- Case Study -
Tennessee Power Cooperatives Rely on eBallot for Virtual Business Meetings
Tennessee Valley Public Power Association (TVPPA) and Seven States Power Corporation (SSPC), both based in Chattanooga, Tennessee, relied on our virtual and in-person voting solutions to support their annual membership meetings.
Although the two organizations share staff and work collaboratively, they’re each headed by their own board of directors. Both organizations hold elections at their respective annual membership meetings.
Due to the global Covid-19 pandemic, the organizations weren’t able to fully host their annual membership meetings in-person due to social distancing restrictions and local public health regulations.
Because the new board of directors elections typically took place at these meetings, many members raised concerns about how the decision was to take place in wake of the situation. Likewise, the organizations’ bylaws required that a vote be held, regardless of the circumstances.
For the first time in their joint history, the TVPPA and SSPC were forced to find a unique, hybrid approach that would allow members to vote either in-person or virtually.
A joint team from TVPPA and SSPC conducted in-depth online searches for a reputable online voting platform. The team, with help from their legal counsel, outlined some of the core requirements that would be necessary for their elections:
- Instant results so that winners could be announced during the meetings
- Secure voting mechanisms so that votes could not be duplicated or misinterpreted
- Detailed voter reports to identify where dissenting opinions were coming from
After considering several options, the team came to the conclusion that we were the only provider that could address all of their prerequisites and provide the support they desired.
We provided an online voting portal for members to access virtually and cast their votes, as well as in-person voting solutions for those who could attend to participate. All voters were given individual login credentials in order to ensure that their votes were counted and tracked. This also allowed administrators to confirm later in voter reports that ballots had not been duplicated or counted twice.
Regardless of whether voters participated in-person or online, all votes were counted in real-time to provide quick results to administrators.
One of our own account managers was also in attendance via Zoom call in order to ensure proceedings went smoothly, provide trouble-shooting as needed, and offer instant assistance to administrators.
The board of directors elections at the SSPC and the TVPPA annual membership meetings went off without a hitch. Over 100 voters successfully elected new board members and made a number of decisions regarding outstanding resolutions affecting the organizations.
Diana Bryant, Director of Conferences and Events for SSPC, was especially grateful for eBallot’s support throughout the process. “We were new to voting online, but eBallot did all of the setup to help take things off our hands,” said Bryant. “Our account manager was particularly fantastic. Luke answered all of our questions promptly and helped with login and last-minute changes.”
Despite the requirements and size of the event, the organizations felt that they received good value for the results they got. “It was seamless and we were thrilled with the results,” said Bryant. “The value was great for what we were provided, and eBallot’s expertise and support were so useful.”
“eBallot was the only service that could accomplish everything we needed, from instant results and voter reports to ballot security and transparency. No one else could do that for us.”
-- Diana Bryant, Director of Conferences and Events
About Tennesee Valley Public Power Association
TVPPA is a nonprofit, regional service organization that represents the interests of consumer-owned electric utilities operating within the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) service area. TVPPA members include both municipal and electric cooperatives and they serve more than 9 million people in Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, Kentucky, North Carolina and Virginia.
About Seven States Power Corporation
SSPC is an energy solutions company that serves 153 local power companies across seven states of the Tennessee Valley. Its members distribute TVA-generated electricity and provide a variety of essential services that build the economy and enhance life in their communities. Their turnkey products and services include EV (electric vehicle) chargers, solar arrays, backup generation, combined heat and power, battery storage, fiber deployment, cybersecurity, economic analysis and distributed energy resource management systems.
Seven States is a generation and transmission cooperative with a wholly-owned subsidiary entity, Seven States Energy, LLC. TVPPA is a trade association with a wholly-owned subsidiary entity, Distributors Insurance Company, Inc. Seven States delivers energy services and renewable power projects to the 153 distributors in the Tennessee Valley, and TVPPA provides education, training, conferences, advocacy and member services to the 153 distributors.
Although the organizations share staff, each organization is governed by its own Board of Directors.
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