Advocacy Council Candidates & Online Election

The NYC Network of Worker Cooperatives (NYC NOWC) is launching our second Advocacy Council (formerly known as the leadership council) for 5 worker-owners who will lead NYC NOWC’s advocacy efforts.  Council members’ responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • NYC NOWC’s participation in the Worker Cooperative Business Development Initiative (WCBDI) which has received funding from NY City Council for the past four years.  Council members participate in Initiative meetings and help coordinate feedback from the rest of NYC NOWC’s membership.
  • Identifying NYCNoWC members’ needs to inform advocacy efforts
  • Research and Campaign Development for NYC NOWC’s city and state advocacy platforms. The draft platform was put together by the 2016-2017 Leadership Council.
  • Participation in US Federation of Worker Cooperatives Policy and Racial and Economic Justice councils.


These short biographies were provided by the candidates as part of their nomination process. Beneath them the bios you will find the electronic ballot. All worker-owners members of NYC NOWC can vote and we average the tally per-co-op. Results of this election will be weighted to reflect the language, age and sector demographics worker-owners in our network.

Steph Wiley – Brooklyn Packers

I believe in the strength of cooperation and collaboration.  I think it’s the only way we ensure fair wages and workers right in the future. I would like to be a part if that future. I have participated in the Just Foods advocacy training in the past. 

Steph is a serial entrepreneur who believes in the power of cooperation and collaboration to ward off unjust labor practices and unfair wages. He is from Queens NY. 

Clara Calvo – Cooperative Home Care Associates

I have been working as Home Health Aid for 16 years at CHCA. I was a member of the board and I am a worker-owner. Originally from the Dominican Republic, I am trying to be part of the Council, because with the experience that I hope to acquir and what I can learn I will be able to help more in advancing the cooperative movement.

Maria Guillen – Brightly Cleaning

I am interested in knowing more about how to help my cooperative and what rights and obligations we have as owners and workers of a cooperative since my cooperative just launched this year.

I am originally from the city of Mexico, I have been here in the country for 9 years. I like working, helping, and sharing my knowledge with others. I do not like injustices, I would like to use this as an opportunity to learn more about the rights that we have.

Carlos Martinez – Sunset Scholars

I would like to participate in this Advocacy Council for NYC NOWC because I want to bring ideas and new concepts to the cooperative I’m working with now. I have knowledge of how coops work but I’m always eager to add more content to my knowledge, this can be a great opportunity for myself as well as the coop.

My name is Carlos Martinez. I am an immigrant from Ecuador as well as the son of immigrant parents. I am currently a college student in York College where I’m getting my major in psychology and minor in education. This will lead me to a Social Work degree in the near future. I am a founding member of the Sunset Scholars Tutoring Coop which is now currently running for the third year. I love the work I do, whether is working with kids or adults or fellow Coop members, it’s always a pleasure to give others a learning experience.

Zeneyda Bonilla – Golden Steps Elder Care Cooperative

I want to participate to be the voice of many in our movement and help our empower our businesses. I am also interested in learning about advocacy and learn about more ways of getting involved.

Originally from El Salvador. I have been living in Brooklyn for over 13 years. I have been a member of Golden Steps since 2012. I’ve participated in the leadership committee, the marketing committee. During our second year, I served as president and the third year I was secretary. I am currently a participant in the Institute of Leadership in Coordination, at the Center for Family Life. I am proud to say that I have contributed a lot to my cooperative. At the same time, I have learned and together with my partners we have fought during critical moments to keep our business standing, and we continue!

Ruth Lopez Martinez – Pa’lante Cleaning

First of all, I have a deep desire to be part of this group, to advocate for our rights and work for cooperatives. In the past, I have worked with organizations that advocated for the rights of school children. I consider myself a community leader and I am willing to continue to learn and improve my leadership skills. I am originally from Colombian. I studied Economics and Political Science at the university. I have been the secretary of our cooperative for over 2 years. Finally, I enjoy public speaking.

Maria Arias – Bioclassic Cleaning

I am the president of my Bioclassic cooperative, which we formed three years ago through the academy of Greenworker Cooperatives. I have had the opportunity to represent my cooperative in events at the City Council, at industry conferences, workshops, and meetings. I want to learn more so I can help my colleagues and move forward the cooperative movement.


Online Ballot – Please vote by Oct. 4, 2017

Advocacy Council Candidates

This election is limited to NYC NOWC dues-paying member cooperatives. Select only five candidates.

Candidatos al Consejo de Incidencia Pólitica

Esta elección esta limitada a miembros de NYC NOWC, cooperativas que pagan quota. Seleccione cienco candidatos.

Pick only 5 candidates / Seleccione cinco candidatos

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