2016 Cooperative Issues Forum will Explore How Co-ops Help Workers, Businesses Adapt to New Economy


Declining real wages, reduction in employer provided benefits and labor-saving technology have destabilized the U.S. work force in ways society has yet to address. The 2016 Cooperative Issues Forum will consider the future of work in the new economy and the role of cooperatives in helping workers and businesses adapt. Sponsored by the Ralph K. Morris Foundation and open to all, the forum will be held on May 4 from 1:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the Ballroom of the National Press Club, located at 529 14th Street, NW in Washington, DC.

Vickie Choitz, Associate Director of the Economic Opportunities Program at the Aspen Institute, will keynote the event. Following Choitz’s keynote, a panel will discuss the role of cooperatives in helping workers and businesses adapt to the changing economy.

Choitz provides strategic research and leadership for a number of program initiatives to identify and advance strategies that help low-income Americans gain ground in today’s labor market. Her primary focus is to advance the EOP’s work to improve both the quality of low-wage jobs and career advancement opportunities simultaneously as a key strategy to address deepening economic inequality in America.

Choitz has almost 15 years of experience in national organizations promoting economic security and career advancement opportunities for low-income workers and job seekers. She most recently worked at the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), where she was interim director of the Center for Postsecondary and Economic Success (C-PES) and director of the Alliance for Quality Career Pathways. She has also worked at Jobs for the Future, the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning and FutureWorks. She has a Masters of Public Policy degree from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and baccalaureate degrees in political science and secondary education from Kansas State University.

The Cooperative Issues Forum is hosted by the Cooperative Development Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit foundation headquartered in Washington, DC.  CDF’s mission is to promote community, economic and social development through cooperative enterprises.

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