Site Announcement!

Your Food Co-op location is...

Annual Meeting Wrap-up

Thank you to all the Member-owners who spent Friday evening celebrating the announcement of our food co-op site! There was such energy and warmth inside City Hall. We shared the 2013-2014 financial report, outreach, site announcement, success stories of co-ops across the country, and next steps. This is such an exciting time for member-owners, our board & volunteers, and the community.  

Not a Member? 

The strength and commitment of our community is apparent in the large and growing number of people who have already taken the step to become member-owners even before we had a permanent location! If you've been waiting to join, NOW is the time! 

The Work Ahead

While securing the site is a huge milestone, there's is still plenty of work to be done! It will not happen without the dedication of our members and success of our capital campaign.  Details and timelines regarding the capital campaign will be coming out over the next few weeks. 

What You Can Do Right Now

Join if you haven't!
- Host a house party! We all know folks who haven't joined yet. Let's get together, share our stories, and encourage others to become part of making Columbus stronger. 
- Purchase a gift membership. 
- Consider a loan to the co-op & attend an upcoming info session to learn more. 
- Volunteer! We're looking for fundraisers, grant writers, and anyone who help at future events. 
- Help us share the co-op story! We welcome any opportunity to speak to groups or organizations about the co-op and our mission. 
-Share this newsletter and/or Facebook posts with friends :-) 

Again, thanks to all the Member-owners who attended the Annual Meeting and to all the volunteers who provided food! 




Our Mission: Columbus Food Co-op will serve and strengthen the community by providing wholesome foods and products while practicing and encouraging sustainability. 

Your Board of Directors
Kevin McCracken, President
Mike Johnston, Treasurer
Christopher Clerc
Dan Fleming
Sarah Grey
David Kadlec
Shirley Trapp

SaraBeth Drybread, Project Manager 


Happy Birthday, Common Ground Co-op!

There's no denying the positive impact food co-ops have on local growers and consumers. This short video celebrates the 40th birthday of Common Ground Food Co-op by highlighting these relationships. Take a look and if you're not a member please consider investing in Columbus Food Co-op to help us succeed as Common Ground has. Thanks!


2014 Board of Directors Election

Below are the three candidates for the 2014 election. Member-owners, please vote at the Annual Meeting on Friday, Nov. 21 at City Hall, 6:00pm. You may also vote electronically and an email had been sent to you. Deadline is Sunday, November 30 at midnight. 
Mail your ballot to:


 Lorraine Low
 c/o Heritage Fund
 PO Box 1547, Columbus, IN 47202 

Thanks to The Heritage Fund for handling the ballots again this year. 

Terry Whitaker


Why did you become a member of the Columbus Co-op and why are you interested in serving on the Board of Directors?

Coops are much more than a shopping place; they bring together a community of like minded individuals, promote local, sustainable food sources and healthy living. I have always tried to be of service when asked by organizations which share my values.

Please share any personal, professional or volunteer affiliations that will help your service on the Board.

I have served on the Visitors Center Board, Arts District Coalition, Library Associates and on and off for 14 years on the Great Lakes Independent Booksellers Association Board. I am the head of the Downtown Columbus Merchants Group.

What specific talents, skills, expertise, and experience do you believe you can share with the Co-op?

Although my retail experience is not related to food, I hope that I can be of help in those areas that are common to most retail operations.


Jan Lucas-Grimm


Why did you become a member of the Columbus Co-op and why are you interested in serving on the Board of Directors?

I believe in the cooperative model, first of all, and especially when it comes to our food. I want to be involved in the choosing of sources and vendors and I love the possibilities fo what a food co-op can provide for a community.

Please share any personal, professional or volunteer affiliations that will help your service on the Board.

I think my affiliation with the Unitarian Universalist community will be a good connection, as well as my network of followers of Tim's and my music. Through Americana Music series as well as our own level of touring, we have access to a wide audience and have a certain level of recognition that could be beneficial ot the co-op.

What specific talents, skills, expertise, and experience do you believe you can share with the Co-op?

I ran a restaurant in chicago for ten years an I am experienced in food selection and preparation.
Also my experiences as an actor and performing musician can be valuable in outreach for the co-op, in promoting it and educating the community about it.

Feel free to share anything else you think would be valuable for the membership to know about you.

I am passionate about good and healthy food.
I am passionate about spreading the word about good and healthy food.
I am at a point in my life where I want to devote myself to a cause and the co-op is my first choice!
It is important to recognize that I do travel a lot, at least 4-6 weeks every year in Europe.

Looking forward to being a part of this awesome new chapter for Columbus!!

Christopher Clerc

I was born and raised in Columbus, where I’ve returned to practice law starting in June 2013.  Roughly half of my law practice focuses on defending people who cannot afford to hire their own attorney, as a public defender for the Circuit Court.  The rest of my practice is extremely varied, and I enjoy having a general practice rather than specializing on any single area.  I play the Tuba in the Columbus Symphony Orchestra.  I’m excited about the prospect of serving on the Co-op board, if I’m chosen.  I thoroughly enjoyed the farmers’ market last summer, and I hope to help establish a year-round store.

Current BOD
Kevin McCracken, President
Mike Johnston, Treasurer
Christopher Clerc
Dan Fleming
Sarah Grey
David Kadlec
Shirley Trapp


November Newsletter -- Site update, Annual Meeting, & Turkeys!

Click HERE to read the November Newsletter. Things are happening, Columbus!


September Newsletter: Exciting News & Happenings

Click HERE to read the September newsletter. 

Has your email changed? Are you not receiving emails? Email us at 


In the Co-op World

Co-ops are not new, but more and more communities are seeing the value in starting up one. Click HERE to read more about a start-up food co-op in Bloomington, Illinois called Green Top Grocery. 


Co-op Board of Directors Election: Candidate Information

Please exercise Principle #2 (Democratic Member Control) and vote for the four open board seats. Ballots will be sent to member-owners on Monday, November 4. You can also vote at the member-owner annual meeting on Thursday, Nov. 21 at City Hall. You many vote for up to four (4) candidates by sending their names to and include your name at the bottom.  The Heritage Fund will be collecting the ballots for us. Candidates were selected and nominated by a Governance Committee and then approved by the Interim Board of Directors. Member-Owners also had the opportunity to self-nominate.  

Click on the name to read more about each candidate.  

Selected by Governance Committee:
John Delap
Dan Fleming
Mike Johnston
Shirley Trapp

Michael London

Deadline to vote is Wednesday, December 4th by midnight.  One member=one vote. Only member-owners can vote. 

Click HERE for the CDS Consulting Co-op Elections Field Guide. 


November Newsletter

Click HERE to read all the latest news! 


September Newsletter: MANY upcoming events!

Click HERE for the September Newsletter. Lots of fun events in the next couple of months! 


Membership Vote Needed -- Amendment to the By-laws

Member-Owners, if you did NOT receive an email with the proposed amendment to the by-laws and board election news, please let us know ASAP. We realize email addresses change and people move, so please make sure we have your updated contact information. 

Call SaraBeth at 812-343-3588 or



Nearly every co-op begins with a small group of dedicated volunteers. Those volunteers comprise a group that is called by various names, depending on the co-op: Steering Committee, Working Board, Interim Board, to name a few. Every volunteer group knows that at some point, there will be a transition to an elected board. There are several ways to complete that task. This is a very common path for start-up food co-ops. 

The Columbus Food Co-op interim board began discussing elections on August 1, 2012. The interim board has continued discussing elections since then, while also soliciting input from Bloomingfoods and from CDS Consulting Co-op. 

On July 25, 2013, the interim board approved a motion to amend the by-laws so that elections for directors would take place each November, beginning in 2013. A message explaining the proposed by-law amendments and the election process went out on August 1. In order to become effective, the proposed amendment must be approved by the membership. 

The interim board chose a transition model that involves adding three elected board seats. Each year, three additional seats would be filled by elected board members, replacing interim directors. This model, suggested by Bloomingfoods and approved by the interim board—minimizes the potential disruption of wholesale turnover (which could be substantially disruptive during the current site selection phase). It includes a hybrid board (interim and elected directors) during the transition. 

In order to achieve this, the interim board proposed changes to the by-laws to accommodate the transition. In the spirit of democratic member control, Columbus Food Co-op member/owners must now vote on the proposed changes, which include authorizing interim directors to participate with elected members to carry out the business of the co-op. 

Please support your Columbus Food Co-op by voting on the proposed changes. Please support your interim board by voting to approve. 


Kevin McCracken

Interim Board President


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