Our History

Coast Electric’s Historic Timeline

1935 President Roosevelt created the Rural Electrification Administration (REA) in May 1935, recognizing the need for government involvement in electrifying rural America.
1937 Hancock Electric organizes to electrify rural Hancock County. Meanwhile Gulf Coast Electric is busy signing up members in Harrison County.
1938 General Manager Vickers resigns. C. Clifton Ferrell named replacement.
1939 A merger is completed creating CEPA. The co-op serves rural members residing in Hancock, Harrison and Pearl River Counties.
1948 General Manager Ferrell resigns after leading the Association for 10 years. Hardin Shattuck named new General Manager.
1949 First three-phase service is set in Picayune to WRJW Radio Station.
1950 November 4 – Dedication of new headquarters building on Hwy 90 in Bay St. Louis. The modern building houses the co-op’s administration offices, billing and engineering departments. Coast Electric serves over 4,800 members.
1952 Electricity for the entire system was obtained at Picayune; Landon was second; then Derby, then Bay St. Louis and finally North Biloxi.
1957 Total number of members – 6,963
1958 Major chain grocery store comes online in Bay St. Louis.
1961 December 4 – First refund of capital credits totaling over $70,000 to 3,125 members receiving service 1944, 45, 46.
1964 Celebration of Coast Electric’s 25th Anniversary. Average monthly bill: $10.60. Average cost per kwh: .0250.
1969 Hurricane Camille devastates distribution system.
1971 Dedication of new headquarters building located on Hwy 90.
1973 Henry Thomas named General Manager. Coast Electric recognized for 364,309 consecutive man hours worked with no lost time accidents.
1978 Coast Electric changed electric bills to postcard form to reduce costs.
1984 Began offering electronic funds transfer. Coast Electric maintained 83 company vehicles.
1985 Picayune branch opens drive-thru.
1986 Robert Occhi was appointed General Manager.
1987 Opened Poplarville office. Began participating in NRECA Youth Tour.
1989 Coast Electric members received $438,000 in capital credits.
1990 Began Good Cents energy efficiency program.
1991 North Hwy 49 Gulfport office grand opening.
1993 The Association converted from yellow to white vehicles.
1994 Coast Electric named Business of the Year.
1996 Coast Electric vehicles traveled over 2.2 million miles.
1998 Coast Electric forms Advisory Committee of nine member-owners.
1998 Hurricane Georges’ damaging winds caused 95% of Coast Electric’s 58,000 members to lose power.
1999 SCADA system put into place.
2000 Summary billing was introduced.
2001 GIS system was installed.
2002 Ground breaking at Bernard A. Mutter, III Operations Center
2003 Coast Electric joins the national brand alliance, Touchstone Energy
2005 On Aug. 29, Hurricane Katrina devastates the Mississippi Gulf Coast and 100 percent of Coast Electric’s members are left without power. Coast Electric employees, along with more than 3,200 crew members from 19 states work to restore power to all members in only three short weeks after the nation’s most devastating natural disaster.
2006 Coast Electric is recognized by the Mississippi Business Journal as one of the Best Places to Work in Mississippi.
2006 Coast Electric sells its headquarters facility to the city of Bay St. Louis. The cooperative moves its headquarters to the Bernard Mutter, III Operations Center in Kiln, Miss.
2007 Coast Electric is once again named one of the Best Places to Work in Mississippi by the Mississippi Business Journal. It is the cooperative’s second consecutive year to win the award.
2007 Coast Electric announces capital credit retirement of $1,504,915 with over 35,000 checks mailed to members.
2008 Coast Electric is named one of the Best Places to Work in Mississippi by the Mississippi Business Journal for an unprecedented third consecutive year.
2008 Coast Electric announces capital credit retirement of $1,999,502 with over 42,000 checks mailed to members.
2008 Coast Electric completes new full service office in Bay St. Louis in August 2008.
2008 Coast Electric joins national political grassroots effort “Our Energy, Our Future”.
2009 Coast Electric breaks ground on its new headquarters in Kiln, MS.
2009 Coast Electric is again named one of the Best Places to Work in Mississippi by the Mississippi Business Journal.
2009 Coast Electric announces capital credit retirement of $2,164,241 with over 45,000 checks mailed to members.
2009 Coast Electric announces new Time of Use rate options.
2010 Coast Electric begins conversion to automatic metering infrastructure (AMI).
2010 Coast Electric sets all time peak of 510 MW on January 11.
2010 On May 5, 2010, Coast Electric surpasses 1 million member dollars saved through pharmacy portion of Co-op Connections program.
2010 Coast Electric announces capital credit retirement of $2,505,243 with over 52,000 checks mailed to members.
2010 Coast Electric announces the removal of the Katrina Cost Recovery Fee of $3.00 per account.
2011 Coast Electric officially opens Kiln Headquarters Facility on June 13.
2011 Coast Electric employees reach milestone of one million man hours worked without a loss time accident
2011 Coast Electric announces capital credit retirement of $2,801,621 with over 57,000 checks mailed to current and former members.
2012 Coast Electric kicks off year long 75th anniversary celebration.
2012 Coast Electric completes installation of automated meter infrastructure system (AMI).
2012 Coast Electric launches smart phone app on Apple and Android devices.
2012 Coast Electric introduces meter data management system allowing members to securely view their usage data over the internet.
2012 On June 5, 2012, Coast Electric surpasses 2 million member dollars saved through pharmacy portion of Co-op Connections program.
2012 Coast Electric completes renovation of Poplarville branch office.
 2012  Coast Electric wins “Best Places to Work” in MS for the sixth year.
 2013  Coast Electric introduces PrePay Metering.
 2013  Coast Electric retires $3,001,619 in capital credits.  The largest retirement in company history.
 2014  Coast Electric sets a new all time peak of 527 MW on January 7.
 2014  Coast Electric achieves a score of 88 on the American Customer Satisfaction Index.