What another year it has been! The world and our region have continued to be challenged by a pandemic as well as social and economic disruption. Through the uncertainties, Three Rivers Market has remained strong and been a beacon of reliability to those it serves. The deep roots anchoring the success of our Cooperative have been intentionally and thoughtfully cultivated over the years. Dedicated employees, leaders, and members have continually planted purposeful seeds thinking beyond today to tomorrow’s growth.
In November 2021 General Manager Jacqueline Arthur announced that she will be leaving Three Rivers Market at the end of May 2022 to embark upon new opportunities. Since December 2000, Jacqueline has served as General Manager, growing our business from sales of $800,000 per year to over $9,000,000 per year, from 12 to 50 employees, from a minimum wage of $5.25/hour to $15.00/hour, from under 1,000 owners to over 10,000, from $0 in cash reserves just shy of $2,000,000, and from fragility to stability and the realization of a long-term commitment to our region. She spearheaded the transition of our co-op to a genuine cooperative business structure in 2005, generating $749,018 In patronage dividends to our members through sound business practices. She served as Project Manager for the purchase and development of 1100 N. Central Street, securing financing during the recession of 2008 with a strong business expansion plan that included our cooperative’s first member loan program. Over $84,000 has been returned to our community in the form of interest paid to our members-lenders.
Jacqueline’s candor, compassion, and community mindset have been pivotal to shaping Three Rivers into a true cooperative center. While we are both saddened to see Jacqueline leave and excited for her next new adventure, be assured she has set the bar for General Manager leadership which the Search Committee and Board will use as a benchmark for selecting her replacement.
Thank you to our employees and members for your loyalty and support of our Cooperative’s values. As another globally challenging year comes to a close we reflect upon the gifts of community which Three Rivers Market has provided and will continue to provide into the New Year.
Three Rivers Market Board of Directors
Thank you, Joy, for your excellent leadership not only this past year as Chair, but throughout your three-year term on the Three Rivers Market Board. Your dedication, intelligence, compassion, and common sense have been essential during the pandemic.
It is an honor to take on the responsibility of serving as Chair during a year that will bring a significant transition for Three Rivers Market. I am grateful to all the Board members with whom I’ve served over the past two years for demonstrating a thoughtful, effective, and cooperative approach to governance. I also appreciate the many learning opportunities provided to Board members through Columinate, our cooperative consultant, with whom we are partnering in the search for a new General Manager. Engaging with Board members, General Managers, and others involved with cooperatives around the country during Columinate trainings and events has expanded my knowledge of both cooperative governance and the various ways cooperatives serve their unique communities.
Today we welcome Interim General Manager Garland McQueen to Three Rivers Market. Garland comes to us from the Columinate consulting cooperative’s Interim General Management Team. He has a strong record of providing steady, experienced management at dozens of food cooperatives nationally. Meanwhile, our Board-appointed Search Committee continues to work with Columinate’s Carolee Colter, Brett Myers of the Carlisle Group, and General Manager Jacqueline Arthur to find a new General Manager for Three Rivers Market by the summer of 2022.
The Board recently voted to appoint Erin Salter to complete the remaining year of vacant Seat 3’s term. With all nine Board seats now filled for 2022, we look forward to hiring a new General Manager who will ensure that Three Rivers Market continues to serve as a cooperative center of sustainable commerce that exists to benefit its members by creating and nourishing a healthier environment, healthier people, and a healthier community.
Three Rivers Market Board of Directors