It is time again to think about joining the pool of great people who are willing to serve on the BCS Board of Directors. As only two or three seats are available in any given year, not everyone who runs will serve on this next term, which begins in November 2011. I know that seems like a long way from now, but in order to process applications, publish information about the candidates in the newsletter and eventually get the ballots to our member-owners, we have to start now.
If you think being on a board is just a boring, time-consuming job, think again. I asked all of our present board members what they liked about serving on the BCS board and here are their responses. Donna Stroup said that the thing she loves most is the excitement and synergy that comes from working with talented, deeply caring and committed people with a common focus on a worthwhile goal. “The possibilities are endless!” she exclaimed. Art Sherwood said, “I really enjoy envisioning the world as we would like it to be and determining the co-op’s role in bringing it about.” Tim Clougher enjoys being on the BCS board because of the knowledge he has gained of policy governance, local food, and the positive impact the cooperative model has on our community and beyond.
Janice Lilly said, “First, I have enjoyed getting to know the people with whom I work. Even though we are all members of Bloomingfoods, I did not know any of them before I joined the board. Sharing in their lives has been a joy and a privilege. Second, I have enjoyed all I have learned about Bloomingfoods, about cooperative business and policy governance. Finally, and just as important, I enjoy how much we laugh together!” Mary Beth Haas also expressed how much she enjoyed working with everyone and the many things we learn together. Our newest board member, Danielle McClelland, looks forward to the opportunity to learn more about what cooperative business can offer the community and leverage that knowledge for all of us. The very first response many of us had to my question was that we love the laughs and the pie. I thoroughly agree with all of the above.
As you can see, even though we get a tremendous amount of work done in a short period of time, it is not a grind. Everyone shows up on time to enjoy a savory meal of Bloomingfood excellent cuisine,
preceding an hour of talking about “the big picture.” This big picture topic changes according to what the board decides is most relevant for the current year. Everyone shares ideas and brainstorms possibilities. Then, the president leads us in efficiently taking care of business. Thanks to policy governance, the process of making sure that the general manager is taking the co-op businesses in the direction mandated by our by-laws and policies is clear and quick. We finish all this by about 8:30pm.
Our board meetings are once a month. Usually, there is homework where we prepare for our discussion topics and agenda. We attempt to keep additional committee meetings to a minimum, just enough to plan the year’s education topics, attend to any extra financial review if needed, and ensure that there are owner-members in our pool of potential board candidates. This newsletter article is part of that extra-curricular process, something I thoroughly enjoy.
If you want to share in this work with us, please let us know by diving into this pool of potentials. Applications will be in the stores by April 1st. Picking one up and filling it out is not a commitment; it just lets us know that you are interested in joining our team when you can. If you have time for just a little bit more meaningful work to make Bloomington a great place to live, serving on the BCS board might be just right for you.
Carol Bridges, Secretary
BCS Board of Directors