Dear Co-op Market Owners,
Times of change are opportunities to rethink, reimagine, and resolve. Early in the pandemic, the Board of Directors received this advice from our consultant: “Never waste a transition.” And, as you may have noticed, transition has been a thing. We took this advice to heart and have worked hard to rethink our systems and processes. Some of them have been behind the scenes, like restructuring the budget process and updating our governance policies, and others have been more visible, like moving the annual meeting to the spring. While managing these transitions, the board has done our best to respond to the needs of the co-op team, owners and customers.
We recognize that some of these processes need extra attention. This fall our industry consultants, Columinate, offered us an opportunity to hire a dedicated interim general manager (IGM) who could bring the grocery retail expertise necessary to make our co-op thrive. We expect the next few months will bring a business turnaround with Dennis Hanley leading as an experienced IGM. He will then assist in training our new general manager once they are hired.
We acknowledge those who have carried us through these tumultuous times. We are thankful for Shaun Sims for serving as interim general manager in 2020 and Rich Rosenberg for his work as general manager in 2021. They kept our store open and safe, while continuing to make strides in store operations and service to our customers. We’re especially grateful to our team of essential workers, who came to the store with their sleeves rolled up, ready to get the work done.
We are thankful to Madeline Patterson-O’Dell, dedicated board member, who has completed her term. The board will miss her passion for nutrition, healthful food sourcing, and the co-op mission. We are thankful to NCG and Columinate who have supported the store and the board before and throughout the transitions of the past two years.
Finally, we thank you for continuing to support the co-op. We are more than a grocery store: We are a community. When you support the co-op with your time, dollars, and even “likes” on social media, you are investing in the type of community you want to live in.
The board is motivated to work for our values-driven co-op, and we remain committed to our purpose: “We serve our community and planet with a cooperative grocery business focused on healthful options.” Our co-op makes our community a better place, and we will keep doing the hard work so that it can continue to do so far into the future.
Art Gelvin, Brian Kassof, Patrice Lee, Anduin McElroy, Madeline Patterson-O’Dell, Rich Seifert, Hilary Shook
2020-2021 Co-op Market Board of Directors