Employees from the information technology and engineering departments, as well as Horry Electric’s office manager attended the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s TechAdvantage technology showcase this past week. TechAdvantage ran in conjunction with NRECA’s Annual Meeting, which was attended by trustees, the CEO and the CFO.
TechAdvantage: Showcasing Latest Tech Solutions
Story by Derrill Holly/ ECT Staff Writer/ Published 3/6/14
Visitors to TechAdvantage got a chance to see, touch and, in some cases, try out some of the gear essential to operating an electric cooperative in the 21st century.
“We’ve got 342 exhibitors representing more than 130 categories of products and services,” Eric Commodore, an NRECA meeting and event planner, said of the March 3-6 show.
Commodore was one of several association staffers who devoted much of the past 15 months to the annual product exhibition for electric cooperatives, which ran in conjunction with the NRECA annual meeting. Meeting rooms located near the exhibit hall provided attendees with an opportunity to explore the trade show as they traveled to forums and other meetings.
“Exhibitors filled more than 67,000 square feet inside of Nashville’s Music City Center,” said Commodore. “One exhibitor even used an unmanned aerial vehicle to attract people to their booth.”
Products on display included substation equipment, vehicles, tools, uniforms and protective gear. Environmental consultants, software vendors and energy audit service providers were also represented.
“Operations staff and purchasing managers could find the products and services they need here at TechAdvantage,” said Robin Slye, NRECA’s director of meeting and event planning. “We also wanted directors and other decision makers to see the advanced equipment and technology that can help keep their co-ops running smoothly.”
More than two dozen NRECA staffers engaged members and other visitors to NRECA’s TechAdvantage booth. Operating units represented in NRECA’s 2,400 square-foot space included the Cooperative Research Network, the Cooperative Benefits Administrators and the NRECA International Foundation.
“The NRECA booth provided our members with an excellent opportunity to become more familiar with the value the national association delivers every day,” said Jim Bausell, NRECA’s senior vice president of communications. “We had key staffers on hand to fully explain and answer any questions about a wide array of programs and services.”