Elections

2022 Owner Elections

The voting period will run from Thursday, September 22nd - Thursday, September 29th and will conclude at the annual Meeting of Owners (MOO). Eligible owners will be able to vote for 4 Board of Director spots, as well as their top 10 Round Up For Good organizations for the 2023 grant period. All owners must have paid their equity in full and shopped at least once in the past year as of Wednesday, August 31st, 2022. All active owners will receive a ballot via email on Thursday, September 22nd. If you do not receive an email but believe you are eligible to vote, please contact ben@cgfcboard.org. If you have any other questions about elections, voting, the Board of Directors, or Round Up For Good, please email marketing@commonground.coop.

 

2023 Round Up For Good Project Proposals

 

Read below to learn more about our 4 Board candidates. 

 

Board of Directors Candidates

 

Sandy Budde

Why would you like to serve on the Board? What excites you about policy governance?

I am a highly relational person and love working co-operatively for the greater good of the community and a food co-op is something I am passionate about. From the moment I walked into the co-op, I knew I had found my place and the people I relate to.

I am excited at the possibility of working with the board and owners to help guide and steer the Common Ground Food Co-op toward its Ends and to grow community resilience and healing with a focus on local food and relationships.

I am excited to learn about the scope of a board's responsibilities and to work with a talented group of individuals who are passionate about serving their community through a food co-op as well as to learn what makes a successful board.

 

What professional skills will you bring to our Board? Share any relevant leadership experience.

I bring the traits of listening, an open mind, attention to detail, communicating my ideas and thoughts clearly, creative thinking and problem solving. My professional work involves writing and communications consulting, and advocacy. In past advisory board roles, I have led a newsletter and website team, supported communications and planned and executed events. I previously served on the board of a similar model food co-op and the store didn’t make it and I am excited to serve on the board for a successful organization. I also served on the advisory board for a community supported agriculture farm and fully embrace local food and the slow food movement.

 

What do you hope to get from the experience of being on the Board? What do you hope you will learn about yourself or our organization?

I hope to continue to learn about myself in relation to this particular board and how I can best serve in the capacity of a board member with my unique strengths and talents, as well as learning about the needs of the Co-op and Owners. I hope to learn by listening, observing and participating with this board how we can come together as unique individuals and solve problems and make decisions in the best interest of the community.

 

How will you help the Board balance the needs of upholding our Ends, planning for the future of our community-owned cooperative and monitoring the operations of our grocery store?

I will help the Board to the best of my ability by listening and learning all I can about the Co-op's Ends, the policies and practices of the Board and the operations of the grocery store, attending the Board meetings and participating when and where my talents and strengths allow, and being open-minded to the ideas of others and showing up for the needs of the community.

 

 

 

Jon BarnesA picture containing outdoor, person

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Why would you like to serve on the Board? What excites you about policy governance?

I like being engaged with the coop on a deeper level through my involvement with the board so far, and would love the opportunity to grow into that position further. The policy governance model seems to be quite streamlined and does a solid job of making it clear what responsibilities each person has as a part of the whole. 

 

What professional skills will you bring to our Board? Share any relevant leadership experience.

I have so far served on the board for seven months. I feel I've learned quite a lot in that time and have enjoyed getting to understand our role in the cooperative - the oversight, planning, owner outreach, etc. I think that, combined with my long experience working at Common Ground, give me a good deal of insight and value as a member of the board.

 

What do you hope to get from the experience of being on the Board? What do you hope you will learn about yourself or our organization?

I would like to continue to learn more both about policy governance broadly, and also specifically the workings of the cooperative and how we can always strive to do more to work towards both our ends as well as the seven cooperative principles!

 

How will you help the Board balance the needs of upholding our Ends, planning for the future of our community-owned cooperative and monitoring the operations of our grocery store?

I think it would be useful to view these three objectives as being very interconnected. Monitoring the operations of the store provides necessary information for planning our future - financials, employee and customer surveys, GM monitoring and feedback all give us data to know how to move forward. It is up to us and the GM to ensure that current operations and any plans for the future must be done in furtherance of our ends (and the seven cooperative principles). In the places where there's some conflict between these goal, I actually enjoy working to come up with creative solutions that resolve whatever contradictions or obstacles I encounter.

 

 

 

Blake Hackler 

Why would you like to serve on the Board? What excites you about policy governance?

I am passionate about the coop and would like to take a more active role in the direction of the coop. I have learned a lot about the local food movement and the mission of the coop in my time here and really love the work that we do. I think a community owned business that is guided by ends rather than profits is the best way to organize a company and want to serve in a bigger role than just an employee here. While I do enjoy the day-to-day operations and love that I can contribute in that way, I would really like to do some bigger picture thinking and help guide and direct the coop into the future. We face a lot of problems currently with supply chain issues and loss of a few local farms. We don't have the clearest of pictures on what the future looks like with these supply chain issues as well as global warming affecting the quality and reliability of fresh produce. I am excited to face these challenges from a director/problem solving standpoint rather than from a customer service standpoint.

 

What professional skills will you bring to our Board? Share any relevant leadership experience.

I have been a manager at the coop for the last year and a few months. I was a paramedic for 8 years, in which every emergency call I took leadership on. I was also a paramedic supervisor for one year where I lead the night shift, handled narcotics tracking and inventory, made all operational decisions while on duty, and provided support for other paramedics during and after 911 calls as well as running 911 calls. As a teen I was in Boy Scouts and was the assistant/acting senior patrol leader and chapter chief of Order of the Arrow lodge 167. I bring a varied skillset with my work history with a lot of troubleshooting and problem-solving skills as well as thinking and performing well under pressure. I have also managed projects in the past and enjoy a lot of the "leg-work" of it: gathering and compiling relevant data to get a better picture of what is going on.

 

What do you hope to get from the experience of being on the Board? What do you hope you will learn about yourself or our organization?

I would love to learn more about the coop and our organization. I want to learn more about coops, equity, how our bylaws work, and all the inner workings of the organization from that standpoint. I have a pretty good grasp of the operational side of the coop so to be on the director/"bigger picture" side would give me a really well-rounded experience of the coop. I am excited to take on new challenges outside of the day-to-day operations and take on new tasks. It would be really great if I could take on some projects or tasks and really hit the ground running with them and learn what I am good at and capable of in the direction of the coop. I left an 8 year EMS career which is a very high speed and high stress job that takes a lot of mental and physical fortitude so I am looking forward to a new challenge and maybe a next step in my development as a person and in my career.

 

How will you help the Board balance the needs of upholding our Ends, planning for the future of our community-owned cooperative and monitoring the operations of our grocery store?

I believe that our ends are a great starting point that have a cascading effect on the latter two needs. Every time we talk about smart business decisions at the coop, I point to our second end: the cooperative movement is strengthened. While we do have a bigger mission than just business success, we need to be aware of the fact that we cannot focus on our bigger mission if we fail as a business. With the challenges we face with supply chain issues and climate change impacting our ability to get fresh produce, now more than ever we need to have an equitable, robust and environmentally sound local food movement to help not only meet our business needs but build resiliency in our food system. For many farmers, CGFC is how they interface with our community, and we need to continue to foster that critical role we play for them and our community members when it comes to local food access. For brevity's sake I won't go through the other ends, but they are equally important. The beauty of the coop is that we are guided by ends we must meet rather than profit goals and quarterly growth.

 

 

 

Morgan Montgomery

Why would you like to serve on the Board? What excites you about policy governance?

I am an executive assistant to two non-profit Boards, and in my 6 years with each, I’ve seen Boards work through issues to achieve change and new policy that truly benefits their members. It’s exciting to see how invested each Board member is in serving their memberships and evolving their organizations. Seeing real change happen because people care about what they’re doing is inspiring and I want to be part of that. Common Ground’s Ends align with my values and I can bring a lot to the Board while also personally growing as a member of this community.

 

What professional skills will you bring to our Board? Share any relevant leadership experience.

Professionally, I plan conventions/board meetings/symposia for my clients, travel with them and execute events on-site, manage the Boards and volunteer committees, and handle each association’s day-to-day membership and organizational operations. I help the Boards create and work within annual budgets, create and implement their 3-year strategic plans and SMART goals, and execute action items and decisions made during their monthly meetings.

Personally, I volunteer regularly with several local organizations and am currently completing the United Way’s Emerging Community Leaders program, where I am a project team leader.

As I’ve grown both in my career and personally, I’ve developed and enhanced my creative problem solving, teamwork, communication, and leadership skills. Because of my personal and professional experiences, I’m able to be both flexible and organized.

In my free time, I’ve taken several online courses and attended personal development events on topics including: negotiation tactics, anti-racism, DEI implementation, and more. I’m a very curious person and I actively seek out opportunities to learn something new. I’m excited by the prospect of being able to serve on the Co-Op’s Board and am thankful for the opportunity to run!

 

What do you hope to get from the experience of being on the Board? What do you hope you will learn about yourself or our organization?

I want to learn more about food equity and security. Food insecurity has a lot of layers and is still stigmatized. I appreciate the work the Co-Op is doing regarding this issue and I’d like to get involved in helping to remove barriers and reducing the stigma related to food security.

I also want to grow my network in Champaign County and learn more about local organizations and causes. Working with the Co-Op and serving on the Board will allow me to do that.

Additionally, serving on the Co-Op Board will help me to understand Board work more holistically. Working as a Board member in my personal time will help me to be more tuned-in to the Board members I support during my work hours. I think serving as a Board member will be invaluable in helping me further develop my professional and interpersonal skills while also picking up a few new ones. 

 

How will you help the Board balance the needs of upholding our Ends, planning for the future of our community-owned cooperative and monitoring the operations of our grocery store?

For any organization, it’s important to identify where you are, what you represent, and where you need to be. If an organization doesn’t have a strong identity, then they can’t purposefully grow within their community. The current practice of revisiting the Ends every few years to ensure the Co-Op is serving the community as it currently stands is fantastic.

Having undertaken strategic planning and SMART goals identification and implementation several times, if elected to the Board, I will apply those skills and processes to upholding the Ends while also examining where the Co-Op should be in the future.

 

 

2021 Owner Elections

The results are in!

 

The following candidates have been selected to serve on our Board of Directors:

Calvin Wang

Mel Weinsten

Robert Taylor

Andrew Muller

 

Read More About Our New Directors!

 

The following organizations have been selected for our Round Up For Good Grant:

Daily Bread Soup Kitchen

Planned Parenthood of Illinois: Champaign Health Center

Eastern Illinois Foodbank

Immigrant Services of CU

Crisis Nursery

Sola Gratia Farm

Prairie Rivers Network

Urbana Champaign Books to Prisoners

Courage Connection

Habitat for Humanity Community Garden

Urbana Free Library Foundation

 

Read More About Our Round Up For Good Recipients!