Clete Rains, Sumner-Cowley Electric Cooperative CEO, announced his retirement last fall and will be succeeded this April by newly-named CEO Coni Adams. Rains started his career with Sumner-Cowley in 1977 as an apprentice lineman. He worked his way up the ranks to journeyman lineman and crew leader before he began working in the warehouse.
The warehouse job gave rains the opportunity to attend college at night and on the weekends. Rains was then promoted again in 1994 to assistant manager. 1996 was a big year for Rains as he graduated from college and was named CEO in December. He is currently the longest-tenured manager at Sumner-Cowley.
“I think rural cooperative people are the best people you’ll ever meet, no matter where you go,” Rains said. “I’ve met some of the best people ever. It’s been a real honor and a privilege to work in the rural electric industry and have all the interaction with the rural people.”
Rains has worked for in the electric cooperative industry for forty-three years. While he’s still deciding on his plans for his time during retirement, he’s taken advice from a previous manager and will have plenty of time to think about what’s next.
“One previous manager told me that when you retire, every day is a Saturday and you never face a Monday again,” Rains said. “I thought ‘well that’s a good way to look at it.’”