Board of Directors

2015 Election


Bylaws, Amended April 25, 2011

Policy Register, Adopted July 24, 2014

Meeting Minutes

The Board of Directors is a group of nine to seventeen member-owners, responsible for overseeing Co-op operations and making policy decisions. Two seats are reserved for worker-owners, elected by their fellow worker-owners, who serve the interests of the entire membership. This group has legal responsibility to ensure the Co-op's well-being. The Board supervises the General Manager(s) of the store. At this time, we have a three person General Management Team which fulfills this role and is responsible for carrying out Board policies, including issues relating to staff.

The Board represents and acts for the Co-op’s member-owners, whose votes imply trust that the Board is representing their interests.

Board members are elected to three year terms and approximately one-third of the Board is up for election each year during a period that includes the Annual Meeting. Board members receive a $25 per month store credit ($35 for officers) for their service. The Board meets at least monthly, generally on the fourth Thursday, 6:30-8:30pm, with a socializing time with snacks from 6-6:30pm. Meetings are open to Co-op member-owners, with specific time reserved for member-owner comments. Committee meetings happen throughout the month; see details here.

Board meeting agendas are posted on the Co-op bulletin board and website one week prior to each scheduled meeting. Approved minutes of Board meetings are available on the website the week following the subsequent monthly meeting.

Special meetings may be called as necessary by the Board, or by petition submitted by at least 10% of Co-op member-owners. At this time, our Co-op has about 3600 member-owners.

The Board may be contacted here or by leaving mail with the Co-op Floor Manager on duty during business hours (7:30am-8pm) to be delivered to individual directors.

Current Board Members:

Nick Bombardier

Purchasing Policy Committee

2014 - 2017

Ron Braybrook
Long Range Planning & Bylaws committees
2013 - 2015

Born and raised in the British Isles, Ron married and moved to the U.S. in 1974, where he became a U.S. citizen. He lived and taught in New Jersey for 29 years. During that time, he served on the Board of the local public library and enjoyed being a member and supporter of Genesis Farm in Blairstown, NJ.  Since retiring 7 years ago, he and his wife Diane have lived in Belfast.He is vice-president of the Maine Celtic Celebration, where his main responsibilities are vendor coordination and logistics. He volunteers in the summer at the Belfast Chamber of Commerce. He enjoys gardening, food and cooking, and haa a strong interest in local, sustainable and organic food.

Cindy Canavan
Membership Committee
Stockton Springs

2013 - 2016

Betsy Garrold
Board Development Committee, representative to Cooperative Maine
2012 - 2017

Betsy first became a Belfast Co-op member when she returned home to Searsport after college in 1977. Later, while living in the Marshall Islands, she combined her midwifery skills with nutritional and gardening outreach work to address severe maternal and childhood malnutrition issues. In Cleveland for 10 years, teaching at Case Western Reserve University, she was a member of the Cleveland Food Co-op. She and her son returned to Maine in 1999 to live and work on a 50 acre once-and-future farm in Knox.  Since then she has been active on several nonprofit boards.  She served for three years as the state party co-chair for the Maine Green Independent Party, currently serves on the board of Food for Maine's Future, is a member of MOFGA's El Salvador Sistering Committee, and is a worker-owner at Fedco Seeds.

Chris Groden
Purchasing Policy Committee
2012 - 2015

Doug Johnson
Staff Representative
Membership Committee
2013 - 2016

Rocketed to Earth as an infant, Doug was reared by loving parents in a small town in rural Pennsylvania. From an early age he showed a great passion for cooperation. "That boy sure does know how to cooperate!" was often overheard when Doug was among playmates. After graduating from a small liberal arts college in Northeast Florida, he and his wife moved to the burgeoning metropolis of Pittsburgh, PA. There Doug found employment at the East End Food Co-op, and over his ten year tenure rose through the ranks to become the store's Sustainability Coordinator, part of the in-house graphic design team, and served as a member of the Board of Directors. In 2011 he moved his family to Maine to seek out a simpler life and to try his hand at farming, both of which are not working out so well.

Debbi Lasky
Vice President
Board Development, Bylaws, Management Oversight, Membership committees

1991 - 2016

Debbi was born in the Big Apple, started migrating north in 1966, and finally found home in Waldo County in 1971. An organizer of the first pre-order co-ops in the early '70's she is a strong believer in cooperatives and community. After working for many years raising two children and as an Obstetrical nurse, Debbi now feeds her passion for rural life with vegetable and flower gardens, goats and other assorted beasts, and maintaining her home and land. She is also a member of the Montville Historical Sociery and is active in her 'adopted' community. Debbi is also passionate about alternatives to consumer mentality, two party politics and many aspects of world politics.

Jean Lenderking

Board Development, Long Range Planning committees
2013 - 2015

Jean moved to Belfast about 10 years ago from the D.C. area and joined the Co-op shortly thereafter. Born in a small farming community in Western PA, Jean moved to D.C. after finishing school. She retired as the Labor Relations Program Manager for the U.S. Department of Transportation, where she led federal sector efforts in strategic labor/employee relations. She worked with managers and unions on win-win negotiations focusing on shared interests. Recent consulting and journal publications address strategic and tactical aspects of constructive change management. Jean serves on the advisory council of the Camden Conference, fostering informed discourse on world affairs. She has a BS degree in Business Administration, Personnel and Industrial Relations from American University, and is certified in Nonprofit Management and as a mediator.

Alessandra Martinelli
Bylaws Committee
2014 - 2017

Alessandra breathes and dreams in midcoast Maine with her family. She was born in Delaware and lived all over the country before attending UMaine Orono, where she began pursuing an interdisciplinary major focused on dance, peace studies and permaculture. Before long, farming and a land-based lifestyle pulled her away from conventional education and inspired her to continue her education through hands-on, experience-based living. After interning on an organic farm, she met her husband and they settled down to build a home and family. She's since studied with several herbalists and become a trained birth doula. Alessandra now focuses her energy on her family, and is thrilled to actively participate in the healthcare and education of her three young children.

Bindy Pendleton
Board Development, Management Oversight committees

2002 - 2017

Bindy was born and raised in Belfast, then lived 'away' for many years during which she served as a worker-member at Hungry Chuck's Co-op in Waterville and at Puget Consumers Co-op in Seattle. Past Board experience includes 10 years serving on the Belfast Area Child Care Services Board. She currently helps plan and oversee the Annual Board Retreat and Annual Meeting as well as serving on committees. Professionally, she has been a Family Nurse Practitioner and Nurse Midwife, is semi-retired and presently teaches yoga and is working on developing Eastside Herbs & Gardens at her home in East Belfast. She is married and has two daughters. Passions include the great outdoors, gardening, hiking, food & herbs fresh from the garden, and dancing.

Kip Penney
Bylaws, Finance, Public Interaction committees
2000 - 2016

Kip has spent 35 years as a co-op activist, manager, worker, board member and co-owner. He began his cooperative life in 1974 with a pre-order co-op, followed by involvement in retail and wholesale cooperatives. Currently, he is a worker-member at Fedco Seeds Co-op and has been a Belfast Co-op board member since 2000. In the past, Kip served on Management Oversight, Purchasing Policy, and Annual Meeting Committees. In addition to his current role as a division coordinator for Fedco Bulbs, he is also a warehouse seed-pulling coordinator and telephone facilitator at Fedco. He lives in Knox, in Oddalawatalotta County.

Phil Prince
Building and Grounds, Elections and Nomimations, Long Range Planning committees

2009 - 2016

Phil arrived in Waldo County in 1975, and participated in the Friends Food Co-op, has been a Belfast Co-op member since 1978, staff member since 2005, and is presently the acting Facility Coordinator. Phil previously worked at the Waldo Independent, Ace Construction Company, Belfast Area Children's Center, and The Playhouse Theater in Belfast. Phil likens being on the Board to a tug boat which nudges, alters, directs, protects, and maintains the proper direction of the Co-op.

Jerry Savitz
Finance, Management Oversight, Purchasing Policy committees
1991 - 2017

Jerry has lived in Northport since 1953. He has owned and operated Darby's Restaurant in Belfast for the past 26 years and has also been an advocate for the Co-op since the 1970's. He has been a scallop and lobster fisherman and the early Co-op store was one of his best customers. Maintaining the Co-op's reputation for being trustworthy is a major goal for Jerry.

Janis Stone
Building and Grounds, Membership committees
2012 - 2015

Janis was born and raised in Orange, MA. After graduating from Keene State College, she taught physical education and art in public schools. While teaching and living in Orange, she became a working member of a small food co-operative. Past board and community service experiences include three years as the chairperson of the Orange Revitalization Partnership, member of the Orange Town Hall Restoration Committee and she now serves on the Belfast Area Habitat for Humanity Selection Committee. In 2004, she and Jim O’Connor moved to Belfast where they've owned a home since 1998. Then they purchased and restored one of the oldest houses in Belfast at 179 Northport Ave., for the relocation of “Interiors by Janis Stone”, an interior decorating and service business Janis established in 1992. Between the two of them, Janis and Jim have four daughters. Gardening, hiking, skiing, boating and painting are among her many interests.

Zafra Whitcomb
Board Development, Finance committees
2007 - 2016

Zafra is the Finance and Information Systems Manager for the Co-op, and the former Business and Human Rights Program Coordinator for Amnesty International USA. He spent ten years working in performing art management and production with theater and dance companies in New York City and regional theaters in New York, Washington, DC, New Hampshire and Maine. He is happy to be back in Montville, raising his son and brewing beer on the road where he grew up.