Blog

December 20, 2019
New Belgium Brewing helped build the burgeoning craft beer market by shaping best practices in it: a quality product, consistent innovation, ethics and sustainability at the fore — and employee ownership at the core.    Employee-owned companies have had an outsized role in building the market for craft beers, the same hot market that eventually gobbled up New Belgium.    Click here to read Melissa Hoover's take on what we can learn from the New Belgium Sale, published on Fifty by Fifty... more
December 3, 2019
By Rebecca Bauen, Director of Education and Training   Democracy at Work Institute, in partnership with Rutgers University School of Management and Labor Relations, recently hosted a five-day Certificate in Participatory Management for managers and worker-owners from across the country. The partnership represented the evolution of DAWI's work to support the development of stronger worker-owned and worker-managed businesses throughout the U.S.   Thirty-three participants from across the... more
September 18, 2019
  By Rebecca Bauen, Program Director   The worker co-op, employee ownership, and community investment world lost a giant this summer with the passing of Sherman Kreiner in Winnipeg.  He died of leukemia, complicated by fibromyalgia, after a long hard fight.   In the l980's, Sherman supported his wife Cindy Coker, and Teresa Mansell, the co-founders of Childspace in Philadelphia, to structure their worker cooperative using an innovative non-profit/coop hybrid.  This is after he and Cindy had... more
March 22, 2018
“While it’s wonderful to think that family members will take over the business – this doesn’t always happen,” said Small Business House Committee Ranking Member Rep. Nydia M. Velázquez. “It is anticipated that many of these businesses will be bought by a rival, while others will be forced to close altogether, leaving empty Main Streets and hard-hit local economies. I am pleased that the bill we passed will help empower employees to become owners in their companies.”    At DAWI, we know that... more
November 19, 2017
The latest State of the Sector report by the Democracy at Work Institute and U.S. Federation of Worker Cooperatives covers research on worker-owned enterprises through 2015. Three years into surveying worker cooperatives on a national scale, we are positioned to analyze stability and change—demographically, and in terms of business performance, wages, and benefits. Download the report here
October 19, 2017
Together, let’s show off the worker cooperative movement The US Federation of Worker Cooperatives and the Democracy at Work Institute invites you to participate in our annual census to study the economic and social benefits of worker cooperatives. This is an opportunity to contribute to a major, ongoing research that will not only help shape the future for worker cooperatives in the US, it will also help us to show off just the strong, meaningful, and rapid growth of our sector. When we know... more
October 4, 2017
The Democracy at Work Institute is happy to celebrate co-op month with the rest of the movement! As we continue to see the growth of worker-owned businesses and a widespread understanding of the model, we renew our commitment to training and equipping leaders in the sector and being the “think and do” tank that helps the worker cooperative movement to grow strategically. We are at a tipping point in awareness of the worker cooperative structure- as the legislation like the WORK Act and the... more
March 27, 2017
The U.S. Federation of Worker Cooperatives and the Democracy at Work Institute deeply mourn the passing of Frank Adams. Frank was a tremendously influential worker cooperative advocate, developer and educator, and a founding board member of the USFWC. In memory of Frank we share here an obituary from Rebecca Bauen, DAWI's Senior Program Director: Honoring of Frank Adams 1934-2017 This week we mourn the passing of Frank Adams, a giant in the worker cooperative movement.  Frank is known best for... more
February 27, 2017
Democracy at Work Institute Board President and worker-owner at Opportunity Threads, Molly Hemstreet, spoke at the U.S. Regional World Meeting of Popular Movements in February, a convening of faith and social justice movement leaders. She gave the below address at the meeting.     My name is Molly Hemstreet.  I am from Morganton—a town in Western North Carolina.   During the late 1990s to early 2000s our surrounding community lost 47,000 jobs.  These were good manufacturing jobs.  When my... more
January 11, 2017
The US Federation of Worker Cooperatives and the Democracy at Work Institute, affiliated organizations working together to grow a powerful grassroots movement for worker ownership in the United States, join forces in our support for the Movement for Black Lives.  We sign on to the Vision for Black Lives, and we pledge our combined energy and resources to work toward community control and economic justice based on “ownership, not merely access” for Black communities.  At this critical historical... more