Mary Harris

Why are you interested in serving on the board of Bloomington Cooperative Services (BCS)?
"I believe in the values, principes, and benefits of having a community co-op. I am interested in serving on the Board as a means to be involved in my community, contribute my knowledge and experience and learn what I don't know in order to be a better co-op member and supporter."

What experience or involvement have you had with Bloomingfoods or other cooperatives?
"I have been shopping at Bloomingfoods for many years and have been an owner-member for at least half that time. I am a huge supporter of co-ops and their mission and I not only want to see Bloomingfoods succeed but thrive within our community."
What has been your experience working cooperatively with small groups of people?
"I am involved in several committees in HR at Indiana University. I've been an avid rock climber which relies on trust and communication and I've volunteered for many organizations over the years, such as Big Brothers, Big Sisters; Friends of Muir Valley, and the Boys & Girls Club."
Please share any professional, volunteer, or life experience you have had that will provide insight when serving on the BCS Board of Directors. Include knowledge, skills, formal training, and education that will contribute to the mission of our co-op.
"I have over a decade of experience working in Human Resources with a focus in policy management and oversight, employee orientation and training, and special projects. I hold a SHRM-CP credential with the Society of Human Resources Management and am a degree seeking student in Labor Studies at IU."

How do your values and lifestyle align with the values and mission of the co-op?

"My values and lifestyle align closely with that of the co-op. I support local businesses and am passionate about environmentalism and the humane treatment of animals (and people). I believe in equality and equal opportunities for all, including access to education, jobs, healthy food, and a safe and inhabitable environment."
Given the stated Ends of BCS, what do you see as the primary role of BCS in the community?
"Bloomingfoods' primary role in the community is to provide healthy and locally sourced food (when possible) with a focus on affordability and sustainability, that meets the needs of the local community in a transparent and democratic way for both employees and consumers."
What are opportunities and challenges you see for BCS in the future expression of these Ends?
"Consumers have many options when it comes to Bloomington's food sales market. The challenge for BCS is to remain sustainable and profitable. Because Bloomingfoods is the only local co-op we have a niche that others cannot fulfill. There is also the challenge of finding a new home for the East-side location."
Please share any other brief statement that you feel is important regarding your potential service as a member of our board.
"To add to my experience, for 10 years my job was to orientate all new Board members, coordinate and attend monthly Board meetings, and maintain Board minutes for a local non-profit. My top 5 Clifton Strengths are futuristic, restorative, ideation, adaptability, and relator."
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