Cooperative Governance

Ongoing Hours + Retreat

Ongoing Hours

The award winning, innovative CBLD Program includes ongoing, customized support and planning and facilitation of a one-day in-person retreat -- all designed to meet your organization’s needs.

Your primary CBLD consultant will be matched with your organization with care. We are committed to providing high value, and creating and sustaining the highest quality client/consultant relationships.

Fifteen consulting hours are included in the calendar-year program along with preparation, facilitation and follow up for a one day retreat or other in-person event designed in collaboration with board leaders and GM to meet the needs of the board and the organization.

Retreat designs vary widely and might include board, board & top management, or board and key stakeholders. Clients report that the in-person retreat time strengthens their relationship with their CBLD consultant, which we believe deepens and improves the service we are able to provide.

Consulting hours can be used by board leaders, general managers, committee chairs or others designated by the board in the way that best serves the needs of your board. Consulting typically takes place monthly by phone and email.

Startups are eligible to receive an additional 5 “bonus” consulting hours for use in each enrollment year to help with the special challenges of governance development and support for the very new and very small.

Examples of how co-ops have used their consulting hours:

  • Gather resources and ideas related to current issues
  • Support follow through on board work plans
  • Plan for member participation
  • Understand and implement the board’s role during an expansion
  • Improve their board self-evaluation process
  • Adapt board process for acting on monitoring reports from management
  • Strengthen board leadership


CBLD provides a framework for the annual board retreat. Coupled with the perspective of the CBLD  consultant gained from ongoing consulting hours, the retreat becomes a part of an overall plan for development, including skill building, strategic thinking, developing the board’s work plan and team building activities. The CBLD consultant provides assistance and support with planning and facilitation of a one day retreat or other in-person event designed in collaboration with board leaders and GM to meet the needs of the board and the organization.

The program cost includes preparation, facilitation and follow up of a one-day in person retreat or other event tailored to your organization's needs. Your CBLD consultant will work with you to design a day that includes the right people doing the right work to move you forward.

Associated Consultants

Art Sherwood

Board Leadership Development, Strategy and GM/CEO Coaching

Ben Sandel

Leadership Development, Startup Co-ops, Capitalization

Jade Barker

Board Leadership Development

Leslie Watson

Board Leadership Development

Marilyn Scholl

Cooperative Governance, Board Training, Facilitation, and Assessment, Cooperative Development

Mark Goehring

Leadership Development, Cooperative Governance, Facilitation, Member Linkage

Martha Whitman

Board Leadership Development

Michael Healy

Cooperative Governance, Team Building, Communication

Rose Marie Klee

Board Leadership Development

Thane Joyal

Board Leadership Development, Cooperative Governance, Bylaw Support

Todd Wallace

Board Leadership Development

“ One of the key areas of support is the development of a Policy Governance workshop that is facilitated for our board candidates each year. This is vitally important in preparing future board members to be successful in our governing environment. ”

Janice Parker, former Board Administrator, PCC Natural Markets

“ Our CBLD consultant has, after eight years, become a trusted partner in our board work...from helping to rework our board meeting agenda to build in valuable strategic discussion time, to working with our board and our committee chairs in planning retreats. ”

Janice Parker, former Board Administrator, PCC Natural Markets

“ We all have a lot of good ideas for retreats, but our CBLD consultant, in his role as facilitator, helps us prioritize, focus and refine our ideas. He helps us see a bigger picture, plan with the future in mind, and find new ways to keep our sessions fresh and invigorating. He asks outstanding questions. ”

Maggie Lucas, Board Chair, PCC Natural Markets

Associated Case Studies

Upcoming Events

Check out our open-access library!

It is a great resource for understanding all of the particulars of good governance - from agenda planning to policy templates, you can find it all in our Library.