Blog & News from Conway Corporation
Today is December 12, 2017

Energy Efficient Holidays

The winter holidays are a time for delicious food and festive fun shared with cherished company, but your energy use can rise considerably with all the extra decorating and entertaining shared with family and friends.

While today’s new household appliances use nearly 50 percent less energy than those built just a decade ago, they’re worked overtime during the holidays which can add to your utility bill. Americans spend more than $65 billion a year on holiday gifts, but thankfully it’s easier to keep your added holiday energy costs to a minimum with just a few simple tips.

Cooking Tips

  • The turkey is traditionally stuffed early in the morning and roasted for hours. Since it's a long, slow cook, there's no need to preheat your oven – even when the recipe suggests it. This also holds true for a holiday ham. In fact, unless you're baking breads or pastries, you may not need to preheat the oven at all.
  • Don't open the oven door to take a peek at what's cooking inside. Instead, turn on the oven light and check the cooking status through the oven window. Opening the door for even a few seconds lowers the temperature inside by as much as 25 degrees which increases cooking time and wastes energy.
  • If you use glass or ceramic pans, try turning your oven down by 25 degrees. Your dish will cook just as quickly.
  • When cooking on top of your range, match the size of the pan to the heating element. More heat will get to the pan and less will be lost to the surrounding air. Believe it or not, a six-inch pan on an eight-inch burner will waste more than 40 percent of the energy.
  • Clean burners and reflectors provide better heating, while saving energy. If you need new reflectors, buy quality ones. The best on the market can save as much as one-third of the energy used when cooking on top of the stove.
  • Don't overlook the other cooking appliances during the holidays. Fast and efficient microwave ovens use around 50 percent less energy than conventional ovens, and they don't heat up your kitchen. Consider using them to bake yams, steam your favorite fresh vegetables or heat up leftover turkey and gravy for a midnight snack.
  • Use your slow cooker. For about 17 cents worth of electricity, you can prepare an entire meal.

Cleaning & Household Tips

  • A load of dishes cleaned in a dishwasher requires 37 percent less water than washing dishes by hand. However, if you fill the wash and rinse basins instead of letting the water run, you'll use half as much water as a dishwasher after your holiday party.
  • If you opt to use the dishwasher, wash full loads only. If you must rinse your dishes before loading them, use only cold water so you're not running up your energy bill by heating water unnecessarily.
  • Use the energy-saving cycles whenever possible. Dishwashers that feature air power or overnight dry settings can save up to 10 percent of your dishwashing energy costs.
  • Store extra beverages outside or in a cold garage during the winter to save on the energy required to power a second refrigerator.
  • Consider unplugging your Christmas lights or other electronic decorations and devices during the daytime or if you’re traveling for the holidays. In the average home, nearly 75 percent of the energy used to power electronics is consumed while they are turned off but still plugged in.
  • When it comes time to buy gifts for your friends and family, opt for Energy Star certified electronics which use up to 60 percent less electricity than their non-certified counterparts. In addition, laptop computers require 50 to 80 percent less power than a desktop computer.

Decorating Tips

  • Consider buying miniature lights which use about 70 percent less energy and last much longer than the larger bulbs. If you prefer larger lights, switch to 5-watt bulbs, which use about 30 percent less energy than 7-10 watt bulbs. A 100-bulb strand of miniature lights will cost the typical residential customer $13.50 a month versus the $33.75 it cost to operate traditional bulbs.
  • Want something new or different? Look for LED holiday bulbs – they’re shatterproof, shock resistant, safe to touch and won’t burn your hands. Plus, they save up to 80 to 90 percent of your energy costs and can last up to 20 years. Ten sets of 100 LED bulbs cost the typical residential customer only $1.35 per month to operate.
  • Plug your indoor and outdoor lighting displays into a timer set to run during the earlier evening hours. This will also remove the burden of turning lights on and off or accidentally leaving them on and running up your electric bill unnecessarily.
  • Rather than adding more lights to your tree, try enhancing the existing lighting with tinsel, mirrored ornaments and other reflective ornaments. Also, consider decorating your home with fewer lights and using more decorations that don’t use energy like wreaths or poinsettias.

Saving energy is a habit you should practice all year long, and the holidays are a great time to start. Just simply being aware of your energy usage can help you save energy and money. You can even make a New Year’s resolution that’s good for your pocketbook and the environment by scheduling a free residential energy audit through the Conway Corp Energy Smart program.

For additional information on energy efficiency or to schedule your audit, contact Conway Corp at 501-450-6000 or click here.

Blog & News from Conway Corporation
Today is December 12, 2017

Conway Corp recognizes employees

Business Class Services Specialist Technician James Buggs, Lead Cashier Kendra Caines and Senior Lineman Scott Ussery were recently honored by Conway Corp for their outstanding work performance over the past year. 

Buggs and Caines each received the Customer Service Award presented by CEO Richard Arnold, and Ussery received the Safety Leadership Award presented by Safety Director Steve Plant at the company’s annual awards dinner.

Buggs and Caines were both nominated by their fellow coworkers for going above and beyond their job duties.

One employee commented how many compliments Buggs receives yearly from customers and how professional and courteous he is.

Another said Buggs “is an outstanding employee with a great attitude. He is always ready to help and will have a smile on his face. James is very conscientious and courteous and goes the extra mile for our customers.”

Caines was nominated by one employee for her “excellent customer service skills she always displays with a high degree of integrity and dedication. She always has a positive attitude and is a valuable asset to Conway Corp.”

Another employee said she “exceeds expectations in her job as cashier and leader in her area. She leads her department with encouragement and praise, always having high expectations.

While being kind and courteous, she maintains a professional manner with customers. She is always willing to give assistance with any department or situation.

Working with her, you can see she takes pride in her job and strives to do what is best for Conway Corp. She has gained the respect of her peers by being the kind, considerate, hardworking and conscientious person that she is.”

Ussery was nominated by the entire Electric Department who said as the department’s trainer “he is the one who teaches the apprentices the proper safety techniques. He takes the job very seriously. He strives to not only be a leader, but a safe one.”

Arnold said he was proud to be able to recognize employees who go above and beyond.

“We are extremely proud of our employees and want to recognize those who continue to exceed expectations,” he said. “The peer nominations submitted make these awards even more meaningful.”

Blog & News from Conway Corporation
Today is December 12, 2017

Conway Corp launches Gig internet service

Conway Corp has announced the addition of a 1 Gigabit internet package to its offerings for residential customers beginning in December.

“Internet usage has grown and will continue to as cloud-based products and services become more prevalent,” CEO Richard Arnold said. “Gigabit download speeds seem a luxury today, but may be tomorrow’s necessity.”

Using a 32-channel cable modem, Conway Corp residential customers will be able to experience download speeds that were once only possible with a direct fiber connection. The 1 Gig package, with equivalent speeds up to 1,000 Mbps down and 50 Mbps up will be priced at $94.95 per month and will replace the current Broadband 200 package.

The new speed option will not affect pricing for other tiers of service.

Conway Corp has been an innovative leader in broadband offerings for more than 20 years. In 1995, the company began construction on a city-wide cable conversion to a fiber-coax hybrid, a project cost that was estimated at $5.6 million. Upon completion in 1997, Conway became the third company in the country and fifth in the world to offer high-speed, broadband cable Internet service.

“For several years, we have been on a strategic path toward gigabit service,” Chief Technology Officer Jason Hansen said. “With this initiative, Conway Corp is embracing its position as an internet technology leader.”

Click here more information about internet service from Conway Corp.

Blog & News from Conway Corporation
Today is December 12, 2017

Employees recognized for customer service

Conway Corp was recognized for excellence in customer service when 20 of its customer service and cable installer professionals were awarded Customer Service Excellence Awards at the 2016 Mid-America Cable Show held recently in St. Louis. 
 
Customer Service Specialists Tracy Ferrell and Elizabeth Harmon, Lead Customer Service Specialist Jane Harrison, Customer Care Specialist Rachael Myers, Commercial Sales Account Executive Eleise Wood Myers and Senior Customer Care Specialist Kelly Wirtz earned five-star Customer Service Awards in the sales category.These awards recognize presentation of features and benefits while helping customers find the correct products and services for their needs.
 
Business Class Services Specialists James Buggs and Jason Fleming, Marketing Coordinator Beth McCullough Jimmerson, Broadband Premises Expert Tony Lemke and Customer Service Specialist Shelly Smith earned five-star awards in the service category. These awards recognize the ability to remain calm and professional while showing concern for the customer’s individual needs and resolve the situation.
 
Customer Care Specialist Michelle Hatfield was recognized with five-star awards in both the sales and service categories. 
 
Cable System Technician Jonathan Booth, Cable Senior Service Technician Brent Brown, Broadband Premises Technician John Davis, Broadband Premises Installer Aaron Julian, Customer Care Specialist Nicole Pizzolato, Broadband Premises Installer Aaron Reynolds and Cable System Technician Brian Robinson received four-star awards in the service category. 
 
Customer Care Specialist Eric Bell received a four-star award in the sales category. 
 
The Mid-America Cable Association was formed in 1958 in part to help promote superior customer service in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Iowa, Arkansas and Texas. The award program was established in 1986 to recognized excellence in the cable television industry. 
 
Five-star awards recognize master performance that are clearly exceptional with outstanding skills that far exceed position requirements. Four-star awards recognize a superior performance with presentation skills that are considerably above industry competency.
 
Blog & News from Conway Corporation
Today is December 12, 2017

Remembering James H. Brewer

Our thoughts are with the family of James H. Brewer today as we remember the life and impact of Conway Corp’s former General Manager. Mr. Brewer, age 89, died today (Wednesday, Oct. 19), at his home in Conway.

Mr. Brewer became a part of the Conway Corp family in 1955 as assistant manager. He was named General Manager in 1966 and held that position until his retirement in 1991. Our community and our company continue to feel the benefits of Mr. Brewer’s leadership.

“Conway lost a legend today,” Conway Corp CEO Richard Arnold said. “Jim was one of the most intelligent, hard-working men I ever knew. We all benefit from his vision.”

When Mr. Brewer joined Conway Corp in 1955 there were 39 employees serving 3,400 customers. That grew to 101 employees serving more than 12,000 customers at his retirement. He saw the growth that would come to Conway and he helped pave the way for Conway Corp to be able to continue to provide quality, reliable services to our customers.

Under his leadership the Gleason Water Treatment Plant (now Roger Q Mills Water Treatment Plant), originally designed to provide 1-million-gallons of water daily was raised to a capability of 15-million-gallons-daily.

In 1966, Mr. Brewer led Conway Corp to recommend that the city reserve the cable franchise for the city of Conway. That held a place for cable television (and after his retirement Internet services) to be offered in Conway. In 1981, the city’s cable television system was completed.

In 1980, Conway Corp began receiving power from its 2 percent interest in the White Bluff and Independence Steam Electric generating plants. Total electrical energy consumed that year was 208,689,200 kw hours, almost ten times the amount consumed in 1960. Ownership in these plants meant better electric rates for Conway Corp customers for many years.

In 1983, following 20 years of negotiations, work was completed on a new water reservoir for the city. In September of that year, Conway’s primary water source was dedicated and named James H. Brewer Lake.

“Without Jim Brewer we would not have the water source that has served us so well and will continue to serve us well for years to come,” Bill Hegeman said. Hegeman followed Brewer, serving as Conway Corp CEO from 1991 until 1998. “Jim’s persistence to stay with that project and make it happen is the only reason we have the lake.”

In June 1991, just prior to his retirement, Mr. Brewer wrote these words, “But Conway Corporation is not an event; it is an ongoing process, one that requires the dedication of each employee, each day. You, my friends and fellow employees, are possessors of that type of dedication. And because of that, the Conway Corporation will continue, as always to grow and be a vital part of the community it serves.”

Conway Corp retiree and former Chief Operating Officer Roger Mills added, “Jim’s goal was to always provide the best service for the citizens of Conway. I lost a good friend and our community lost a man of great impact.”

Upon the occasion of Conway Corp’s 75th anniversary in 2004, Mr. Brewer was interviewed for a video providing the history of Conway Corp. During that interview, he said “The spark of vision that the 1929 leaders infused in to the woof and warp of this community has lasted all through the years and I would say to them, ‘Thank you very much for your ability to put something together that had the capacity for lasting like this has.’”

Thank you very much Mr. Brewer.  For your leadership, your vision, your commitment to Conway Corporation and for leaving a legacy of dedicated service to our community. 

Blog & News from Conway Corporation
Today is December 12, 2017

Moore celebrates 30 years of service

We’ve come a long way since we began operating Conway’s electric light plant in 1929, and we owe much of our success to our employees – the men and women who proudly serve this community 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Jim Moore is celebrating 30 years with Conway Corp. Jim was hired in October 1986 as a serviceman in the Electric Department. After completing the Journeyman Apprentice Program, he was promoted to a Journeyman Lineman Meterman in 1996. Jim was promoted to Senior Meterman in 1998 and to Electric Foreman in 2000. Jim was promoted again in 2003 to Assistant Superintendent in the Electric Department and to his current position of Electric Distribution System Manager in April 2013. Jim works 24/7 to ensure safe, reliable and economic operation of the entire electric department and to keep the lights on for the residents of Conway during normal and emergency conditions.

In addition, Water Systems Foreman Darren Frost is celebrating 33 years of service. 

Blog & News from Conway Corporation
Today is December 12, 2017

Conway Corp wins marketing awards

Conway Corp’s marketing and public relations department received two MIDI Awards at the 2016 Mid-America Cable Show held last week in St. Louis, Mo.

The company’s “Powered by Conway Corp” campaign featuring video, print and digital components won in the marketing and promotion category. Marketing and Public Relations Manager Crystal Kemp and Marketing Coordinator Beth Jimmerson received recognition for this campaign.

“Powered by Conway Corp” showcases Conway Corp employees, customers, services and community involvement.

“We have loved telling the Conway Corp story and showcasing the ways Conway Corp is involved in the community through this campaign,” Kemp said. “We are honored for the campaign to be recognized by industry peers.”

Conway Corp was also recognized in the cable advertising: self-promotion category, for a 30-second commercial produced to promote the company’s new home security service offering.

Conway Corp marketing staff worked with advertising agency Eric, Rob and Isaac to produce both campaigns.

The Mid-America Cable Association is an industry association formed in 1958 to help telecommunication providers promote technical excellence, superior customer service, exemplary marketing and student scholarship. It includes cable telecommunications system operators in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Iowa, Arkansas and Texas. Conway Corp was competing with systems of 10,000-50,000 cable subscribers.

Blog & News from Conway Corporation
Today is December 12, 2017

Fuller retires after a decade of welcoming customers

Receptionist Vivian Fuller took off her headset and headed into retirement at the end of September after 11 years of service at Conway Corp.

She is now looking forward to more time with her husband and traveling to see friends and family. 

Customers who visit Conway Corp’s downtown business office have been greeted by Vivian’s smile, with many stopping at her desk to seek directions or just to say hello.

“It is important to me to project friendliness, be interested in customers and have a smile on my face,” Fuller shared. “I have been a lot of places where the person greeting customers did not project friendliness. We appreciate our customers, and I have the opportunity to show them that.”

Fuller moved to Conway in 2005 and began working at Conway Corp soon after.

Having previously worked in banking, a water company and a sanitation company, Vivian was quick to understand the many hats she would wear at Conway Corp.

“People call us for all kinds of things – things that don’t have anything to do with us; they come in and ask for directions. I just do my best to help them all. I also needed to learn what jobs everyone at Conway Corp did so that I could get customers to the right person.”

“Vivian will definitely be missed by her co-workers and by our customers,” Customer Service Manager Jaylene Sexton said. “She has become the face of Conway Corp and has showcased our value to exceed customer expectations. We know she will enjoy retirement, but we will certainly miss her.”

Fuller commented that she too will miss the family she has come to know at Conway Corp – both customers and co-workers.

“I feel like I am part of the company even though I’m the front desk. I like the ways my co-workers have made me feel valued. Whatever your role is here – you are important.”

Fuller drew on her experience with breast cancer as an example.

“I received my cancer diagnosis in 2011 and my mom passed away in 2015. Those were some low points for me and Conway Corp was like family. I really appreciated the kindness, prayers and encouragement as I went through treatment and when my mom passed away. Conway Corp is a family.”

“I’m not saying good-bye. I’m saying ‘I’ll see you around.’”

Blog & News from Conway Corporation
Today is December 12, 2017

Conway Corp receives programming award for local series

Conway Corp’s local programming department received a MIDI Award at the 2016 Mid-America Cable Show held in St. Louis, Mo.

Conway Corp’s program “Dish’n Dirt” was named the winner in the Community Programming Series category. Hosted by Kami Marsh, Faulkner County's agriculture agent, the show is filmed on location in Faulkner County and showcases agriculture in the community including tips on preparing for seasonal gardening and agriculture related interviews. The show is produced by Conway Corp Production Coordinator Wayne Bailey and airs at 8 a.m. and 6:45 p.m. daily on Conway Corp Channel 5. “Dish’n Dirt” was recognized over all other entries from cable providers with a subscriber size between 10,001 and 50,000.

The Mid-America Cable Association is an industry association formed in 1958 to help telecommunication providers promote technical excellence, superior customer service, exemplary marketing and student scholarship. It includes cable telecommunications system operators in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Iowa, Arkansas and Texas, and Conway Corp was competing with systems of 10,001-50,000 cable subscribers.Click here to learn more about Conway Corp's community programming.

Blog & News from Conway Corporation
Today is December 12, 2017

Celebrating Public Power Week

Public Power

This October, Conway Corp is celebrating Public Power Week along with more than 2,000 other community-owned, not-for-profit electric utilities that collectively provide electricity to more than 48 million Americans.

“Public Power Week celebrates the reliable, affordable electricity Conway Corp provides to our community,” CEO Richard Arnold said. “Public power puts the people of Conway first, and Public Power Week gives us the chance to emphasize the advantages of locally grown, locally owned power that supports strong communities.”

Conway Corp has operated alongside our customers in Conway since 1929. We not only work for Conway, we are Conway. Knowing our community and its needs helps us keep homes, businesses and public places powered year-round. Our service is safe, reliable and affordable, and we take pride in serving our friends and neighbors.

Conway benefits from public power including affordable energy costs, superior service, local control and reinvestment in the community. Local needs are considered when decisions are made about rates and services, power generation and green alternatives. Plus, public power revenues are reinvested into community programs and projects that are for the common good.

Reliability

Reliability is our number one job. Our crews work tirelessly to keep the power on and restore it quickly when outages occur. Through continued training and ongoing preventative care, we are prepared to act quickly and safely to restore power to Conway. We are the only utility in the state to be designated a Reliable Public Power Provider by the American Public Power Association for demonstrating high proficiency in reliability, safety, work force development and system improvement. Plus, our employees are dedicated and passionate about this community because it’s where they live too.

Affordability

We focus on providing affordable electric rates, and on a national average, our rates are lower than industry competitors saving money for citizens and businesses. Lower rates mean citizens have more available to spend on other goods and services, together with the dollars our customers save through energy efficiency programs, which boosts the local economy. Our revenues are reinvested into maintaining and upgrading our system’s substations, transmission and distribution lines and more so we’re able to safely deliver low-cost, reliable electricity. Keeping energy costs affordable serves our community’s long-term needs – and that’s what public power is all about.

Superior Service

Conway Corp exists to serve to the residents of Conway. We provide friendly walk-in service to customers. Customers can also call 24 hours a day, seven days a week and be connected to a customer service representative who is a local, member of the community.

Community Values

Conway Corp is dedicated to exceeding our customers' expectations in producing and delivering safe, affordable, reliable, innovative and environmentally-sound utility and telecommunication services while enhancing the quality of life in our community. We believe in enhancing our community through community projects, education opportunities like scholarships and more. 

We’re invested in Conway, and so are our employees. We employ nearly 250 local individuals who serve on local boards, participate with local charities, coach local youth sports teams and more. Last year, Conway Corp employees collectively donated more than $32,000 to United Way and granted their seventh wish to a local child through the Make-A-Wish Foundation. In addition, employees hold an annual food drive for a local charity each year and participate in the Angel Tree program.

As a public power utility, our loyalty is to our customers and our community. Public power is an American tradition that works, and we thank you for your support and for allowing us to serve you since 1929. 

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