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Challenger wins Empire Electric Board District 3 election

Newly elected board member Corey Robinson, left, poses with fellow Empire Electric Association board members Robert Barry, Larry Archibeque, Norman Butler, Jerry Fetterman and Kent Lindsay. (Jim Mimiaga/The Journal)
Robinson secures seat 57% to 43% over incumbent Fahrion

Corey Robinson, a cinematographer and self-described energy nerd, was elected to the District 3 seat on Empire Electric Association board of directors in Thursday’s election.

Robinson earned 1,515 votes (57%) over incumbent Audra Fahrion, who had 1,130 votes (43%).

“I am humbled by all the support, and I’m very honored to serve on the board,” he said after the election. “It is so cool that we are part of a co-op and get to choose who we want to represent us.”

He has attended the board meetings for the past year and had a strong election campaign.

“There is a lot more to learn, and I look forward to working with my fellow board members,” he said. “My goals align with what the co-op community says they want, providing affordable and reliable energy.”

During his campaign, Robinson said he talked to anyone he could about their views and concerns regarding energy, and even went door to door.

“I had a lot of amazing conversations with people. I have a real interest in the topic, where we get our energy and how we manage it is fascinating,” he said.

His campaign raised $7,035 in donations toward his successful election bid, according to his campaign contribution report.

Robinson’s day job is creating outdoor, cultural and science films. He said his experience working with a team translates well with serving on a board striving toward a common goal.

In the election, there were 13,229 ballots sent out and 2,645 returned, or 20% voter participation.

Empire Electric board members help manage the electric co-op, an energy distribution system that provides service to Montezuma and Dolores counties and southeast Utah. Tri-State Generation and Transmission is the energy provider.

Board members review and approve policies and analyze projects and rates during monthly meetings. They receive a base pay of $1,000 per month, plus $150 for attending additional meetings.