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  • Press release

Heartland CEO appointed to National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative Board of Directors

Updated: Jan 24

By Doug Graham, Communication Specialist, Heartland Rural Electric Cooperative Inc.


Heartland Rural Electric Cooperative,Inc. Chief Executive Officer Mark Scheibe will advocate for the technology needs of cooperatives in Kansas, Colorado, Nebraska and Wyoming following his election to the National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative (NRTC) Board of Directors representing District 7.

NRTC is a national cooperative that helps rural electric and telephone providers deploy advanced technology solutions in rural communities. Scheibe said he is particularly interested in helping cooperatives leverage smart grid technologies to improve reliability, security, and efficiency of the electric grid.

“NRTC has always been there for major technology decisions at every co-op I’ve been at,” Scheibe said. “Whether it’s advanced metering infrastructure, solar, battery technologies, or electric vehicles, they’re always there to provide support and help solve problems.”


Scheibe said his background in data analytics and engineering lends him a unique perspective. He sees many opportunities for cooperatives to make better use of the data and streamline operations through automation of repetitive tasks.


“I want to ensure people are able to do the hard work once to get things automated and then reap the rewards in the future,” Scheibe said.

Scheibe was elected to the District 7 seat, which became open in 2021 upon the retirement of Dale Short as CEO of Butler Rural Electric Cooperative in El Dorado, by vote of the other NRTC board members, who considered several impressive cooperative leaders and conducted interviews prior to their vote. His election was effective January 13, 2023, and his term continues until March 2025.


“Mark’s track record of deploying technology to improve reliability, security, and efficiency of the electric grid is impressive,” said NRTC Board Chairman Tim Mergen, CEO and General Manager, Meeker Cooperative Light & Power Association in Minnesota. “We look forward to his contributions to the Board as NRTC continues to drive technology innovation on behalf of its members.”


Scheibe is a licensed professional engineer and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Iowa State University. Prior to coming to Heartland, Scheibe worked his way up from Distribution Engineer to Director of Engineering for Maquoketa Valley Electric Cooperative in Anamosa, Iowa.

Schelbe's prior service on local, state, and national boards and committees includes:

  • Board member for Learning Tree Institute at Greenbush

  • Trustee and Executive Committee Member for Kansas Electric Power Cooperative, Inc.

  • Chairman of Loss Control, Safety, and Compliance Committee for Kansas Electric Cooperatives, Inc.

  • Member of Strategic Technology Advisory Council for the Business and Technology Strategies area of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association

Scheibe is also an avid long-distance cyclist. He lives with his wife and two children in rural Crawford County, Kansas.


Heartland Rural Electric Cooperative, Inc. powers rural lifestyles throughout more than 11,000 locations in southeast and eastern Kansas. Heartland’s service area includes consumer-members in 12 counties, including Allen, Anderson, Bourbon, Cherokee, Coffey, Crawford, Labette, Linn, Miami, Neosho, Wilson, and Woodson counties.

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