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Victoria Birkbeck

Owner #3435

 

Why did you join the Dill Pickle?

Initially, I joined because I love to cook and I was excited about the co-op’s good produce and locally sourced products. I also wanted to support a cooperatively owned local business. I have lived in the area for about 3 years and have been seeking ways to give back to and become more connected to the local community around me, and I thought the co-op would be a good place to focus those efforts.

How have you participated as an owner?

My partner Heather and I are interested in finding ways to connect owners of the co-op to each other. We started an owner’s table on Wednesday nights, with the idea that it will be a place for owners to get to know each other and discuss the co-op. We hope that fostering this kind of interaction will lead to greater owner involvement and a sense of community within the co-op. Besides that, I have primarily participated as a co-owner by shopping regularly at the co-op.

Why do you wish to serve on DPFC Board of Directors?

Primarily because I really value the co-op as a neighborhood institution and want to help it succeed. I have been seeking a community focused volunteer opportunity for some time, and I think this is a good fit for my interests, skills, and availability. Also, as stated above, I am interested in increasing owner engagement. I feel strongly about the importance of responsibly run, economically equitable organizations and would like to participate in ensuring the co-op fulfills its mission and adheres to its principles.

What perspectives, skills, experiences, or affiliations do you hope to bring to board leadership?

I’m a passionate home cook, and have spent a lot of time reading about environmental, food, and social justice issues. I am interested in the way the co-op can serve the needs of the community by making high quality local and organic foods accessible, practicing environmentally sustainable policies, and maintaining a cooperative business structure. I currently work as a flight attendant, which means I have a flexible schedule with a lot of downtime for reading and studying reports and documents. I am also a union member and regularly vote and provide feedback on our labor contract and workplace policies. Finally, I am a generally detail oriented and studious person who likes to work on collaborative projects.

how might the co-op open its doors wider to prospective new owners and community members?

I think the co-op could increase its volunteer opportunities and community events to draw in a wider array of customers. We could also more widely publicize the values and benefits of membership and focus on being visible at neighborhood events. I think increased owner engagement would also lead to more word-of-mouth recruiting to ownership.


Anything else you’d like to share?

I am enthusiastic about the possibility of joining the Board of Directors. I feel I have a lot to learn, but a good foundation for contributing positively to the co-op. I am excited about its future and to help it to succeed both financially and in fulfilling its mission and principles. I feel strongly that the co-op is an important part of the neighborhood business community and am excited for it to continue to grow. Whether or not I am elected to the board, I look forward to remaining engaged as an owner and using my time and abilities to make it a better place.