SOURCE: National Cooperative Business Association

National Cooperative Business Association

October 31, 2011 09:34 ET

NCBA Members Elect New Board and Officers

Thanexus, Inc. President Wilson Beebe Elected Chairman

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - Oct 31, 2011) - Members of the National Cooperative Business Association, a membership association representing cooperatives in the United States, recently elected five members to the association's board of directors. The role of the board is to set the strategic direction for NCBA, which has a mission to develop, advance and protect cooperative enterprise. In addition, the board elected new officers. The board has elected Wilson H. Beebe Jr. to serve as chairman. The results of the elections were announced to members at NCBA's Annual Meeting and Cooperative Conference, held earlier this month.

Beebe is founder and president of Thanexus, Inc., a funeral service cooperative offering human resource, marketing, communications and financial services to New Jersey's independently owned funeral homes. Through the cooperative structure of Thanexus, these small businesses combine their efforts and resources to give them the advantages of scale and scope that they cannot achieve on their own. The cooperative business structure gives them an advantage in the marketplace.

In his role as chair, Beebe will guide the board's strategic plans for identifying and developing new roles for cooperative enterprise in the US economy.

"The cooperative business model is integral to the sustainability and growth of small business -- and can play a significant role in the nation's economic recovery," said Beebe.

In the role as chair, Wilson Beebe succeeds Martin Lowery, executive vice president with the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, who served for more than two years as chair. Lowery remains on the board and will serve as the immediate past president.

In addition to Beebe, Jerry McGeorge, Christine Neal and David P. Swanson were elected to serve as officers of NCBA's board of directors.

NCBA board members serve for a three year period. Joseph Bergeron, Cornelius Blanding, Mary Ann Rothman, Charles E. Snyder and David P. Swanson were elected to serve as directors. Bergeron will be serving his first term; all others were reelected.

Joseph Bergeron is president, Association of Vermont Credit Unions, and is new to the NCBA board. Bergeron has spent the past 33 years in service to Vermont credit unions and has become actively involved in connecting credit unions and other cooperative sectors. He was a founding board member of the Northeast Cooperative Development Institute as well as of the Entergy Cooperative of Vermont, a local fuel oil, wood chip and energy service provider.

Cornelius Blanding is director of field operations with the Federation of Southern Cooperatives/Land Assistance Fund Federation. He has expertise in managing diverse, rural development projects around the world. His latest involvement is in coordinating and managing the Federation's immediate relief and long-term recovery activities for rural communities, small farmers and cooperatives affected by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita on the Gulf Coast of Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana.

Jerry McGeorge has been elected to serve as second vice chair of the NCBA board of directors. He is a lifelong organic consumer who has been with CROPP Cooperative (aka Organic Valley) for the past twelve years. He has held numerous positions within the cooperative; currently McGeorge holds the title of director of Cooperative Affairs and is a member of the Management Team. His duties include strategic planning of cooperative structure and development, creation of cooperative policies, and oversight of the government affairs, legal affairs, investor relations and human resources functions. Of particular interest to McGeorge is the start up and development of cooperatives. He has consulted with several co-ops during their start up phase.

Christine Neal has been elected to serve as secretary-treasurer of the NCBA board of directors. Neal is senior vice president, Finance and Treasurer, with Unified Grocers where she is responsible for strategic planning and risk oversight as well as financing and credit. In addition, she oversees the cash management, tax and payroll departments. Along with her service to NCBA members, Neal serves on the board of directors of the Greater Los Angeles Chapter of the American Red Cross, where she is a founding member of its prestigious Tiffany Circle Society.

Mary Ann Rothman is executive director of the Council of New York Cooperatives & Condominiums, a membership organization providing information, education and advocacy to and for housing cooperatives and condominiums in the greater New York area. She has served in this capacity for more than 30 years. Rothman has served several terms on NCBA's board of directors and has served on NCBA's Executive Committee.

Charles E. Snyder is the president and chief executive officer of NCB and leads its Executive Council, a team of eleven senior managers representing business development units and functional areas across the company. He also chairs the board of the wholly owned subsidiary, NCB, FSB. Snyder serves on various boards, including the Consumer Federation of America. Mr. Snyder was recently named a 2012 inductee to the Cooperative Hall of Fame in recognition of his lifetime of service to cooperative enterprise and advancement of the principles of cooperation.

David P. Swanson has been elected to serve as first vice chair of the NCBA board of directors. Swanson is an attorney at Dorsey & Whitney LLP where he has been a partner since 1998. At Dorsey, he chairs the Agribusiness, Rural electric and Cooperatives Law practice group. For 20 years, Swanson's practice has focused on organizational issues, financing and transactions for agricultural, rural electric and purchasing cooperatives as well as cooperative financial institutions. He has worked with many start-up groups on the organizational, tax and securities issues involved in starting a new cooperative enterprise.

Founded in 1916, the National Cooperative Business Association is the national voice for cooperative enterprise in the United States and has a mission to develop, advance and protect cooperative business. NCBA provides a strong, unified voice on Capitol Hill and diligently works with lawmakers to enact legislation that supports the development and growth of cooperatives. NCBA's comprehensive programs help co-ops strengthen their businesses so they can better serve their members and transform the global economy. NCBA also creates connections across all sectors of the nation's more than 29,000 cooperative businesses, including agriculture, food distribution and retailing, childcare, credit unions, purchasing, worker-owned, housing, healthcare, energy and telecommunications cooperatives. NCBA's CLUSA International Program has helped develop cooperatives and other sustainable businesses in over 100 countries since 1953. CLUSA currently implements 23 projects in 10 countries. In the 2012, cooperatives around the world will celebrate the International Year of Cooperatives. Cooperative enterprises build a better world. To learn more about NCBA, please visit

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