by: Steve Peterson, Board Vice President
What has the Board of Directors been doing the last two months? Lots! Here’s a quick run down of our activities on behalf of member-owners.
Board Policy Changes
As reported in the COMM POST recently, the board passed changes to the Staff Treatment policy section that requires a grievance procedure to allow grievances to be filed following termination, and requires a staff survey at reasonable time periods. We are scheduled to have a staff survey conducted by an external reviewer this year as part of our budgeted expenses. We have also considered changes to board policies that clarify the internal operations of the board—specifically how to get issues to the attention of the GM and to other board members—as well as a requirement that the store operate with a merchandising policy that takes into account the successful operation of the store, the mission of the store, and the diverse needs of the members. We think these improvements will help clarify our expectations for an incoming GM. Our goal is constant improvement through ongoing reflection.
There will be an election for three open seats on the board this year. Onita Mohr, Toni Smith, and Georgie Klevar are stepping down after their many years of work on the Board of Directors. We thank them for their untiring service. Their humor, intelligence, and hard work will be greatly missed. Luckily we have four extremely good candidates that the board nominated for the open board seats at our January meeting: Jon Jensen, Joan Lubke, Bill Pardee, and Dennis Pottratz. The election occurs during March, with ballots being mailed out on March 1st and the last day to vote being March 29th. You can find more details about the election process in this issue of the Scoop, at the front desk of the Co-op, on the website under the Board page, or on the board in the Co-op foyer.
After a careful reading of the Articles of Confederation this year (one of the documents that tell us how we need to do things), we discovered that we needed to change the way we asked for memberships to be paid. According to the Articles, for members to be “in good standing” a minimum $20 payment has to arrive each year by March 1st until paid in full. That’s a change from the way we’ve been doing things in the past, when anniversary date of sign-up was the key date. We sent out postcards to all of the folks who need to pay up their memberships. If you have questions, you can contact the store and they can help you get your membership up to date. Thank you for your patience as we make this switch over.
We have devoted a large part of our time lately to searching for a new GM. We developed an advertising strategy, recruited candidates, and received about forty applications for the position. After review of the application materials, we conducted phone interviews with seven of the most qualified. We then narrowed the field down to three highly qualified people who we brought for on-site interviews. The interview process was a very long day for our candidates. We began with a 2-hour interview with the Board and two staff members, then moved on to a store tour, followed by a chance to meet and answer staff questions. The day ended with an hour-long conversation with member-owners and a dinner with the Board of Directors.