Vermont Employee Ownership Month 2017 Recap!

With employee ownership month officially concluded, we figured we'd share a few reflections on October's happenings!

Festivities kicked off early on, when Governor Phil Scott made an official proclamation at ESOP Carris Reels declaring October Employee Ownership Month (you can read the proclamation here). This was immediately followed that Friday by the New England Chapter of the ESOP Association's fall conference at Killington, which brought many employee-owners together from both Vermont and the broader region for training, networking, and celebration of the sector's accomplishments.

Next, on Tuesday the 17th, employee owners from Central Vermont companies gathered at Three Penny Taproom, which graciously agreed to honor Employee Ownership Month by donating 5% of that day's proceeds to the VEOC. That evening of great food, drink, and conversation was followed on Thursday the 19th by a cross-sector gathering of co-op leaders convened by the Association of Vermont Credit Unions (as October is also Co-op Month). Our Associate Director Matt participated in a panel discussion alongside reps from credit unions, housing co-ops, electric co-ops, food co-ops, and agricultural co-ops, providing an update on what's been happening in Vermont's worker co-op community (video).

We then concluded the month with two Employee Ownership Month Celebrations on the 24th and 25th that were hosted by Vermont's two Employee-Owned Breweries: Harpoon and Switchback. Both events attracted employee owners from diverse EO companies in their respective regions, and the Switchback event was livened by an appearance by Governor Scott, who read his Employee Ownership Month proclamation live to the revelers!

Also on the 25th, our Executive Director Don was invited to come on VPR's Vermont Edition to discuss employee ownership; the segment can be heard here.

2017 was our most ambitious Employee Ownership Month schedule to date, and we were pleased by how the events brought together folks who live and support employee ownership from many organizations to strengthen relationships and our shared vision for what growing employee ownership can accomplish for the Green Mountain State. Thanks to everyone who collaborated with us in planning and organizing this year's events, and we look forward to involving even more folks in 2018!