We elected two new members to our board last month. Give a warm Chicago Market welcome to Edward Collins-Fanner and Sofia Jouravel! They are both beyond excited to get started on some exciting initiatives for the year ahead. In the meantime, they are familiarizing themselves with Chicago Market's history, mission and values.
We recently sat down and asked Edward and Sofia about their relationship with food, and how they came to become Owners, and eventually board members, of Chicago Market.
What's your name and tell us about who else shares your fridge (ie is part of your household or business Ownership)?
Edward: My name is Edward Collins-Fanner. I don't share my fridge with anybody regularly.
Sofia: Sofia Jouravel + my husband, Misha Iklov
Why are you a Chicago Market Owner?
Edward: I decided to become a Chicago Market Owner because of my passion for food and culture. With Chicago Market being a community store and targeting the Uptown neighbourhood, we need voices that not only talk about healthy foods but action that creates access to healthier food options across varying lifestyles and income levels.
Sofia: When I first heard about Chicago Market in 2014, I was just starting to explore the good food community in Chicago. I thought the idea sounded fantastic and immediately became an Owner, even though I live in the Loop. Our co-op embodies many important values AND allows for interaction with like-minded people so it's a win-win!
What type of work do you do -- or what else are you devoting time to? Why?
Edward: For most of my day, I stare at a computer screen as an Accountant. When I'm not working, I'm usually listening to music/talk radio, walking the streets of a city, or reading about something new going on (usually re: technology, places, food, and/or social trends).
Sofia: I do business development and customer experience management at FarmLogix - an Evanston-based company that uses technology to connect local farms to institutional cafeterias and run reports on institutional and governmental sustainability metrics to tell their story.
Is there something new you'd like to learn or pursue, now or someday?
Edward: I'd like to learn many languages and possibly move into tourism, hospitality, or some other customer-centered business.
Sofia: I'm always learning or pursuing something...I have information FOMO! Yoga & holistic physical practices (what you put in and on your body) are a regular part of my life; mindfulness practices like meditation are something I'm curious to learn about and do.
What's your one 'wish come true' that you'd love to see from Chicago Market? Might be a product for our shelves, a program you'd like to see there, a job you'd like to have, a location; you name it! GO!
Edward: I'd like to see Chicago Market offer a diverse, selective stock of products with transparent labelling, while creating a cultural food journey.
Sofia: Truly maximizing the amount of local products (especially produce!!) - something I seldom see at many co-ops.
Three words that best describe you?
Edward: Intense. Calm. Aware.
Sofia: Multi-cultural. Explorer. Dedicated.
What else is really important to you?
Edward: What's really important to me is learning about how cultures overlap and trying to help realise the innate value that we have in ourselves.
Sofia: Travel & my cultural community. Love to explore Chicago (through food of course, history/architecture tours, neighborhood exploration, etc.), other cities in the US, and abroad. Also, an advisory board member of the Russian Jewish Division of the JUF - maintaining a close connection to my ethnicity/culture.