Natural Times, January/February/March 2012
By Jim Terrell
Here’s hoping you all had a great holiday season. The New Leaf Market Board has been busy since the last newsletter, and I want to tell you about two major events that occurred in the last quarter.
The first event was the Annual Owners’ meeting held on October 8 at the Optimist Park Community Center. Even though turnout was lower than in the past few years, the owners in attendance had extremely useful perspectives to share with the Board and co-op staff.
The meeting was called to order at 10:08 a.m. and was followed by introductions of the Board members and New Leaf Market managers. After introductions, there were several reports dealing with various aspects of New Leaf Market, starting with the President’s report that reviewed many of the Board’s activities of the past year.
June Wiaz, board treasurer, gave the financial report. Although last year was not a great year for New Leaf Market, June gave a great report on some of the dynamics of why last year was down financially and some of the ways in which New Leaf Market is dealing with the situation. Larrane Hartridge followed with the General Manager’s report, briefly reviewing the history of New Leaf Market’s economic situation over the last year, and discussed in greater detail what is being done to improve the store’s outlook.
Cristin Burns, marketing manager, then gave the annual “Ends” report, essentially summarizing how the Co-op has supported the goals or ends that relate to the Co-op’s “higher purpose.” You can read the Ends on page 8. She did a great job despite a terribly botched introduction by the Board president. Her report covered New Leaf Market’s use and promotion of local products and supplies, donations, consumer education and co-operative principals. Phil Valentine, store manager, discussed accomplishments and goals, notably in the deli and meat departments. See page 8 for a detailed Annual Report.
Dave Watson, election committee chair, then took center stage and talked about the election procedures and introduced the candidates for the Board.
Finally, Heidi Fox did a great job facilitating the owner’s forum. It was very informative with great questions, answers and discussion. The meeting was adjourned at 11:37 am.
The second event of note was the New Leaf Market Board Annual Retreat. This is a time where the Board discusses what was accomplished in the last year and creates goals for the upcoming year.
The Board met with Larrane and Board Consulant Thane Joyal on Friday and Saturday, November 11 and 12 and had a very entertaining and educational experience. We collectively established working committees for the board, and assigned board members to evaluate our Co-op policies in the form of “monitoring reports.” There was a lot of discussion on how to maximize Board impact and owner education.
Over the next few months I will share more with you about the decisions we made at our annual retreat and the Board will continue in its efforts to represent the owners and keep them informed on what is happening at New Leaf Market.
Take care and see you next issue.