Jon studied Hotel and Food Administration at the University of Guelph. He went on to work in restaurants across Canada and France and these experiences launched him on a complimentary career as a food journalist. In 2006, Jon created Deconstructing Dinner – a weekly one-hour radio show and podcast produced at Kootenay Co-op Radio. Before it went off the air in late 2010, the show was being broadcast on 50 radio stations in Canada and the US and continues to be ranked as the top Canadian food podcast by iTunes. In 2011, Jon met James Beard Award winning film maker Declan O’Driscoll and began working on resurrecting Deconstructing Dinner as a documentary television series and multimedia project which was launched on ichannel in September 2013. Jon is an active public speaker and has been in involved in many West Kootenay food initiatives. Jon has been a Board Director of the Kootenay Country Store Co-operative since 2006.
Abra grew up on a farm and moved to the West Kootenays where she became a member of the Co-op in 1990 — she has always appreciated the vital role that the Co-op plays in this foodshed. She is a founding member of and special advisor to the Canadian Biotech Action Network and a long-time volunteer with Kootenay Organic Growers. She champions public policy that supports healthy food systems and communities, studying and making accessible to the general public the regulatory regimes on sustainable food systems in Canada. She is a founding member and current staff of the BC Food Systems Network and is recognized nationally as a passionate, eloquent and knowledgeable food systems advocate.
Alex has been active in BC’s food co-op movement since the 1970s. After he settled in the Kootenays, he trained as a Registered Nurse at Selkirk College, starting a health care career of 40 years. He spent many years as an executive in teaching hospitals and now manages a health care management consultancy. The values and lessons from his co-op activism greatly influenced his later work. He believes that creating value in a competitive environment and managing a major change are both current challenges for the Co-op.
He lives today with his family in the Slocan Valley where they operate an organic farm and poultry abattoir. He also supports various projects in Bangladesh.
Elizabeth has lived in Nelson since 2005 and has enjoyed its amazing support for the arts, healthy living and community. Since moving here, she has been involved with the Nelson Figure Skating Board, Capitol Theater Pantomime (community theatre), and building a successful bodywork business on Baker Street. Elizabeth became a board director in the fall of 2013 and immediately threw herself into the successful Member Loans Campaign (October 2013) — she deeply appreciated how extremely welcome she was made to feel as the Board’s newest member. She currently sits on two board committees and has enjoyed learning more about the link between our plates and where and how our food is grown, supported and processed. It is an exciting time to be involved with the Co-op and Elizabeth looks forward to participating actively in the Co-op’s growth in the coming months and years.
Andrew brings 40 years of business and community service experience to his role as board director, including nine years coordinating the Kootenay Boundary Community Services Co-op, six years on the board of Realize Co-op (an executive recruitment and management consulting co-op) and four years on the board (including founding chair) of the Upper Columbia Co-op Council (UCCC). Today, Andrew is the principal consultant of Ridgetop Consulting, providing organizational development services for organizations and individuals participating in the social economy.
Stephan has been a Co-op member since 1991. He is also the founding director of the Slocan Integral Forestry Co-op (SIFCo) and has 25 years’ experience in the non-profit and cooperative sectors.
He is the founder and president of Next Step Integral, a non-profit society working internationally in the field of Ecology-Education-Parenting and community development. He was the Project Manager for the Nelson co-housing development at Six-Mile. Stephan brings his experience as a consultant for community organizations and as the current SIFCo manager to his role as a board director.
Cathy Ann has been the Employee Director on the Board since the fall of 2013. During the day, she is the Customer Service Assistant Manager. She has lived and worked in the Nelson area since 1990 and her first job here was as a cashier at the Kootenay Co-op (then located in the Gerick’s Cycle building). At that time the Co-op was preparing for the move to its current location. During her hiatus from the Co-op, Cathy Ann build the successful Kootenay Coconut Soaps business and became a supplier to the Co-op. In a wonderful twist of fate, she has returned to employment at the Co-op as it prepares for yet another big move! Cathy Ann is pleased and proud to be serving the Co-op both as Employee Director and as part of the staff and looks forward to serving the membership and staff as we move forward with planning all aspects of the new store.
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