ABJ Staff – Austin Business Journal – Oct. 3, 2019
Imagine in your mind’s eye a Central Texas nonprofit — do you think of an electrical utility providing power to thousands of customers spread across the Hill Country?
Perhaps not. But Pedernales Electric Cooperative Inc. is a nonprofit, and a successful one at that. It serves more than 320,000 accounts and provides electricity to more than 1 million residents. Since Julie Caruthers Parsley took over as CEO in late 2017, PEC has added more than 14,000 meters.
PEC is the largest distribution electric cooperative in the United States, and one of the country’s fastest-growing electric cooperatives. For some context of Pedernales’ size, consider that it had more than 700 employees in 2017. As of 2018, PEC had more than $1.7 billion in plant assets and posted a net margin of more than $60 million. Total revenue topped $638 million.
Parsley hasn’t simply been content with the status quo at PEC. She made over the nonprofit’s executive team, eliminating silos to foster more collaboration. To create more transparency she hired an executive vice president role to oversee public affairs, communications, community engagement and legislative affairs.