Key Volunteers, Staff & Consultants
Marcia Buhler, Capital Campaign Chair, firstname.lastname@example.org
Marcia served on the Wild Root Market Board from 2012 to 2015. She is a former small business owner and corporate training and marketing professional who most recently held various management positions in the Marketing and Training departments at Northwestern Mutual in Milwaukee where she also served as a certified coach for new field representatives. Marcia earned her B.A. and M.A. degrees in communication from Marquette University. With a passion for healthy eating and cooking, Marcia became involved with Wild Root Market to strengthen our local agricultural community and to increase access to fresh, local and organic foods for everybody in Racine.
Bill Gessner, CDS Consulting Co-op, cdsconsulting.coop/consultants/bill-gessner
Bill is the lead consultant with CDS Consulting Co-op, with over 25 years of experience assisting over 250 co-op start-up and expansion projects. His primary focus is guiding food co-ops through the planning and implementation of expansion, relocation, and new store projects. Bill has developed a systematic approach to co-op development that includes feasibility assessments, financial planning, timeline management, and capitalization development, helping countless co-ops reach their goals. In May 2012, he was inducted into the Cooperative Development Foundation (CDF) Cooperative Hall of Fame.
Nicole Klimek, CDS Consulting Co-op, cdsconsulting.coop/consultants/nicole-klimek
Nicole specializes in food co-op store design in her work with CDS Consulting Co-op. She is consulting with Wild Root Market on store planning and design. With 10 years of experience in co-op development, Nicole has assisted over 70 food co-ops with store planning to incorporate green practices and design, LEED certification and efficient store operations. She is interested in how communities are created through good design, and sees food co-ops as a big part of what makes a place livable.
Joel Kopischke, CDS Consulting Co-op, cdsconsulting.coop/consultants/joel-kopischke
Joel has over 20 years of experience in process improvement and leadership consulting. He is consulting with Wild Root Market for board leadership development. Joel is an expert on Policy Governance and will facilitate Wild Root Market’s transition to this proven model of board leadership. Joel’s been involved with co-ops for over 15 years, serving on the board at Outpost Natural Foods in Milwaukee for nine years, including five as president.
Jacqueline Hannah, Assistant Director, Food Co-op Initiative, www.fci.coop
Jacqueline joined Food Co-op Initiative in March of 2015 to fulfill her passion for new food co-op development. Before joining FCI, Jacqueline spent over 25 years in retail management for independent local businesses. She served as the general manager of Common Ground Food Co-op in Urbana, Illinois for 9 years. During her time with Common Ground Food Co-op, Jacqueline led the co-op through two expansions and the founding of their Food For All economic access program, while being the fastest growing retail food co-op in the nation from 2008-2013.
In 2010 Jacqueline was named one of the “40 Under 40” business people of excellence by Central Illinois Business Magazine. She was awarded the Innovation Award for Economic Development Impact in 2011 for her work with Common Ground Food Co-op Cooperative and received CEO of the Year award from the Illinois Cooperative Council in 2014.
Katie Novak, Green Top Grocery, www.greentopgrocery.com
Katie’s interest in local food stems from years living in Colorado when her sister and brother-in-law recruited her to assist them in opening a non-profit restaurant called SAME (So All May Eat) Café where customers are provided a healthy, organic meal regardless of their ability to pay. Katie continues to hold an “advisory” Board position with SAME Café and served as the Outreach Coordinator for Green Top grocery from April 2013 to July 2017. Katie grew Ownership (with the help of an army) from just over 100 Owners in April 2013 to over 1,600 when she left Green Top to start her own co-op consulting business. She chaired Green Top’s Owner Loan Campaign which raised over $1,450,000 in loans, a national record! She is active in the Bloomington-Normal, IL community, served on the board of the local YMCA and serves on the board of Homes of Hope, a local non-profit that provides quality housing to adults with developmental disabilities. She’s a native of Central Illinois and is excited to be part of the cooperative movement.
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