Senior decision-makers come together to connect around strategies and business trends affecting utilities.


Flint Energies donates Chromebooks to rural schools

Marian McLemore's picture
VP of Cooperative Communications Flint Energies

Marian McLemore has more than 25 years experience in public relations, with more than 20 of those in the electric cooperative industry.  Currently, Marian is the Vice President of Cooperative...

  • Member since 2017
  • 10 items added with 11,189 views
  • Sep 11, 2020

Flint Energies and its philanthropic arm, the Flint Energies Foundation, bridged the digital divide by donating 200 Chromebooks to six rural school districts. The COVID-19 pandemic revealed how rural families are often at a disadvantage in a virtual learning environment. The majority have poor internet service and many cannot afford a computer to access online classrooms. That is where Flint Energies and its Foundation stepped in.

The Flint Energies Foundation held an emergency meeting last month to approve the purchase of more than $90,000 worth of Chromebooks to be donated to Crawford, Macon, Peach, Schley, Talbot and Taylor County school systems.

Flint Energies coordinated the purchase and delivery of the laptops to the school districts. Peach County received 20, Macon, Schley, and Taylor counties received 30 each and Crawford and Talbot counties received 45 Chromebooks each for distance learning students to use.

“Flint Energies has always been in the business of improving the quality life of our members, whether through power lines or community development. We saw our rural students’ great need for technology and did what we could in short order to improve their access to online learning. Our Chromebook donation would not be possible without those Flint Members who participate in our Operation Round Up® program,” says Marian McLemore, Vice President of Cooperative Communications. “The small change they donate each month made this gift and so much more possible.”


About Operation Round Up and Flint Energies Foundation

The Flint Energies Foundation provides grants to local non-profits by using money donated by Flint Energies Consumer-members through Operation Round Up. The electric cooperative’s Members contribute $177,000 annually to the Flint Energies Foundation, which supports worthy causes in the 17 counties it serves. Operation Round Up is a way for participating Members to support multiple charitable organizations by simply allowing Flint Energies to round up their bills to the nearest dollar. Donations to Operation Round Up, which average only about $6 per year per Member, are tax deductible. About 40% of Flint’s Members have chosen to participate, but those numbers are declining. If you are a Flint Energies Consumer-member and wish to contribute, you can sign up at under the My Community section or by calling 1.800.342.3616.

The Flint Energies Foundation, a state-chartered, non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization, disburses all contributions to approved projects; Member contributions are not used for administration costs. Foundation Board members include Chairman Kathy Waites, Fort Valley; Vice Chairman Joanne Hamlin, Lizella; Secretary Connie McCutchen, Midland; Treasurer John Luppino, Warner Robins; Gina Fink, Kathleen; Charles Harrison, Grovania; Pat Bartness, Warner Robins; Traci Kemp, Warner Robins; Rudy Killingsworth, Buena Vista; Eloise Doty, Butler and Betty Chase, Oglethorpe.

Funding applications are available by contacting Flint Energies at 1.800.342.3616 or visiting the My Community section of


About Flint Energies

Flint Energies is a not-for-profit electric cooperative owned by its members in parts of 17 central Georgia counties. Flint employs 234 employees and serves more than 92,000 electric meters. We are 100% locally-controlled and democratically governed by nine Directors elected from among the membership. In 1937, Flint Energies was created to bring people together to meet common needs like reliable electric energy, and our mission remains focused on improving the quality of life in Middle Georgia. Flint Energies is an equal opportunity provider and employer. Follow Flint on Twitter and Facebook.

Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Sep 11, 2020

A great example of a utility taking the 'we're all in this together' to heart and not just as a PR phrase-- really cool to see. Thanks for sharing, Marian. 

From what I've heard from my teacher friends, though, the next step would be some sort of tech support hotline-- too many teachers are being put in the position to create virtual and in-person lesson plans, answer parents questions/panick, and play IT for dozens of families. We truly need to appreciate the teachers of the country (always, but especially now)

Paul Korzeniowski's picture
Paul Korzeniowski on Sep 17, 2020

Definitely something needed today was schools struggle to continue children's education while the pandemic rages. Many students lack the financial resources to take part in classes and are in danger of falling behind in developing needed skill sets. 

Marian McLemore's picture
Thank Marian for the Post!
Energy Central contributors share their experience and insights for the benefit of other Members (like you). Please show them your appreciation by leaving a comment, 'liking' this post, or following this Member.
More posts from this member

Get Published - Build a Following

The Energy Central Power Industry Network is based on one core idea - power industry professionals helping each other and advancing the industry by sharing and learning from each other.

If you have an experience or insight to share or have learned something from a conference or seminar, your peers and colleagues on Energy Central want to hear about it. It's also easy to share a link to an article you've liked or an industry resource that you think would be helpful.

                 Learn more about posting on Energy Central »