Join our board! (updated)
The Data Commons Cooperative  is looking for people to serve on its Board of Directors. The co-op was founded in July 2012 to improve information flow in the cooperative/solidarity/new economy. If you like to push the edge of what can be done with co-ops, and think the infrastructure of the ethical economy could do with some love - we want you! Serving on the co-op board is an excellent way to make sure the voice of your community is heard clearly, and to guide the co-op in productive directions.
Directors are nominated and elected by co-op members. Existing members of the co-op are generally umbrella organizations or projects that represent a region, sector, or movement (and are listed in this call). Each member may make two nominations. The current board encourages members to consider using one of their nominations to sponsor motivated individuals active in their community to step forward. The board stands ready to help with any match-making needed, and encourages passionate individuals to respond to this call without necessarily having a confirmed sponsoring member.
People everywhere have been organizing a more ethical economy, but they work in relative isolation, fragmented by geography, sector, and even organizational form.
Many communities gather information about a small piece of these efforts. In every situation, there is another community for which that information overlaps. In every case there is an opportunity to share that will strengthen all the communities participating. But that requires effort, it requires trust, and it requires infrastructure. It requires, in short, a co-op!
The Data Commons Co-op is a cooperative of organizations that are figuring out how their disparate communities can work together, both technically and culturally, to benefit from their overlap without blunting their difference.
Your basic duty is a 3-hour commitment per month. One hour of that is a regular board meeting (by phone). The remainder is reading and and responding to board business (by email).
There are various roles that go beyond that baseline. These are strictly voluntary, and currently filled by the 5 current board members (the role of treasurer is held in interim). Those roles include:
- Officer roles - treasurer, secretary, president
- Membership committee - read member applications, make recommendations
- Data trust - check out incoming data, make recommendations
- Operations team - work with the people coordinating the day-to-day activity of co-op
- Tech team - work with the people who move the bits around
A variety of term durations are possible, from 1 to 3 years.
The key formal requirement is that you must represent the interests of at least one of our existing members. Directors are nominated and elected by the co-op members. Nominees need to be "employed by or connected with or representing" a member organization . Check the list of member organizations included towards the end of this call. If your interests overlap with one or more members, they may well be interested in nominating you as part of their board representation (each member can nominate up to two board members). We'd be happy to help with any match-making needed. If you belong to a group that isn't yet a member but you think it should be, let us know so that we can reach out, or you can direct the group to our member information packet .
A general qualification is having an interest in the development of infrastructure for sharing data in and about the ethical economy. You just won't have any fun in the co-op otherwise.
If you represent a member of the co-op and would like to nominate a candidate for the board, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line "board nomination" giving the candidate's name and contact information. Expect an acknowledgment within 3 working days. From our bylaws, the latest possible moment to make a nomination is:
Wednesday May 15th 2013
If you are an individual who'd like to run for the board, please send an email to email@example.com with the subject line "getting on board", giving:
A biography (in any format you like)
A brief description of your relationship (by employment or interest) to one or more of the co-op members listed here: http://datacommons.find.coop/participants
Please do so by:
Wednesday May 1st 2013
Expect an acknowledgment within 3 working days. Voting will take place at the Annual General Meeting, scheduled for:
Friday June 14th 2013
3:00-5:00 PM Eastern DST
(2:00-4:00 Central;1:00-3:00 Mountain;12:00-2:00 Pacific).
The meeting will be held by phone or online, details to be announced.
The co-op incorporated in July 2012 with a slate of board members drawn from a pre-existing steering committee. All 5 of those board members will be standing for election at the first AGM of the co-op, scheduled for June 14th 2013. Bylaws state that the number of board members should be between 5 and 15. Board member terms will be staggered.
- Ethan Miller: serving director, president. Membership committee.
- Jamie Campbell: serving director.
- Jim Johnson: serving director, interim treasurer.
- Melissa Hoover: serving director. Membership committee.
- Paul Fitzpatrick: serving director, secretary. Operations team.
- Joe Marraffino: prior director and president.
- Adam Schwartz: steering committee prior to incorporation.
- Neily Jennings: steering committee prior to incorporation.
- Canadian Worker Co-op Federation (http://www.canadianworker.coop)
- Carolina Common Enterprise (http://commonenterprise.coop)
- Cooperation Works! (http://www.cooperationworks.coop)
- Cooperative Fund of New England (http://www.cooperativefund.org)
- Cooperative Maine (http://cooperativemaine.org)
- Cultivate.Coop (http://cultivate.coop)
- Eastern Conference for Workplace Democracy (http://east.usworker.coop)
- Food Co-op Initiative (http://www.foodcoopinitiative.coop)
- hOurworld (http://hourworld.org)
- Manitoba Cooperative Association (http://www.manitoba.coop)
- North American Students of Co-operation (http://www.nasco.coop)
- Sarapis Foundation (http://sarap.is)
- US Federation of Worker Co-ops (http://usworker.coop)
 See section VI(1) of our bylaws http://member.find.coop/bylaws