GRDA welcomes Grove’s Townsend to director post

Ed Townsend (Grove) has been appointed to the GRDA Board of Directors by Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin.

Ed Townsend (Grove) has been appointed to the GRDA Board of Directors by Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin.

Vinita — Grand River Dam Authority Chief Executive Officer Dan Sullivan said his agency is “pleased to welcome Ed Townsend to the GRDA Board of Directors.”

On Wednesday, Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin’s office announced that she has appointed Townsend (Grove) to serve on the GRDA Board. He will succeed outgoing board member Greg Grodhaus (Grove).

“Mr. Townsend brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our board,” said Sullivan. “His relationship to the Grove community will bring a vital viewpoint to our board.” Grove is located on the shores of Grand Lake, a 46,500 surface-acre lake created when GRDA constructed Pensacola Dam in 1940.

The founder, owner and chief executive officer of Bank of Grove, Townsend previously served as chairman and CEO of Local Oklahoma Bank, a $3.3 billion commercial bank based in Oklahoma City.

His community service also includes time as chairman of Integris Health, based in Oklahoma City, and he was also instrumental in getting a 58-bed hospital built in Grove. Today, an area of that hospital bears the name Townsend Women and Children’s Center.

Townsend received bachelor’s degrees in economics and accounting, as well as a master’s in business administration in finance from the University of Texas.

He and his wife, Barbara, through their foundations and Bank of Grove, are actively involved in funding medical needs of children in Delaware County.

GRDA is governed by a seven-member board of directors, comprised of representatives from each GRDA customer class (municipals, electric cooperatives and industrials) as well as the GRDA lakes area. Two at-large representatives also sit on the board. Appointments are made by the Oklahoma Governor (3), Speaker of the Oklahoma House of Representatives and President Pro Tempore of the Oklahoma State Senate. Two other board positions are ex-officio, filled by the general manager of the OAEC and the executive director of the Municipal Electric Systems of Oklahoma (MESO) or by their designees.

Headquartered in Vinita, GRDA is Oklahoma’s state-owned electric utility; fully funded by revenues from electric and water sales instead of taxes. Directly or indirectly, GRDA’s low-cost, reliable electricity touches 75 of 77 counties in the state. At no cost to taxpayers, GRDA also manages 70,000 surface acres of lakes in the state, including Grand Lake, Lake Hudson and the W.R. Holway Reservoir. Today, GRDA’s 500 employees continue to produce the same “power for progress” that has benefited the state for 75 years.

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