Toby Haag has tendered his resignation from the Interim General Manager (IGM) position and is returning to his position as Grocery Manager. Rebekah Valentine has assumed the IGM position, effective immediately. The Board of Directors is incredibly grateful to Rebekah for stepping into this role with such short notice and has full confidence that she has the skills needed to lead the Co+op through this transitional period.
Rebekah began working at the Co+op in August 2013. She started as a grocery clerk and was quickly given more responsibility within the department—and the store—after demonstrating a positive attitude, hard work ethic, and cooperative values. In October 2015 she was promoted to Front End Manager. “In the Front End, I like to interact with all of our customers and owners,” Rebekah says. “It’s nice to get to know everyone.”
On Monday, November 30, Rebekah accepted the IGM position at the Co+op. “I am drawn to the IGM role because our Co+op needs support—which comes both internally and externally,” she says. “I want to play the necessary part to help the store. It will also a great learning opportunity for me.”
Rebekah will work with advisers from National Co+op Grocers (NCG) and her staff to make the Co+op a better store. “My goal is that we regain our status of being a great place to work, shop, and be,” she says. When she’s not at the Co+op, Rebekah can be found exploring Los Alamos’s trails, doing yoga, cooking, and spending time with her cat, Puzzle.
2015 has been a challenging year, and we realize many of you might be wondering what is going on at the store and where the Co+op is headed. We’ve lost good people, and our sales are down about 17 percent for the past six months compared to the same period last year. That’s the bad news. The good news is, we still have exceptional staff, and the Deli is making delicious food again. We were selected by NCG, a national cooperative grocers organization with vast experience, to receive its support and advice on ways to keep improving each department and returning the Co+op to full financial health. NCG has completed an assessment of the store and is confident that we can be successful again. Rebekah will be working closely with NCG in implementing its recommendations.
The Co+op is a valuable resource in the community. LACM employs more than 30 people and supports many local farmers and vendors. The board and Co+op managers have been asked by member-owners and the general public how they can best help the Co+op. What we need most of all is your financial support. If you haven’t been to the Co+op in a while, come take a fresh look. If you know someone who has stopped going, please let them know we’re on the upswing again—because we are. With the community’s support, we will get better each day.