People and Events

eight portraits of 2022 Benton REA scholarship recipients. Text says their names and "Congratulation, 2022 Scholarship Recipients".

2022 Scholarship Recipients

Benton REA planted two threes at Wine Country RV Park on April 13 as a part of the Arbor Day Foundation’s Tree Line USA program. Pictured from left: Brian Cramer, area utility tree coordinator; Troy Berglund, Benton REA vice president of member services; Louann Rockney, Wine Country RV Park manager; Mike Freepons, Benton REA trustee.

Benton REA Plants Trees at Wine Country RV Park

Visitors to Prosser’s Wine Country RV Park will enjoy two new trees donated by Benton REA on April 13, Washington State Arbor Day. Benton REA planted a Linden tree and a Hot Wings Maple tree because they will only grow 25 to 30 feet tall at maturity. They were planted far enough away from utility…

A photo split down the middle, the left shows the back left side of an electric lineworker wearing a hard hat with a powerline in the background. The right side shows the right half of a lineworker wearing a ball cap and holding a baby girl with his home in the background. It says, "Lineworker Appreciation - We thank lineworkers for their courage and commitment to powering our community."

A Month of Appreciation

Lineworker Appreciation If you have noticed Benton REA’s line crews working on power lines and other electrical equipment, it’s no secret a lineworker’s job is tough—but it’s a job that’s essential. This month we celebrate lineworkers. The next time you see a lineworker, please thank them for the work they do to keep power flowing,…

Photo of a Genevieve Boarman, a lineworker.

Are You Lineworker Material?

If you hate the outdoors, prefer monotonous tasks, despise your community, like to work alone and enjoy working for minimum wage, this isn’t the job for you. Electric lineworkers are hard to find. It is an incredibly challenging and sometimes dangerous job not everyone is cut out for, but it can be incredibly rewarding. “There’s…

Benton REA Lineworkers prepare to set a new power pole. Photo by David Herder.

A Day on the Lines

Benton REA Line crews work hard day and night to keep the lights on Story and photos by David Herder As the Benton Rural Electric Association lineworkers arrive to their worksite on a late February morning, the poles they plan to raise are covered in snow. For the past week, foreman Chris Hill and his…

On the cover of the 2022 Ruralite calendar, highlighted by evening light, a farmer’s crops grow near an old grain elevator. PHOTO BY HAROLD CARLSON

Member’s Photo Featured on Cover of 2022 Ruralite Calendar

The cover photo on the 2022 Ruralite calendar was submitted by Benton REA member and amature photographer Harold Carlson of West Richland. “I drove down this gravel road and saw this structure,” Harold says. “The evening light was hitting it so well and luckily the farmer’s crops were starting to show up. I got lucky…

Cars parked at Benton REA's 2021 drive-in annual meeting

Drive-In Annual Meeting Fills Red Mountain Event Center

On the rainy morning of September 18, Benton REA hosted a drive-in annual meeting for the first time in the co-op’s 84 years. “As a cooperative, we’re required to hold an annual meeting of the Benton REA members,” says General Manager Mike Bradshaw. “While planning the meeting, the number of COVID-19 patients being admitted to…

2021 Annual Meeting Ad_web

Drive In to the Annual Meeting

Benton REA invites all members to drive in for the 84th Annual Membership Meeting on September 18 at 10:30 a.m. Join us for a modified version of your annual meeting without leaving your vehicle. Drive to the Red Mountain Event Center (8280 W. Van Giesen St.) in West Richland. You’ll get a boxed lunch and…

Benton REA Board District Map - Trustee election

Mail-in Ballots Due September 9 for Trustee Districts 7, 8

Benton REA is governed by eight trustees who each represent a district of members. These trustees are elected by you—Benton REA members—to serve three-year terms. Members who live in districts 7 and 8 will receive a ballot in August for the 2021 trustee election. Each membership receives one vote. Members may submit their vote by…

David Hanson, executive director, and Ken Trainor, director of operations for Sunrise Outreach Center food banks accept a check for $3,000 from Benton REA Board President Connie Krull (center).

Benton REA Donates $15K to Local Food Banks

Fifteen thousand dollars is helping feed local families thanks to Benton REA and matching funds from CoBank, one of the utility’s lenders. Benton REA received a $7,500 matching grant from the CoBank Sharing Success program. Together, the $15,000 donation will help families through three organizations within the Benton REA member service area. Nine thousand dollars…