Why Join the BFC Board?

  | Board of Directors, News from the Board of Directors

by Judy Fink

For the first time in my 4+ years of experience as a Brattleboro Food Co-op Board Director, our Co-op is enjoying the good fortune of a stable Board. With fingers crossed, we look forward to having three out of nine seats up for election this fall.

The beauty of this rotation – three seats expiring each year – is that it gives us opportunities to court and welcome new Directors while building continuity and deepening knowledge among our veteran Directors. Once Directors gain experience, they mentor new members. As a former mentee and a current mentor, I understand how powerful and mutually satisfying these partnerships can be. We learn from each other, gain trust and encourage growth and competence.

What happens when Board Directors need to leave the Board before their term is up and the rotation is disrupted? Disruption can be beneficial. A  Board that has worked together for a long time might become complacent. When new Directors are added to the mix mid-term, they add fresh perspectives and invigorate processes.

So why do I focus so much of my Board work on reaching out to shareholders, encouraging them to consider running for the Board? Before I engage in initial conversations with prospective Board Directors, I take some time to reflect on what I find rewarding. My overarching reason for serving on the BFC Board is to give back to this amazing place that continues to provide so much to me and to the community. Other experiences are equally rewarding and go deep. I relish the connections made with my Board colleagues; I have met and become friends with people whom I might never have met otherwise. Together, we engage in stimulating and provocative conversations related to our work in monitoring and supporting Lee, our phenomenal General Manager. I am constantly challenged to learn new things; before I was elected to the BFC Board, I had no idea how a grocery store functions, and no real understanding of the cooperative model.

My enthusiasm for the work we do as a Board is genuine, though, at times, the work is hard and even a little frustrating. I thank my lucky stars that I get to shop at the BFC whenever I want, that it’s my store, and that I am doing my part to assure its vibrant future. I invite you to be in touch. Perhaps you may be inspired to join us.

Judy Fink

BFC Board VP and Board Recruitment Committee Chair