Images of the Past: Milbank's Leo P. Flynn - "Mr. REA"
In The Moment … October 5, 2020 Show 916 Hour 2
Leo Flynn was born in Iowa but the family moved to a farm near Milbank in his youth. He attended Milbank high school and went on to earn a law degree from Creighton University in Omaha. Flynn was among the founding members of the South Dakota Rural Electric Association in 1942. South Dakota author Chuck Cecil in his book, "Going the Extra Mile" notes that Flynn was known both locally and nationally as 'Mr. R.E.A."
Flynn wrote or co-wrote many of the legislative actions that made rural electrification possible from a regulatory standpoint. He started organizing and working with rural electric cooperatives in 1937 and continued his REA work through he mid-1970s.
Later in life, Flynn supported philanthropic projects amounting to over $27 million dollars in Milbank and beyond. The Leo Flynn Trust is also a supporter of South Dakota Public Broadcasting.
Leo P. Flynn is the subject of this week's Images of the Past. Joining us with more is Arlo Levison, a member of the Grant County Historical Society in Milbank.