Good News for the Holiday Season

A Letter from the Co-op General Manager

To Our Community,

I have some good news to share today.

Community Giving

Pennies for Change, our innovative program for raising money at the registers, is expected to break the million-dollar mark by early spring next year. This is a remarkable achievement by any measure. We can all easily forget how aptly named this program is. We are, quite literally, talking about spare change here, faithfully and conscientiously donated by Co-op shoppers day after day, year after year. We know people are shopping less frequently during the COVID-19 era. As a result, Pennies for Change donations have dropped off over the past year. Still, even in the course of the pandemic, our shoppers have been donating regularly. Thank you to all who have donated, even when times are hard.


In 2001, the Co-op Board of Directors created an endowment to support enterprising co-ops nationwide, fund local community projects, and award scholarships all at the same time. This holiday season, our Outreach, Merchandising, and Operations teams, as well as several long-time Co-op vendors, have worked together on a popular in-store fundraiser to support the HCCF.

Each time a shopper purchases select holiday items, the Co-op will make a donation to the HCCF.

Shoppers can find the products throughout our stores. They include customer favorites such as Cabot Creamery Cheese Bars, Lake Champlain Chocolates, Equal Exchange Organic Coffee, Back Roads Granola, Vermont Coffee Company Whole Bean Coffee, Red Kite Candy Caramels, and a great variety of wines. Learn more here.

Facilities Update

As many shoppers have surely noticed throughout the Co-op, our Facilities teams have been busy these days, managing everything from repair work to large, complex paving projects. Most, if not all, of the large projects have been completed, and the results speak for themselves. I would like to spotlight and thank our Facilities teams for all of their hard work—so much of it behind the scenes. Their quality of work greatly enhances both the employee and customer experience.

Employee Bonus                  

In closing, I am pleased to report that this morning another discretionary bonus was approved by the Co-op leadership team and will be going out to employees later this month. Employees will see the bonus reflected in the paycheck of December 17. The bonus covers the period of late August—the last date a discretionary bonus was paid out—through November 14.

As in the past, this bonus is very well-deserved. It is tough being on the front lines in the best of times. To hang in there and demonstrate commitment to service during a pandemic, and throughout the holiday season, speaks volumes to our employees’ professionalism.

In short, this discretionary bonus is our way of saying we notice! My thanks to all of our employees for the hard work, and to all of our members and shoppers for showing Co-op employees so much support over the past year.

Wrap Up

Thank you to our community and as always, I welcome any comments and questions. Please reach out to me anytime. In the meantime, remember to be kind to one another and to yourselves. We look forward to serving you in our stores or at the curbside.

Happy holidays, and onward and upward,




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Paul Guidone

Paul Guidone, CFA, spent the better part of four decades in the investment management business here and abroad. He held positions ranging from analyst through Deputy Chairman and Group CEO, at organizations such as Citigroup (US) and The HSBC Group (London and Hong Kong). He joined the Co-op in 2016 as the CFO and in 2018 became Strategic Advisor to the General Manager. Paul was appointed by the Co-op Board as interim General Manager in March 2020 and General Manager in September 2020. To contact, email

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