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From #107, July-August 2003
B Y Dave Gutknecht
At the National Co-op Bank and the NCB Development Corporation, Annie Donovan has provided food cooperatives many years of spirited advocacy, consistent dedication, and sound professional advice, and she has helped make possible many projects that have strengthened our sector. Often unnoticed and working behind the scenes, Annie's efforts have been of enormous benefit to food co-ops locally and as a system.
Willy Street Co-op
On Madison's East Side, Willy Street builds on over thirty years of service and is a vital presence in its community. Their 9,500 of retail space, roomy when opened in 1999, continues to hold more and more products, customers, and member owners. Manager Anya Firszt, Willy Street Co-op staff, and directors also continue to provide valuable leadership in local, regional, and national cooperative associations.
Cooperative Innovation and Achievement:
Community Food Co-op, Bozeman
Community Food Co-op in Bozeman, Montana is an outstanding example of a strongly successful retail that is deeply embedded in its community. Member loans totaling $900,000 and a participatory design process supported the co-op's recent expansion to a facility totaling 15,000 square feet. Community Food Co-op, managed by Kelly Wiseman, continues as the heart of downtown and the heart of the Bozeman community.
Alex Gyori and Paul Cultrera
Beginning over twenty years ago in New England, these two mustachioed managers have spread their humor and dedicated leadership among co-ops all across the country. Alex at Brattleboro (Vermont) Co-op and Paul at Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op are continuing the growth and success of those stores, while building upon years of dedicated assistance to other co-ops, providing innumerable instances of offering friendship and direction to local, regional, and national cooperatives.
CCMA attendees every year benefit from excellent program planning by Ann, a professor at University of Wisconsin Madison and a longstanding advocate of greater academic resources for cooperatives. But her accomplishments range much further, in over thirty years of activism and leadership -- from food co-op manager training to credit union governance to overseas cooperative development and more, including her current position as first Vice Chair at the National Cooperative Business Association.