Four County EMC is first co-op board in North Carolina (and possibly the nation) where all the directors have achieved their Director Gold certificate from the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA).


The Four County EMC board shares the distinction of being the the first in the nation with 100 percent Director Gold achievement with:

  • Baldwin County EMC, AL

  • Pioneer Electric Co-op, AL

  • Butler REC, Inc., OH

Four County’s rapid success spurred NRECA’s Education and Training Department to check course records of every co-op in the nation. That’s how we discovered the accomplishment of the boards at Baldwin, Pioneer and Butler. These boards are all the first to earn this honor. CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL!

“Our board has always been very mindful and self-motivated and is aware of how important education is in our changing industry. Their overall dedication and commitment to attend these classes and meetings exemplifies their loyalty to the co-op,” says CEO Mitchell Keel.

To earn this advanced certificate, all ten directors completed a core set of five courses followed by a variety of elective courses in topics ranging from finance to technology and then commit to a continuing education requirement throughout their service on the co-op board. The Director Gold certificate recognizes directors who are committed to continuing their education throughout their service on the board by earning three continuing education credits over a two-year period.

Pat Mangan, NRECA Director of Governance Education, said that more than 800 individual directors across the nation have obtained their Director Gold certificate since the program was launched in January. He said it has become very popular because it publicly recognizes directors who demonstrate their commitment to their co-op and to the necessity of continuing education to stay up to date on the issues facing electric cooperatives today.

“Today’s electric utility environment imposes new demands on electric cooperative directors, particularly the increased pace of change in the electric utility business, advances in technology and a working knowledge of the cooperative principles, Mangan noted.

“Four County EMC’s achievement is an example to the entire cooperative network,” he added.

  • Have all your board members obtained their Director Gold certificate? Let us know, by emailing Pat Mangan.

  • Want to learn more about Director Gold? Click here.

  • Read an article about the success of the program. Click here.


When your co-op board achieves 100% Director Gold, send a us a photo and we’ll publish it in Boardroom Spotlight. Send email to Boardroom Spotlight editor.