McConnell awardLOUISVILLE, Ky. (11/19/19) — U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) was honored Monday morning as the “2019 Distinguished Rural Kentuckian” at the 73rd Annual Meeting of Kentucky Electric Cooperatives. The award is the highest honor given by the statewide association of Kentucky’s electric cooperatives which serve nearly 1.5 million Kentuckians in 117 of 120 Kentucky counties.

“Senator McConnell is a champion for rural Kentucky,” said Chris Perry, president and CEO of Kentucky Electric Cooperatives. “Time and time again, he has been there for co-ops when it matters most. And, what’s striking is how responsive he is to the issues of rural Kentucky and America.” 

Perry said McConnell’s leadership securing access to sensible financing and USDA funding has helped Kentucky co-ops deliver safe, reliable and affordable electricity, and McConnell’s advocacy for sensible environmental regulations has protected the consumer-members of Kentucky co-ops.

“We know that Leader McConnell’s clout means good things for Kentucky and we appreciate his hard work and dedication to fight for rural priorities,” Perry continued. “As Majority Leader, he gets to set the agenda and because of that, rural Kentuckians have a lot to be grateful for. Our agenda is his agenda.”

“As a predominantly rural state, we’re made stronger by our heritage,” said McConnell. “From the Big Rivers to East Kentucky Power, your 26 statewide electrical cooperatives are making a real difference in the lives of families and communities. You’re helping power Kentucky’s future, support good jobs, and drive our economic prosperity. I’m grateful for your advocacy and keeping me up to date on your priorities, and I’m honored to receive this award.”

First elected to the U.S. Senate in 1984, McConnell is Kentucky’s longest serving senator and the longest serving Republican Senate Leader in U.S. history. In addition to serving on the Senate Agriculture Committee, Senate Rules and Administration, he also serves on the Senate Appropriations Committee – the committee which holds jurisdiction over discretionary spending.

Through the years, McConnell has fought for many priorities important to rural Kentucky, including major tax reform, regulatory relief, infrastructure, rural broadband development and healthcare. Senator McConnell is well-known as a champion for rural Kentuckians – their jobs, families and futures. He has secured vital funding for our communities and been the voice for all Kentuckians in Washington.

About the Distinguished Rural Kentuckian Award:
Since 1982, the Distinguished Rural Kentuckian honor has been awarded by Kentucky’s member-owned electric cooperatives. Previous Distinguished Rural Kentuckians include elected leaders, authors, journalists, business executives, physicians, and sports champions. The award recognizes outstanding individuals who have devoted their lives to Kentucky in a way that matches the co-op mission of enhancing the quality of life here.

About Kentucky Electric Cooperatives:
Kentucky’s electric cooperatives serve more than 1.5 million people – about 35% of the state’s population – in 117 of Kentucky’s 120 counties. The statewide association provides representation before the General Assembly, Congress, and regulatory bodies: safety training; coordination of management training; and public relations support including publication of Kentucky Living magazine. Kentucky Electric Cooperatives is governed by a board consisting of one manager and one director from each of its 26 member systems and is headquartered in Louisville.

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