Prairie Food Co-op Community Grocery

Dorothy Swit

  • Hometown: Lombard
  • Owner #: 1247
  • Term: Elected 2023.

"Prairie Food Co-op is an asset to the community and I would be honored to serve on the Board of Directors to create the best possible co-op that serves not only the owners but all the customers."

Why are you interested in serving on the Prairie Food Board of Directors?

This is an exciting time for Prairie Food Co-op as the store is soon going to become a reality. The mission of the co-op is one that resonates with me and I am proud to support it. I would use my organization, communication, and program creation skills to work in the best interest of the owners and the co-op.

Employment: Please tell us about your past or present employment

I have worked for the DuPage County Department of Probation and Court Services for 14 years. Working in this position has given me the opportunity to work with strict deadlines, read and interpret laws, and to collaborate with multiple levels of the organization to achieve goals. While in college, I worked at Trader Joe’s as part of the first crew in a new store and enjoyed being around food and discussing it with the customers.

Which of the following areas do you have expertise?

Management, Communications


What experience, education, and skills do you have that you feel will contribute to your effectiveness as a Prairie Food Director?

My education and career experience would be an asset to Prairie Food Co-op. I have a Master’s Degree in Public Safety Administration. While obtaining the degree, I had to demonstrate a working knowledge of human resources, financial management, ethics and social responsibility, multicultural diversity, and labor relations. Throughout my career I have had the opportunity to use good communication skills and a collaborative mindset to successfully reach goals. While with the DuPage County Department of Probation and Court Services, I had the privilege to work with my team create the first of its kind, first time offender court. This specialty court provides first time drug offenders the opportunity to change their lives and, at the end of their probation, remove the conviction from their criminal record. The program was nationally recognized for its innovation and enhanced services to the community.


What are your personal goals for Prairie Food Co-op?

First and foremost, my goal for the Co-op would be opening a successful store. It will be important to foster a sense of community though education, engagement, and access to healthy and local food. That can be achieved by helping people gain an understanding of where food comes from and the community created around it. I would like the co-op to be sustainable and welcome everyone for generations to come. I understand that my work with the co-op directly impacts all it will serve and I do not take that responsibility lightly. It would be an honor to help create something that the owners and community can be proud of.


What experience (if any) have you had with cooperatives, food or otherwise?

I do not have experience with cooperatives outside of shopping at them periodically, but look forward to the opportunity to be able to contribute to growing Prairie Food Co-op into a thriving community.

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