BARC Electric Cooperative’s board of directors has announced that Bill Buchanan has been named chief executive officer of the cooperative.

Bill Buchanan

Buchanan replaces Michael Keyser, who departed the co-op in December 2021 after 11 years of service, BARC said in announcing the leadership change. Buchanan will take over as CEO effective May 9, 2022. Chris Botulinksi, interim chief executive officer and chief operations officer, will continue in his role as chief operations officer for the cooperative.

“The board of directors conducted an exhaustive search in partnership with Carter-Baldwin to find a new CEO for BARC,” said board Chair Keith Swisher. “We are confident that Bill will bring much expertise and leadership to the cooperative, continuing its mission to improve the quality of life in the communities it serves. BARC will remain focused to bring reliable and affordable electric service, solar opportunities, and expand broadband deployment to best meet the needs of our consumers.”

Buchanan comes to BARC from Northwestern Rural Electric Cooperative in Pennsylvania and is no stranger to cooperatives, bringing more than 30 years of leadership experience to the role focused on strategic and financial planning and operations. He is a graduate of Western Illinois University, the University of Missouri’s Graduate Institute for Cooperative Leadership and Stanford University’s professional certification in Energy Innovation.

Buchanan has many years of service to cooperative telecom boards and community service organizations serving local communities. He has served as president and board member of both the Illinois and Colorado rural telecommunications associations, as well as the Western Telecommunications Alliance, serving on the transition committee during the merger of two regional associations.

He and his wife, Malloree, are in the process of relocating to the area; they have two sons, Tyler and Tanner. The family is actively involved in its church and volunteering in various capacities.

—Report by Tish Blackwell, Director of Communications, BARC Electric Cooperative