ACTIVATING AN ELECTRIC ALLIANCE
Six years ago, municipal electric utilities joined forces under an Interlocal Cooperation Agreement that created KYMEA: the Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency. KYMEA’s founding members believed in a collaborative vision; so much so, they spent 18 months studying and discussing it before aligning together.
There is power in a group built on ‘all for one, one for all’; especially when the goals under that inspired alliance fuse with focus. Individually, every KYMEA member felt committed to improving public power resources. Yet, they knew as a collective force, this surge of leadership unlocked new potential to provide for communities; from finding more efficient ways to lower energy costs to securing dependable power sources.
KYMEA exploded open possibilities for energy options for its member communities: Barbourville, Bardwell, Benham, Berea, Corbin, Falmouth, Frankfort, Madisonville, Owensboro, Paris, and Providence. Today, 11 trusted municipal utilities lead KYMEA, ensuring wholesale electric power generation and transmission. These leaders strive to do whatever is needed or attainable to serve Kentucky communities.
After all, energy needs are constantly changing in the new millennium. Walter Gretzky understood that tackling shifts in momentum applied even on the rink, realizing it’s better to “skate to where the puck is going, not where it has been.” That’s exactly how KYMEA founders approached public power in September of 2015 when first forming this municipality — and how the agency continues to care for electric power and energy requirements into the future.
CREATING A STORY TO LIGHT UP COMMUNITY-WIDE ATTENTION
Hatfield Media has built a long-standing relationship with KYMEA, charging the agency’s branded visions into motion. It felt meaningful to help the Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency amp up its annual report in 2019 — work that received recognition for raising awareness of public power.
The American Public Power Association evaluated KYMEA's annual report under the print and digital materials category. The Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency hoped to offer a report packed with action-oriented information with visuals attuned to readers. Hatfield mapped out fresh design details, all within the brand’s story: from compelling text to engaging graphics. Our team was thrilled to see KYMEA granted the Award of Excellence in Public Power Communications.
Morgan Fletcher, Graphic Designer at Hatfield Media, notes, “Working with KYMEA always presents an interesting opportunity to get creative with design. Sometimes the KYMEA team will lean towards a theme for the annual report. It’s fun experimenting with those themes, crafting witty headline titles, and visualizing artwork throughout the report’s pages.”
The Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency selected “Out of the Gate” as a thematic idea for its report that year. Hatfield bounced off this theme, introducing readers with a historic horse racing quip: “And We’re Off.” When exploring colors to visually entice KYMEA’s audience, Fletcher explains, “This is a brand that uses a wide range of colors, which makes designing a piece like this report eye-catching and exciting.”
The American Public Power Association’s awards of excellence are considered among the most sought-after achievements in public power. We knew KYMEA deserved to be among the top-honored leaders in electric utility operations. Hatfield set out to re-imagine the brand’s relevant data with this in mind, allowing KYMEA’s public power story to glow strong.
The energy agency works to keep the lights turned on for communities across Kentucky. Fletcher empathized with this commitment, designing the report so that the Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency could share impactful information about public power. She structured new updates in a refreshing format, engaging readers communities-wide. “I take pride in representing KYMEA’s key data and goals for the upcoming year," expresses Fletcher; seeing to it that she helps "transform essential facts into a report clients will want to pick up and read!”
TEAMING UP FOR A ZAP-CRACKLING FUTURE
Hatfield has had various opportunities to work with KYMEA’s team and is honored to assist the agency in amplifying its voice. Michelle Hixon, Director, Administrative Services & Communications at KYMEA, says, “The Hatfield team has completed several projects for KYMEA, and they never fail at capturing our vision. The Hatfield design and project management team were wonderful to work with. Our unique theme, ‘Out of the Gate,’ was creatively displayed throughout the report.”
The annual report is not only a chance for KYMEA to convey its diverse power portfolio journey. KYMEA likewise takes moments to bring community heroes to light; including Bardwell’s story of solidarity and community. Bardwell has an inspired history overcoming a bevy of natural disasters, thanks to generous support from local churches, restaurants, volunteers, and farmers. It’s a true testament to KYMEA’s belief: when neighbors link up, there's no obstacle communities can't overpower together.
Hixon adds, “The team did a fantastic job in capturing the Member Spotlight page, where we highlighted the resiliency of the community of Bardwell. We always enjoy working with Hatfield's team and know that they will deliver a professional product!”
Since 2015, the Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency has paved the way for expanding energy options for the communities it represents. Moving forward into new eras and a changing electric industry, Kentucky’s leaders of public power and energy continue to champion one another’s experiences, perspectives, and talents. This is the power of Kentuckians working together. KYMEA is keeping the lights on for communities come what may: taking the future’s roadmap into the hands of the people. Hatfield Media looks forward to doing all we can to boost the Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency’s vision ahead.