From the Board of Directors

December 13th 2018

by Meg Kennedy

Hello all my fellow Provendarians,

This is a brief note from you board of directors to give you an overview of what we’ve accomplished in 2018.

At our January in person meeting we conducted our annual Board of Director’s training to onboard our newly elected directors, give a refresher to the rest of us and pass our many years of expertise onto our membership. These annual trainings are open to all members to come learn about Provender’s well-honed board process, and gain tools and knowledge for anyone interested in Policy Governance and/or board work. If you or your organization is interested you can register here, or get in touch with Vicki to find out more. It’s free, in Vancouver WA on January 30th, and our feedback from these trainings lets us know they are quite valuable to the folks/organizations that attend.

Our board meetings (also open to all members, contact Vicki for invites) during the early part of the year mostly dealt with designing and implementing our strategic plans for the year. These plans consist of board and member recruitment strategies, conducting a survey of our members to see what we can do for you, and a commitment to becoming a more inclusive organization with a lens focusing on attracting and including folks and organizations traditionally marginalized in our industry.

Mid-year we continued to form mini-committees needed to carry out our strategic plans, began discussing workshop ideas and key note speakers for the conference in October, went over the survey results, revitalized our board officer task descriptions, and completed our annual monitoring reports as part of our policy governance model.

For the latter part of 2018 your board really focused on assisting the ED in creating a fun, inspiring and educational conference, recruiting board candidates for the 2019 election, and developing our inclusivity/equity statement. After researching many of our like-minded organizations’ statements, and months of discussing what is fair and real for Provender to declare and be committed to, we were able to create our own and here it is:

The Provender Alliance pledges to create and maintain an environment that respects the traditions, heritages, and experiences of all individuals and communities.  We are committed to using an equity lens when making decisions for our organization. We strive to create an inclusive environment in our programming. We provide educational opportunities and support to our membership towards a goal of a more diverse natural products industry.

We are currently winding down 2018 with the hiring process of a new ED for 2019. Vicki has served us for the past 2 years like the baddass professional she is, bringing us many innovative and efficient tools (remember the fun, interactive app at the conference?) to further the organizations’ missions and we are so very grateful for her work. She was instrumental in getting us on track with our strategic planning and putting together 2 inspirational, educational and fun conferences. Her dedication, commitment and caring for our organization over the past 10+ years (she served on the Board for several years before becoming our ED) will be hard to match, but we are confident that our community will step up and help us fill this position.

Happy Winter, Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to all of you from the Provender Board! We hope 2019 is full of inspiring each other, treating the earth and each other with respect, great success for all our members and community and most of all having a blast while doing so!