Blog

July 28, 2021
U.S. Representative Adam Smith (D-WA, 9th District) has reintroduced the Emergency Economic and Workforce System Resiliency Act, which creates a five-year funding stream to state and local workforce boards, including funds to assist firms in transitioning to employee ownership or cooperative models. The bill also includes funding to invest in new programs that prevent layoffs, assist displaced workers, and support employers to both preserve and create jobs. The Democracy at Work Institute is... more
July 28, 2021
The Democracy at Work Institute and Seed Commons are pleased to announce that as of August 1, 2021, Roodline Volcy will join the staff of Seed Commons as Director of Peer Advancement, leaving her position as DAWI’s Events and Training Manager.  This personnel transition continues an organizational affiliation between Seed Commons and DAWI. For the past year, Roodline has worked with both organizations, doing training and events with DAWI and facilitating and helping build capacity for the Seed... more
June 25, 2021
In response to the reauthorization of the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI), Democracy at Work Institute has begun a conversation primarily within the field of worker cooperative practitioners about how we might meet this opportunity (see our press release with Employee Ownership Expansion Network). Here we offer some thoughts gathered from dozens of conversations with partners, including those in the Workers to Owners Collaborative, on framing the opportunity, the field’s capacity... more
September 25, 2020
Photo Credit: New Economy Coalition The cooperative community has lost a tremendous spirit this week with the passing of Elandria Williams, a visionary agitator and unparalleled educator. Elandria was an immense force within the new economy space - a huge, joyous spirit and a powerful organizer who served in so many capacities -- from the Highlander Center, to the PeoplesHub, to the founding board of The Democracy at Work Institute.  We are forever grateful for Elandria’s contributions to the... more
July 1, 2020
      By Todd Leverette and Philip Reeves The murder of George Floyd and the heroic actions of movement organizers have once again exposed the social fragility created by this nation’s racist underpinnings. In an almost-poetic economic parallel, the Coronavirus pandemic has exposed decades of economic policy and investment practice that have left American workers, especially workers of color, with stagnant wages, declining wealth and little to no economic security.  As the government struggles... more
March 25, 2020
    The following is a letter from Cooperative Home Care Associates and Opportunity Threads to build support for frontline worker -owners responding to COVID-19.   Dear Cooperators,   We need your help.  These are unprecedented times and difficult for all of our communities.  Adria Powell (president and CEO of Cooperative Home Care Associates) and I are working to try and get home care workers protective surgical masks. Our health care workers are on the front lines and many are having to work... more
March 20, 2020
    Hello, partners and supporters of Democracy at Work Institute:   We hope you are keeping well and healthy in all ways, as the COVID-19/coronavirus changes our lives and work, and as we wait to see how transmission will be contained in the U.S. Because so much of DAWI’s work is connected to other organizations, we are updating partners to share how we have been and are likely to be affected. We hope this assessment and mitigation of risk fortifies all our resilience in unprecedented times.... more
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, Director of Education and Training   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... more

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