Meet your 2020 Nominees for Regional Representative of the USFWC.

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It's election time again! USFWC voting members, now is the time to exercise your member right and responsibility to elect the next round of regional representatives to the USFWC board.

Voting member classes include: Worker Cooperative, Democratic Workplace, Cooperative Developer, and Federation Partners. More about all member classes available here: usworker.coop/join/membership-application

Learn more about the election at: https://www.usworker.coop/board-of-directors-nominations

Election Timeline

Voting will open Wednesday, October 1st, and will close Saturday, October 31st, 2020. Your workplace should have received a voting code by email. If you haven't received the code, please let us know asap, email membership@usworker.coop.

Meet your 2020 Board Candidates

Candidate Statements

North

Molly Shea

Esther West

South

Anna Boyer

East

McKenzie Jones

Araceli Dominguez

West

Ricardo Nuñez

Northern Region Candidates

Representing Illinois; Indiana; Iowa; Kansas; Michigan; Minnesota; Missouri; Nebraska; North Dakota; South Dakota; Ohio; Wisconsin.

Molly Shea

Molly Shea

Workplace: Pattycake Bakery

New board candidate

Member Type: Worker Cooperative | Cooperativa de Trabajadorxs

I believe I can contribute years of experience within a successful worker owned cooperative, combined with experience and passion for organizing to help build the world we want to see. My personal, and professional, commitment to moving us towards equity drives most of the choices in my life. I'd love to support cooperatives on a national level, while also learning and engaging with new ways to create change.
molly (she/her/hers), a white queer femme, has been a co-owner of Pattycake Bakery, located in central ohio, for 5 years. molly dedicates her energy towards building and connecting with community, in a way that fosters social change. In organizing, she has participated in the anti-mountaintop removal movement, through supporting and engaging in Appalachian organizing and popular education. More recently, she’s been involved in anti-racist organizing and anti-sexual assault work within the Columbus, Ohio community. She grew up in rural central Ohio and has since settled into Columbus, where she tries to find a balance between work, play, and social change-- ideally seeing and creating alignment between these ‘different’ aspects of life.

 

Esther Julia West

Workplace: MadWorC (Boardmember/member); work at UW Center for Cooperatives

New board candidate

Member Type: Federation Partner |  Asociado de la Federación

Particularly in today’s world, we need strong grassroots movements to support our vibrant communities. Together, we can create the world we want for us and our communities. In this light, it would be an incredible opportunity to serve worker-owners of the Northern USFWC Region as a USFWC Board Member. Here is what I bring:

  • Broad Worker-Owner Experiences: Through first-hand experience as a worker-owner while at Equal Exchange, having collaborated with many worker co-ops across the U.S., and being raised by worker co-operators, I understand worker co-ops from various perspectives.
  • Work & Wellbeing: Worker co-ops are tools that still require the thoughtful working towards racial, gender, and economic justice in our workplaces. I much appreciate that the USFWC incorporates racial and gender justice into its messaging and leadership. I want to support our workplaces in cultivating jobs that are good for all our health and livelihoods, and to me, these are critical elements. Amplifying our strengths as co-ops can also be of support in meeting these goals. I would reach out to my region, as well as community-rooted groups not yet active in worker co-ops, for ideas to better grow workplaces that meet our needs.
  • Listen & Communicate Our Work & Voices: I would clearly communicate our region’s voices to the table, and showcase all our region brings. I try to stay up-to-date on co-op examples through daily online activity, and one of my research areas is new co-op development (see @new.coop.love on Instagram). Prior to votes or proposals, I could use the USFWC Slack or e-mail to gather feedback through quick surveys.
  • Accessing National Resources: The USFWC is a way for us all to have power together and to be stronger together at a national scale. I wish to ensure that the existing USFWC benefits like healthcare are accessible to those in my region. I would be prepared with what we need to do to connect the dots in accessibility of member benefits, such as researching state-level health care options.
Esther West brings a long-time passion for worker co-ops and community development in her role as Cooperative Development Specialist at the University of Wisconsin Center for Cooperatives. Bringing insights from various urban and rural planning experiences prior to joining the Center, Esther researches ecosystems that support the creation of new co-ops, Latinx cooperatives, and creates interactive online co-op tools. Bringing five years of first-hand worker ownership experience from Equal Exchange, Esther works with home care cooperatives, childcare co-ops, and businesses becoming employee-owned. Additionally, she has been Co-Facilitator for the Eastern Coordinating Committee for the Eastern Conference for Workplace Democracy, a Trainer with Green Worker Co-ops in the Bronx, Equal Exchange’s Education Committee Co-Chair, and worked on issues related to immigration, racial equity, and climate change. She obtained a Masters of Urban Planning, Design and Development, a Masters of Environmental Studies, and a GIS Masters Certificate from Cleveland State University. She also holds a Bachelor’s in Theology with minors in Political Science and History from Xavier University. Esther currently is a Board member of MadWorC, is a proud Xicanx, and in her free time illustrates various cooperative projects and plays Cole Porter on the piano.

Southern Region Candidates

Representing Alabama; Arkansas; Florida, Georgia; Louisiana; Kentucky; Mississippi; North Carolina; Oklahoma; South Carolina; Tennessee; Texas; Virginia; Puerto Rico; U.S. Virgin Islands.

Anna Boyer

Workplace: C4Tech & Design

Incumbent board member

Member Type: Worker Cooperative | Cooperativa de Trabajadorxs

At a time when worker rights and employee ownership are receiving increased attention from an outraged world, it's more important than ever that the voices of workers lead this movement. With many allied organizations working to achieve economic justice, the USFWC is unique in its mission - we are member-led, member-funded, and accountable to our members. The USFWC is experiencing growth and finding new opportunities and resources, and I want to help guide our work toward our vision of building a resilient cooperative movement while staying accountable to our mission. I am committed to being an advocate for workplace democracy and a representative voice of our members.

I have been proud to serve on the USFWC board since 2012, and if reelected, this will be my last term. I have been a worker-owner at C4 Tech & Design, an IT cooperative in New Orleans, since 2008. This job was my introduction to worker ownership. My connection to this movement through work and the USFWC makes me excited to go to work every day. I've come to appreciate worker cooperatives as a critical part of a larger economic justice movement, and I plan to work with cooperatives for the rest of my life.

Eastern Region Candidates

Representing Connecticut; Delaware; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; New Hampshire; New Jersey; New York; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; Vermont; Washington D.C.; West Virginia.

McKenzie Jones

Workplace: CoLab Cooperative

New board candidate

Member Type: Worker Cooperative | Cooperativa de Trabajadorxs

I am deeply committed to the cooperative movement because I believe that worker ownership is an important and achievable tactic for dismantling the oppression of laborers and employees by an owning class. My vision of a just and sustainable future is one of economic justice and empowerment for workers, democratic workplaces that are instilled with diversity and equality, and a high quality of life for all people and their families and communities. I have a history of serving and working in cooperatives, including as the president of a biodiesel cooperative, as a co-founder of a housing cooperative in which I still reside, and as a worker with CoLab Cooperative. I recently went through a cooperative developer training with the Center for Family Life in Brooklyn, NY and am excited to continue supporting others who are invested in worker ownership. I get a lot of joy out of collaborating and networking with other people invested in the movement, love traveling to and attending conferences and other professional development opportunities, and feel that I can be a unique voice representing cooperatives!

I am an off-grid farmer turned social scientist bringing a long-term dedication to service and equity in my work. I received a BS in Human Development and Family Studies from The Pennsylvania State University and an MS in Design and Environmental Analysis from Cornell University. I have been a strong advocate for affordable housing while volunteering on the City of Ithaca Planning and Development Board for the past several years. I enjoy riding my homemade bike, going on road trips with my kids, and playing in my band, Strange Heavy.

 

Araceli Dominguez

Workplace: Brightly Port Richmond

New board candidate

Member Type: Worker Cooperative | Cooperativa de Trabajadorxs

Information to come.

My name is Araceli Dominguez, I am from the State of Mexico and I migrated to New York at the age of 23, in search of opportunities. I love my origins, I arrived with many aspirations and dreams, some already realized, and others to fulfill, I studied nursing at the Faculty of Higher Studies Zaragoza UNAM, Mexico and I spent 5 years working in the carpentry industry. I have been in the cleaning industry for more than 20 years, I have 2 teenage daughters and my life partner is present with me. I am very proud of the family that I have formed, we have created not the best or the perfect family, but my family is unique and that is important to me. In addition to that, I have my other family that I formed in the Brightly Port Richmond cooperative world in 2016 and that has continued to grow day by day with good things, such as families, we support and strengthen each other. I am part of the finance committee, I am a founding member of my cooperative. I am part of the board of directors of Cooportunity, the first cleaning cooperative franchise in New York, we are also founding members of the Up & Go cooperative, a digital cooperative platform where cleaning service reservations are made online. I am very proud of what we have achieved in the cooperative family because it is very true without it, all your support and help would not be here. It has made me grow and advance and create beyond my limits. I hope to continue growing in this movement and contribute as much as I  can to offer to the cooperative world and beyond.

Western Region Candidates

Representing Alaska; Arizona; California; Colorado; Hawaii; Idaho; Montana; Nevada; New Mexico; Oregon; Utah; Washington; Wyoming; American Samoa; Guam; Northern Mariana Islands.


 

Ricardo Nuñez

Workplace: Sustainable Economies Law Center

Incumbent board member

Member Type: Democratic Workplace | Lugar de trabajo Democrático

I am deeply committed to the cooperative movement because I believe that worker ownership is an important and achievable tactic for dismantling the oppression of laborers and employees by an owning class. My vision of a just and sustainable future is one of economic justice and empowerment for workers, democratic workplaces that are instilled with diversity and equality, and a high quality of life for all people and their families and communities. I have a history of serving and working in cooperatives, including as the president of a biodiesel cooperative, as a co-founder of a housing cooperative in which I still reside, and as a worker with CoLab Cooperative. I recently went through a cooperative developer training with the Center for Family Life in Brooklyn, NY and am excited to continue supporting others who are invested in worker ownership. I get a lot of joy out of collaborating and networking with other people invested in the movement, love traveling to and attending conferences and other professional development opportunities, and feel that I can be a unique voice representing cooperatives!

 

I'm a worker cooperative ecosystem development specialist supporting cultural practices, policies, organizations, and systemic changes that allow communities to build beyond the interlocking systems of imperialist white supremacist capitalist patriarchy. I'm currently the Director of Economic Democracy at the Sustainable Economies Law Center where I have co-coordinated educational programs, legal services, policy advocacy, and regional and national ecosystem development to restore human labor to right relationship with people and the planet for over 7 years. I've also served on the USFWC board for over 4 years and as USFWC Board President for 2 years.