Board Updates – August 2021


by Bob Gibson

Renewing the Contract of GM Mike Houston

The TPSS Board of Representatives is pleased to announce that Mike Houston has agreed to a new contract to continue serving as the General Manager of the Co-op for another three years, beginning September 1.  Mike was originally hired in August 2018 and from the start he met if not exceeded our high expectations.  In the first year and a half, he oversaw a grocery operation that enjoyed growing sales, a very healthy balance sheet and a stable workforce. He worked with the Board on the execution of a mediation agreement with the Neighborhood Development Company as part of the development of the Junction, and ably represented the Co-op in a variety of community and business settings.

Then the going got tough. Mike guided the store through the unprecedented crisis presented by the pandemic. He switched the store to an on-line only status for several months. Sales plummeted but our staff and shoppers remained safe. The Co-op maintained full employment for our employees, and Mike ensured the financial health of the store with his success in procuring two Payroll Protection Program loans. On top of the turmoil caused by the pandemic, Mike devoted additional hours each week over many months this year to a protracted legal fight to maintain access for Co-op deliveries on the City-owned lot.

We are all looking forward to a hopeful return to ‘normalcy’ in the months ahead. With a dedicated and talented staff in place, and a supportive and growing membership, we’ll continue our mission of providing healthy food and a socially and environmentally conscientious community resource.

Consider Serving The Co-op As A Member of Our Board

Our annual elections for the TPSS Board of Representatives will take place in just a little more than two months. As a member, I like having an ownership stake in our cooperative business. I’m proud to know that our profits are reinvested in the business, while supporting competitive pay and good benefits for our employees, discounts for members and charitable contributions to local non-profits.

The health of the Co-op also depends upon the willingness of members to serve on the Board. Board members provide oversight of our financial health, have a direct voice in the policies that provide direction to our General Manager, and a role in setting the strategic direction of the business.

There are three seats up for election this year. We ask interested members to submit a nomination through the TPSS website beginning September 17 through October 14.  All qualified candidates will have a chance to speak at the Fall Membership Meeting on October 17. Voting is on-line and will take place from October 19 through November 14.