Meet the CIAG members
Alexandra Wilson, Canada, Chair
Alexandra Wilson discovered a passion for cooperatives when, as a teenager, she led her neighbours in a successful fight to create the Bain Apartments Co-operative, putting a stop to the landlord’s plans to evict 260 low-income households. Her involvement in saving her own home led to a career in the development, management and provision of association services to housing cooperatives. After nine years with the Co-operative Housing Federation of Toronto, five as managing director, and 15 years at the helm of the Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada, she started up the Agency for Co-operative Housing, serving as CEO from 2005 until her retirement in 2021. Alexandra spent 22 years on the board of Cooperative Housing International and in 2017 was elected to the global board of the International Cooperative Alliance. She is a member of the board and vice chair of Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada, the apex body of the Canadian cooperative movement; vice chair of the board of The Co-operators, a large cooperative insurer; a member of the board of the Canadian Co-operative Investment Fund; and a member of the board of the Funeral Co-operative of Ottawa. A member of numerous cooperatives in Canada and France, Alexandra has played multiple volunteer roles in the credit union sector and did a three-year stint in the 1980s in the international cooperative development field.
Akira Kurimoto, Japan
AKIRA KURIMOTO studied law at the University of Tokyo. He is a senior fellow of the Japan Co-operative Alliance since 2021. He was a professor of the co-operative program at the Institute for Solidarity-based Society at Hosei University, Tokyo during 2015-2020. He was the manager of the Japanese Consumer Co-operative Union during 1990-2003 and the board member/chief researcher of the Consumer Co-operative Institute of Japan since 1998. He served as the Vice President of the Japanese Society for Co-operative Studies and the general secretary of the Robert Owen Association.
He served as the Chair of the ICA Research Committee (2001-2005) and a member of the ICA Principles Committee. He is the Chair of the ICA Asia Pacific Research Committee and a member of the Steering Committee of the Global Co-operative Monitor. He is a founding member of the Asia Pacific Co-operative Research Partnership which published a volume “Waking the Asian Pacific Co-operative Potential” in 2020.His main research interests include co-operative laws, co-operative economics, co-operative history, corporate governance, food supply chain, health and social care and the social economy/enterprises.
Melina Morrison, Australia
Melina Morrison is the inaugural CEO of the Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals (BCCM) and was a driving force behind the establishment of Australia’s first peak body for co-operatives in 2013. She is a well-known advocate for co-operatives in the media and business community bringing together her passion for co-ops and her background in communications and public relations.
Before the BCCM, Melina was editor of the ICA Digest for five years and co-authored the ICA message platform for the Blueprint for a Co-operative Decade. Melina produced the commemoration book “100 Stories of Co-operation” for the ICA. Her advocacy work resulted in the Australian Government minting a coin and producing a stamp series commemorating the International Year of Co-operatives in 2012.
Melina has since led the apex body to many historic achievements for the Australian co-operative sector including the first national research on the sector; the first policy blueprint; and the first national government inquiry into the co-operative and mutual business sector leading to 17 ground-breaking reforms. As a result of Melina’s long-term campaign for access to capital for co-operatives, the Australian Government passed the first enabling laws for co-operatives and mutuals in 18 years allowing co-operatives to issue investment capital without demutualising.
Melina has championed a world class operating environment for co-operatives in Australia. Key projects she has initiated include the $1 million, 2-year impact measurement research project, Mutual Value Measurement, with Monash University. She is now leading Australia’s first environmental, social and governance (ESG) project for co-operatives to improve sector capacity to respond to the global sustainability challenges.
Sonja Novkovic, Canada
Sonja Novkovic is a Professor of Economics and Academic director of the International Centre for Co-operative Management at Saint Mary’s University in Halifax, Canada. Her research, teaching and writing revolves around comparative economic systems, co-operative and broader social solidarity economy, with particular focus on worker ownership, participation and economic democracy. Having worked in and studied the self-managed economy in the former Yugoslavia, she continued to work on economic democracy in her graduate work in Canada. Her interest in the broader cooperative movement deepened with the launch of the professional Masters in cooperative management program at Saint Mary’s University in 2002.
Currently, she is a contributor to the UNRISD Sustainability Performance Indicators project bringing the cooperative economy perspective to the team. She is also a collaborator on a four-year research project on humanistic co-operative governance funded by FWO – Belgium, and a research project for Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada on the impact of Covid-19. Her co-edited volumes include Co-operatives and the World of Work (Routledge, 2019); Cooperativism and Local Development in Cuba: An agenda for Democratic Transformation (Brill, 2018); and Co-operatives in the Post Growth Era (Zed, 2014), among other.
Sonja has been serving as Chair of the International Co-operative Alliance Research Committee (2013-2021); she is a member of the CIRIEC International Scientific Commission on Social & Cooperative Economy, and the NCBA-CLUSA Council of Economists.
Cynthia Giagnocavo, Spain
Dr. Cynthia Giagnocavo is the director of the Cátedra (Chair) of Agriculture, Cooperative Studies and Sustainable Development UAL-Coexphal at the University of Almería, Spain and a professor in the Faculty of Economics and Business Management in the area of Organisations. Her work is focused on sustainability in food and agricultural systems, including transitions to agro-ecological social systems. Her research focuses on the intersection of organisational, technical, social, economic and institutional innovation, with an emphasis on cooperatives, innovative business models, collaborative entrepreneurship and social enterprise. She is Chair of the ICA CCR European board and a member of the ICA CCR global board. She is also a member of the CIRIEC European Members of the International Scientific Commission Social & Cooperative Economy. She is lead scientist in numerous European and international projects on innovative knowledge systems, sustainable supply chains, the diversity of business models, entrepreneurship, and the application of new technologies and digitization processes from a socio-economic perspective.
She is also an experienced Barrister, Solicitor and Attorney qualified in Canada (Ontario), England and Wales, and New York State. Before entering an academic career, she worked in both London and Madrid for the global law firm Clifford Chance LLP in the structured finance and banking groups, advising European and global banks and corporate entities. Before relocating to Europe, she worked in Toronto, Canada at the Ministry of Environment, as legal counsel for the Ontario Clean Water Agency, and for the law firm of Davies, Ward, Phillips & Vineberg in the areas of corporate, banking and securities law. She was a law clerk for the Chief Justice of the Ontario Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court.
Her varied experience has led her to understand the need for cooperative business and social models in a profound and urgent manner.
Hons. B.A. (York U); LL.B. (Osgoode Hall); M.E.S (York U); PhD (UAL).
Dante Cracogna, Argentina
Dante Cracogna holds a doctorate in Law and he is professor of Commercial Law at the Law School, University of Buenos Aires.
He is also a lawyer practising in the field of Civil and Commercial Law. Currently he is vice president of the Argentine Federation of Consumers Cooperatives and Chair of the Cooperative Law Committee of Cooperatives of the Americas and in that capacity is a member of the Cooperative Law Committee of the ICA.
Dr. Cracogna was a member of the Consultative Committee which assisted Prof. Ian Mac Pherson when drafting the Identity Statement. He was a member of the ICA Principles Committee in charge of elaborating the Guidance Notes to the Cooperative Principles published by the ICA in 2015.
He was active in the elaboration of the Framework Law for Cooperatives in Latin America and the Statute of the Mercosur Cooperatives and wrote several books and many articles on Cooperative Law. For several years was president of the Intertional Association of Cooperative Law.
Jeonghee Kim, Korea
Jeonghee Kim joined iCOOP as a consumer member and obtained a master’s degree on Cooperative Management at Sungkonghoe University Graduate School in 2014. She served as the chairperson of the Yulmok coop, one of member coops of iCOOP, and the representative of the COOP Store, a subsidiary for the management of iCOOP Natural Dream stores from 2017. She was a representative of the Anyang City Cooperative Association and was elected as Chairperson of iCOOP Federation this year.
Anu Puusa, Finland
I am a PhD (Business and economics) and I work as a Professor in Management and exercise the art of management in practice too by being the Deputy Head of Department, the Service management Master’s Programme and research group of Managing Intellectual Capital at the Business School of the University of Eastern Finland. I am a Docent of Management and Co-operatives at LUT School of Business and Management, Lappeenranta University of Technology. My current research interest areas are co-operatives (namely their dual nature, co-operative governance and management), organization change, organizational identity and work-community skills/Organization Citizenship behaviour. I have published textbooks and numerous journal articles and other publications. I also believe in giving back: I have positions of trust such as membership of the board at Cooperatives Europe, Pellervo Coop Center and Pohjois-Karjalan Osuuskauppa, a regional consumer cooperative that is part of S-Group. I am an experienced organizational speaker, TED TALK speaker (http://go.ted.com/anupuusa) and an awarded teacher. I am an academic who does not believe that theory and practice are opposites. My philosophical background lies in the interpretative paradigm: “We look at the same target, but do we see the same thing?”I am a realist who tends to look at the bright side of life. I believe in the power of questions. Joint pondering and cooperation are the ways forward.
Om Devi Malla, Nepal
Mrs. Om Devi Malla a Nepalese cooperative leader, born in Gorkha district of Nepal, completed her master degree in Sociology from Tribhuvan University Nepal. She is the first Nepali co-operative woman leader to complete a Diploma in Co-operative Education and Management from NCCE New Delhi, India.
Mrs. Malla, who has commenced working in the cooperative sector since 1997 from the District Association leadership to the first Senior Vice-President of the National Co-operative Federation of Nepal (NCF). She has had working experience in the executive committee of NCF for one term. She supported the working of the National Cooperative Development board for 2 times in the capacity of cooperative expert.
Malla has been participating as a national representative at International Cooperative Federation programmes while receiving education and training from more than 15 countries. She is always concerned to exploit her experience and knowledge at national and international number for women empowerment and women leadership development in cooperative leadership.
Malla is the first person to become a parliamentarian working in the country’s policy making level, representing the area of cooperation in the legislative parliament. She played a constructive role in the making of constitution 2015, and raised voice in parliament for women empowerment in cooperatives. She has been awarded by the ”Suprabhal Jana Sewa Shree” a State level decoration by the Government of Nepal for her continuous contribution in the cooperative sector. She was also awarded by different commendation from the national and international organizations. With her commitment and dedication in the cooperative sector from 22 years, Mrs. Malla, has been elected in the position of Global board members of the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on November 17, 2017, for the first time from Nepal. This is a great achievement for the cooperative movement of Nepal.
Om Devi Malla, who has been providing her special attention in women leadership development and inclusion in the cooperative sector and believed that poverty can be eliminated through the cooperative in developing countries.
Yashavantha Dongre, India
Yashavantha Dongre Ph.D, served as Professor, Dean and Vice Chancellor (Acting) at the University of Mysore, India. He is currently a Visiting Professor at the College of Policy Science, Ritsumeikan University, Japan.
Dr. Dongre’s research interest is in the area of Third Sector studies, including Cooperatives, Nonprofits and Social Enterprises. He has published over 100 Journal Articles and Book Chapters. His current research focuses on Governance of Cooperatives in the Asia Pacific Region.
Dr. Dongre is also involved in Training and Consultancy activities related to cooperatives in India. He served as Consultant to the High Power Committee on Cooperatives set up by the Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India, the recommendations of which paved the way for the 97th constitutional amendment. He is a founding member of the ICA-AP Research Committee and also serves as the Co-Secretary of the ICA-AP Committee on Cooperatives in Educational Institutions.
Petar Stefanov, Bulgaria
Prof. Petar Stefanov, PhD in Economics spent more than 33 years working for the cooperative movement in Bulgaria. Since 2003 he is a President of Central Cooperative Union – Bulgaria. He is a member of Group III of the Economic and Social Council of Bulgaria and member of the Board of the Bulgarian Industrial Association.
At European level he is among the founders of Cooperatives Europe – European region of International Cooperative Alliance established in 2006 and Vice President in the period 2013-2017 and 2021 – 2025. He is Vice President of the European Association of Consumer Cooperatives (EURO COOP) in the period 2013 – 2017 and member of the Board of EURO COOP since 2004.
At global level, he is a member of the Executive Committee of Consumer Cooperatives Worldwide (CCW) in the period 2001 – 2015 and since 2015 he was elected President of CCW. In 2009 he was elected to the global board of the International Cooperative Alliance and he is Chair of the ICA Governance Committee.
For exceptional merits in the development and establishment of the values and institution of the cooperative movement in Bulgaria and two decades of continuous leadership in the field of economic life in 2010 he was awarded State order “Civil Merits” – First Degree. The Central Cooperative Union in 2004 and 2006 was awarded with the prize “National Structure with Contribution to Bulgaria’s Economic Development” for significant contribution of the consumer cooperatives to the economic and social development of Bulgaria.
Prof. Petar Stefanov is among the founders of Cooperatives Europe House (MEC), Brussels, Belgium which is currently Headquarters of the International Cooperative Alliance.
Graciela Fernández Quintas, Uruguay
Dr. Graciela Fernández has been a Doctor in Law and Social Sciences from the University of the Oriental Republic of Uruguay since 1982, with more than 20 years of experience in matters of cooperative organization, associativism and social economy.
She chaired the Uruguayan Cooperative Center, CCU, from 2010 to 2020, a Non-Governmental Organization which has been dedicated for over 50 years to the advice and development of Associative and Cooperative processes. She joined the Organization in 1996, performing in different management positions and as the Legal Area Manager as well.
Dr. Fernández has participated as the Coordinator in the Social Cooperatives project of the Ministry of Social Development since 2005.
She participated in the advisory body to the Ministry of Labor and Social Security appointed in March 2015 on behalf of the Social Economy and Cooperative System.
She is a member of the ACI Americas Cooperative Law Commission and chairs the CUDECOOP Cooperative Legal Advisors Commission.
Dr. Fernández chaired the Confederación Uruguaya de Entidades Cooperativas, CUDECOOP, from 2014 to 2020.
She is President of Cooperatives of the Americas, Region of the International Cooperative Alliance, and Vice President of the International Cooperative Alliance since October 2018.
Martin Lowery, USA
Martin Lowery is the United States representative to the ICA board of directors and is the current Chair of the ICA Cooperative Identity Committee and the Cooperative World Congress Task Force. He is the past Chair of the National Cooperative Business Association, the apex organization of cooperatives in the United States. He is also the past Chair of the National Cooperative Bank, created by the United States Congress to provide capital to cooperative and community-based organizations. He is an inductee to the U.S. Cooperative Hall of Fame. His career in cooperatives has been centered on electric cooperatives in the United States as the Executive Vice President of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. He holds a Ph.D. in philosophy from Duke University and believes that we have much to discuss regarding the relevance of cooperative principles and values to the future of mankind.
Jean-Louis Bancel, France
Jean Louis Bancel after having graduated in management and law, has for 15 years, held different positions as a civil servant in the French Ministry of Finances.
For many years he has been an active manager in French cooperative and mutual enterprises in the field of insurance and banking His last position for 15 years has been to be the executive chair of Credit Cooperatif, the oldest French cooperative bank serving cooperatives and social economy enterprises
- In France he has a long knowledge of advocating for mutuals and cooperatives. He is still the President of CoopFr the French national apex for all the cooperatives
At the international level: he has been:
- member of the board and President of the International Cooperative and Mutual Insurance Federation (ICMIF).
- He also has been the President of the International Cooperative Banks Associations
- Till a few weeks ago he has been the President of Cooperatives Europe
- In different positions (representing sectors, representing regions and as at large member) has been a member of the ICA board. He has been the chair of the principles committee which published the guidelines to the ICA principles.
Ana Aguirre, BASQUE COUNTRY (Spain)
Ana Aguirre is co-founder and worker owner at TAZEBAEZ S.Coop, an innovation group that focuses its activity in the creation of learning and training ecosystems for companies and education institutions; has a communication agency; runs a university degree and short higher education programs (Travelling U.); and participates in various companies in emerging sectors. In TAZEBAEZ Ana leads the Cooperative Development line and is a member of the innovation consultancy team.
Ana serves as the VP for Europe in the ICA Youth network and she also participates in the Executive Committee.
In the last two years she has been part of the creation and running, as operations lead, in the Platform Cooperatives NOW! course by Mondragon University and The New School. In this field she participates as one of the 12 people in the Harvard Research Sprint on Data Cooperatives.
Pauline Green, UK
Dame Pauline Green was the first woman President of the International Co-operative Alliance in its 115 year history. Elected on the 23rd November 2009 at the General Assembly of the Alliance, Pauline argued that the time was right for radical change in the priorities of the ICA, and called on members to rally to help her achieve the sort of global body that the size and reach of the movement deserves.
Pauline Green has been part of the UK co-operative movement for the past 40+ years from its youth movement, to being its advocate on European affairs, on to the European Parliament as a Co-operative Member of that Parliament. Over the next ten years she rose to be the leader of the largest political group in the European Parliament during which time she led the move to sack the European Commission and force it out of office.
In 2000 she retired her seat in Brussels and became Chief Executive of Co-operatives UK, the apex body for all co-ops in the UK. She was instrumental in bringing the different sectors of the movement together, successfully lobbied for new co-op legislation in the UK, and was a key player in driving a wave of new co-operative development. She retired from Co-operatives UK in October 2009 after being nominated to stand for election as President of the ICA.
During her 10 years at Co-operatives UK she joined the Board of the ICA, serving as Co-President of Co-operatives Europe and ICA Vice- President for Europe until her election as ICA President in 2009.
Since her retirement at the end of 2015, Pauline has worked with the co-operative movement in Malta to help heal the rift between the two national federations allowing the Maltese movement to grow. She is a director of Coop Exchange a new venture designed to attract co-operative capital via a mobile App. She ended her public speaking roles in 2019.
Maria Eugenia Perez Zea, Colombia
María Eugenia Pérez Zea, born in Medellín – Colombia, is a cooperative leader, with more than 20 years of experience in managerial positions within the cooperative and solidarity movement at the national and international level.
She has presided over leadership positions in Coomeva and its Cooperative Business Group, being elected as president of the Board of Directors since 2010 and re-elected in 2013, concluding her term in 2017.
She has been a member and coordinator in the COOMEVA Cooperative Business Group for various periods of the corporate committees of: Audit, Finance, Mutual Funds, Good Corporate Cooperative Governance and Statutory Reform.
She served as president of the Regional Committee for Gender Equity Regional – CREG of ACI Americas from 2010 to 2014 and vice president of it, from 2014 to date.
She is currently president of the Global Gender Committee of the International Cooperative Alliance – ICA and a member of the ICA world board.
María Eugenia is also the executive director of the Colombian Association of Cooperatives – ASCOOP, being the first woman president of the integration body with 61 years of experience.
She is a lawyer from the University of Medellín, a specialist in administrative law from the Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana, as well as in Socioeconomic Evaluation of Projects from the University of Antioquia. In addition, María Eugenia has experience in Cooperative Law, fiscal control, state contracting, quality management, boards of directors and good governance.
This cooperative leader has published several articles in different publications of the cooperative sector, has been a university teacher, and has been a national and international speaker on issues of cooperative regulation and management, gender equity, fiscal control, Sustainable Development Goals, among others.She was chosen as one of the 100 Most Influential Women in 2020 and recognized in the global cooperative movement by the SHE-COOPS organization.
Hagen Henrÿ, Finland
Born in 1952 in Germany. High school in Germany and in the United States; studies in law and French language at Saarbrücken and Geneva; qualification as German judge; post graduate studies in development issues and development law in Geneva and Paris; licentiate, doctorate and professorship qualification in law at the University of Helsinki.
Prior to working at the University of Helsinki, from where he retired at the end of 2020, he worked as Chief of the Cooperative Branch of the International Labor Organization (ILO), as legal advisor to the German Federal Minister of Economy and at the universities of Geneva and Saarbrücken. Since 1994 Henrÿ has consulted on cooperative policy and law in/for some 65 countries for national, regional and international governmental and non-governmental organizations, among which the ILO, the FAO, the World Bank, the EU, the OECD, the International Trade Center and the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA). He coordinated the ICA Cooperative Law Working Group, a predecessor of the current ICA Cooperative Law Committee (ICA CLC), which was established in 2013. Since then he has coordinated the ICA CLC.
Henrÿ has published widely on development questions, land law, comparative law and cooperative law and has been a frequent contributor to seminars and conferences in many countries over many years. He is a member of several scientific associations and of editorial boards of scientific journals. He has taught cooperative law and policy and comparative law at several universities and other institutions.
Onofre Cezário De Souza FILHO, Brazil
Dr. Onofre Cezario De Souza Filho graduated in Medicine from Federal University of Goiás and has a specialization course in Cooperatives Management by the Getulio Vargas Foundation. He started in the cooperative movement at the health cooperative Unimed Cuiabá, being one of the founders of the Unimed cooperative system. He was president of the Unimed Federation. Currently president of OCB and the National Service of Cooperative Learning – Sescoop in the state of Mato Grosso. Member of the Board of the Federation of Unions of Cooperatives of the Federal District and States of Goiás, Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul and Tocantins.
Ayeola Tajudeen Oriyomi, Nigeria
High Chief AYEOLA Tajudeen Oriyomi, a Deputy Director of Education with the Lagos State Civil Service of Nigeria and the President, Cooperative Federation of Nigeria (CFN), since 2017. He is a graduate of Economics Education from the Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago Iwoye, Nigeria.
He has a sterling track record of extensive experience in Economics, Education, Cooperatives and Public Administration spanning over 26years. He has been a board member of the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA)-AFRICA since 2018 and heads the Audit and Risk Committee.
He is the immediate past President of Lagos State Cooperative Federation (LASCOFED), Nigeria; Board Member, Cooperative Mortgage Bank Ltd of Nigeria and Heads the Cooperative Development Committee of the bank;
Member, Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT); Fellow, Institute of Professional Managers and Administrators of Nigeria; Patron, Association of Nigerian Authors (Lagos Chapter) and a Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Cooperative Professionals of Nigeria (ICOPRON).
Hilda Ojall, Kenya
She developed a great admiration and inspiration in working with youth and youth member owned institutions. Through her work with the youth, she has interacted with young men and women and had an opportunity to mentor youth in different sub regions of Africa. She is currently working with the Kenya Union of Savings and Credit Cooperatives (KUSCCO) subsidiary company – Mutual Assurance. Hilda is a certified Credit Union Development Educator (ADE). She has completed the D.E program, and is an educator of Credit Union /Saccos addressing different issues across Africa that affect Cooperatives. She is a former President of International Cooperative Alliance – Africa Youth Network (ICA-Africa YN) and Vice-president of International Cooperative Alliance Youth Network (ICA-YN). As the first ever elected President of ICA-Africa YN, Hilda has been instrumental in the formation of the Network’s regional committee and increased the number of youth engagement and participation to the Network’s activities hence increased cooperative visibility.
During her tenure, Hilda has organized for a number of national, regional, and global platforms to promote financial literacy, climate action through the “Go green campaign”, the Global Youth Forum (GYF 20 and 21), Global Cooperative Entrepreneurship (GCE) pilot program as a mentor to promoted business start-ups in the Africa region. She has also helped the ICA- Africa YN to get the affiliate member status with the African Youth Commission and ensured youth engagement discussions with different stakeholders such as DGRV, Fairtrade Africa, Aflatoun International and International Trade Centre.
Iñigo Albizuri Landazabal, Spain
Iñigo Albizuri Landazabal represents the International Cooperative Entrepreneurship Think Tank (ICETT) Working Group on Cooperative Identity as a Key Competitive Advantage, in the CIAG.
He is the Global Head of Public Affairs at Mondragon Corporation in the Basque Country of Spain. He is also the President of the International Organisation of Industrial and Service Cooperatives, a sector organisation of the International Cooperative Alliance, which includes 49 members with 65,000 affiliated enterprises employing four million people across the world.
A trained engineer with a degree in Industrial Engineering and Business Management, Mr. Albizuri has spent more than 20 years at the COPRECI Group, a cooperative belonging to the Mondragon Group, working in countries like México, U.S. and China to expand markets while committing to the cooperative’s values. He has also served as the President of MUNDUKIDE the NGO of MONDRAGON for pushing the creation of cooperatives in developing countries. He currently holds patents for 15 of his industrial inventions, and was awarded the Fair Saturday Award for his role as the creator of Humanity at Music Project of the Mongradon Corporation.
At the 33rd World Cooperative Congress, Mr. Albizuri spoke alongside Idoia Mendia, Deputy President and Regional Minister for Labour and Employment in the Basque Government, on ‘Strengthening Our Cooperative Identity’.
Erbin Crowell, USA
Erbin Crowell represents the DotCoop LLC which manages the dotCoop domain and the Coop Marque, in the CIAG.
Erbin Crowell serves as Executive Director of the Neighboring Food Co-op Association (NFCA), a secondary co-operative of more than 45 food co-ops and start-up initiatives with a combined membership of over 164,000 people across New England and New York State. With a mission of supporting co-operative growth, innovation, and shared success among its member food co-ops, the NFCA provides technical support, opportunities for peer collaboration, regional sourcing initiatives, marketing and policy advocacy, and educational and training resources. Erbin brings more than 25 years of experience in the co-operative movement, sustainable food systems, and Fair Trade, including work with Equal Exchange, the Cooperative Fund of New England, the Cooperative Development Institute, and the Valley Alliance of Worker Co-ops, and as a consultant with organizations such as the Federation of Southern Cooperatives / Land Assistance Fund. He currently serves on the boards of directors of the National Cooperative Business Association, CLUSA International (USA), the New England Farmers Union, and the Co-operative Management Education Co-operative (CMEC). Erbin received his B.A. in Anthropology from Brown University and his Master of Management: Co-operatives & Credit Unions from Saint Mary’s University in Nova Scotia, and is an adjunct lecturer at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he teaches courses on the co-operative movement.
Dr. Onofre Cezário de Souza Filho, Brazil
Dr. Onofre Cezário de Souza Filho graduated in Medicine from the Universidade Federal de Goiás, specialist in Cooperative Business Management from Fundação Getúlio Vargas. He began his career as Cooperativist at Unimed Cuiabá, he is one of the founders of Federação Unimed, where he was president for two terms. Current president of OCB in the state of Mato Grosso (OCB/MT), member of the National Board of FECOOP Centro-Oeste e Tocantins, he also represents the Brazilian cooperative movement as board member of the International co-operative Alliance. Dr Onofre is knowledgeable about several international cooperative experiences in the United States, Canada, and a great admirer of Mondragón’s cooperative movement.