What is a co-op?

Cooperatives are Everywhere!

There are health care cooperatives, housing cooperatives, credit unions are cooperatives, and farmers often use this model too to pool resources for crop storage and expensive equipment.

Cooperative history

See the history of consumer food cooperatives like ours that trace back 200 years to Rochdale, England.

Main Market Co-op exists for the community of Spokane with a multiplier effect throughout the Inland Northwest. We work to create:

A market for healthy, local, sustainable food

A model cooperatively owned business
A healthier local environment and food system
A strengthened local economy and livlihoods

Co-ops operate according to 7 international principles that emphasize the many ways we do business differently. We're here to sell groceries, but we pledge to do that in a way that cares for all of our community and makes us stronger together.


Not for Profit and Community Driven

Main MarCo-op is intentionally a not for profit store so that we can emphasize the importance of our mission as a reason to exist and never put profit before the good of our community and the food we sell. When we DO make profit, we share that profit with our community and with our owners in the form of dividends. We aim to create sustainability in our business and its impact and grow community wealth - wealth shared with all and not hoarded by the few.

Food Quality

Main Market Co-op prioritizes local producers and small companies that take care of our community. We preference products that are made closer to Spokane and prioritize whole foods. We look for certifications like organic, Non-GMO verified, and Fair Trade that tells us when a company's claims have been verified.


Most importantly we listen to our owners and let them vote with their dollars on the products they do and don't want in our store.

Concern for Community

Our co-op is democratically owned by community residents, lending accountability and oversight to store operations. Our operations and profits are geared to increasing COMMUNITY wealth not Wall Street wealth. We invest in local producers, our employees, and local businesses and charitable organizations in alignment with our mission.

Concern for People

As a not for profit business, we direct the money we make toward making peoples' lives better as much as we can. We pay farmers fair prices, we've always given staff plenty of paid time off, a decent wage, and big discounts, and we reach out to our low income community with special discounts as well. Most importantly, as an employer and community owned business, we value diversity, transparency, and putting people before profit in our business decisions.

Concern for Environment

Everything we do begins with concern for the environment and its preservation for future generations. Our entire building is sustainably built, from rainwater recycling to certified sustainable wood to drought tolerant landscaping. We have product standards that aim to safeguard our community's health AND the environment's health - emphasizing always sustainable agriculture and food as cleanly grown and minimally processed as possible.

The difference ownership makes

Everyone is welcome to shop at Main Market Cooperative, but by joining our thousands of cooperative owners, you get something more - a stake in a local company that's committed deeply to our community and local food system. 


There are many options for health food in Spokane, but only one where you can become a co-owner of a mission driven retail business. Main Market is here to strengthen Spokane's food system, protect its environment, and care for and nurture the local economy. Your ownership ensures we always stay that way - locally driven.

Julie, Current member-owmer

"When I shop at the co-op I'm voting with my dollars. I'm supporting an idea for a better world and getting great groceries too." 

Benefits

Learn the many benefits of being an owner

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FAQ

Learn more about the ins and outs of membership with some of our most frequently asked questions from customers

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Important info for New Owners

Important information if you're considering becoming an owner or if you're a new/existing owner already!

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Business Partners

These fantastic locally owned businesses offer special discounts to Main Market Owners. Present your membership card (key fob) to be eligible for discount.

Our Board

Your board of directors are elected annually every Spring and serve 3 year terms. They act as the voice of the membership and serve as the governing body of the co-op - not running daily operations but setting policy and vision for how the store meets our members' needs now and in the future.

Ellen Maccarone

Board President


Sheri Shields

Vice President

Sheri has been in love with the Pacific Northwest and specifically Spokane since her 1st visit in 1986; as a result she moved to Spokane the day after graduating from High School. She has been co-owner of several businesses, including a stress reduction and wellness center, is a mother to 3 daughters and lover of nature and music. Sheri attended SFCC and earned her BA from Gonzaga University.

Her passion for wellness lead her to become certified as a Holistic Health Coach, now she leads workshops and works with individuals and groups; supporting people in making positive and sustainable lifestyle choices.

“As a health coach and fellow being on this planet I believe it is imperative that people have affordable access to high quality foods and products that are NON-GMO and Organic. I believe by supporting local farmers, producers and businesses who follow sustainable practices it is a win win for us, our community and our planet. I believe an awakening is happening across the planet that begs for the education of our communities on such matters. These beliefs are being modeled in the daily operations and management of Main Market; as a board member I strive to build on these values and further the mission of the co-op.”

Stephanie Brady

Treasurer

Stephanie Brady is a native to the Pacific Northwest and has lived in Spokane for 20 years. Stephanie is passionate about creating a healthy community by fostering access to healthy foods, exercise, health care and stress management. She is an avid gardener, cook, yoga student and yoga teacher (not to mention hiking, biking, jogging, skate skiing, mushroom foraging, trail maintenance, etc.).

Stephanie works at Potlatch Corporation, a verified leader in sustainable forestry, where she is the Corporate Controller. She is a CPA and brings over 30 years of experience in accounting, financial controls and corporate governance.

For Stephanie, Main Market provides an opportunity to continue building a healthy community for Spokane. 

Phil Spiegel


Originating from Kansas City, MO, Phil Spiegel came to the Northwest in 1981 as an electrical engineer. It seems like only yesterday that he ran his first Bloomsday race in 1985. An avid bicyclist throughout the Inland Northwest, he enjoys it now from a bicycle.

Working in the engineering field until 1992, Phil made a career shift into organic foods. Phil is the creator and owner of Small Planet Organics. From product development to marketing to accounting, he has show that the entrepreneurial spirit is still alive and well in the Inland Northwest. Now the Western Regional Sales Manager for Maple Valley Organic Maple Cooperative, Phil has a firm knowledge of what challenges face the Main Market Co-op.

Phil helped start the first food coop in Boulder, CO in 1980 and has been involved with many coops personally as a member and as a vendor and sales representative. 

To Phil, a natural and organic foods co-op has the unprecedented capability to connect people together in a community and nurture the health of both.

Tamy Roloff


Tamy grew up in Spokane, graduating from Ferris High School and EWU with a business focus. She began helping women have babies in 1985, and has been a licensed midwife since 2003. After having 4 children, with the help of a midwife, Tamy founded a full service natural food store in 1989. Some may remember the store, Total Health Foods Natural Grocery and Cafe, which focused on organic foods, local suppliers, herbs and educating the consumer. She closed it in 2013 and has been working as a midwife, birth educator, manufacturer of bulk herbal tea combinations for women and their families, and has recently begun a Masters Degree Program at Gonzaga in Organizational Leadership. Tamy loves to travel and recently went to Nicaragua and Costa Rica. She has 14 grandchildren and considers her family her most fulfilling and satisfying work.

 

Tamy began learning about natural and sustainable living from her midwife and mentor, Sister Marie Ladd, in 1980. She wanted her children to have the very healthiest lives possible, and was highly motivated to learn all she could. From there her work in retail and educating women and their families took a high priority, as she wanted everyone to benefit from optimum health and the food that sustains that. Wherever she has lived and traveled she has found the local expressions of organic, sustainable & local food sourcing. She believes in the benefit of co-ops and when she moved back to Spokane, Main Street Market Co-op, has been her go-to natural and organic food store. She is excited to be running for the Board of Directors as she has much to offer in supporting the direction the co-op is growing.

Tim Herold


Recent graduate of University of Washington's Evans School of Public Policy and Governance

Tim Herold grew up in Spokane, graduating from Gonzaga Prep in 2005. He graduated from the University of Washington in 2009 with a BA in political science, before returning to UW to earn his Master’s of Public Administration from the Evans School of Public Policy and Governance in 2015.

His interests center around creating livable and inclusive communities through improved public transportation and infrastructure, local food and urban farming movements, and smarter land use policy decisions.

Additionally, Tim spends his time working on his photography, organizing for progressive change with Democratic Socialists of America, reading vociferously, and occasionally performing as a DJ sets and stand-up comic around town. He loves Radiohead, British comedy shows, board games, and locally crafted microbrews.

Sarah Schwering


Sarah Schwering is the Senior Director of Marketing & Communications at Gonzaga University where she supports many of Gonzaga’s academic programs and departments as well as larger initiatives like Gonzaga Day and communications for the Gonzaga Will Capital Campaign. Sarah earned both a bachelor’s degree in business administration (’04) – with concentrations in marketing, human resources management and entrepreneurial leadership – and an MBA (’07) from Gonzaga.

Previously, she worked for Desautel Hege Communications as an account director, serving a wide range of clients with branding, marketing, writing, planning, research, media relations and communications training needs. She also served as an adjunct professor at Gonzaga in the School of Business Administration for four years.

Schwering has been involved in both the Gonzaga and Spokane communities, serving on the Gonzaga MBA/MaCC Executive Committee Board, International Trade Alliance Board, Spokane Junior League Board, Hogan Entrepreneurial Leadership Program Board (Chair) and more. Sarah and her husband Tim live in Spokane with their two sons, John (age 6) and Paul (age 4).

Nancy McKennon



Bylaws

Legal bylaws of our cooperative

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Policy Governance

This is the governing document of the co-op. It outlines the roles of the Board of Directors and General Manager. Both parties create monthly reports showing compliance or plans to come within compliance to ensure there is accountability for running our owners' business well.

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Next Public Meeting July 20th 5pm Main Market Co-op

If you're interested in attending, please RSVP by email below and pertinent documents and instructions will be emailed to you. A reminder that "public" meetings are open to active current member-owners only.

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Past Meeting Minutes

Coming soon

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