April 28-29, 2019 - Sacramento, CA
California Center for Cooperative Development
Venue: Sacramento Scottish Rite Temple
6151 H Street, Sacramento
Nathan Schneider is a journalist and an assistant professor of media studies at the University of Colorado Boulder who writes about economy, technology, and religion. His most recent book is Everything for Everyone: The Radical Tradition that Is Shaping the Next Economy, published by Nation Books, and two previous books, God in Proof: The Story of a Search from the Ancients to the Internet and Thank You, Anarchy: Notes from the Occupy Apocalypse, were both published in 2013 by University of California Press. His articles have been published in Harper’s, The Nation, The New Republic, The Chronicle of Higher Education, The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Catholic Worker, and others. He writes regular columns for America, a national Catholic weekly, and he is a contributing editor for YES! Magazine. In 2015, he co-organized “Platform Cooperativism,” a pioneering conference on democratic online platforms at The New School, and co-edited the subsequent book, Ours to Hack and to Own: The Rise of Platform Cooperativism, a New Vision for the Future of Work and a Fairer Internet. Follow his work on social media at @ntnsndr or at his website, nathanschneider.info.
Edward Moncrief is the author of Raising the Blackbirds, a story of Sixto Torres, an immigarnt farmworker and his community who created San Jerardo Cooperative outside Salinas, CA. He grew up in rural Redlands, CA and spent 10 years studying to be a Franciscan priest. When he left the priesthood, he entered graduate school where he earned his Matser's degree in Social Work with an emphasis on Community Organizing and Development. Moncrief spent his career directing non-profit housing organizations and developing new housing for farmworker families and other economically disadvantaged people.
Among other positions, Moncrief was the director of El Porvenir, an early self-help housing project launched by the American Friends Service Committee with farmworkers on the Westside of the San Joaquin Valley. Upon completion of that sixty-unit subdivision, he went to Salinas in 1973 to work with Central Coast Counties Development Corporation (CCCDC). He oversaw the establishment of farming cooperatives and the development of the San Jerardo Cooperative Housing project, both with farmworker families seeking to improve their economic and living conditions.
From 1980 through 1995, as founding executive director of Community Housing Improvement Systems and Planning Association, Inc. (CHISPA), Moncrief directed the development of more than seven hundred homes for farmworker families of the Salinas Valley. From 1997 through 2000, he was the executive director of Neighborhood Housing Services of the Inland Empire and from 2000 through 2011, Neighborhood Housing Services Silicon Valley.
Partial List of Additional Speakers
Jeff Bessmer is a co-op management professional who has served as Executive Director of Santa Barbara Student Housing Co-ops and Waterloo Co-operative Residences, as well as General Manager of Tacoma Food Co-op. Jeff has served on 8 co-op Board of Directors and has started new housing and secondary co-ops, as well as serving as a co-op educator and consultant. He holds a Masters of Management: Co-operatives and Credit Unions degree from Saint Mary's University and currently works for Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op.
Linda Brockway is currently the Treasurer of the National Association of Housing Cooperatives (NAHC), and has served on the Board of Directors since October, 2000. Linda is a national speaker for the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, and has spoken for the National Association of Housing Cooperatives, Midwest Association of Housing Cooperatives, The National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials, NCBA, CCCD, and numerous local associations. Ms. Brockway has also worked to develop the governance, strategic planning training courses, and Resident Cooperative Manager Classes, which are offered by NAHC.
E. Kim Coontz Executive Director, California Center for Cooperative Development, has been working with cooperative enterprises for over 20 years. She has assisted in the start-up of more than 28 cooperatives, authored and co-authored more than 10 publications about cooperatives and written numerous articles. Prior to her employment with CCCD, Kim was Executive Director of Yolo Mutual Housing Association, a nonprofit developer of cooperatively-governed affordable housing in Davis, CA. She also spent 14 years in an academic position with the Center for Cooperatives at the University of California at Davis.
Brian Dahlk, CPA, is a senior manager at Wegner CPAs in Madison, Wisconsin. For the past dozen years, he was provided audits, financial reviews, tax returns, and consulting services for hundreds of cooperative organizations all across the country. Brian received his master’s degree in business in 1992 and his Certified Public Accountant designation in 2006. Prior to joining Wegner CPAs, he owned a business and worked as a financial manager for several nonprofits and cooperatives in Wisconsin and California.
Mark Fick is the Director of Lending with Shared Capital Cooperative where he leads the business development, loan underwriting and portfolio management functions of the organization. As a cooperatively owned loan fund, Shared Capital works to build economic democracy by providing financing throughout the United States to cooperatively owned enterprises including consumer, worker, and producer owned cooperatives. Over the past 25 years Mark has been an active leader with a variety of community-based and cooperative development organizations with a focus on building economic systems that are democratic and radically inclusive. This has included work with the US Federation of Worker Cooperation, Chicago Mutual Housing Network, NASCO Development Services, Housing Action Illinois, Organization of the Northeast, Stone Soup Cooperative and the Northside Community Federal Credit Union.
David Hammer is the Executive Director of the ICA Group, the country’s oldest national organization dedicated to democratic employee ownership, and is a leading practitioner of employee buyouts of small business and worker cooperatives. David’s areas of expertise include governance design, market research, business planning, policy analysis, data analysis, and financial modeling. David has worked on a wide variety of projects throughout the country in industries as diverse as long term care, child care, industrial laundries, apparel distribution, food retail, tire manufacturing, temporary staffing, hospitality, aluminum can manufacturing, as well as various small manufacturing settings. David earned a Master’s of Science from the Labor Relations and Research Center at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and a Bachelor’s degree in History from UMass, Amherst.
Jacqueline Hannah, Food Co-op Initiative, served as the general manager of Common Ground Food Co-op (CGFC) in Urbana, more than 9 years. During this time she led the co-op through two expansions, the founding of their Food For All economic access program. In 2010 Jacqueline was named one of the "40 Under 40" business people of excellence by Central Illinois Business Magazine, and in 2011 she was awarded the Innovation Award for Economic Development Impact for her work with Common Ground Food Co-op. She received the Cooperative Service Award in 2013 and Cooperative CEO of the Year award from the Illinois Cooperative Council in 2014. Jacqueline joined Food Co-op Initiative in March of 2015 so she can fully commit herself to her passion for new.
Neil Helfman has practiced law in California sing 1987. He has advised, counseled, and written about Worker Cooperatives. He earned his law degree from University of San Francisco School of Law.
Gregory Jackson is a native of Oakland with deep family roots who feels fortunate to live within blocks of his family that now spans three generations. He is deeply committed to achieving economic equity in the East Bay through collective ownership and democratic decision-making. Recognizing the many social problems rooted in the unequal distribution of wealth and decision-making power, Greg focused his law school research on international cooperatives. During his internship with Sustainable Economies Law Center he created a pilot program for youth-led cooperative development. As a 2018 Equal Justice Works Legal Fellow, Greg aims to increase collective decision-making and cooperative-ownership in East Oakland. He holds a B.A. in Philosophy from San Diego State University, and a J.D. from Golden Gate University School of Law. Sponsored by Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
Renee Ledoux is a Relationship Manager at National Cooperative Bank (NCB), where Renee processes loan, investment and grant applications from start to finish. Renee works on the Specialty Finance team which focuses on Mission and Low Income activities. Part of NCB’s Mission is to support cooperatives and cooperative like organizations.
Fathia Macauley is the California Business Development Officer for Capital Impact Partners, located in Oakland. Her experience encompasses community development lending, affordable housing development and nonprofit management. Fathia has been in the field of community development finance for the past 23 years and she holds a Master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs and a Bachelor’s degree in History and African Area Studies from UCLA. Capital Impact Partners has a long and successful track record of supporting cooperative businesses. Since it’s founding in 1984, it has provided nearly $300 million to more than 200 cooperative businesses that serve low-income people and communities.
Bruce Mayer is a Partner with Wegner CPAs in Madison, Wisconsin. He and his firm works with over 200 cooperatives from coast to coast providing tax, accounting and financial statement services. He specializes in food, worker, and purchasing coops. He also works with non-profits, employee benefit plans, and commercial businesses.
Sheella Mierson, a founding member of The Sociocracy Consulting Group (www.sociocracyconsulting.com), helps organizations implement sociocracy in support of their strategic goals, and to create adaptive and effective organizations where all members’ voices matter. In addition to being a Sociocracy Consultant, she is a Certified Facilitator for the Blueprint of We Collaboration Process, used to build trust, creativity, effortlessness, and resilience in relationships. Sheella has a long term interest in the cooperative movement, and in 2018 was inducted into the North American Students of Cooperation (NASCO) Cooperative Hall of Fame.
Ojan Mobedshahi is a 2nd generation Iranian American born and raised in the Bay Area. His past work, ranging from healthy urban land use to real estate development, informs his holistic view of finance, with a triple bottom line that includes people and planet along with profit. Ojan lives in a co-op in Oakland and works as a contractor and regenerative landscape designer revitalizing land throughout the East Bay. While earning his B.A. in Economics from Pitzer College, Ojan was inducted into the Economic Honors Society and organized a local chapter of the Occupy movement.
Ricardo Nuñez serves on the board of CCCD and is Director of Economic Democracy at the Sustainable Communities Law Center, where he coordinates legislative strategies, popular education, and legal research around worker-owned businesses. Among the legal services he supports is the Resilient Communities Legal Cafe, a program that provides direct legal support to individuals and groups creating new solutions for resilient economies in Oakland, Berkeley, Richmond, and beyond. Ricardo was formerly a member of the Los Angeles Worker Ownership Resources and Cooperative Services Committee (LAWORCS), an initiative to start a worker cooperative incubator for the greater L.A. area. Ricardo was a Rural Education Development Specialist in Zambia with the U.S. Peace Corps, where he led efforts in capacity building with 15 rural, up-country schools, establishing two village based Women’s Cooperatives, and training multiple Farmer’s Cooperatives on sustainable farming practices.
Zen Trenholm is a Program Manager with the Democracy at Work Institute (DAWI) building capacity, partnerships, and resources to scale employee ownership across the country. He currently coordinates the Shared Equity in Economic Development Fellowship program, working with city leaders and economic developers to develop and implement employee ownership initiatives around the country. He also supports DAWI's Legacy Business Initiative which focuses on preserving small businesses through conversions to employee ownership. At UC Berkeley, he co-founded the Student Environmental Resource Center and after obtaining a Bachelor’s degree in Cooperative Business Development, he returned to his alma mater to launch a course on cooperative entrepreneurship.
Daniella Preisler is worker-owner at Home Green Home LLC since 2013, serving as cooperative bookkeeper in charge of the Administration and Finance Committee. She has been a Community Coach and Co-op Developer Consultant since 2016. Daniella is a consultant with Prospera and provides training in cooperative business model, governance and financial aspects of LLCs in programs for Latina Women who are interested in becoming worker-owners by starting their own cooperative or by joining existing cooperatives.
Shanta Sacaroff has been an activist in cooperatives and the local food movement for more than 30 years. She has written and published 4 books, including Other Avenues Are Possible: Legacy of the Peoples Food System of the San Francisco Bay. Following her retirement last year from being a worker owner with Other Avenues Food Co-op, in San Francisco, she has continued to stay engaged in the cooperative community, sharing her knowledge, experience and enthusiasm for co-ops.
Kate “Sassy” Sassoon is the founder of Sassy Facilitation, a consultancy which provides facilitation, education, mediation, and group process design to innovative organizations. In her 20 years of membership in various democratically owned and run organizations, Sassy has seen many faces of the co-op sector, including: housing, childcare, worker-owned enterprises, arts and manufacturing collectives, and intentional communities. She strives to bring lucidity, productivity, and humor to her classes and her clients. You can download free tools, learn more about co-ops, and explore Sassy's work at www.sassycooperates.org.
Luis Sierra, Assistant Director, has been with California Center for Cooperative Development since 2008. Luis heads CCCD’s Food and Agriculture programs and also works with farmworker and other housing cooperatives. Luis has worked with growers producing olive oil, flowers, sugar beets, specialty Asian fruits and vegetables, seeds, and livestock. He also supports food co-op organizing groups with business and strategic planning, and market research. To better support nascent farmer co-ops Luis became a certified PSA Lead Trainer for FSMA and completed the Lead Auditor training for USDA GAP standards. His Community and Regional Development MS degree area of emphasis was on popular education and its application to cooperative development and education.
Nathan Schneider is a journalist and an assistant professor of media studies at the University of Colorado Boulder who writes about economy, technology, and religion. His most recent book is Everything for Everyone: The Radical Tradition that Is Shaping the Next Economy, published by Nation Books.
Noni Session is a 3rd generation West Oaklander, Assistant Librarian and Cultural Anthropologist. Her research and organizing work spans national and global arenas. In her doctoral work under the umbrella of the UNDP in Nairobi, Kenya, Noni carried out ethnographic analysis of international humanitarian strategies and their on-the-ground consequences. After a 2016 run for Oakland City Council in which she garnered more than 43% of the vote, Noni came to believe that her community’s clearest pathway to economic justice and halting rapid displacement was an independent cooperative economy. Noni holds a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology and Black Studies, cum laude, from San Francisco State University, and an M.A. in Cultural Anthropology from Cornell University.
Nate Shaffron leads NCCLF’s lending to promote equity in our food system and economy as a whole. He comes to NCCLF with over 15 years’ experience in development lending and social enterprise, with a focus on food and agriculture. He previously worked for a decade with Root Capital, launching the organization’s African operations and building a portfolio of over $30M and a staff of 30+ African professionals. A native of Richmond, CA, Nate holds an MS in Foreign Service from Georgetown University, and BAs in Economics and Political Science from Swarthmore College.
Jeff Streiffer, Senior Counsel with Goldfarb & Lipman, LLP, practices in the areas of affordable housing and community economic development, with special expertise in cooperative formation, operation, and governance. He has been active in the cooperative movement for over 30 years, working in, and serving on boards of, cooperatives in Vermont, Indiana, and Minnesota. Before joining Goldfarb & Lipman, Jeff was an attorney with the U.S. Department of Agriculture for 15 years, where he represented USDA agencies, including Rural Development and the Rural Cooperative-Business Service, in the administration of federal financial assistance programs. Jeff has trained attorneys, boards, and staff on cooperative law and governance and has presented programs on D&O Duties and Liability for the Credit Union National Association, the Minnesota and Wisconsin Association of Cooperatives, and the Cooperative Network. Jeff earned his undergraduate degree from Earlham College, his J.D. from Mitchell-Hamline College of Law in St. Paul, Minnesota, and is licensed to practice law in Minnesota and California.
Stephen Rye Switzer is an accountant and facilitator with 15 years experience working, living, and thriving in cooperatives. He co-founded A Bookkeeping Cooperative and was a member of Thirdroot Community Health Center Cooperative. Currently Stephen resides in the Bay Area, supporting cooperatives and non-profits. Stephen is a consultant with the Coop Clinic (USFWC) and provides cooperatives with training and development services.
Karen Tiedemann is a partner with Goldfarb and Lipman Law firm where she practices affordable housing, redevelopment and environmental law. She represents numerous public agencies and nonprofit corporations on the development, financing and management of low and moderate income housing. She has special expertise on both stock and limited equity cooperative housing structures. Karen is co-author of Between the Lines: A Question & Answer Guide on Legal Issues in Supportive Housing and A Legal Guide to California Redevelopment. Karen's education includes an A.B. from the University of California, Berkeley. J.D., Boalt Hall School of Law, and a Masters in City Planning from University of California, Berkeley.
Thérèse C. Tuttle contributes her work with consumer, agriculture and worker cooperatives to the board. She specializes in the representation of California consumer cooperatives, agricultural cooperatives and worker cooperatives, and also advises clients on business formation and estate planning matters. She serves on the non-profits committee of the California State Bar Association. In 2013, she drafted amendments to California’s cooperative law that enabled preferred-share financing and capitalization of cooperatives. She been awarded USDA’s “Great Cooperator” Award. In 2000, she founded Tuttle & Van Knonynenburg, LLP, a firm focused on cooperative and agricultural law, with her law partner Frank Van Konynenburg; in 2001 the firm successfully defended the 400 members of Tri Valley Growers, a processing cooperative, from claims of creditors in the cooperative’s bankruptcy. Prior to founding the firm, she worked as Director of Cooperative and Economic Development for National Farmer’s Union, managing cooperative project requests from 23 state-based member organizations.
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