From the General Manager – July 21, 2020
Greetings from the Co-op,
In this time of incredible flux, there are many questions to ponder:
- How will life in central Vermont be different in one year? In three years?
- What will our cooperative community need that is different from today?
- How will our local food system adapt, and how might the Co-op adapt to support it?
- What roles should diversity, plastic reduction, product affordability, and supporting other co-ops play?
- What will our cooperative priorities be in five years, and what strategies should we pursue now to best position ourselves?
To be sure, we are living in interesting times, and as a cooperative, now more than ever, we need strong leadership to help guide us.
Good governance is critical to the success of any cooperative. As member-owners, we elect a governing body to represent our interests and to ensure our co-op is run consistent with our collective goals and values. The board (which we call our council) is the critical link between the members and the enterprise they own but (usually) cannot operate themselves.
Our Co-op Council is in search of new members to help lead us forward. Each year we have at least three open seats up for election, and this year there may be more. Serving on the council is engaging, informative, and dynamic. It is also a critical service to our 9,600+ member-owners, 165+ employees, 475+ Vermont vendors, and overall community.
One of the beauties of our consumer cooperative design is that council members do not need to be grocery business experts to be effective. To be sure, we benefit from the expertise that council members bring, but the role does not require any particular background or training. Instead, effective council members bring their values, passion, and desire to learn and lead. Along with solid communication skills, good teamwork, and a sense of humor, this combination helps members make meaningful contributions to the the council’s and the Co-op’s success.
If you are interested, we have many resources to learn more about becoming a member of our Hunger Mountain Co-op Council:
- Check out our Council Information Guide
- Contact a current Council member with questions and ideas
- Attend a “live” Council information session (next one is this Saturday at 8:30 am). Info on how to attend
- View a prerecorded presentation of our information session
- Attend a Council meeting (next one is this Monday at 5:30 pm) View the agenda here
- Read a sample meeting packet
- Take a look at the Council Election Application
There’s no doubt this is a challenging time to consider adding anything, including community service, to an already busy schedule. It is also a critical time for our co-op as we work to safely meet current needs while looking to the horizon for the best course to achieve community well-being and cooperative success over the long term.
Kari Bradley, General Manager