NEC Election 2020 – Candidate Profiles – Co-operative Party

NEC Elections 2020 - Candidate Profiles

Candidates for this year's Co-operative Party NEC elections were invited to send statements describing their experience within the Co-operative Party, the broader co-operative movement, their governance experience and a candidate statement.
Their submissions can be read here, under the relevant section for their nation, region or section.

Ballot papers will be despatched in August.  Please contact k.wilkie@party.coop if you have any questions about the NEC election.

East

Yaqub Hanif

Luton and Central Bedfordshire

Endorsed by: Herts. & Beds. Party, Luton & Central Beds. Branch, Norfolk Branch, St Albans, Watford & South Hertfordshire Branch.

Co-operative Party Experience:

Former Coop and labour party councillor in Luton. I have been the chair and currently the secretary for the Luton and Central Bedfordshire branch. I am also chair of the Herts and Beds Coop Party council. Have attended and spoken at annual conference every year since 2010. An active trade unionist since 2005

Co-operative Movement Experience

Helped to arrange a mini conference for party members in Stevenage in 2018 which i also chaired. Undertook visits to Plymouth and Oldham councils to see what cooperative practices they were implementing in local government.

Governance Experience

Member of the Luton Airport Board 2011-2015 (through Luton Borough Council). Currently chair of the Herts and Beds Coop Party council. Member of the eastern region coop party board. Coop party delegate to the eastern region labour party board. Treasurer of the Luton division of the National Union of Teachers.

Supporting Statement

It would be a tremendous privilege for me to serve on the NEC of the coop party. I am a committed, long-serving and active member of the party, who has managed a successful and active local branch and party, served as Coop & Labour party councillor, developed cooperative policies for local government.

Nigel Rushby

Luton and Central Bedfordshire

Co-operative Party Experience:

Have been a member of on and off for the last 30 years. Have stood as a Labour & Coop supporter in local elections. Have trouble getting to meetings as I work away a lot with my job. Committed Socialist with bags of campaigning experience.

Co-operative Movement Experience

Have represented the Coop at local govt level in my time as a Councillor.

Governance Experience

Have been a local councillor 3 times and have stood for local govt 6 times served on a number of local govt committees. Finance experience - Business Analyst by profession

Supporting Statement

I think the NEC needs strong, experienced representatives to not only protect the improvements we have made in recent years but also to move forward and continue to improve and take appropriate and decisive action against who seek to prevent progressive democratic changes from taking place within our Party.

Chris Vince

Harlow and Epping Forest

Endorsed by: Chelmsford Star Party

Co-operative Party Experience:

I have been actively involved in both the Labour and Co-operative Party’s for the past ten years and previously the secretary of my local Co-op Party from 2012-2014. I am an active campaigner and Councillor in Harlow canvassing over 250 times last year.

Co-operative Movement Experience

As secretary I supported the Co-op Party’s end legal loan shark campaign setting up local street stalls as well as working with our affiliated societies. I have represented Labour at three general elections and last year’s European elections as well as being a member of the Eastern regional board. I am a teacher, a keen trade unionist and my schools rep.

Governance Experience

I am a secondary school Maths teacher and have taught A-level Maths and Further Maths up to degree level. I have recently taken on the role of whole school data coordinator so am used to working with figures. As a Cllr I am director of our local authority trading company.

Supporting Statement

As an NEC member I will be proactive in engaging with members and reinvigorating our movement. As a regional board member I ensured I always reported back to members and promoted our work and as an NEC member I would look to promote the party to existing members and future members.

East Midlands

Jamie McMahon

Nottingham, Gedling and Rushcliffe

Endorsed by: Notts., Lincs. & Erewash Party, Lincolnshire Branch, NEMCO Branch, North West Leicestershire Branch.

Co-operative Party Experience:

I joined the Co-operative Party aged 16, passionate about the co-operative difference and maximising our voice.
My experience includes:
- Serving you on the NEC for the past three years.
- Chairing my Party Council, and was Secretary before.
- Serving on the EMids Regional committee.
- Flowing the flag as a Labour and Co-operative Parliamentary Candidate.
- And, in the increasingly distant past, I was national Youth Chair and EMids representative.

Co-operative Movement Experience

Our Party is the voice of our movement, and the co-operative movement runs in my family. I spent my Saturdays’ as a youngster running around the depot of old Ipswich, Norwich and Colchester Societies’ where my Dad worked.
Now, I’m proud to work supporting the creation of mutuals and co-operatives. Working with staff and people to create and support organisations that put people and communities first, accountable to all of us.

Governance Experience

Whilst representing the EMids on the NEC I’ve understood the importance of ensuring our Party has good governance and financial management. I’ve served on the NEC’s Audit and Rules Committees – investing my time ensuring our Party is well run.

Every day at work, I create mutuals and co-operatives, designing their Boards, governance and financial arrangements. I have qualifications in good governance from the Association of Corporate Governance Practitioners and Finance from my MBA.

Supporting Statement

It’s been an honour to serve the EMids. If reelected I will continue to ensure our voice is heard. We know that co-operation is the answer to the challenges we face. Our Party is strong and ready to argue our values.
In my time I have:
- Campaigned for the EMids – securing our first Regional Conference and ensuring they continue.
- Been active and accessible – visiting Branches and Party Councils to be accountable.

Martin Strube

Northampton, Daventry, and South Northants

Endorsed by: Central England Eastern & Southern Party, Northampton, Daventry & South Northants. Branch

Co-operative Party Experience:

Been a member most of working life. Currently Branch Secretary. Also representative to and Vice Chair of Central England Eastern & Southern Co-operative Party SPC. Please see:
https://www.facebook.com/martinstrube4nec/

Also active in local Labour Party. Formerly Branch /CLP chair /secretary. (Wrote “An Open Letter to the PLP” after the recent election which seems to have struck a chord). See:
https://www.facebook.com/showalittlerespectpage/

Willing to attend any meetings of members to respond to questions.

Co-operative Movement Experience

Partner at a Co-operative Development co-op (www.solutions.coop ) and Secretary of CD consortium (www.development.coop ).

Member of housing co-op (Secretary), credit union, several Retail Societies, including The Group as former Area Committee member.

Wrote “Demise of The Co-operative Group” (went mini-viral on Facebook), “The Parallel Economy”, “Co-operative Off-Shorism”, readable at:
https://www.facebook.com/pg/martinstrube4nec/posts/?ref=page_internal
Willing to attend any members' meetings to respond to questions.

Governance Experience

Have served on company and trust Boards as Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, Non-Executive Director. An experienced public sector Project Manager, have personally managed funds in excess of £5 million, including drafting and presenting financial reports to Boards and Committees.

Thorough understanding of company, trust, and constitutional law.

Devised the “Democracy Audit”, downloadable at:
www.martinstrube.com

Please also see:
https://www.linkedin.com/in/martin-strube/

https://portal.intouchnetworks.com/profile

Willing to attend members' meetings to respond to questions.

Supporting Statement

Very supportive of Manifesto, preferably with commitment to not just “doubling”, but also to protecting and developing "stand-alone" co-operative economies – nationally and globally.

Concerned that current forms of democratic machinery do not assure that elected representatives are held properly to account. Would like to discuss and implement ways to improve on this. Great believer in Member nominated and properly resourced panels and select committees.

Unhappy with 75 word restriction on supporting statements.

London

Ian Adderley

Lewisham

Endorsed by: London Party, Bexley Branch, Brent & Harrow Branch, Croydon Branch, Merton Branch, Islington Branch,  Sutton Branch.

Co-operative Party Experience:

I have been the Chair of the London Co-operative Party since 2016. With this experience I am confident I have the insight and expertise to represent London effectively.

I bring to the role previous experience on the Co-operative Party NEC. And am grounded with a history of activism at a local level as a branch officer (treasurer, and vice chair) and was a regional representative on the inaugural National Youth Committee.

Co-operative Movement Experience

I’ve served on the North London Co-op Group Area Committee and have worked for a regional co-operative council – supporting and networking co-operatives.

For the last 5 years I’ve chaired the UK Society for Co-operative Studies, who produce the Journal of Co-operative Studies. And have had my work published in the Journal of Co-operative Law.

Before moving to London, I chaired Fairtrade Leeds, and founded and chaired Fairtrade Yorkshire.

Governance Experience

I was Called to the Bar in 2010.

I have experience serving on boards of directors of charities (British Youth Council), social enterprises (Mediation Leeds), and co-operatives (the Co-operative Party).

I’ve delivered seminars on co-operative law to lawyers and senior society staff from across the movement as well as lectures on society legislation.

Supporting Statement

Now is an important time for the Co-operative Party, and the co-operative movement. I am passionate about the need for the Party to be the movement’s voice in politics and believe it is crucial we are a strong influence on the policy of our sister party, the Labour Party. I will utilise my current and previous experience to ensure London is well represented in a strong and growing Co-operative Party and movement.

Stella Creasy

Waltham Forest

Endorsed by: Waltham Forest Branch

Co-operative Party Experience:

I have been a Labour and Cooperative MP since 2010. During that time working with colleagues across the Cooperative movement I have led several successful campaigns rooted in our cooperative principles- from taking on the legal loan sharks and promoting credit unions to fighting for fairtrade and supporting the use of citizens assemblies. I wish to bring that experience to developing the impact of the Cooperative Party in the UK.

Co-operative Movement Experience

Throughout my time in the Cooperative party I have worked closely with the Cooperative movement to help grow its work and recruit members. This includes attending cooperative movement conferences to give workshops on campaigning - whether in the South West or at Coop Youth Conference- and joining with Cooperatives around the country to promote their activities including at the Cooperative Group AGM and in parliament.

Governance Experience

As well as playing an active role in Waltham Forest Coop, prior to entering parliament, I was deputy director of Involve, a democracy charity, Head of Campaigns at the Scout Association and a school Governor, all roles which involved oversight and management of budgets. Since becoming an MP I enable the local community in Walthamstow to participate directly in the management of my MPs budget, putting into practice Cooperative values!

Supporting Statement

Cooperative ideals, experience and our ability to engage the public in the pursuit of social justice has never more been needed to address the challenges of the modern world. The NEC plays a crucial role in supporting Cooperative Branches to be changemakers- I want to bring my passion for our shared principles and track record of activism to helping the Cooperative Movement be at the forefront of progressive activism in the UK.

Brahma Mihir Mohanty

Brent and Harrow

Co-operative Party Experience:

I have been a member of the party since 2016 having attended conferences and events both locally and nationally, including the centenary conference. I work closely with and have in the past with prominent Cooperative MPs including Gareth Thomas MP (whose CLP executive committee I serve on), and with Jim McMahon MP being my previous local MP. This inspired me to get more involved with the Cooperative Party and further their (and Labour's) values.

Co-operative Movement Experience

Closely involved with Gareth Thomas MP, helping him with the recent General Election campaign, and also helping other Cooperative members/councillors with their campaigns. I continuously look to strengthen my commitment to the party and its values by being involved locally as a member of Brent and Harrow Cooperative Party. Channelled my passion for Cooperative values during the recent General Election where I stood as a Labour candidate (though missed the deadline for joint nomination).

Governance Experience

Extensive experience in finance/consulting sectors with strong analytical/problem-solving skills. Served on the boards and committees of numerous groups: Harrow West CLP Executive Committee, Oxford University Labour Club, Cambridge University Labour Club, The Oxford Union, The Cambridge Union, Labour Campaign for Free Movement, The Oxford Guild. Member of GMB, Unite, Fabian Society, Jewish Labour Movement. Working towards CFA and Investment Management Certificate and in the final stages of an MBA (with particular focus on Finance/Investment).

Supporting Statement

As a Labour and Cooperative member and a supporter of their values, running for NEC was a natural choice. I have always advocated for a fairer and more just society that works for all with at its core, fairer and more equitable business and trading practices. This has only been further strengthened by my extensive business/finance experience and I want to combine this with Cooperative values through a role on the NEC.

Karunakaran Sugathan Thekkeppurayil

Newham

Co-operative Party Experience:

I have been a member of cooperative party since 2nd of April 2013. It was through the local Compass meeting that I came to receive invitation from Mr Alan Griffith of the local coop party to join in. Since then I have been involved in the both local labour party and coop party .

It was in 2017 , the centenary conference in London that I had a chance to speak in the conference.

Co-operative Movement Experience

In India, I grew up in cooperative environment in Kerala, a south Indian state where socialists governments are in power since 1957. I had experience collective ownership and running credit unions. In UK myself have been created a society of south Indian travellers primarily to overcome the travel scam that had been affected the community frequently. In addition to the objective was to augment the power of customers for better deals during the peak holidays

Governance Experience

I am a director of a travel society. I was a school governor for three years. I had been the chair of the New ham Labour Group from 2018 to 2019.
Post graduated in politics and law graduated from London Met. I did volunteer job as an initial case assessor at Toynbee hall Aldgate. My experience, knowledge and commitment towards cooperative values is unquestionable. As a staunch socialist I committed to explore new cooperative values.

Supporting Statement

The challenges from emerging global business imperialism like Google and Amazone etc. as a result of neo liberal economy that have been started decades ago is a threat . The threat can only be resisted through fostering and augmenting cooperative values in all sphere of life. I am really very proud of the achievements that have been achieved by UK Cooperative establishment in the last century. I am committed to need to carry forward the movement.

Princess T Thomas

Walthamstow

Co-operative Party Experience:

I am applying for this opportunity because I am passionate about people especially the youth.

I have seen and experienced suffering, poverty, lack of discipline, lack of direction, miseducation and more in my community & society at large and want to make a little contribution of my own.

Im a natural communicator being a teacher, an Agony Aunt &inspirational Motivativatiinal speaker. I have worked with people living with stigmatisation and helped to give hope.

Co-operative Movement Experience

I have been a member for a number of years and follow events through keenly as they unfold.

I support my local& national cooperative in every way possible. I am part of many other cooperatives too which shows me in true testament to the cooperative cause be it locally or nationally and hope I can represent you all well enough. Thank you

Governance Experience

As a member of a board of trustees in a social enterprise namely - Enablement International (www.enablementinternational.com), which is a charity that helps the vulnerable and disabled through workshops, motivational speaking & pageants.

As someone that is a teacher & giving care I've worked with Charity orgs contracted through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and others. This meant i had to organise and oversee adequately areas of governance, finance dispensation & evaluation of budgets.

Supporting Statement

I am from a BAME community & believe I stand for hope of all communities to uphold good & inclusive values whilst spreading love at every opportunity as a cooperative.

I'm New to this in many respects but believe being real is where we are in politics today.

I am applying for this as I am passionate about people. I have seen suffering, poverty, lack of discipline, lack of direction in our society at large.

North East and North Cumbria

Michael Bell

Tyneside

Endorsed by: Tyneside Branch.

Co-operative Party Experience:

Over the last few years have been proud to serve as secretary to the largest and fastest growing branch our region. I've travelled from Tynemouth to Workington, Cramlington to Grangetown, campaigning for Co-op candidates and recruiting new co-operators. If you elect me to serve you at the highest level, I will seek to grow our party in number, and our influence in the Labour movement, while defending our independence as a party

Co-operative Movement Experience

I have worked in the co-operative sector for over a decade, as steward of a small customer-owned bar on Tyneside. It was my work here, and the sense of community I encountered that instilled co-operative principles in me long before I first heard of the Co-op Party. I am a proud member of two credit unions, two social clubs, the Phone Co-op, and of course the Co-op Group

Governance Experience

I have served on our party council's executive for two years now, after being elected to the role of assistant secretary.

Supporting Statement

Like most of you I am a proud Labour Party member, but more than that I am proud of our own party's independence. I want to increase our public visibility, especially that of our candidates, and also to ensure that our party is never drawn into or used in Labour's own factional disputes. We owe it to our affiliated societies that we speak for them before we speak for anyone else.

Janine Docherty

Durham North & City

Endorsed by: Sunderland Branch, Teesside Branch.

Co-operative Party Experience:

Served as Co-operative Party NEC member - North East and North Cumbria since 2017. I have championed our region’s members on issues including widening participation in party conference and choosing candidates for election. I worked to secure Newcastle as host for the 2019 local government conference.

Joined in 2010, Active member of North Durham & City branch and of Regional Council, working on issues such as equalities and policy development.
Labour Party member since 1998.

Co-operative Movement Experience

Director and trustee of local development trust, operated on co-operative principles.

Member of several co-operatives, including a credit union.

4th generation of my family to be a member of the Co-operative Group.

Co-chaired North Durham Women’s conference November 2018 as representative of Co-operative Party. The conference commemorated 100 years since women first got the vote and brought together a range of stakeholder groups to discuss progress made and needed.

Governance Experience

Co-operative Party NEC and society board. Sub-committees:
Policy Committee – securing region’s preferences in policy consultation.
Staffing and Remuneration Committee – work included recruiting new General Secretary.

Rules Committee – ensuring rules are fit for purpose.

Disciplinary Committee.

Corporate Governance Certificate – Associate member of Association of Corporate Governance Practitioners.

Master of Business Administration – Durham University

Profession: Certified technology project manager with over 10 years experience.

Director, Trustee of local development trust.

Supporting Statement

I wish to carry on promoting the members' views and the profile of the region so that we can continue to promote co-operative principles and candidates in elections. We have work to do given recent election results. Our members can do wonders when we work together and I was delighted to support the community wealth building event led by the Sunderland branch.
I have lived and worked in both the North East and Cumbria.

North West

Gary Booth

Liverpool, Sefton & Halton

Endorsed by: North West North Party Council, East Lancashire Branch, Pendle & Burnley Branch, Preston & South Ribble Branch.

Co-operative Party Experience:

Current Member of the NEC
Chair of the Liverpool, Sefton & Halton Branch.
Secretary of the North West North Party Council.
Delegate to the North West Regional Co-op Party.
Former Co-op Party Representative on the North West Labour Party Regional Board

Co-operative Movement Experience

Former Member of the CRS Liverpool District Committee
Former Chair of the Co-op Group Merseyside Area Committee
Former Chair of the Co-op Group North West Counties Area Committee

Governance Experience

Former Chair of Arnot Street Primary School Governors.
Former Liverpool City Councillor

Supporting Statement

After the disastrous General Election result many people were in a state of despair. The opportunity to campaign for a better way of shaping the society we live in and the way it is governed has been taken away from us for another five years. We must redouble our efforts in order to see change happen. I have been a committed co-operator all my adult life, I ask for your support for the NEC.

Grigore Donose

Salford

Co-operative Party Experience:

We will jointly provide all the projects carried out in the campaign with my help,I will be able to see if some problems are,or it is good to continue with confidence.

Co-operative Movement Experience

I would like to grow to 80 % percent. It is possible now.

Governance Experience

When I support, some idea desired by the leader are made with the performance.

Supporting Statement

I am worried about the negative developments that are conceived by some that do not perform.

Scotland and Northern Ireland

Ruth Hall (elected unopposed)

Glasgow

Co-operative Party Experience:

Since becoming a member, I have been vice-chair of the South Essex branch, and stood in the local elections in May 2019 as a Labour and Co-operative candidate. I was the first candidate approved by the party to stand in the election and was interviewed for the spring/summer edition of The Pioneer. I have also attended every conference, since becoming a member, and am active in the women’s network.

Co-operative Movement Experience

I worked for The Co-operative Group for 15 years, and am elected to the National Members Council, sitting on the Member Voice Committee. I am a Trustee for The UK Society for Co-operative Studies, and I was a speaker at The Co-operative College centenary conference on youth action day. I am on the steering group for Co-operative Futures conference, leading a discussion on transportation and creation of a co-operative solution.

Governance Experience

Having sat on The Co-operative Groups National Members Council, I have played a part in the democratic structure of one of the UKs largest co-operatives. Holding the board to account, being a guardian of the co-operatives values and principles and scrutinising the business acumen. Being on the board of UKSCS, I work in a team to ensure creation of its strategy and policies, engagement with members and delivery of events.

Supporting Statement

I want to see the co-operative movement creating more progressive sustainable action for which I believe The Co-operative Party belongs at the heart of. I don’t want to just double the size of the co-operative sector but see co-operation be interwoven into the daily lives of everyone living and working in the UK. We need to secure the future of our movement and see the UK once again as world leaders.

South East

Rosa Bolger

Oxford

Co-operative Party Experience:

Rosa is a West Oxfordshire District Councillor and in May 2019 became the first woman Leader of the now Labour & Co-operative controlled Witney Town Council. Rosa has been delegate at Co-op Party's national conference and is a regular speaker at various Co-op Party events, including facilitating a session at a recent training weekend for new Co-operative councillors. In 2019, Rosa stood as Labour & Co-operative Parliamentary candidate in Witney.

Co-operative Movement Experience

In her role as Leader of the Witney Town Council, Rosa is working to transform the council into an, accessible, and outward facing council that values the contribution of local residents. She is working on devolution of power from larger authorities to amplify the voice of the community, as well as encouraging the growth of the co-operative sector in Witney with a focus on community wealth building and community energy.

Governance Experience

Rosa is Chair of Witney Town Council's Policy, Governance and Finance Committee and also Chair of the newly formed Climate and Biodiversity Committee. At district level, Rosa sits on both Finance Management and Audit scrutiny committees. Rosa is a governor of a local education foundation and is an elected member of the committee of Labour Women's Network. Her experience of being Women’s Officer on the Witney CLP executive, further demonstrates her governance and financial knowledge.

Supporting Statement

I'm standing for election to the NEC because, at my roots, I'm a community activist committed to fighting inequality and promoting a society of Labour and Co-operative values. I will be an energetic and active voice on the NEC, standing up for towns and villages, not just big cities. I'm a recent graduate of the Jo Cox Women in Leadership programme, a mother to two young children, a reluctant runner and a gin enthusiast.

Anne Rouse

West Surrey

Endorsed by: Canterbury & Swale Branch, West Surrey Branch

Co-operative Party Experience:

I stood as a joint labour and co-operative candidate for the borough council election in May 2019 and found that the local community were often unaware of the Co-operative Party values. I had support from the party during the campaign.

Co-operative Movement Experience

I joined the party relatively recently but attended the conference in Reading last year and was able to assist Lynda McDermott by taking minutes of all the key speeches.

I also attended a meeting the previous year for the West Surrey branch.

Governance Experience

I have been a chair of Governors at two schools in Guildford (one school for it's final year and the other for 16 years, 7 as chair). I have been a chair of one charity for the past 10 years and have just joined the board of another.
I am a self employed accountant

Supporting Statement

I feel that the Co-operative Party should be more widely recognised. I stood in the General Election as a candidate for Guildford in 2019 and was unable to stand as a joint candidate because of the limited number of places available and was selected with only 6 weeks to go.

I am particularly interested in education and the tax burden placed on small self employed businesses and how the Co-operative Party supports them.

South West

Patricia Juby

Gloucester, Forest of Dean and Tewkesbury

Endorsed by: Exeter & Devon Branch, Swindon Branch

Co-operative Party Experience:

Midcounties Co-operative Party representative
Chair Gloucestershire and Swindon Co-operative Party Council
Chair Gloucester, Forest of Dean and Tewkesbury Party Council
Member of the South West Regional Party
Organising events for the local Co-operative Party Branch (eg a focus on Co-operative housing, the Co-operative Councils Innovation Network)
Attendance at Co-operative Party’s Annual Conference
Attendance at the South West Regional Party weekend school

Co-operative Movement Experience

Elected Member and Chair of Midcounties Member Engagement Committee and member of the Midcounties Community Funding Committee.
Director Revolver Coffee Cooperative
Member and former secretary to the UK Society of Cooperative Studies
Member Cooperative College
Member and Vice Chair Coops and Mutuals Wales.
Former governor to Beaufort Cooperative Academy, Grange Primary School and Harewood Infants School. All were members of or associate members of the South Gloucester Learning Trust; former secretary to the SGLT.

Governance Experience

I have a Masters in Business Administration
Director Revolver Coffee Co-operative
Trustee and Director Aspire Sports and Cultural Trust; Chair, Transactions Committee
Director SHARP Life and Learning Skills CIC (to Oct 2019)
Former Trustee and Secretary to the UK Society of Co-operative Studies
Finance experience within HE – responsible for negotiating and monitoring the budget for the community placements undertaken 2000 medical students at Manchester Medical School(nearly £4m).

Supporting Statement

I am passionate about co-operatives and believe that a diverse and healthy movement offers economic and sustainable advantage at the local, national and international level. Change is needed. The world needs to find alternative solutions to the current capitalist model. I would work hard to promote co-operation as a solution, and am prepared to work across the political spectrum to enable the development of the necessary policies and campaigns.

Susan Milestone

Bristol

Endorsed by: Bristol Party

Co-operative Party Experience:

As current NEC representative for the South-West I have gained valuable experience of the work of the NEC. 2017 - elected to the Policy, Rules and Disciplinary Sub-Committees.

Helped formulate policy - e.g. BREXIT, environment etc.

Helped update rules at NEC meetings and telephone conferences.

Undertook training in effective corporate governance and finance.

Helped set strategy of Party during annual strategy weekends/phone conferences.

Gave regular reports, attend members’ feedback sessions locally/regionally.

Co-operative Movement Experience

Re-elected as a member of the Group’s National Members’ Council. I have a unique perspective on the interface between the movement and Party e.g. a good overview of conditions for employees in frontline of stores with the Party’s joint USDAW campaign to end violence against shop workers.

Attended surgeries for local co-ops, Co-op College event, Group AGM and Co-op LGA Conference, Party Spring conference; visited Co-op Academy in Manchester.

Governance Experience

MBA European Business including business finance and accounting, European Business Culture, Environment, Strategic Management, Marketing, IT, Electronic Communication, Human Resources Management.

Post-graduate study of social policy/equalities.

Former school governor, experience of setting targets, managing finances, appointing staff, reviewing staff performance.

Specific training in effective co-operative governance, understanding co-operative finances. Involvement in helping build a co-operative alternative to UBER.

Director of Co-operative Party Limited/Upper Horfield Community Trust gives hands-on experience.

Supporting Statement

Having thoroughly enjoyed the NEC and attended every meeting, I would like endorsement to continue so that, with your input, I can influence the direction of the Party. I enjoy working as part of a team and feel I make a valuable contribution to the work.

Having experience of environmental campaigning (Greenpeace, Schumacher Society) introduced the debate on “Climate Change, Energy and Environment” at Conference 2019.

Former Bristol City Councillor, Vice-Chair - Bristol Labour Party.

Mike Owen

Cornwall

Co-operative Party Experience:

I am an enthusiastic member and I was a keynote speaker at the party conference in 2017 where I spoke about the creation of one of the largest co-ops in Wales and the first to embrace tenants and employees. I attended the 2018 conference debating mutuals. I also helped draft the party’s response to the Welsh Government Housing Review and was invited to join the party round tables on housing policy of the party.

Co-operative Movement Experience

A career setting up and working in housing co-operatives :-
• CEO at Merthyr Valleys - led change to a housing cooperative. Coop colleagues visiting from Mondragon described how they were “blown away by the enthusiasm and levels of involvement in this mutual”.
• Helped set up the hugely successful Taf Fechan Co-op in Merthyr l and in my early career I worked for Birmingham Coop Housing helping establish TMOs and co-ops.

Governance Experience

I will bring both governance and finance skills to the NEC:-
• Currently chair of a community housing association and was appointed by the Welsh Government to an organisation to improve governance.
• Fellow of the RSA for my work on governance.
• Previously I was the Chair of the National Federation of ALMOs and worked on the fiscal changes that have again allowed councils to build council houses.
• Managed the spending of over £100m improving public housing.

Supporting Statement

The Coop Party can heal the disconnect between people who have no power and the events and activities that shape their lives. Coops help people reconnect with collectivism creating inclusive communities and a fairer more equitable economy by doubling the size of the co-op economy. I believe in sharing power and involving people in decisions and if elected as an NEC member I will work to engage, enthuse and involve members across the regions.

Wales

Josephine Rao

South East Wales

Endorsed by: North Wales Branch

Co-operative Party Experience:

I have been a member of the cooperative party for over 25 years and believe in the cooperative ideals, values and principles as well as mutualisation. I strongly support the 12 ideas that the cooperative as for local government plus i respect and support the cooperative plans and agenda for wales and great britain as a whole.

Co-operative Movement Experience

I am currently a member of the South East Co-operative Party Branch and have been a member of the Co-operative Party for 30 years.

I previously held the following positions i.e. Chair and Secretary of the Caerphilly Branch, Secretary of the South Wales Party Council and Chair of the All Wales Party Council twice as well has on the Co-operative Party's Standing Orders Committee.

Governance Experience

I have been the Secretary/Treasurer of the Caerphilly Co-operative Branch as Treasurer and Auditor of other organisations including the Labour Party (our sister party). But, I would be interested in attending the relevant governance and financial training course to acquire the necessary qualifications which are required.

Supporting Statement

I feel that I would make a valid contribution to the nec - speaking up on issues that affect Wales as well as continuing to support the labour party and the welsh assembly which is the only labour government in wales.

Mary Wimbury

North Wales

Endorsed by: Cardiff & Vale Branch

Co-operative Party Experience:

Co-op Party member for over 30 years and regular attender at meetings. Former Treasurer Wales Co-op Party and delegate to Wales Party Council. Labour and Co-op candidate both for Wrexham in the 2019 General Election and as lead North Wales regional list candidate in 2016 Welsh Assembly election. Also European candidate in 2019. Former Co-op Party delegate to Welsh Labour conference and delegate to Co-op Party conference.

Co-operative Movement Experience

I'm a keen member of the Co-op Group, regular shopper at my local store, have a co-op bank account and get energy from Co-op Energy. I always try to put my co-operative principles into practice and develop consensus where possible, whether as Chair of my CLP, as Vice-Chair of the North Wales Regional Partnership Board for Health and Social Care or in other work and voluntary roles.

Governance Experience

I am Chief Executive of a not for profit organisation, responsible for governance and finance reporting to our Board. I previously ran a UK-wide registered charity with similar responsibilities but I also needed to report to and comply with the requirements of the Charity Commission. I was Treasurer of the Wales Co-op Party and I have been a General Election Agent and on the board of UK, Wales and local organisations.

Supporting Statement

In December I stood to be North Wales' first Labour & Co-op MP. People were curious and then enthused when I talked about Co-operative politics. I want to be on the NEC to build that stronger policy platform and recognition. I'd visit all Welsh branches and work with them to promote Co-op values locally and ensure the UK party truly reflects our devolved nation and its decision making.

West Midlands

Chris Bain

Birmingham, Solihull and Tamworth

Co-operative Party Experience:

I have been a member of the Coop Party for over 10 years and the NEC since 2017. I have represented the Party on the Regional Board since 2018 and the National Policy Forum since 2019. I have been elected as Chair of West Midlands Labour Party Conference Arrangements Committee for 2020. I was a Labour and Cooperative Parliamentary Candidate in GE2019, and have been Secretary of Birmingham Solihull & Tamworth Branch for 4 years

Co-operative Movement Experience

I have been a member of the Midlands Cooperative Society and the Coop Group for many years. I am a member of the Tamworth Coop. I have been heavily involved in the Credit Union movement both as a Chief Executive in South Birmingham CU (Communisave) and as President of Newtown South Aston CU. I am working now, on the National Policy Forum and the Regional Conference to ensure cooperation is part of any policy platform.

Governance Experience

I have served on a number of Boards as a Chief Executive and as Chair. I was Chair of the Federation of Independent Advice Centres for 4 years, Chair of North Warwickshire Primary Care Trust for 5 years, Chair of Governors at Coleshill Comprehensive School for 5 years. I am currently Chair of the International Centre of Excellence for Community Schools, Chief Executive of Healthwatch Warwickshire, and sit on the Board of Staffordshire Housing Group.

Supporting Statement

I am standing for re-election as an NEC Member partly because so much has been achieved over the last 3 years; 3 successful Regional Conferences, a good Mayoral Hustings, a proposal to close regions successfully opposed, but there is much more to do. This will be a time of great change for our sister Party and I am keen to see our members in the Region fully involved in what those changes might mean.

Rupinder Singh

Coventry and Warwickshire

Co-operative Party Experience:

I am the Secretary of the Central Midland Party for the last four years, during this time I have made the party more open, welcoming and engaging. We have increased our numbers of elected members in local elections many times, and we made an addition of a Cooperative MP in the West Midlands. We are actively engaged with our neighbouring region and collaboratively work with the Labour Party to make this world a better place.

Co-operative Movement Experience

I am a member of the Midcounties, I have been banking with Smile for the last 20 plus years, I use Co-op insurance and been supportive of other mutual organisations like which and Coventry Building Society. I am actively pursuing cooperative housing options in Coventry.

Governance Experience

I am elected councillor in the City of Coventry and chair of Finance and Corporate Services Scrutiny Board (1). I have a Master Degree in Economics. I sit on the Board of Coventry Refugee and Migrant Centre and play an active role in reforming the working of the Centre.

Supporting Statement

I am standing for the NEC to bring a fresh perspective, new energy and a different mindset at the heart of our organisation. I believe our movement has far more to offer to our citizens by being a force of good governance at every level of their experience. Cooperative Party needs to work in a fashion that it offers true inroads to the shires, towns and villages where we need a political home for people.

Gareth Snell

North Staffordshire

Co-operative Party Experience:

I am a regular attendee of the North Staffordshire Branch, serving 3 years as Branch Secretary. I have served as both a Labour & Co-operative Councillor in Newcastle-under-Lyme and the Labour & Co-operative MP for Stoke-on-Trent Central. As Council Leader in Newcastle, I took the council into the Coop Council Network and have supported Labour & Coop candidates across Staffordshire.

Co-operative Movement Experience

I am a member of the Co-op Group and formerly a director of the Staffordshire Credit Union.

As Council Leader, I took my council into the CCIN and served on the values and principles board.

Governance Experience

I served as a Director of the Staffordshire Credit Union and held several senior roles in Local Government and within the union movement. My previous day job was the Central Services Manager for UNISON in the West Midlands handing regional finances.

Supporting Statement

I am standing for the NEC as I believe that there is a huge opportunity for the Coop Party to influence politics in the West Midlands. The Coop Party offers real life solutions to the problems we face across the region. Our Council's supporting the Modern Slavery Charter and make the case for mutualism. As an NEC member I will work to embed Coop values across the West Midlands.

Yorkshire & Humber

Cheryl Barrott

Sheffield

Endorsed by: Barnsley Branch

Co-operative Party Experience:

I joined the Co-operative Party, as I've been active within the Co-op Movement all my life. I'm the Co-Chair of my local branch, a Vice Chair of the Regional Party Council, Chair of the City Region Mayors Panel for Co-operation and I represent the Co-op Party on the LCF (Sheffield) and the National Labour Party Policy Forum (Health and Social Care) I'm also active in our BAME and Disability Fora.

Co-operative Movement Experience

Within the movement: I chaired Co-ops Y&H, for many years and currently serve on the board of Co-ops UK. I've founded 3 Co-ops and support the development of others, mainly through the Sheffield Co-operative Development Group and the Aizlewood Group. I'm a member of the Community Wealth Building Unit (Labour Party) was a member of the Co-operatives Unleashed implementation Group and contributed to the Alternative Models of Ownership report.

Governance Experience

Within the movement: I chaired Co-ops Y&H, for many years and currently serve on the board of Co-ops UK. I've founded 3 Co-ops and support the development of others, mainly through the Sheffield Co-operative Development Group and the Aizlewood Group. I'm a member of the Community Wealth Building Unit (Labour Party) was a member of the Co-operatives Unleashed implementation Group and contributed to the Alternative Models of Ownership report.

Supporting Statement

It's been, an honour and a privilege to serve as the NEC rep for Y&H (2 terms). If elected this will be my final term.

As well as the regular duties and responsibilities, my focus will be to encourage others to stand.

Losing the election was a blow but our co-operative contribution to Labour Party thinking and delivery, has never been better, or more well received.
Let's build on it, together, in co-operation.

Abigail Marshall Katung

Leeds

Endorsed by: Leeds Branch

Co-operative Party Experience:

As an elected Labour & Co-operative Councillor, I thrive on our Co-operative principles of self-help, self-responsibility and solidarity. I am hugely involved in supporting local residents to set up housing/local associations to find their own solutions and voices within their community. The Co-operative ethos empowers me to support and campaign for ways in trusting local communities in devolving power and resources for people to achieve this and be self -reliant.

Co-operative Movement Experience

As the first African to be elected on to the Leeds Council in 2019, I am currently the Lead member for BAME and joined the first meeting of the Co-op BAME movement ensuring we have a good diverse representation. I am actively campaigning within our diverse cultures on the Co-op partys longstanding commitment to action on climate change. I believe we can achieve more for our environment when we work co-operativeley.

Governance Experience

- I am a Masters degree holder from the University of Leeds where I studied Development studies (Class of 2001)
- I have a Bachelors degree in Business Education (Class of 1998)
- I am an entrepreneur running my own 14yr old medical recruitment business
- Primary School Governor in my ward
- Non Exec Board member of DOMA(David Oluwole Memorial Association)
- Was Finance Director for the Nigerian Community Leeds for 5years
- Former ABDN(Asian Business Development Network)Board member

Supporting Statement

I am a very focused and goal oriented activist and I thrive on teamwork and inclusivity. I love our socialist cooperative model and I am certain I will bring my passion and energy to the NEC. I will support the Party’s strategy and forward plans in consultation with the General Secretary whilst ensuring I remain a strong and invaluable voice in the Labour Party for our amazing Coop values especially in decentralisation & International partnerships.

Youth

Nathan Burns

Waltham Forest

Endorsed by: London Party, Northern Ireland Party, North West North Party, Canterbury & Swale Branch, NEMCO Branch, Waltham Forest Branch, West Surrey Branch, .

Co-operative Party Experience:

In 2016 I was elected as the youngest Labour & Co-operative Councillor in Britain, and the first in Lancaster for decades. I was also Britain's youngest local authority Cabinet member, where I pushed for a local broadband co-op to provide full-fibre broadband for local residents and businesses. For the last three years I've represented young members on the NEC, supporting continued funding of conference bursaries for young members amongst other things.

Co-operative Movement Experience

I'm a member of both the Co-operative Group and the Phone Co-op. As a Councillor and activist I pushed for our local election manifesto to include commitments to support the growth of student housing co-operatives, an important frontier in bringing the next generation of co-operators into our movement. I also worked hard to sign up as many members of my university Labour Club to Co-ops and the party as possible.

Governance Experience

My governance experience comes from my years on the NEC, and two years as a senior Councillor in Lancaster. On the NEC staffing sub-committee I've had experience overseeing the recruitment of a new General Secretary, as well as approving yearly budgets. As a Councillor, I helped oversee the transition to a financial model that was sustainable and could also continue to provide excellent service levels in the face of huge central government cuts.

Supporting Statement

It's been an amazing experience representing young members on the NEC, and I'm hugely grateful for everyone's support over the last three years. If re-elected, I'll continue to fight for excellent funding support for young members, providing bursaries for national events and bigger, better youth events like an expanded summer school. I'm also keen to build on our engagement with our sister movement, Young Labour, with more Co-op representation at national YL events.

Aaron Daniels

Herefordshire & Worcestershire

Co-operative Party Experience:

I have had five years of cooperative party experience, campaigning for the cause. The first political event I ever went to was Co-Op conference in Cardiff and I went in to get enthused by politics and become chair of my labour club, looking at making it a Labour-Coop Club

Co-operative Movement Experience

Heavily invested in two main policies:
Cooperative pubs and cooperative student housing
I believe a union of student tenors who own a block of flats, and can change and sign on every year would be much more beneficial than the current system of dodgy illegal landlords. Houses rented by students to the students. The same goes for pubs. Local communities chipping together to save their local.

Governance Experience

I have been treasurer and chair of two university societies so am no stranger to managing finances or watching budgets.

Supporting Statement

I am standing for election to the NEC because quite frankly I care deeply about the cooperative movement. Especially for young people. Young people, particularly students have it bad in the world when it comes to finding a place to live. With many landlords being dodgy, unreliable or even acting illegally it is time than ownership of these properties was cooperatised I want to start a national campaign to increase housing for students by students.

Ben Procter

Glasgow & East Dunbartonshire

Endorsed by: Bristol Party, Scottish Party, Barnsley Branch, Dartford Branch, Glasgow & East Dunbartonshire Branch, Lanarkshire Branch, South West Scotland Branch

Co-operative Party Experience:

I have over four years of active participation within the Co-operative Party, most notably as the Scottish Campaigns Officer during both the 2017 Local Government elections & subsequent snap General Election. My work assisted in increasing our representation in Scottish seats and returning two new co-operative MPs.

I have also served three full terms on the Party’s Scottish Executive Committee, including two as Scottish secretary assisting in the co-ordination of national events.

Co-operative Movement Experience

Before joining the Party, I was a long-term advocate for our movement which started with my membership of both Scotmid & my local credit union.

In education, I promoted the use of sustainable housing co-operatives as an alternative to absentee landlordism, and continuing expansion of their use in our local communities.

Through work, I continue to promote the work of credit unions as an affordable alternative to short term loans and community financing.

Governance Experience

I am a founding member of British Cycling’s Scottish Track Committee, with a remit covering the scrutiny of various large budgets as well as the development of annual and long term business plans, both of which allow me access to the experience necessary to serve on the NEC.

Previously, I served on the board of a social enterprise, tasked by the Scottish Government with contributing to the national strategy addressing health inequalities in young people.

Supporting Statement

Politics across the United Kingdom is fractured. It’s time for a different model; a co-operative model.

If elected as your Youth representative on the NEC, I will work tirelessly to ensure that the voices of all members across the nations and regions are not only represented but listened to.

I have the skills, experience and determination to ensure that even whilst in opposition, our movement has the ability to give power back to communities.