Prairie Food Co-op Community Grocery

Jess Buttimer


  • Hometown: Glen Ellyn
  • Owner #: 311
  • Term: Elected 2016 and 2021. Term ends 2024.
  • Contact Jess

Why are you interested in serving on the Prairie Food Board of Directors?
I have been going to board meetings for the past 5 years. I served a two-year term as a board member and then stepped down to plan the capital campaign. I want so continue to have a voice and vote at the board table to see that we transition successfully from a working board to a governing board. My current role on a school board has prepared me well for this transition.

Employment: Please tell us about your Past or Present Employment
Currently a stay-at-home mom, I enjoyed eight years as a user experience research consultant with User Centric, Inc (now a part of Ipsos). As a Senior Research Director with User Centric, I sold, designed, and managed large global usability research and design engagements. For five years prior to that, I designed, developed, and implemented web-based customer relationship management (CRM) systems as a programmer for Nuveen Investments. Rounding out my portfolio of gainful employment, I have been a horrible waitress, an unimpressive administrative temp, a too-nice bill collector, a lost ‘gopher’ of insurance documents, a freezing-cold jar scraper for a cheese factory, an excellent sandwich artist, and a loving, though exhausted, babysitter.

Volunteer: Membership/Affiliations/Leadership past and present
In addition to volunteering for Prairie Food Co-op, I currently serve on the D41 School Board, Policy Committee, DEI Committee, D41 Kids Foundation Board, Partnership for Educational Progress Board, and PTA Council Parent Education Chair.

Volunteer: Which of the following areas do you have expertise?
Management, Fundraising, Marketing/Public Relations, Grants, Communications

What experience, education, and skills do you have that you feel will contribute to your effectiveness as a Prairie Food Director?
Years of client management experience has taught me how to work well with others, be open to multiple perspectives, and collaborate towards consensus. I have served for two years on a governing board for District 41 in addition to several working boards. In addition, reading non-fiction, learning, organizing, and concise communication are a few of my favorite things and will contribute to my effectiveness as a Prairie Food Director.

What are your personal goals for Prairie Food Co-op?
As a board member, I have no personal agenda for the Prairie Food Co-op. Rather, I am most interested in adhering to our mission of creating a marketplace for local, sustainable, organic, and transparently labeled food. I do want to make sure we are responsible stewards for the funds our community has invested in the co-op.

What experience (if any) have you had with cooperatives, food or otherwise??
This is the first co-operative that I have been a part of. I have attended several cooperative conferences and co-presented about cooperative capital campaigns.


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