Becoming a Director

In this section

Our board is made up of members like you - elected to act in the best interest of all members. 

Each year, we hold elections for a number of places on the Society's Board of Directors.

In February – March, eligible members can nominate themselves to become a director on our Board. Candidates will then go forward to the elections (subject to eligibility) during April-May, where our members vote to decide who is appointed. The results of the elections are then announced at our Annual Members’ Meeting in May.  

You can find out the results of the Director Elections 2022 here.

About our Board of Directors 

Our Directors work together to oversee our governance, policy and strategy decisions. There are 16 Directors on the Board. They are all members who care about the way their local co-op is run. They help shape our future direction, but are not responsible for the day to day operation of our co-op. 

What is the role of the Board?

The role of the Board is to ensure the long-term success of the Society in accordance with the International Co-operative Alliance Statement on Co-operative Identity. The Board is appointed by and accountable to the members who own the Society. The Board represents the membership, making business decisions in the interests of the members. The Boards acts as the custodian of the Society's assets to safeguard the enterprise for the future. 

A co-operative board provides accountable leadership by setting the strategic direction of the enterprise and ensuring it runs efficiently within a framework of prudent and effective controls in line with co-operative values and principles.

These requirements are set out in our rules here.

What is expected from a Director?

  • Attend around 14 Board meetings a year. These are held on-line via Microsoft Teams or in-person at Wherstead Park in Ipswich. Meetings are held either on Saturday mornings or mid-week evenings. There are also occasional off-site strategy meetings that might involve overnight stays.
  • Join one Board committee – this will involve attendance at a further 4-5 meetings per year.
  • Take part in professional development to meet any individual or collective needs that arise throughout the normal 4-year term of office.

Any business experience that you have will be welcome, but it isn’t essential as training can be provided if you have been elected.

Am I eligible? 

The eligibility to be a Director are set out in our rules here

This includes that Directors must have been a member of the Society for at least 2 years and mainly live within the trading area of the Society. They should also have made purchases of £500 or more per annum from the Society in each of the two previous Society financial years. To note no more than 2 employees from the Society can be on the Board at any one time.  

What do I get in return?

  • Becoming a Director gives you the satisfaction of knowing that you’re helping to make a difference to your local co-op and your community.
  • Directors also receive a fee (currently in the region of £9,000 per year) and reimbursement of all expenses incurred in the role.
  • Our Directors play a key role in the success of our business, and it is a really rewarding experience. You’ll meet new people and gain valuable skills, all while helping a local, independent co-operative business to thrive.