Consumers Organized for Reliable Electricity
This article is part of the Center for Media & Democracy's spotlight on front groups and corporate spin.
Consumers Organized for Reliable Electricity (CORE) is a front group for the electricity company, ComEd. The group, which was unveiled in September 2005, claimed that it had been formed to launch "a statewide effort to warn the public about political threats to the electric industry that jeopardize the Illinois economy."
On its website it describes itself as "a coalition of individuals, businesses and organizations who support continued reliability in the electric industry. We support competition, investment and economic development goals as the Illinois electric industry transitions to a more competitive marketplace." However, in January 2007 CORE spokeswoman Avis LaVelle told the Chicago Tribune that ComEd was the group's main funder but declined to provide details.
The Hill & Knowlton Connection
One month after CORE was launched, Chicago blogger Dorian Breuer pointed out that the groups website had been registered by Hill & Knowlton in August 2005. The website registration listed the PR firm's Jason Maymon as the agent.  The domain name registration now provides no details on who registered it.
In its initial press release in September 2005, Barnaby Dinges stated that "CORE's primary funding source is ComEd."  ComEd President Barry Mitchell told the Chicago Tribune that that the company has contributed almost $10 million to CORE since it was founded in 2005. 
- Greg W. Baise, President/CEO, Illinois Manufacturers Association
- Carnice Carey, Executive Director, Cosmopolitan Chamber of Commerce
- Michael T. Carrigan, Secretary-Treasurer, Illinois AFL-CIO
- James W. Compton, President, Chicago Urban League
- Mike Fitzgerald, Business Manager, IBEW Local #134
- Mary Gonzalez-Koenig, Executive Director, Spanish Coalition for Jobs
- John T. Hooker, Senior Vice President of Legislative & External Affairs, ComEd
- Phillip Jackson, Executive Director, The Black Star Project
- Donald P. Jacobs, Ph.D., Dean Emeritus, Kellogg School of Management
- Colleen McShane, President, Illinois Restaurant Association
- Paul O\'Connor, Executive Director, World Business Chicago
- Philip R. O'Connor, Vice President, Constellation NewEnergy
- Juan Rangel, CEO, United Neighborhood Organization (UNO)
- Jerry Roper, President/CEO, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce
- Cesar A. Santoy, Executive Director, Hispanic American Construction Industry Association (HACIA)
- Deborah Sawyer, President/CEO, Environmental Design International, Inc.
- Tom Villanova, President, Chicago & Cook County Building and Construction Trades Council
- David F. Vite, CEO, Illinois Retail Merchants Association
- Douglas Whitley, President/CEO, Illinois State Chamber of Commerce
P.O. Box 3314
Chicago, IL 60654-9998
Phone: 866-395-CORE (2673)
Email: info At illinoiscore.org
Articles and Resources
- "Consumers Organized for Reliable Electricity (CORE) Formed", Media Release, September 27, 2005.
- Consumers Organized for Reliable Electricity, "About Us", CORE, accessed March 2008.
- Crystal Yednak, "ComEd is behind `consumer' warning: Critics blast the utility for its obscured role in bid to stop rate freeze", Chicago Tribune, January 5, 2007.
- Dorian Breuer, "Illinois Core", November 22, 2005.
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