Name                                                Background

Chief Brand Officer at Roti Mediterranean Grill
Architect and Principal of Hammersley Architecture
Marketing Group Manager at Hinshaw & Culberton LLP              
Fund Accountant at Magnetar Capital  

Enterprise Program Manager at Siemens
Engineer at Case New Holland
Architect;  Civic Projects LLC, Adjunct Assistant Professor IIT
Manaaki Foundation, SLoFIG
Founder and President of Strategy Scene
Founder of Paramount Property Management
Assistant Professor at University of Illinois Chicago

Peter Nolan, Board President
Brian Hammersley, Vice President              
Maureen Spain, Board Secretary                
Chris Dowsett, Board Treasurer  

Daniel Becker                 
Ryan Bradley                                    
Monica Chadha
Bill Gee
Judy Klem
Greg Marsey
Rachel Poretsky                                           


Peter Nolan is currently the Board President. He is honored to bring his extensive knowledge of food marketing, and his passion for community building, to help the Sugar Beet thrive.

Peter has been in the food business for over 20 years, holding marketing leadership positions at several innovative companies.  He began his career as a Scoop Truck Driver for Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream and grew to lead all of the consumer promotions at the values-driven company.  Peter moved on to lead the marketing efforts of Potbelly Sandwich Works and Roti Mediterranean Grill.  Currently Peter is running his own business - 5th Marketing - a consultancy focused on small, entrepreneurial food companies. Peter proudly serves as a Super Mentor at Chicago's Good Food Business Accelerator.

A Chicago native, Peter studied Mass Communications at UC Berkeley. He and his wife Karen Steward-Nolan have two daughters.  They live in Oak Park.


Brian Hammersley is currently the Board Vice President of the Co-Op.  He is pleased to be working with such a vibrant group of people to grow the fantastic community hub that Sugar Beet is.

An architect by training, Brian and his firm Hammersley Architecture led the build out team in the construction of the Sugar Beet Co-Op's current location.  Passionate about local, sustainable food and a strong supporter of developing local community, Brian was immediately attracted to the idea of a co-op in Oak Park and was an early supporter of the mission.  Having grown up in Oak Park, Brian recognized this very important project as an essential component of a well-rounded and healthy community - it was impossible to resist getting involved!  In addition to the Sugar Beet, Brian is also deeply involved in the growth of the urban agriculture movement here in Chicago, serving on the Advisory Board of Growing Power Chicago.  

A native of Oak Park, Brian attended the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign for his undergraduate degree and the University of Florida for graduate work.  Brian, his wife, and two girls live in Oak Park.


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Maureen Spain is currently the Board Secretary. 

Maureen's interest in local food developed after living in several farm-to-fork loving urban communities around the country. Now, back in her hometown of Chicago, the Sugar Beet combines all of her passions – community development, sustainability, education and food – into one project. And it makes her feel like that high-priced MBA in social entrepreneurship was worth it. What excites Maureen most about the Sugar Beet is the way it brings people together, enhancing the strong sense of community in Oak Park. 

By day, Maureen helps lawyers develop and implement business development and marketing plans and brings this expertise to the Sugar Beet board. She has a bachelors degree in Communications from Northwestern University and an MBA from Duke University. When not shopping at the Sugar Beet, Maureen enjoys playing and watching sports, reading, traveling and doing yoga. She lives in Oak Park with her husband and their three children. 


Daniel Becker and his wife, Francis, have been Oak Park residents for 28 years and chose to live here because of the community spirit and degree of citizen involvement.   Daniel's vision for Sugar Beet is that it grow into a strong, stable, “sustainable” business, that along with its related businesses and suppliers works at a meaningful scale that positively impacts our local and regional food system. Daniel's professional experience in the building energy conservation industry will help our board immensely as he has acted as an energy manager,operations manager and is conversant with project budgeting, cost estimating, and executing projects to meet time and budgetary constraints.  Daniel and his wife were early Sugar Beet supporters and Owners, and are now regular shoppers. They bring a longtime appreciation and support for co-ops and have been members of the Lembas Food Co-op in Oak Park and the Food for People Co-op and Beggar’s Banquet Food Co-op in Chicago.


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Chris Dowsett is currently the Board Treasurer.  Chris brings almost 20 years of experience in the financial services industry to assist the Sugar Beet in adhering to its principles that guide its business model.  He currently serves as a Fund Accountant at Magnetar Capital where he's responsible for financial and investor reporting of the firms various funds . Previously, Chris held finance positions at some of Chicago's biggest banking institutions, including Bank of America and BMO Harris.  His passion for good food is what brought him to the Sugar Beet, he is an avid cook, focusing on local and organic foods.  He is a native of the Quad Cities and graduated from the University of Iowa. 

Chris and his wife Amie live in Oak Park with their two dogs.  Interests include gardening, bike riding, cheering on the Iowa Hawkeyes, and travelling the country in search of the best craft breweries.  


Ryan Bradley and his wife Natalie live one block from the Sugar Beet Food Co-op and appreciate the ease of frequenting a small local grocery store as this became their normal routine when they were living in Denmark years ago.


"The Sugar Beet is pretty much the best thing I could have come up with if asked to imagine my ideal grocery store. It is close by, so I can walk there quickly and often. It is in a beautifully rejuvenated old building. The food is healthy and delicious. The square footage makes it feel inviting instead of overwhelming. Overall, it is one of our favorite things about living here."

Ryan joined the board of directors in 2016 because he believes that when you have something you really value, you should do what you can to take care of it and make sure it succeeds. His vision for the Sugar Beet is one of significant debt reduction and long term financial stability. From his work with Case New Holland he brings strategic planning and project management experience which he intends to use to help the Sugar Beet Board reach long term financial goals. 


Monica Chadha is a LEED certified, licensed architect who has been practicing for over 20 years. Based in Chicago, she is the Founder of Civic Projects LLC, focusing on the design, building and development of community led projects through a project’s social, economic and environmental impact. Through economic drivers such as pop-up retail and kitchen and business incubation she provides a platform for grassroots and underserviced economic development. 

She has recently served as Founding Director of Impact Detroit. At both Studio Gang Architects and Ross Barney Architects, Ms. Chadha has been responsible for the design and team leadership of several award-wining buildings. Her architecture practice ranges from long term planning initiatives such as Chicago’s 606 (Bloomingdale Trail) Framework Plan to the design and development of mixed-use residential projects to the design and construction of early childhood facilities and libraries. Her work has been widely published and the Design Futures Council recognized her as a 2010 Emerging Leader. Ms. Chadha is also an Adjunct Professor at the College of Architecture since 2007.

She is proud to be part of the Sugar Beet Board and serving as co-architect for the store. She lives in Oak Park with her three daughters and husband Rob Chambers. Among her many favorite moments at Sugar Beet are when staff share new recipes and her daughters ask to try products like quinoa and chia seeds.  


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Bill Gee appreciates working with and learning from the pool of talented individuals who make up the current SB board. He strives to utilize his varied experiences as a past business owner in the food manufacturing space to help add positive and relevant input to the group.

 Bill has 30 years of experience in building a family business that concentrated on the production of sweet goods. His time in the industry has given him an insider perspective on how the commercial food sector works and is a big reason why he values the unique opportunity the Sugar Beet Co-op is offering our community. Bill also works with socially impactful investment groups such as Impact Engine Business Accelerator Program & Sustainable Local Food Investment Group aka: SLoFIG, that invest in and mentor small businesses who are committed to making social change and who share many of the same challenges that the Sugar Beet will face as it continues to grow.

In keeping with the theme of our local co-op, Bill can claim that he too is a local product, being born and bred in Chicago. Apart from a four year stint as a Bakery Science major at Kansas State University he has lived his entire adult life in the OPRF area. Bill and his wife Sue currently reside in River Forest and are proud of recently attaining "Empty Nester" status after successfully launching their two daughters off to College.


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Judy Klem is founder and principal of Strategy Scene, a strategic marketing consulting firm. A born solutionist, Judy thrives on solving client challenges, providing vision and building long-lasting relationships. Leveraging her experience from both client and agency arenas, clients value her proactive approach, strategic thinking, and keen insight of the industry. Judy is known for her strong rapport with clients, engendering honest and open communication and better results. 

Prior to founding Strategy Scene, Judy spent 14 years at 88 Brand Partners, most recently as Director of Client Services. In addition to guiding her clients to success, Judy played a critical role on the leadership team as the agency grew and transitioned over time. Judy has a background in the restaurant industry having worked as Director of Marketing for Bravo Restaurants, and began her career in healthcare marketing and PR for LifeSource Blood Services.

Judy's history with co-ops runs deep--her dad was a manager at the famed Hyde Park Co-Op in the 1970's, one of the oldest and largest co-ops in the nation.

In addition to her marketing career, Judy is proud mom to 4 kids (with husband, Jon), an active cook--especially of vegetarian cuisine, native gardener and a member of the board at Oak Park Temple where she also leads the Oak Park Temple Green Team.


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Greg Marsey has lived in Oak Park, IL, since 1991, and has served on the Board of Directors of the Holley Ct. Condominium Association since 2000.  Greg was an Oak Park Village Trustee from 2005-2009.

 From 2005-2012, Greg managed a franchise network of Jimmy John’s restaurants in the Chicago area. Now Greg owns and operates Paramount Property Management, specializing in residential and mixed-use properties.

 Greg is proud to serve on the Board of Directors of The Sugar Beet Co-op.


Rachel Poretsky grew up in food co-ops and brings her experience from Daily Food Co-op in Georgia, where she served on the board and worked as cashier during graduate school, as well as her from her hometown co-op, The Flatbush Food Co-op in Brooklyn, NY. Rachel joined the Sugar Beet Food Co-op board in 2016 and is thrilled to help implement changes and ideas and be a voice for the co-op community in order to succeed and grow. She believes that this is an exciting time for our co-op as it's growing rapidly and is proving to be a major  contribution to our community. She loves shopping the Co-op where she is  surrounded by friendly faces, good products, and fun music playing and is excited to see how the co-op will mature and grow in the next few years—perhaps becoming a central community space, decreasing prices and changing/expanding inventory as the Co-op becomes a full-fledged NCGA member. She wants to help continue to grow our ownership, and spread the vision of local, sustainable, socially and environmentally conscious, community love throughout our little village. 


Sugar Beet Food Cooperative By Laws - 
Our Co-op is guided by the By Laws that were created by our Board of Directors. These were last amended on 4/30/16 at the ANNUAL OWNER MEETING. 


The Sugar Beet Food Co-op Board of Directors meets once a month on the fourth Tuesday from 7-8pm at Oak Park's Main Library in the Community Space. 
These meetings are open to the public and all owners are encouraged to attend. While the Board follows a tight agenda, there is time for Q&A at the end of the meeting. 
Meetings are announced on our website's events page, and in our newsletter.

 - Meeting Minutes -

Click on the date to access the document.  

August 25, 2015

September 29, 2015

October 27, 2015

December 1, 2015

January 26, 2016

February 23, 2016

March 22, 2016

April 30, 2016 Annual Meeting

May 24, 2016

June 28, 2016

July 26, 2016

August 23, 2016

September 20, 2016

November 3, 2016 

December 6 2016

January 24, 2017 pending approval

February 28, 2017