Scott Spence has been named president & CEO at Duck River EMC, Shelbyville, Tenn.

Spence succeeds Charles McDonald, who’s served in an interim capacity since the January 2019 retirement of Michael Watson. According to a Duck River EMC statement, Spence is set to start work later that month.

A Chattanooga native, Spence has been the chief executive at Arab EC, Arab, Ala., since January 2018. He revamped the cooperative’s internal controls and operating procedures, earning TVA’s 2019 Partnership Award for his efforts. Spence’s resume also includes a decade at TVA, where he was a senior risk and fuel-supply analyst and senior forecasting manager.

Duck River EMC Chairman Barry Cooper said Spence was the unanimous choice of the cooperative’s board of directors.

“Scott brings much expertise in the electric industry, as well as proven leadership skills and strategic-thinking experience,” Cooper said. “He is energetic, talented and approachable. We believe he will be an asset not only to our cooperative, but to our greater area as well.”

Spence holds degrees from the University of Tennessee and the University of Georgia. He took the Arab EC job after a four-year run at Cooperative Energy in Hattiesburg, Miss.

“Since our beginnings in the 1930s, electric cooperatives have been working together, side by side, to reach our goals of making our rural areas better places to live,” Spence said. “I like being able to come home and talk to my kids about the real difference we make in our community – the people we help, the way we unify.

“A lot of people want this job,” Spence said. “I want this work.”