University of Mary invites Basin Electric to speak about St. Baldrick’s success

Who: Ted Cash, Emily McKay and Mary Klecker-Green

What: Convocation – St. Baldrick’s success at Basin Electric
St. Baldrick’s raises money for children’s cancer research.

When: Thursday, January 29, at 11:00 a.m.

Where: Butler Hall, Tharaldson School at University of Mary, Bismarck, ND

Why: University of Mary calls itself “America’s Leadership University.” But there is a particular form of leadership that’s revered above the rest: servant leadership. Ted, Emily and Mary will explain how the St. Baldrick’s idea came to Basin Electric, and how it became a huge success.

after the shave

Emily McKay and Ted Cash, BEPC


Ted Cash and Emily McKay each graduated from U-Mary at different times. They each came to work at Basin Electric at different times.

They got married. And their big idea became a big success. The winner – kids who may benefit from cancer research.

Below is an excerpt from the May-June 2008 Basin Today:

As Basin Electric’s former ‘traveling teacher,’ Emily McKay spent a lot of time on the road teaching students about electricity and safety. While listening to satellite radio one day, she came across a light-bulb-moment-inducing story.

“They were talking about the St. Baldrick’s Foundation and how for every dollar raised, 83 cents goes to research. Then when they said people raise money by shaving their heads, I thought, ‘I’m in!’”

When McKay got home, she told her husband, Ted Cash, media support supervisor, all about it. He didn’t agree that she should be the one to go bald. He brought the idea up at a staff meeting, offering himself up as the first shavee. McKay decided to cut 10 inches of her hair and donate the ponytail to Locks of Love, a charity that makes wigs for children who’ve lost their hair.

“When we started, we really were thinking big. We thought we could get five or six people to shave their heads, Ted being one of them, and maybe we could get to $10,000,” McKay says.

“There wasn’t much [hair] in the front to begin with. It wasn’t doing much for me,” Cash jokes.

Cash raised a little more than $1,000, which impressed him. “But I knew my family would go the extra mile to see me get my head shaved,” Cash says.

Now that the event has raised more than $93,000, Cash says he can’t imagine it having gone any better. “This is really a testament to the people of Basin Electric and the support they’ve drummed up for this event. We work with a great group of people.”

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