Coaching, Connections and Capital to build Community Wealth.
Cooperation Richmond Project Officer
Cooperation Richmond is seeking a 0.8 FTE (32 hours per week) Project Officer to provide coaching, connections, and capital for Spanish-speaking community members forming cooperatives in Richmond, CA.
Working-class communities of color in Richmond have long lived on the frontlines of economic and environmental injustice. These two crises require transformation of the economy. We need solutions that build community wealth. Our vision is a Richmond that is powered by local worker and community-owned and operated businesses. The people once excluded from the economy are now empowered to build a socially just and ecologically sustainable economy.
About Cooperation Richmond
Cooperation Richmond is a 501c3 non-profit one-stop-shop for the education, training, mentorship, and capital support required to create, convert, and continue to develop successful cooperative enterprises in Richmond. Cooperation Richmond builds community-controlled wealth through worker-owned and community-owned cooperative businesses and enterprises by and for low-income communities and communities of color in Richmond whose wealth has been extracted. We encourage, support, and facilitate the launch and successful operation of diverse cooperative enterprises in Richmond operated by local residents, especially those of us coming from legacies of systemic marginalization and wealth extraction. Our approach to working with cooperative projects is ‘high touch.’ We invest high levels of capacity to provide cooperatives with the greatest chance for success. To do this, we must have partnerships with the projects based on trust, understanding and the mutual exchange of knowledge and skills between the Cooperation Richmond and the projects we serve.
The Project Officer will play an instrumental role in fostering the development of a local cooperative economy, particularly with Spanish-speaking community members. In this upcoming year, the main areas of work include: 1) Supporting current and potential projects through assessment, coaching, assistance with capital 2) Engaging community members to form and support Worker-Owned Cooperatives, and 3) Strengthening the capacity of Cooperation Richmond to support the development of Worker-Owned Cooperatives.
The position is based in Richmond, CA, and reports to Cooperation Richmond’s Steering Committee, comprised of individuals from Urban Tilth, Rich City Rides, Asian Pacific Environmental Network and Movement Generation.
1. Support for current and potential projects
a. Build relationships with selected cooperative projects to better understand their support needs and to assess their readiness for lending and technical assistance
b. Handle day-to-day coordination with cooperative projects, secure monthly updates on their financial health, and partner with them to ensure their ongoing success.
c. Partner with worker-owners around identified areas of support, including researching options, implementing systems, and providing training to worker-owners
d. Support strong governance and decision-making processes
e. Ensure cooperative has appropriate administrative and legal documents.
f. Arrange and manage contracts for coaching and technical support services to cooperatives
g. Map and establish connections with technical experts in the region
h. Work with cooperatives that seek capital, including providing technical assistance, training on basic financial/business literacy, and helping with preparation of loan applications and accompanying financial materials
i. Manage loans and loan applications processes
j. Take the lead in working with Projects and Steering Committee to develop and test loan procedures (e.g. developing criteria for lending, loan applications, and processes for evaluating loan requests)
k. Completing loan and project reporting to Steering Committee, Board, National Financial Cooperative and Funders
2. Strengthen the capacity of Cooperation Richmond to support the development of Worker Owned Cooperatives
a. Participate in the Peer Network and the Financial Cooperative
b. Participate in 4-7 day annual Peer Network training in New York.
c. Work with local government, organizations and other agencies to assess and share business development opportunities
d. Assist with outreach for Cooperation Richmond
e. Act as a spokesperson for Cooperation Richmond
f. Submit monthly reports for Community, Steering Committee, Board and Funders on Project activities and developments
g. Participate in weekly Steering Committee meetings and strategic planning retreats
Qualifications: The successful candidate for this position will be:
– Familiar and have a demonstrated commitment to Richmond’s working class communities of color
– Proficient in Spanish
– Passionate about both social justice organizing and non-extractive finance
– Excited about building alternatives that will transition us to a just economy and comfortable with the uncertainty, learnings, and changes associated with building something new
– Experienced in writing business plans, including work on financial documents (e.g., projections, budgets, capital plans), and analyzing business opportunities
– Reliable with impeccable follow-through
– Both detail-oriented and able to keep an eye on the bigger picture
– Proactive and have the ability to create new structures, programs, and initiatives
– A relationship-builder with strong interpersonal skills
– Computer savvy
– Experienced in coalition work and coordinating/drawing on the resources of people from multiple organizations
– A clear, and coherent communicator in both written and oral forms
– Personally well-organized and able to create and maintain appropriate online and physical files and communications systems
– Experience with running a business or cooperative, writing business plans, marketing, outreach, or lending
– Compensation based on experience
How to Apply
– Applications are due electronically to firstname.lastname@example.org and must include:
– Resume including chronological employment history
– Cover letter describing interest in the position, qualifications, salary history, and expectations
– Three references
Incomplete applications will not be accepted.
Cooperation Richmond is an equal opportunity employer. Richmond residents, women, people of African heritage, people of color, queer, and gender non-conforming people strongly encouraged to apply.
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