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Kinnunen, Pulju elected to West Central Telephone Board

The 59th annual meeting of the members was held at the Sebeka High School Monday, May 11. Key officers, the manager and the controller reported on the status of the cooperative and what the future holds.

Bruce Kinnunen of Sebeka was re-elected to serve another three-year term and Dave Pulju of Nimrod was elected to serve a one-year term. Kinnunen ran uncontested, while Pulju ran against the Rev. Neal Malcore. There were no nominations from the floor. The candidates addressed the crowd at the meeting, each citing reasons to serve on the cooperative board. The ballots were cast by the members, and tallied by the Nominations and Election Committee. Dave Fjeldheim, as chair of the committee, announced the outcome of this year's election.

Bruce Kinnunen, currently the cooperative board president, honored the memory of Director John Oehlenschlager by awarding a commemorative plaque to John's wife Kay Oehlenschlager. Oehlenschlager served on the board of directors for almost eight years. Kinnunen also expressed sympathy on behalf of the cooperative to the family of Andy Schmith who was a past general manager and long-time employee of the company.

Highlights of the evening's presentation included three short videos. The first video gave the audience a sneak preview of the new Menahga office that will open May 20. The second video explained the fiber to the home project, and gave the viewers insight on the capabilities of a fiber optic system. The third video explained the Zenergy renewable services, specifically showing a combination solar panel and wind turbine system powering up a remote cabinet that services 48 customers. According to Geri Salmela, marketing director for the company, these videos will be available online at as well.