CICOPA is the world organization of Industrial, Artisanal and Service Producers’ Cooperatives, or the “international worker co-op confederation”. It is a sectoral organization of the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA).
At the meeting of the Executive Committee of CICOPA held in February, CICOPA appointed Alain Bridault as a member of its Executive Committee. Alain represents North America on behalf of the Canadian Worker Co-op Federation (CWCF). President of CWCF since November 2009, Alain Bridault represents Region Federation member Le Réseau de la coopération du travail du Québec on the CWCF Board. Alain, who is also President of his worker co-op, La Coopérative Orion in Quebec City, is the first CICOPA Executive Committee member to come from Quebec. In recommending Alain to the Committee, CICOPA President Javier Salaberria (of Mondragon) described him as an “extraordinary new colleague”. His appointment was approved unanimously.
A co-founder of the Bachelor’s degree in Co-operative Administration at Laurentian University in the 1980’s, and a lecturer for many years at the Masters in Management of Co-operatives at the University of Sherbrooke, Alain brings strong governance, co-operative and organizational development skills to the position.
The appointment of Alain Bridault follows the resignation of April Bourgeois, who represented the CWCF on the CICOPA Executive Committee for eight years. The CWCF would like to sincerely thank April for her years of faithful service. Alain will finish April’s mandate until November 2011. He will then present his candidacy for a regular term at the Annual General Meeting of CICOPA to be held during the ICA Congress, in Cancun, Mexico in November.
One of the important issues that Alain will bring to the Executive Committee is the planning to launch CICOPA-North America at a Congress to be held in Quebec City from October 13 to 15. Alain is among those at CWCF working to revive CICOPA-Americas together with the worker co-op federations in the United States and Latin America. The creation of a sub-regional organization in North America is part of this process. The October gathering of worker co-operatives from several countries will also include a tandem Congress on the use of worker co-ops for business succession, on October 11 to 13.