During its monthly meeting, the Kissimmee Utility Authority board of directors welcomed a returning board member and held its annual election of officers.

Rae Hemphill, a retired information technologist, took the oath of office to begin a new five-year term on the board which will expire Sept. 30, 2027. She was appointed to the board in 2017.

Manuel Ortega was elected board chairman. Ortega is a former law enforcement officer for Broward County, Florida and New Bedford, Massachusetts. A retired Navy captain, he holds criminal justice degrees from Western New England College in Massachusetts and Salvia Regina College in Rhode Island.

In addition, the board elected:

Vice Chairman: Rae Hemphill
Secretary: Jeanne Van Meter
Assistant Secretary: Ethel Urbina
Director: Raymond Sanchez

The five-member board sets policy direction for the utility. Specifically, the board approves annual budgets, sets rates and approves major purchases. The board also directs a president and general manager who is responsible for day-to-day operations of the utility.

Founded in 1901, KUA is Florida’s sixth largest community-owned utility powering 90,000 customers in Osceola County, Florida. For more information, visit www.kua.com.