Chicago Market Board Meeting Minutes - June 28, 2017

Chicago Market Board Meeting – 6/28/17

Minutes: Heather Lalley


Lee Herman
Dana McKinney
Katie Lopez
Matt Ryan

Read more
Add your reaction Share

Chicago Market Board Meeting Minutes for May 24, 2017

7 p.m., May 24.

Karen's house
Present: Dan, Bill, Heather, Kelly, Jen, Karen, Grant, Emily, Greg, Larry
Guests: Hanh, Lee, Carolyn, Edward
Notes: Heather

Read more
Add your reaction Share

Chicago Market Owner Profiles: Meet Andy!


Chicago Market's new Owner Profiles invite co-op Owners to answer a few fun questions about themselves, so we can virtually 'meet' and build community with each other. 

Our first Profile was Owner #148 Annette. Now, meet Owner #670 Andy Kalish...whose businesses the Ravenswood Event Center and Kālish Short Order Vegan have been huge supporters of Chicago Market.
Click on the "I'm An Owner!" link  and fill out your own profile, for us to feature in our next newsletter!



What's the story behind how you adapted your last name for your business? It was a gift from our architect, Ferdinanda Marcic. She was instrumental in our vision for going vegan and recognized the potential in crafting our name with an accent and apostrophe. Kāl'/Kale + 'ish. We are plant based, but not in obvious ways. 

Read more
Add your reaction Share

Local Food Lobby Day


Chicago Market Owner #615 Terri Reardon is a passionate advocate for urban agriculture and the local food movement. Last month, she was part of a group who headed to Springfield for "Local Food Lobby Day," meeting with our Illinois state legislators and making them aware of how their vote impacts Chicago communities.

Here's her terrific summary of the day and her experience.



Read more
Add your reaction Share

A Chat with Wild Root Market


One term you'll hear a lot from anyone who's been involved in starting or running a co-op is "P6," aka "Co-operative Principle #6: Co-operation among Co-operatives." Chicago Market has been fortunate enough to learn from and share knowledge with food co-ops from around the country, and at the recent Up And Coming Food Co-op Conference in Milwaukee, we were excited to hear that neighboring Wild Root Market in Racine, Wisconsin has just signed a purchase agreement for a site!

Author, Board member and Owner #17 Heather Lalley caught up with them for a chat about the challenges of being a startup, and their next steps.



Read more
Add your reaction Share

Chicago Market Owner Profiles: Meet Annette!

Chicago Market Volunteer & Owner #148 Annette Mambuca recently had an idea: what if we invited co-op Owners to answer a few fun questions about themselves, and share with the rest of us?

We've enjoyed meeting Owners at our new monthly Meet-Ups and our newsletter 'Volunteer Spotlights' are a popular feature...so here's another way we can virtually 'meet' and build community with each other.

Check out Annette's profile below...and then, click on the "I'm An Owner!" link and fill out your own profile, for us to feature in our next newsletter!


Annette Mambuca

What's your name and tell us about who else shares your fridge (i.e. is part of your household's Ownership)? I'm Annette Mambuca, and I have shared my fridge (and other appliances) with Peter M. Cooke since college, albeit when we lived bicoastally for about 8 years. I had my own appliances then. 

Read more
2 reactions Share

What's Up in Uptown - A Walking Tour of the Neighborhood

Owners #43 Karen Jacobs and #55 Sofia Jouravel recently joined a walking tour of the Uptown neighborhood on a lovely Sunday afternoon. Our guide was Patti Swanson, who runs Chicago for Chicagoans, a pay-what-you-can walking tour service that partners with residents and neighborhood organizations to share their history with others. For the Uptown tour, Patti partnered with Vitaliy Vladimirov of Uptown United.

Uptown Walking Tour

Covering about two hours and wandering across city blocks that covered Uptown's famed Jazz Age district, the lakeshore, and a huge diversity of residential, commercial and community centers, we learned about the people and events that have given Uptown its unique and diverse character. Some fun facts:

* Broadway Avenue was originally named Evanston Avenue, but the name was changed in 1913 as part of an effort to market Uptown as an entertainment destination that could compete with...well, you know. 

* It was only in 1980 that Edgewater broke away from Uptown and became its own designated Chicago community area. Uptown still includes an extraordinarily diverse collection of neighborhoods, including Sheridan Park, Buena Park, Castlewood Terrace, Margate Park, Little Vietnam and the Uptown Entertainment district.

* Essanay Studios in Uptown was a pioneering silent film studio (films starring Charlie Chaplin, among others) until Chicago's weather and the rising popularity of Westerns pushed the industry ever-westward.

* The homes of Studs Terkel and (for a short while) George R. R. Martin were in Uptown.

* The Argyle street district, running eastward from under the El tracks, was once a Jewish enclave (and you can still see signs of this on certain buildings...). After the fall of Saigon in 1975, the area brought an influx of South East Asian refugees and took on its current pan-Asian commercial character.

* During and immediately after WWII, tens of thousands of Appalachians migrated to Chicago as the coal mining industry modernized and jobs became scarce. Affordable housing drew them to Uptown, and while there are few signs of it now, even through the 1970's the area supported a distinct Southern, rural subculture. Other waves of migrants and immigrant communities have also been part of Uptown's history and development.

* Not coincidentally, Uptown has a deep history of activism, especially around racial and economic justice issues. Grassroots organizer Peggy Terry fought passionately for racial equality and was an early proponent of what we now might call "intersectionality," the concept that poverty, racism and sexism can be understood as interdependent and not independent struggles. Radical organizers including the (white, largely Appalachian migrant) Young Patriots Organization, the Black Panther Party and the (Latino) Young Lords Organization in the 1960's worked together to push for a "Hank Williams Village" cooperative community in Uptown and even first coined the moniker "Rainbow Coalition." This name was later co-opted by Jesse Jackson's Rainbow/PUSH Coalition; the urban planning vision was co-opted in quite a different way as Mayor Richard J. Daley and other interests established Truman College in that location, instead. Today, activism still plays a huge role in Uptown's development and community organizing, especially around issues of affordable housing and preserving the neighborhood's extraordinary multicultural diversity.



"Patti and Vitaliy did a such a wonderful job of making the social and architectural history of Uptown come alive," says Karen. "It was fascinating to learn about the role played by the original train station - which eventually became the site of the Gerber Building and hopefully will soon become the site of Chicago Market - both in creating and responding to social changes in the neighborhood. I'm even more excited about the possibilities of our co-op becoming part of the story!"

Add your reaction Share

Wilson Station - Community Meeting May 10

5.10.17_Community_Mtg_Steven_Gross_199.jpg Check out some more great pictures from our meeting on Flickr!

On May 10 at Chase Park, Chicago Market hosted a public community meeting about our pursuit of the CTA’s renovated Wilson Station, aka the Gerber Building. This was the second in a series – the first was held April 18 with Chicago Market Owners, and the next, another public session, will be held on Saturday afternoon, May 20 at Bezazian branch, Chicago Public Library. 

Despite an intense thunderstorm that hit right before we started, attendance was solid and the room was full. For many there, this was their first exposure to the food co-operative model, and to Chicago Market’s vision and plans to open a full-service, community-owned grocery store: focused on bringing local, sustainable food and products and being a hub for community gathering, education and growth.

We continue to be thrilled and inspired by the community’s response to this project, and to our bid for space in this very special location. Owners and supporters who’ve been engaged with Chicago Market since the beginning have joined us for meetings, signed our community petition, helped spread the word, and stepped up to volunteer their efforts. New supporters, especially those connected to the Uptown area, have listened thoughtfully and contributed their own knowledge, ideas, and networking connections to help us move our plan forward in ways that will ensure Chicago Market will be a proactive and productive part of the neighborhood – not just another chain retailer.

We’ve also had some great questions asked – at meetings and via other communications. And while not all of them are easy to answer, we want you to keep ‘em coming! It is both a core value and a key point of difference versus traditional grocery stores, that a food co-op exists to be responsive to our Owners and our community, not just to extract profit for outside investors or management.

We’re working to post all of these questions and ideas on a consolidated page on our blog – we’ll share that link here and on our Facebook page very soon!

In the meantime, here's a rundown of the May 10 session:

Board President Grant Kessler kicked off a presentation that outlines Chicago Market's history, our vision and our growth so far.

Founder, Funding Director (and Board member) Greg Berlowitz talked about the history of the Wilson Station site, and some of the ways in which we see Chicago Market taking advantage of this location. We even brought some first draft layout drawings from our partners at Wrap Architecture - they are super excited about this unique opportunity. 

You can check out the presentation here

Sharon Hoyer, who is General Manager of Chicago’s Dill Pickle food co-op in Logan Square, then talked about how Dill Pickle partners with food justice organizations and is an engine of economic growth within their neighborhood. She shared how working in a values-based, community-engaged organization is both challenging and inspiring to her, every day. Chicago Market will bring 75-80 local jobs to Uptown!

Alderman James Cappleman (Chicago Market Owner #500!) talked about his own history with food co-ops, and the special opportunity the Gerber Building represents for Uptown – he shared data that 50% of Uptown residents’ disposable income and much of their grocery dollars are currently spent outside of the ward. He is enthusiastically supporting our project with the CTA and the Mayor’s office. Our formal application for the space, as well as letters of support from community organizations and our community petition, will be submitted to the CTA on June 9. 

Board member Karen Jacobs then opened the room up for questions and facilitated a great, idea-filled discussion among the co-op’s elected Board members and everyone in attendance.

As the meeting broke up, attendees were invited to show their support for Chicago Market and our Wilson Station bid in a number of ways:

* Sharing thoughts on camera, via the cool pop-up studio created by Owners #843 Michael Davis, #870 Benjamin Holland, #14 Malcolm Haar and #817 Sharon Jin – check out this fun video

* Signing our community petition of support (now almost 1,800 signatures strong, and aiming for 3,000!)

* Taking a Chicago Market yard sign (suitable for yards, flower boxes, windows) to help spread the word among their neighbors. Let us know if you’re an Uptown resident and would like one, too!

* Checking out Chicago Market’s upcoming events, including our upcoming BBQ Co-op Po-Up Market on Saturday June 10, at Truman College

* Considering becoming an Owner of Chicago Market. While our store will be open to all, Owners receive special discounts and benefits - including a share of the store's eventual profits. And, you'll play a critical part in helping us make our vision a reality for all!

* Volunteering with us! We are an all-volunteer organization in this phase, and we have so many opportunities to get involved and support the co-op. Click here to learn more, or email us.  

And on that note, we’re especially grateful to all those noted above who helped make this meeting a success, as well as photographer/Owner #237 Steven Gross, note-taker/Owner #909 Kate Samano, greeter/Owner #872 Dana McKinney, and Board members (Owners all!) Anthony Todd, Emily Crespo, Bill Petty, Dan Miller, Linn Austin, Larry Gast and Jen Vest


Add your reaction Share

Wilson Station - Owners Meeting Summary

Two weeks ago, Chicago Market hosted the first meeting about our pursuit of the Gerber Building at the Wilson Red Line station. Because Chicago Market is a cooperative committed to transparency and Owner democracy, it was fitting this first meeting was exclusively for our Owners.

The meeting was completely packed.
Read more
Add your reaction Share

Board Meeting Minutes for April 26, 2017

Chicago Market Board Meeting, 4/26/17
At Emily's house
Present: Grant, Anthony, Greg, Mike, Heather, Linn, Emily, Dan, Karen, Jen, Kelly, Bill
Guests: Dana, Audrey

Notes: Heather

Read more
2 reactions Share

Sign up to receive our newsletter.

Connect with our team.

Created with NationBuilder