Youth Leadership Summit

Grayson Cowan of Cherokee High School and Samantha Bennett of Volunteer High School were selected to attend the 2016 Youth Leadership Summit sponsored by the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association, Holston Electric Cooperative and other Tennessee electric cooperatives.

The summit was held March 21-23 in Nashville at the Millennium Maxwell House Hotel.

This two and one-half day seminar educated young leaders about our state government and hometown electric cooperatives and rural electric systems, enhanced leadership abilities, and gave them an opportunity to meet our state legislators on Capitol Hill.

Highlights of the seminar included a tour of the State Capitol and an opportunity to listen to House and Senate Committee meetings at Legislative Plaza. The summit also included special leadership development presentations from the reigning Miss Tennessee, a State Trooper from the Tennessee Executive Protection Detail and others. The group spent a day at the Nashville YMCA learning teamwork, problem-solving and enhancing their leadership skills.

While visiting Capitol Hill, the group met with state representative, Gary Hicks.

Cowan and Bennett also learned from electric cooperative employees the importance of having a hometown, locally-owned and operated electric utility in their community. Employees led a learning session entitled   “Power to the People.” They also helped the group organize their own electric cooperative and watched as the youth discussed how they would best handle real-life, difficult situations facing cooperatives today.

Students also competed in the long-time favorite of the Youth Leadership Summit – the Energy Battle – where the youth contended in a fun and educational debate-style game of knowledge.

Grayson Cowan and Samantha Bennett are both juniors in High School. Cowan is the son of Doug and Kelly Cowan of Rogersville.  Bennett is the daughter of Ray and Cindy Bennett of Rogersville.


From Left: Samantha Bennett, Gary Hicks, Grayson Cowan