As a member of the Davis Food Co-op, have you ever stopped to consider the role that the board of directors plays in ensuring the success and sustainability of the organization?
The board serves as the governing body, responsible for setting the vision and direction of the Co-op, ensuring it remains true to its values and mission. Think of the board as the roots of a great tree. They provide stability while carefully guiding the path its growth will follow, keeping the Co-op grounded and simultaneously reaching ever higher.
Being a member of the Cooperative’s board of directors is about more than just fulfilling a leadership role. It’s a chance to make a positive impact on your community and be a part of something bigger than yourself. It’s an opportunity to use your skills and experiences to support the values and goals of the Co-op, and to work with others who share your commitment to making a difference.
Serving on the board also offers personal growth opportunities. You’ll have the chance to develop valuable skills such as business acumen, management experience, financial literacy, strategic thinking, and teamwork. And as a thank you for your efforts, Co-op board members receive a 16.5% discount on all their purchases at the store!
So, what does it take to be a member of the Co-op’s board of directors? First and foremost, it requires a commitment to the values and goals outlined in the Co-op’s Ends Statement. Board directors volunteer their time and energy for a term of three years, dedicating approximately 15-20 hours per month to meetings, committees, and other Co-op-related activities. This includes attending monthly board meetings, serving on at least one committee or task force, and participating in the annual ownership meeting and retreat.
In addition to these regular commitments, board directors are also expected to participate in board training and other workshops, conferences, and Co-op events throughout the year. They should also be prepared to read and respond to email correspondence, as well as learn about the co-op movement and Policy Governance decision-making. Board directors are active and engaged members of the Co-op, and most importantly they are willing to listen to and represent the needs and concerns of the Co-op’s members.
If you’re interested in making a positive difference in your community and being a part of something bigger than yourself, serving on the board of directors at the Davis Food Co-op may be the perfect opportunity. It requires a commitment to the co-op’s values and mission, as well as a willingness to devote time and energy to meetings, committees, and other co-op-related activities. But the rewards – both personal and for the community – are well worth it!
2021 Annual Meeting Q&A
The 2021 Davis Food Co-op Annual Meeting took place via Zoom on Thursday May 6, 2021. During the course of the meeting, the General Manager and Board of Directors presented an annual report for the 2019-2020 fiscal year. Owners were also given the opportunity to ask questions. Below is a copy of our Annual Report (which can also be found at the Customer Service Desk) as well as the Owner questions that were asked and the corresponding answers to those questions.
The Davis Food Co-op Board of Directors proudly announces that the vacant General Manager position has been filled by Interim General Manager, Laura Sanchez. Filling in as the Interim General Manager since May 2020, Laura has successfully guided the Co-op during a time when the COVID-19 pandemic has drastically impacted the store’s operations. The Board of Directors received hundreds of applications and conducted numerous interviews, but it was she who stood out among them all as the best fit for the position. Following the approval of Laura’s new position at the Board Meeting on December 18, 2020, Co-op Board President Sharon Tobar welcomed Laura to her new position with this statement:
“In a year of so many challenges, Laura has been a strong and steady guiding hand. In her prior two years of experience at the Co-op. – first as Store Operations Manager and most recently as Interim General Manager — Laura has demonstrated the leadership skills, operational expertise, commitment, and vision that we need to take the Co-op to the next level of excellence. We look forward to a long and fruitful relationship.”
Laura has worked in retail over the course of 20 years. Throughout 14 of those years, she was at Target Corporation in the Sacramento and Roseville areas. She held several Executive Team Lead roles that included Guest Experience, Salesfloor, Logistics and Operations. She started with the Co-op in December of 2018 as the Operations Manager and was ultimately named as the Interim General Manager when the position became vacant. In regards to her time in this position, she noted:
“In my time as Interim General Manager, I have learned that it is important to stay true to the values and the Ends that the Davis Food Co-op is based on. What makes the Co-op so special is that it is owned by the community and is here to truly serve its community”.
With experience in the role under her belt, Sanchez is eager to set goals that will allow the Co-op to thrive for years to come:
“We want to continue our focus on enhancing the skills, training, and spirit of our workforce – on whom the success of the Co-op depends. We will continue the upgrades of our store facility, develop new on-site solar and battery energy storage to enable operations during grid outages, and further expand our product offerings in response to the needs of our Member-Owners. With the ongoing pandemic, the community needs us now more than ever, and we will be ready to meet those needs.”
Laura Sanchez’s first official day as General Manager of the Davis Food Co-op was January 1, 2021. No longer holding an Interim status and looking forward to the new year, Laura wanted to take the opportunity to thank everyone who has played a part in the transition to this new role:
“On a personal note, I am so grateful to the Board and community for their confidence in me and our amazing staff. I’m looking forward to 2021 as a truly great year in the evolution of the Davis Food Co-op.”
Every couple of months, we will be interviewing one of our Board Members so that you can get to know them better! This month, we are featuring J. Faye Dixon.
Some other answers from Faye:
How do you take your coffee?
I am a green tea drinker! But I do love a good espresso drink.
Proudest accomplishment in the last year?
I was promoted to Full Professor at UCD
Favorite area park?
Central (especially back when we still had live music)
Favorite thing about your favorite person?
Sense of humor
What did you want to be when you were little?
A translator for the UN
How do you stay healthy?
Running, walking, yoga and pilates
Favorite place you’ve traveled (provide a photo if possible!)?
Too many to name but the picture above is from Seville, Spain.
Welcome to the Fall Season!
Now that Fall is here, we would like to give a shout out and welcome to all of the UC Davis students starting the 2020-21 school year. Our city has felt so empty without the vibrance of the students and we are happy to finally see returning and new students bringing back life to the community.
It’s been a while since the board updated you on what we have been up to. The board has been working together with staff, behind the scenes to adapt to all of the new changes in our world. We have missed interacting with the community in the many events that typically take place at this time of year and look forward to when we can resume these in person.
To help keep safe during this pandemic, the board transitioned to virtual board meetings that Davis Food Co-op owners are welcome to attend. Dates of the meetings and details on attending virtually are on the Board section of our website, towards the bottom of the page. We would love to see you at our monthly meetings!
As many already know, we had a changing of the guards with our General Manager in June. As we said goodbye to Prassanna Regmi, our Operations Manager Laura Sanchez assumed the role of Interim General Manager and we are happy to say that this transition has gone very smoothly. The Board is now seeking qualified candidates to hire as the new permanent General Manager. If you or someone else you know is interested and feels they are qualified, please refer to the job posting here.
And speaking of more changing of the guards, during the summer we gained a new board member who we would like to introduce to you. Please check them out below and give them a round of virtual applause for joining our board.
Dear Davis Food Co-op Members,
I hope this letter finds you and your household well.
“Stay at Home” orders keep us safe, but for some it can be isolating. At times like this, it can help to recognize the many community connections we have, and one of those is your membership with the Davis Food Co-op. Membership is more than being a shopper, it means that you share store ownership with other members of the store.
Davis Food Co-op elections open on May 7, 2020. This year we have three candidates running to serve on the board. The Board of Directors oversees the Co-op, and implements policies on your behalf. Board members are democratically elected by Davis Food Co-op member-owners.
This year, all elections will be online (you can also do this in the store if you prefer). The Co-op has contracted with a reputable company to manage voting and to tabulate the results. This method of voting is kind to the environment, economically efficient, and secure.
I understand that there are many distractions at this time so I want to reach out and ask—will you please take the time to vote by May 21, 2020?
Sharon Tobar President
Calling Davis Food Co-op Owners to run for the Board of Directors!
If you are feeling like 2020 is the year for you to get involved in the esteemed democratic process and if you value a cooperative business that is collectively owned and governed by its members, then I invite you to consider running for the Board of Directors at the Davis Food Coop. We have three seats open this year.
Board Directors are volunteers for a term of three years and commit to working about 15 hours a month. In exchange, Directors receive 16.5% off all their purchases at the co-op and have dinner during their monthly Board meetings. Directors also gain skills through training and experience that support their professional and personal development. Directors also have opportunities throughout the year to attend community events while representing the Davis Food Co-op.
Acting as a Board Director is a great way to be involved with this long-standing community-owned store. Starting in 1972 this community establishment has thrived because of everyday people who worked and volunteered their time to make it what it is today. Whether you are a long time owner with a long history at the Co-op or a younger member who has an interest in what the Co-op is all about, we welcome each and every one of you.
Running for the Board is very easy and you don’t have to be a savvy politician to do so. If you are thinking about running, please visit our website for detailed information. Our Board Development Committee would be happy to talk to you about the expectations, the process, and our own experiences. If you are still unsure or have already decided to take the plunge, please join us on March 4 at 6:30 pm in the teaching kitchen where we will have an orientation for potential candidates. This is a great opportunity to hear more about what to expect and to ask further questions. Once candidates have decided to run for the Board they must submit their declaration of candidacy by March 20th.
We are excited to greet and meet this year’s candidates! Best of luck and happy campaigning to our future board members!
Board of Directors – Davis Food Co-op