My current cooperative involvement is primarily with Mariposa Food Co-op where I am employed, a member owner, and serve on the Board of Delegates. I have been a member of and employed at Mariposa for six years and this past summer, I joined South Philly Food Co-op.
I started as a cashier in 2013, was promoted to Manager on Duty in 2014 and then moved into my current role in the Finance Department. In my time at Mariposa I have also served on a number of internal staff committees including the Staff Collaboration and Democracy Council (SCDC), the Finance Committee, and the Personnel Committee as well as currently serving as the staff representative on the Board of Delegates.
Philadelphia has so many diverse communities with so many people offering different services and skills but also bringing many different needs. I’ve always found the cooperative movement a no brainer for solving community needs and also building resilience and economic strength. Building economic strength is really where my passions lie; particularly in our current capitalist dominated societies. I’m always interested in where the money is coming from and will aim to work with credit unions, nonprofits such as PIDC, or other cooperatives (the 6th cooperative principle is my favorite!). When cooperatives work together in this way it helps all of us. I think Philadelphia already has a really rich cooperative economy and I am excited for the opportunity to work with PACA to grow that further.
I have experience in
- Group process and decision-making
- Meeting facilitation
- Strategic planning
- Accounting or finances
- Volunteer programs
- Past or present participation on a board of directors
- Business or retail experience
Not only have I worn many hats at Mariposa but I recently (June 2019) completed a certificate course from Saint Mary’s University in Cooperative and Credit Union Management. My studies provided me with an in depth understanding of the impact of the cooperative movement around the world and I would be pleased to bring that knowledge to PACA. I have also been a board member since 2017 and have a familiarity with Policy Governance and BOD operations.
In the next 5 years I’d love to see PACA really being an engine for the cooperative economy in the way of hands on education, legal advice, and funding support. I’ve attended several panel discussions, workshops, talks, and was in the inaugural CLI cohort and I’d really like to see PACA increase the number of these types of things being offered to Philadelphians.
When I think about the three roles posed - ambassador, advocate, and asker, I’d like to think of myself as sort of wearing trifocals and viewing all of my work on the board with a little bit of each. Naturally, I tend to be more of an advocate, and supporter but I am also very curious person. I tend to be the person in groups to ask clarifying questions, and to scrutinize all of the moving pieces of a particular project.