One of the many great things about being a member of Friendly City Food Co-op is that you are a member of a democracy. Members of a democracy carry the right, the responsibility, to vote for the members who help steer the organization. In the Co-op’s case, these members are the Board of Directors.
It is the board’s job to make sure that the co-op is on track to succeed in its goals of providing the community with a vibrant, local economy; fair and friendly relationships; healthy, informed consumers and producers; and a healthy environment; in a way that is profitable, responsible, ethical, and efficient. Therefore, ideally, the board should consist of a group of leaders who bring to the table a variety of skills including, but not limited to, business administration, marketing, law, accounting, economics, agriculture, public relations, race relations, health sciences, food and nutrition, education, public administration, city planning and development, social justice, and food justice. Whatever it takes to build a successful community, it also takes to build a successful community co-operative grocer. Our board of directors may include anyone who is passionate about the co-op’s goals and is able to contribute to its success.
Every year you will be given the opportunity to vote for your Board Members at the Annual Meeting. It happens in the Fall, usually in October, this year it will be on October 6th from 4:00-5:00pm. But don’t just come for the meeting; if you can, come for the party that starts at 2:00pm. This year’s event will be held in the Friendly City Food Co-op parking lot. There will be food, games, prizes, and the opportunity to VOTE!
The Nitty Gritty: We have nine seats on the board, terms are served for three years, three seats renew each year. A board member may serve for three consecutive terms, after which the seat must be vacated. After a break of at least one year, the member may run again for the board. An early resignation may leave an additional seat open. This year we have two members of our board resigning, added to the three renewing seats, we have five seats to fill. We have six candidates running for those five seats.
You will have to make a decision. One candidate will not get elected in this cycle. It is not a decision that you are making alone. You are making it with other owners of the co-op. When more owners of the co-op vote, the outcome of the election becomes more democratic. We also need to have a certain percentage of votes for the election to stand. We have written it into our bylaws to ensure a fair election process. To help you with the decision-making, short biographies of and statements from the candidates will be published in an upcoming newsletter as well as online, and you will get to hear the candidates tell you why they are running for the board at the Annual Meeting.
We are grateful to the candidates who are serving their co-op community by running for the board of directors. We are grateful to all the owners of our co-operative. We hope to see you at the annual meeting. We strongly encourage you to vote. Be one of the voices in our co-op community’s democracy. You can do so at the meeting or in store throughout the month of October. Thank you!
Submitted By Board Member/Secretary: Aniko Safran