The Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas announced Thursday that Bill Gossage, once a top aide to Gov. Asa Hutchinson, has been promoted to chief external affairs officer for Arkansas Electric Cooperative Corp. and Arkansas Electric Cooperatives Inc., both of Little Rock.
Before joining the cooperatives last year as vice president of governmental affairs, Gossage was deputy chief of staff for external affairs to Hutchinson, whose second term ended in January and is now running for the Republican presidential nomination.
“In Bill’s time with Arkansas’ electric cooperatives, he has excelled at ensuring the cooperative message of reliability, affordability and responsibility is communicated with state and federal officials,” said Vernon “Buddy” Hasten, president and CEO for the Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas. “He and his team will continue to ensure that the cooperatives work to improve the quality of life for Arkansans and educate our publics on key issues.”
Gossage served four years in the Arkansas House of Representatives representing District 82 and is a retired 34-year educator. He was an assistant superintendent for the Ozark School District.
“Arkansas’ electric cooperatives are truly dedicated to the interests of the 1.2 million electric cooperative members throughout Arkansas,” Gossage said in a news release. “We look forward to expanding our efforts to fully educate state officials, our members, and the general public about the many challenges facing the electricity sector in Arkansas and the United States.”
Gossage earned a bachelor’s degree from Arkansas Tech University and a master’s degree from the University of Arkansas. He will lobby for the AECC, AECI and Arkansas’ 17 electric power distribution cooperatives. AECI provides services to the regional cooperatives, and AECC generates and distributes electricity to them.
The distribution cooperatives provide electricity to about 600,000 homes, farms and businesses in Arkansas and surrounding states.