OUR HISTORY

BENCO Electric Cooperative is an electric cooperative that has served members in south central Minnesota with electricity since 1935. With a long history of excellent service, the cooperative serves more than 18,000 members in south central Minnesota, including Blue Earth, Nicollet, Faribault and surrounding counties.

BENCO strives to safely provide the best possible service, at the lowest possible cost, consistent with sound business management. The Cooperative has been a leader in many areas including energy efficiency, youth education programs and economic development and is committed to continuing this long-standing tradition for the membership.

BENCO Electric Cooperative through the Years …

  • 1936 – Blue Earth – Nicollet – Faribault Cooperative Electric Association was formed.

  • 1937 – The Cooperative’s first recorded meeting took place.

  • 1938 – The first pole on the system was set in June and the line was energized in September.

  • 1980 – BENCO and Faribault County Cooperative Electric Association consolidated to form Frost – BENCO Electric.

  • 1988 – Frost – BENCO and Wells Electric Cooperative merge to form Frost – BENCO – Wells Electric.

  • 1998 – Frost – BENCO – Wells Electric became a Touchstone Energy partner and began doing business as what is known today as BENCO Electric Cooperative.

  • 2015 – BENCO Electric Cooperative acquired Alliant Energy’s service territory within the existing BENCO service territory.

Pictured left to right: Dale Schueneman, John Winch, Bob Shouts, Bill Shouts, Earl Ogden, Milton Murphy, Emil Stoll, Ira Lynch