About Chris Wong:
At this juncture in the BFC’s history, I seek to join the board because from my brief time with the organization I have developed a profound respect for the membership and reverence for the values it holds dear. I believe my prior experience has imbued me with a number of capacities that I can leverage to help further develop this body, while honoring its unique history and culture. Fiduciary stewardship is a core function of any board, and my background in fundraising, grant management and accounting have helped me identify several exciting opportunities for growth within the co-op. I would hope to support the finance committee in bolstering our financial management processes while simultaneously pursuing additional revenue streams to ensure a sustainable financial model for years to come. Strategic planning is rightly the province of the entire body, as this process bespeaks the values and aspirations of the entire organization. Listening first to members, officers and the board is, accordingly, my approach. Helping to facilitate this dialogue in an inclusive and democratic manner would be my aim. I have witnessed and led these types of processes in a number of organizations, gaining both a faculty for servant leadership and a repertoire of best practices. Lastly, I am a staunch advocate of democratic and transparent governance. As an individual I absolutely hold opinions that I will voice, however as a board member I would be committed and beholden to the views of the entire membership. Leadership is not being the loudest voice in the room; instead, it is making space for those whose voices are not heard.
About Sara Vantournhout
After growing up in Belgium and spending some years in Asia, I moved to the US in 2010 to pursue a PhD in East Asian Studies at Princeton University. In June 2014, I moved from Princeton to Bushwick, and the same month I became a member of the Bushwick Food Cooperative. Never having been a member of a co-op before, I was initially attracted to the ethical and sustainable model of co-operative economics, and, of course, to the healthy, locally sourced, organic, vegan-friendly, and reasonably priced food sold at the Coop. After two years of in-store shifts, I got involved with the Outreach Committee in the Spring of 2016, and started participating in various community events as a BFC representative. Through my roles and activities with Outreach, I learned more about the Bushwick community, and how the BFC could and should help to improve food access and justice in this community. My interest in food sustainability and justice in and beyond the Coop propelled me to join the BFC Board as an Interim Director in October 2016. As an elected Board Member, I hope to continue my work with the BFC Board to responsibly oversee Coop operations and staff, and to ensure that we as a Coop fulfill our mission of social and environmental sustainability. I am currently teaching and finishing up my PhD at Princeton University, and I am also working with the Princeton University Community-Based Learning Initiative, which aims to employ academic research in collaboration with community and non-profit organizations in order to advance social justice and equity in—and beyond—higher education. Aside from my work in academia and with the Coop, I am also a Tai Chi practitioner and instructor, an avid cyclist, and a lifestyle vegan.
About Jen Wilkens:
My name is Jennifer K. Wilkins; I am a lifelong Brooklyn resident who was raised in Bushwick. Having lived in Bushwick through my youth I have witnessed as the neighborhood has transitioned. It is this evolving neighborhood that has shaped my life and encouraged me to become the citizen and community member that I present to Co-op members, today. In continuing as a Board Member it is my hope to continue to offer my services to help support the continued mission of the Bushwick Food Cooperative as well as my fellow members.
In addition to my Co-op affiliation I currently serve the community as an Itinerant Teacher. I work with toddlers and preschool age students that have been diagnosed with Special Needs. I am also the proud mother to a future Co-op member, Jonah. It is because of Jonah that I have embarked on a mission to become a more engaged community member and shopper. I want him to value the same commitment and purchasing power that I have become familiar with through the Co-op.
As the Co-op has grown, I too have grown as well, especially in regards to my perspective about the food industry and my role in the food industry. It is this new awareness that I hope to continue my service in the Co-op as a Board Member.
The deadline to run is end-of-day March 24th! All interested members please email us with a short bio. Election is for a three-year term.
Jen, Sarah and any other potential board members must be voted in by 80% of at least 40 members. Your vote counts! Attend the Annual Meeting April 3rd.