags.

Jessica Ridge, communications specialist


whimsical folk art illustration of man and woman in front of house

Chanelle Nibbelink

Not About To Fixate, October

I had the pleasure of visiting author Sheryl Smith-Rodgers’ home months before this story graced my desk. Upon entering, I immediately commented on the warm and thoughtful character her home preserved. While the rest of the world chases a hashtag, her home was on her terms. Not to mention it reminded me of the one I grew up in.

Chris Salazar, digital content producer


Thanks to Matt Tumlinson, Willie Nelson has a permanent residency in Rankin.

Erich Schlegel

Rankin as a Canvas, July

I love that Matt Tumlinson is telling iconic stories of Texas large and in living color.

Jane Sharpe, senior designer


Paris veterinarian Wally Kraft with his sons—Jack, left, who is in veterinary school at Oklahoma State University, and Trey, also a vet.

Dave Shafer

Second to None, September

I found it astounding that a state so far-reaching and with such a robust farming and ranching culture had only one veterinary school. This story explains how Texas Tech University’s new school will help fill a critical need for vets in rural Texas.

Tom Widlowski, associate editor