IMPACT 2019 session previews: “Designing the Cooperative Policy Agenda” and “Co-op Policies for Stronger Communities”


With 65,000 cooperative establishments and a total membership of more than 115 million people, co-ops are a powerful part of the U.S. economy. And while they help build sustainable, stable communities, policies at the national, state and local level can hinder their growth and development in significant ways.

That’s why this year, in partnership with the Cooperative Development Foundation and local stakeholders, we’re hosting a series of regional Cooperative Policy Roundtables nationwide. And it’s why, at the 2019 Co-op IMPACT Conference, we’re carving out time for critical policy conversations.

Register now to be part of our opening plenary session, “Designing the Cooperative Policy Agenda,” featuring an introduction by the Urban Institute on the best ideas from local leaders, policymakers and cooperative development experts who attended this year’s roundtables.

This session will be an interactive discussion of the most significant strategic national, state and local policies, financing mechanisms and other systems and structures that currently support or impede cooperative development. Attendees will break into groups to identify specific policy initiatives around Access to Capital, Technical Assistance and Education. Your ideas will contribute to the first effort to establish the national policy strategy co-ops need to thrive.

On Thursday, October 3, we’ll kick off the second day of our conference with “Co-op Policies for Stronger Communities: A State and Local Lens,” moderated by Courtney Berner, executive director of the University of Wisconsin Center for Cooperatives; and featuring Anita Bonds, at-large councilmember of the Council of the District of Columbia and other policymakers. This panel will highlight policies that empower people to use cooperatives to have a greater stake in the places they live, businesses where they work or services they use.

We hope you’ll be a part of this year’s policy conversations—and the rest of our best-in-class programming—from October 2-4 at the Sheraton Pentagon City in Arlington, Virginia. We just extended early-bird pricing, so be sure to register by August 14 to save $200 on registration.



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