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Crossroads Co-op Summit Highlights Membership and Engagement


On November 7, nearly 70 cooperators came together to network and share ideas at the 2014 Crossroads Cooperative Summit held at the Indiana Farm Bureau in Indianapolis, Indiana, cohosted by the Indiana Cooperative Development Center and the Illinois Cooperative Development Center.

This one-day summit drew attendees from electric, purchasing, worker, housing, credit union, and agricultural co-ops from across the state of Indiana and Illinois. This year’s theme, “Participate: Own, Use, Serve & Belong,” focused on the importance of an active and engaged membership.  Speakers highlighted the ideas and best practices that have helped them connect to their members. Among the speakers was NCBA CLUSA Board Chair Jerry McGeorge, vice president of corporate affairs at Organic Valley.

Speaking at the summit, John Torres, director of communication and public relations for NCBA CLUSA, commented on the importance of co-op-to-co-op connections. “It is great to see the commonalities co-ops share throughout every sector. It is in those collaborative touch points where NCBA CLUSA helps co-ops connect with each other, establishing a common voice that resonates from Main Street to Capitol Hill.”

The summit hosted an award ceremony for two inductees into the Indiana Cooperative Hall of Fame: Chris Wardrip, CEO of Financial Health FCU, and Ellen Michel, founder and CEO of Ellen Michel Creative Drive.The summit closed with participants reflecting on key take-aways that they could take back to their co-ops, capitalizing on the power of the co-op to co-op connection.

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