West End Food Co-op
Board of Directors - Call for Nominations
Election to be held at Annual General Meeting:
Date: September 25, 2018 6:30 - 8:30 PM
Location: To be announced closer to the date
The Board of Directors of the West End Food Co-op (WEFC) is seeking candidates for nomination for eight positions on the Board. Please read this information package carefully. If after reading this package in full you are interested in self-nominating for a position on the Board, we ask that you send a statement of interest (250 words or less) to the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org. In the statement of interest, you must identify which stakeholder director position you would like to run for. Please submit your statement of interest no later than September 1, 2018.
We will contact you by September 7th to advise you of the informational meeting will be holding in week 2 OR 3 to provide more details about the Director role and answer any questions you may have.
This statement of interest will be distributed to the membership for consideration at the AGM. You will also be invited to speak for 1 minute at the AGM (September 25, 2018 @ 6:30pm) regarding your skills and experience, and why you are interested in being a Director of the WEFC. Note that you must have been a member of the WEFC for at least 30 days prior to being elected to the Board (i.e., you must be a member prior to August 25, 2018). Memberships can be obtained at our Sorauren Farmers Market on Mondays between 3-7pm, or by sending an email to email@example.com. There is a one-time $5.00 membership fee.
The 8 Director positions open for election at the 2018 AGM are as follows:
● 3 Producer member positions
● 2 Community Partner member positions
● 2 Worker member positions
● 1 Eater member position
PLEASE NOTE - procedure change as of this year:
If an insufficient number of nominees come forward for the Producer member, Worker member, and Community Partner positions either before or at the AGM, then General Eater members will be accepted for nomination to fill those seats. If you are an eater member and you are interested in joining the Board , you may submit your nomination in advance on the understanding that only one Eater position is open, but more may be added at the AGM if no Producer members, Worker members and/or Community Partner members are nominated, or if an inadequate number are nominated to fill the empty seats in their category.
Each position has a two-year term. The term starts as of the 2018 AGM, and runs until the 2020 AGM.
About the West End Food Co-op
The West End Food Co-op is anot-for-profit co-operative that is governed by representatives from our four stakeholder groups: eaters, producers, workers, and community partners. We aim to provide viable food security initiatives that are specific to the needs of the West end communities that we serve.
The West End Food Co-op connects local farmers to local eaters, and produces self-sustaining initiatives that work for the community. Our co-op is working to increase markets for local, sustainable farmers and artisan producers; a fair, democratic, and meaningful workplace for our workers; an inspiring, community-driven, and welcoming place to shop, learn and connect for eaters; and a resource and valuable partner to work with community groups in Parkdale and across Toronto to improve food security and access to good, healthy, real food in our neighbourhood and beyond.
About the Board of Directors
WEFC’s Board provides oversight to the operational functions of the organization by ensuring adherence to organizational mission, vision, values.
At the moment, the Co-op is undergoing a major transition. Come September 2018, we will be moving out of our retail space on Queen Street West. While the Board is working hard to make the transition smooth, it is no easy task and requires active participation and engagement from all Board Directors. Finding a location that serves our community and furthers our mission, all at an affordable rate, is our most pressing challenge. We will continue to operate our weekly Sorauren Farmers market on Mondays, as per usual. At the same time, we continue to work towards financial stability to ensure the longevity of the Co-op for years to come.
Multi-stakeholder composition of Board
The Board of Directors directs the business and affairs of the Co-op. The Board consists of 12 Directors, and aims to be a Board that is structuredequitably represent its stakeholdersas follows:3 Eater members, 3 Workermembers, 3 Producermembers, and 3 Community Partnermembers. However, due to a historic difficulty with finding 3 producer members and 3 community partner members willing and able to take on the responsibilities of a Director, if no one is nominated to fill vacant producer and/or community partner seats at the time of Director elections, nominations of eater members will be accepted in order to fill the vacant seats. This approach has been adopted in order to balance the desire to represent all stakeholder groups on the Board, with the need to ensure that the Board is able to achieve quorum and operate effectively.
Directors are elected at the West End Food Co-op Annual General Meeting.Directors are not compensated and do not receive an honorarium.
To be considered for the Board, candidates must meet a minimum set of qualifications, as stated in the Co-operative Corporations Actas follows:
● Candidates must be members of the Co-op (which means you must have joined at least 30 days prior to being elected to the Board (i.e., you must be a member by August 25, 2018)).
● Candidates must be at least 18 years of age.
● Candidates must not be an undischarged bankrupt or incapable of managing property within the meaning of the Substitute Decisions Act
Board members are required to attend monthly meetings and attend to their action items. Board members are also required to participate on at least one committee. Directors must be able to attend monthly 2.5-3 hour Board meetings, either in person or electronically. Directors can expect to participate in 1-2 hours of prep work prior to the monthly Board meeting (preparing and reviewing reports and financial documents). Beyond this regular meeting, the time commitment for a Director typically averages an additional 5 hours per week. The minimum total time commitment for a WEFC Board Director is 10 hours per month.
Given our current priorities, the Co-op would greatly benefit from the addition of Directors with previous Board experience.
We are also seeking directors with experience or expertise in one or more of the following areas:
● Project management
● Fundraising and/or connections to donor communities
● Grant writing
● Co-operative governance or experience with collective decision making
● Legal expertise
● Financial management including:
○ Business management
○ Accounting or business administration
○ Entrepreneurial or social enterprise expertise
● Knowledge of food system issues and food industry knowledge and expertise
● Human resources
● Marketing and business development
● Community outreach and engagement including connections to the various Parkdale communities
● Visioning experience
● Real Estate experience
● Lived experience of marginalization and / or experience working with marginalized communities
It is important that the Directors of the WEFC have a commitment to upholding and furthering the values and principles that underpin the activities of the West End Food Co-op. These include:
1. Co-op principles and values. See “International Principles of Co-operation”: http://www.ontario.coop/all_about_cooperatives/what_is_a_coop/international_principles_of_cooperation)
2. Multi-stakeholder co-op principles and objectives. For more information and case studies, see “Solidarity as a Business Model: A Multi-stakeholder Co-ops Manual”:http://cultivatingfoodcoops.net/news/developing/solidarity-as-a-business-model-a-multistakeholder-co-ops-manual
3. Social equity and diversity:
○ The West End Food Co-op operates in an incredibly diverse community. A key goal of the Co-op is toengage with,represent, and support the fulfillment of residents’ needs. To do this, Board members should:
■ Have a commitment to social equity.
■ Have an understanding of anti-oppression principles and issues of power and privilege, and have an understanding of their own relative power and privilege.
■ Have a commitment to a vision of a co-op that works to address the needs and interests of a membership and community of diverse economic means, lifestyles, relationships with and access to food, food preferences and needs, and member service preferences and needs.
4. Environmental sustainability
5. Food sovereignty: http://foodsecurecanada.org/six-pillars-food-sovereignty
If you have questions about the Director role that are not answered in this document, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you so much for your interest, and we look forward to seeing you at the AGM.
The West End Food Co-op Board of Directors