In its simplest definition, a co-operative is a business that is owned and directed by the people that it serves–its membership. Members of Black Star Co-op OWN one membership share, all members have equal voting power to elect the Board of Directors, and members set the long term goals of the Co-op in the form of Ends policies. Anyone over the age of 21 can become a member-owner, and as of November 2012, we have over 3,000 member-owners.
Each membership share is priced at $150, but new member-owners can get started at just $40 and make payments over time. Two people who share a mailing address can also join together, but each is assessed a full membership share.
Every member-owner holds one vote, including Joining Members, but only Invested Members receive the full benefits of membership, such as running for the Board of Directors and receiving discounts. Joining Members may upgrade their membership at any time by making payments on their membership share, and must make at least one payment per year to remain active member-owners. Once Joining Members have fully paid their membership equity they are automatically upgraded to Invested Members.
Frequently Asked Questions:
How do I become a member?
Go to Become a Member to become a member online or see a membership coordinator at a Black Star Co-op event. It’s easy and only takes a couple minutes!
Who can become a member of Black Star Co-op?
Anyone 21 years of age as well as entities organized on a co-operative or non-profit basis.
What are the costs associated with becoming a member?
Each membership share is priced at $150, and payments can be made over time. Two member-owners sharing an address can share a joint account, but both are assessed a full membership share.
What are the benefits of membership?
Some of the benefits are:
- Member-Owner pint nights weekly
- Member only events like beer tastings
- Discounts at other Co-op events like pairing dinners and home brewing classes
- Monthly newsletter full of craft beer events and Co-op power
- Voting power on Ends Policies and Board of Directors
- Member appreciation events with discounted food and beer
- Patronage refunds by 2015
- Bragging rights
- Free “Birthday” Beer on the anniversary for when you joined the Co-op
- Eligibility to join University Federal Credit Union
Do I have to pay for membership each year?
No. Once you become a fully invested member-owner, there are no yearly dues or fees.