Board Candidate Maggie Jones

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What should members know about you?

I have a long and passionate history with co-ops, organic growing, sustainability, fair trade and self sufficiency. These things have steered my life. I am joyfully running for re-election to your board of directors in the upcoming election.

I have always worked in the natural foods sector. I have worked in natural foods restaurants and stores, run a small commercial kitchen, had my own business, and written and lectured about sustainability and health. I have been involved with other co-ops and was on the board of Earth Harvest co-op for many years. I also spent 20 years working directly with retailers helping to create programs that would allow stores to better serve their customers and grow their business.

When the natural foods movement was just blossoming, I worked as the baker and salad maker in a grassroots vegetarian restaurant, and there I developed a love of creating delicious meals with whole foods.  This has stayed with me all of my life. I teach cooking classes at the co-op, and I take delight in sharing the love of cooking with others.

I also have a keen interest in growing my own food, and I have an education in Horticulture. Our area has a strong base of local farmers and producers, and supporting local is important for the long-term food systems of our region. I help out on a local honey farm and have also done some business consulting with local producers who are growing and developing their companies.

Serving on the board of the Kootenay Coop has been an exciting and fulfilling experience for me. It has given me the chance to give back on a deep and meaningful level to the co-op that I love and believe in passionately. I understand the importance of our co-op as a place of community, good food, ethical employment and leadership.

I sincerely hope that you will give me the opportunity to serve another term on the board of Kootenay Co-op.

Why do you want to serve on the board?

I would like to serve another term on the board of the Kootenay Co-op because I find the experience to be not only meaningful and rewarding but also inline with my personal values. Our coop mission statement speaks to creating a resilient food system for our community and the earth, this resonates with me.

Our coop embraces values that include co-operation, democracy, equality, social justice, environmental stewardship, fiscal responsibility and solidarity which are deeply ingrained in my life path. Being on the board has allowed me to be of service, to embrace social responsibility and caring for others and has helped me to grow as a person.

The Kootenay Co-op is the heart of our community. Our co-op not only provides us with a place to purchase the foods and products we need; it also provides a place for our community to come together. This is very important to me.

The co-op supports a shared vision of what sustainable and ethical food supply chain can look like and it help us to shop locally and organically. I am grateful for the work that our co-op staff do to bring us the best local, organic and ethical choices in products available and by serving on the board I can be a part of this important work.

Our co-op has just celebrated 44 years and I believe that as we look ahead, we need to respond to a changing world to ensure the long- term health and sustainability of our co-op. A healthy Kootenay Co-op means a healthier community at large and a more vibrant and sustainable food system in the Kootenays. This is paramount to me and I want to work to support and nurture this. We need to create ways to securely embrace our values while remaining fiscally responsible. I want to participate in this work and am keen to help guide our coop on its path.

This is why I am running for re-election.

What about your personal qualities, skills and experience would make you a good Director for the Co-op right now?

I believe that I am good choice for the board as I am very committed to our Kootenay Co-op and I have many years of natural foods industry experience.

I have a strong and varied background in the natural foods industry and have worked in many different areas of this business sector. From working at store level, running a small commercial kitchen to running my own business and teaching classes, my experience is wide and varied.

This gives me a clear understanding what our co-op does. I have also worked in service and sales for 20 years providing support to many natural food stores. I am familiar with distribution, manufacturing and how sales support works, as well as market pressures. All of this has allowed me to be of direct assistance to the co-op.

In running my own business I have learned the importance of financial responsibility, as well as the importance of looking ahead, and planning for the long term. I believe these skills are important to the continuing health of the coop. I have previous board experience at Earth Harvest Co-op.

I work from a solution- based mindset and I am cooperative and collaborative in my approach. I feel that our board can only be effective if we can respectfully hear one another and work though issues and challenges. Speaking my mind and listening to others is important to me.

I am hard working, invest deeply in the things that I undertake, and love a challenge. I am good-natured and easy going and enjoy being a part of a team.

I would like the opportunity to continue to contribute to our co-op for the next 2 years.

 

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Candidate profiles are submitted by the candidates in their own words and are not fact-checked by the Kootenay Co-op.