Bowers Fund

About the Fund

The Howard Bowers Fund for Consumer Cooperatives was established in 1993 with an endowment of $50,000 from the Hyde Park Cooperative Society to recognize the commitment and achievements of its general manager, Howard Bowers. The Fund’s purposes are:

  1. To promote and develop consumer-owned food cooperatives and consumer cooperative education in the United States
  2. To encourage and train people to pursue careers in the management of consumer-owned food cooperatives
  3. To provide education programs for staff, board, and managers of consumer cooperatives

The Fund makes grants to food cooperatives, groups organizing food cooperatives, and organizations and events that support the food cooperative sector.  Grants are made from contributions and investment income. Money is raised through events at CCMA, the annual Howard Bowers Day in October (Co-op Month), and other contributions from individuals and food cooperatives.

Achievements
The generosity of the food cooperative community has increased the endowment to over $360,000, made possible two investments into cooperative financial institutions that have loaned this money to food cooperatives, and enabled the Fund to give out over $300,000 in grants. Approximately 20 people attend the annual Consumer Cooperative Management Association (CCMA) meeting every year on scholarships from the Bowers Fund. For scholarships to CCMA, contact Libby Bestul.

Grants given include
– $5,000 to the Indiana Cooperative Development for its “Up and Coming, Up and Running” regional conference.
– $36,600 to new and about-to-open food co-ops (These grants are from contributions to Howard Bowers Day.)
– Over $9,000 annually to the University of Wisconsin for scholarships to CCMA.
– $5,000 to Cooperative Development Services for the Food Co-op 500 flow chart.
– $2,575 to Harlem Natural Food Co-op for board and management training.
– $1,000 to Plainfield Food Co-op to develop and implement a policy governance model for its board.

For more information visit the Cooperative Development Foundation Bowers Fund page   or call 202 442-2331 for more information.

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