E. Kim Coontz is Executive Director for the California Center for Cooperative Development. She has been working with cooperatives for more than 20 years. She was executive Director of Yolo Mutual Housing Association for four years. For more than 14 years Kim worked for the Center for Cooperatives at the University of California at Davis. In this capacity, she was active in the start-up of cooperatives, teaching cooperative board governance seminars, providing technical assistance to cooperatives, conducting research, writing and compliance. She has authored and co-authored more than 10 publications about cooperatives and written numerous articles. These include Cooperative Start-up manuals (Steps to Starting a Marketing Cooperative, and Steps to Starting a Worker Cooperative), and a book on child care cooperatives called Bringing Families Together: A Guide to Parent Cooperatives. She has also published articles on housing cooperatives. In 2004 she was awarded Author of the Year by the National Association of Housing Cooperatives. Kim earned her Master’s degree in Sociology from the University of California, Davis.
Luis Sierra is Assistant Director for the California Center for Cooperative Development. He has extensive experience in developing agricultural marketing organizations to carry out alternative marketing strategies including agricultural cooperatives, farmers’ markets, and investor owned businesses. Luis worked with the Rural Development Center in Salinas, CA to train mixed fruit and vegetable farmers to organize their own cooperative and later became an employee of that cooperative. He has extensive experience in coordinating multi-stakeholder initiatives such as food policy councils and farm-to-institution networks. For two years, he co-hosted and produced Local Dirt, an acclaimed radio show on KDVS focusing on local agriculture and food security issues. He serves as treasurer for Dos Pinos Limited Equity Housing Cooperative, and was a director for the Organic Farming Research Foundation from 2003-2008 and Marina Certified Farmers’ Market from 2003-2005.
Foresta Sieck-Hill, Cooperative Development Specialist, has a wealth of experience in worker cooperatives. She has almost 10 years of experience as a worker-owner of two cooperatives. During her seven years at Pedal Express Courier Cooperative she participated in all aspects of running the business incluiding bookkeeping and financial management: recruitment and hiring new members, developing and maintaining client relations and marketing. Foresta has a BA in Urban Economic Development from UC Berkeley.
Kalim Khogiani, Office Administrator and Bookkeeper, is a graduate of University of California, Davis. In 2007 he received his Bachelor of Science degree in Community & Regional Development; with an emphasis on social services and community groups. During his undergraduate studies, he also completed an internship with Yolo Mutual Housing Association, a cooperatively governed affordable housing non-profit. Kalim chose to pursue a career in the nonprofit world and worked for Affordable Housing agencies as a certified Tax Credit Specialist for 5 years. He began working at CCCD in 2012 as the Assistant Bookkeeper and was quickly promoted to Bookkeeper due to his ability to manage the finances. Kalim is currently taking classes part-time to qualify for a Master’s degree in Mathematics.