Cooperative Development Specialist- Food and Agriculture, California Center for Cooperative Development
The Cooperative Development Specialist will support projects involving people who are interested in starting cooperatively owned businesses within the food system, including marketing fresh and value-added fruits and vegetables, retail grocery stores, and farms operated as worker cooperatives. The specialist will also provide ancillary education related to general farm production and marketing, and business planning. Many of our project partners include groups who speak English as a second language. The agriculture projects include those based on fruit, vegetables, grain, and processed food producers in separate projects and includes working with local technical assistance provider partners for each project. This position allows for the Specialist to grow into work within other sectors, including housing and non-rural service oriented worker cooperatives.
Duties & Responsibilities:
PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITIES: As a Cooperative Development Specialist, you’ll be: • Talking to farmer who produce many different crops, ranchers, and small business owners in the food supply chain about strategies for improving their businesses through cooperation • Completing market research and feasibility studies, including conducting producer surveys, interviews with key informants, and building financial pro formas • Assessing the readiness of organizers and helping them get to the next level • Developing relationships with partners with specific expertise in different areas to help our clients make strategic decisions • Developing presentations and written materials for trainings • Organizing and marketing conferences • Evaluating current and potential projects and preparing progress reports for funders
Education & Experience:
REQUIREMENTS • 5 years of combined experience working in agriculture, fresh fruit/veg distribution, or retail food sectors • At least one experience starting an organization (non-profit, for-profit, or cooperative organization) • Experience conducting research including designing written surveys, conducting interviews, and analyzing data • Strong communication and presentation skills • High degree of competency using Excel, Powerpoint, and Word • Self-motivated, highly organized team player • An entrepreneurial and collaborative spirit • Ability to travel statewide an average 2-3 times per month; occasional national travel • BA or MS in Ag Econ, Business Administration, Managerial Economics, Community Development, or other field related to food or agriculture.