Vernon “Buddy” Hasten of Rogersville, Mo., has been named president and CEO of the Arkansas Electric Cooperative Corp. (AECC) and Arkansas Electric Cooperatives Inc. (AECI). He will start Nov. 1.
The boards of directors for AECC and AECI announced Thursday (Sept. 12) the selection.
Hasten has served as vice president of engineering and construction for Associated Electric Cooperative in Springfield, Mo. He’s also worked in leadership positions in the military, investor-owned and electric cooperative sectors over his 30-year career. He received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Auburn University and earned certificates from the Harvard Business School and the Stanford Graduate School of Business. During his 20 years of service in the U.S. Navy, he obtained a master’s degree equivalent from Naval Nuclear Power School.
Hasten replaces Bill Conine who served as the interim president and CEO of AECC and AECI while a nationwide search was completed. Conine, who previously was CEO of Petit Jean Electric Cooperative of Clinton, will retire after the transition. Conine was named interim president and CEO of AECC and AECI in February after Duane Highley accepted the position of CEO of Tri-State Generation and Transmission Cooperative in Westminster, Colo.
“I have had great respect for AECC and AECI over the years,” Hasten said. “I am honored to serve as the president and CEO of these organizations that are dedicated to serving Arkansas electric cooperative members.”
The Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas comprise 17 electric distribution cooperatives; AECI, a Little Rock-based cooperative providing services to the distribution cooperatives; and AECC, a generation and transmission cooperative. The distribution cooperatives provide electricity to about 500,000 homes, farms and businesses in Arkansas and surrounding states.