Introducing the 2016 Board Nominees

The 2016 ballot for the Bethlehem Food Co-Op board presents candidates from a wealth of backgrounds and experiences. As you think about who you'd like to elect as leaders to move the Co-Op through this vital phase, get to know the nominees a little more here!

JB_cropped.jpgJohn Brunner is a resident of Southside Bethlehem and a Bethlehem Food Co-op pioneering member. Recently retired as Mid-Atlantic Recreation Planner for the Appalachian Mountain Club, he is currently working to establish momentum for building Bethlehem's trail network. John would like to bring his experience in advocacy and community outreach, and his passion for the locavore movement to help the Bethlehem Food Co-op's Board of Directors and members open and operate a successful food co-op in the heart of Bethlehem.

IMG_8259.JPGJennifer Dize has resided in the Lehigh Valley since 2007, and currently lives in Bethlehem with her wife and their brood of dogs and cats. Jenn and Emily are pioneer members of the co-op and have been active since its inception.  Jenn began work at Lafayette College in December 2015 and, with a much shorter commute than her previous employment, is eager to commit more time and energy to the co-op. Jenn has worked in student affairs at colleges and universities for more than 10 years and is experienced at building community, leading teams, and programmatic efforts.

20160902_185041.jpgDonald C. Flad, Jr. grew up in Easton and has lived in Bethlehem’s Center City Historic District for more than 32 years. He graduated from Easton High School, Northampton Community College and Penn State-Harrisburg. Donald has worked much of his life in and around retail, for both local and national companies. His work has sent him traveling to 38 states, with each visit providing an opportunity to learn something new about this country. He is committed to working to make Bethlehem a better place to live and to promote the entire Lehigh Valley as a great destination for tourists and residents alike. Donald been a lifelong political and community activist; it all began when he knocked on doors for George McGovern in 1972, he was 13 years old. Donald is on the Board of Directors of the LGBT Business Council and is newly appointed as an Ambassador of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce.  He also serves as a board member of the Nazareth-Bath Regional Chamber of Commerce and on the Martin on Main and Bike Fest planning committees. As a member of the South Side Film Festival Board, he organized the opening night reception. Donald is very excited to be part of the Bethlehem Food Co-op movement and can’t wait to use his little red wagon to carry his and Earl’s groceries up Market Street.

Marsh_Colleen.jpgColleen Marsh currently serves as the Bethlehem Food Co-Op board chair. She grew up in the Bethlehem area and currently lives downtown with her husband, daughter, and two cats. She graduated summa cum laude from Moravian College with a BA in Graphic and Interactive Design, and currently works for the Moravian College Information Technology department as the Intranet Site Administrator. Outside of work, she is an active volunteer as a Girl Scout leader for several troops, has a work-share at a local CSA, and co-leads the communications committee for the Bethlehem Food Co-Op. Her family enjoys hiking, camping, foraging/fishing/hunting, art, theatre, and cooking. Colleen is passionate about improving our food system and feels that the Bethlehem Food Co-Op is crucial to that improvement in the Lehigh Valley, and she looks forward to being able to walk to a local grocery store.

IMAG0130.jpgJavier R. Toro
was born and raised in Puerto Rico. He earned a B.A. in History and Political Science from the InterAmerican University of Puerto Rico. During his twenty-two years as a resident of Bethlehem, he has been a very active member of the community. Currently, he is the OnTrack Program Director at Community Action Committee of the Lehigh Valley and is a member of the Bethlehem Mayor's Latino Advisory Committee, Lehigh University South Side Initiative and the Consumer Advisory Council for the Pennsylvania Utility Commission. He was the former Executive Director of the South Bethlehem Neighborhood Center and former President of the South Bethlehem Historical Society. He has been member of many community organizations, including CUNA of Bethlehem, Fountain Hill Elementary School Leadership Team, Broughal Middle School Student Performance Task Force, Donegan Elementary School Fowler Family Center Advisory Board, Puerto Rican Cultural Coalition Board Member, YWCA Coalition Against Racism and the South Side Vision 2012 Open Space and Youth Services Sub-committees.

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commented 2016-09-20 13:26:35 -0400 · Flag
sounds like a fantastic slate of candidates!