We researched worker cooperative developers from all over the U.S. and learned from the different ways they do things. Cooperative developers work to create good, sustainable jobs through the development, support and promotion of worker cooperatives. There are many different approaches to worker cooperative development.

Of Special Note:

In the spring of 2015, we participated in a one-hour online session hosted by Melissa Hoover, Executive Director of the Democracy at Work Institute in Oakland, CA, who presented information about the difference between high-touch and low-touch cooperative development models.

See the slideshow below:

We also listened to a one-hour online presentation by Vanessa Bransburg, from the Center for Family Life in Brooklyn, NY. Vanessa talked about the history of CFL and their decision to become a cooperative developer. She shared detailed information about their model, the services they provide, and told stories about the cooperatives they have incubated.

See the slideshow below:

In order to understand several different business models, we researched the following three cooperative developers in depth:

Arizmendi Association of Cooperatives
The Arizmendi Association of Cooperatives is made up of seven member businesses: six cooperative bakeries and a development and support collective in the Bay Area.

Prospera is a co-op developer rooted in deep partnerships with community-based organizations, industry experts, businesses, foundations, and the founding worker-owners of the co-ops they support.

The Working World U.S.
TWW is a non-profit that provides financial investment and technical support for worker cooperatives using a model that puts money at the service of people, not the other way around.

Other cooperative developers we learned from and are inspired by:

Cooperation Texas
Cooperation Texas is an Austin-based non-profit committed to the creation of sustainable jobs through the development, support, and promotion of worker-owned cooperatives.

Green Worker Cooperatives
Green Worker Cooperatives is a South-Bronx based organization dedicated to incubating worker-owned green businesses in order to build a strong local economy rooted in democracy and environmental justice.

Project Equity
Project Equity works to re-envision community economic development to shift control locally and build economic resiliency in low income communities in the San Francisco Bay Area.