Our reputation is built on our strong commitment to customer service and the communities we serve. Whether through financial, in-kind or other community support and services, we actively practice Co-op Social Responsibility and investing in our surrounding communities.
Ken began his career in the retail food industry more than 25 years ago, specialising in merchandising, marketing, private label procurement and global sourcing. Having joined Calgary Co-op in 2014, he provides overall leadership to the organization, developing and ensuring the implementation of strategic direction and business plans for attaining corporate, financial and operational objectives. He deeply values the culture at Co-op, which focuses on serving members and nurturing team members, and how it is reflected in Co-op’s stores, where team members continuously demonstrate their commitment to 3 core values – Service, Caring, and Excellence. Ken also holds an ICD.D designation and has served on the ProAction Cops & Kids board, a not-for-profit with the goal of providing an environment for cops and kids to socialize, making the police less intimidating to youth in the community. When it comes to local products and his favourite Cal & Gary’s products – “My favorite local products are the samosa chips sold in the Deli – I love their flavor and texture. My favorite Cal & Gary’s products are the ice cream cookie sandwiches in any flavor!”
Ken also serves on the Canadian Food Innovation Network Board of Directors and is the Chair of Governance, Nomination and Risk committees.
With a background in commerce, an MBA and a CPA designation, Paul brings more than 22 years of experience to the Calgary Co-op team. He previously worked for the Calgary Stampede from 1999 – 2015, becoming a CFO for the organization in 2005. Paul joined the Calgary Co-op team in 2015, bringing skills in strategic and tactical planning, risk identification and mitigation, cross-functional collaboration, and board and stakeholder relations. He was drawn to Calgary Co-op for its history, ability to survive and thrive against national and multi-national retailers, and its substantial real estate. In addition to financial expertise, Paul has extensive enterprise risk management experience that has been informed and battle tested by the floods of 2013 and Covid-19. Paul’s favourite local product? “I’m a big fan of our 28-day dry aged beef – when hosting a dinner party for friends or family, Only Alberta Beef will be featured prominently.”
With a background in Business Management, Strategic Planning, Management in Retailing and an ICD.D designation, Jeff brings more than 40 years of experience to Calgary Co-op. During his 13 years at Co-op, Jeff values the local member ownership and governance of the organization, how Co-op has become a part of the fabric of the city, and how passionate the team members are in serving the community. In addition to Calgary Co-op, Jeff also sits as the Board Chair for Co-operative Superannuation Society, one of the oldest and largest Defined Contribution Pension Plans in Canada, and is also a Board Member for the Alberta Liquor Store Association. His favourite local product is Village Blacksmith – a consistently delicious Alberta Black Ale from our friends at Village Brewery. “So many of our local brewers do a fantastic job producing exceptional brews, it’s hard to pick just one, but the Blacksmith is at the top of my list.”
Penney brings almost 25 years of experience in customer research and marketing, as well as a B. Sc. (Biology) and an MBA to the Calgary Co-op team. Having joined Co-op in 2018, Penney is incredibly proud and honoured to be a part of the team, especially because of its deep roots in the community. To her, being local is special not only for the products that Co-op carries, but the organization’s ability to connect with the community and support neighbours when they need it. Penney is currently the chair of the Calgary Co-op Foundation, which is driven by the purpose of enriching Calgary Co-op’s member communities by addressing food security among vulnerable populations. Penney’s favourite local products? “I am passionate about food and wine, so I’m always excited to try new products and experiment with new ingredients. I love our Only Alberta Beef! The taste and quality are the best in the world, and it comes right from our own backyard.”
With a background in Management Information Systems and Applied Mathematics, Fadi started his career at Dome Petroleum and Amoco Canada, specializing in managing financial systems, merger coordination/system integration, information systems security and operational auditing. He later founded a management consulting and business systems development company, specializing in risk management and business continuity planning in Canada, the U.S. and Europe. Fadi has been with Calgary Co-op for more than 6 years and values the organization’s progressive thinking and desire to advance technology innovation to meet the growing need for automated customer-facing applications. Fadi is also a member of the Industry Advisory Council of the Haskayne school of Business and holds a variety of certifications, including Certified Business Continuity Planner (CBCP); Certified Internal Auditor (CIA); Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA); Certified Computer Professional (CCP); and Information Systems Professional (ISP). Fadi’s favourite Cal & Gary’s products? The Rotisserie Chicken, Tiger Prawns, Meat Balls, Guacamole and Salsa – “They remind me of the quality food that my wife and I served at the Lebanese restaurant we owned and operated while living in South France.”
With a background in Business Administration, Doug Newstead has been in the retail industry for more than 40 years, including experience in merchandising and operations in food, home lines, hard lines, and general merchandise. With experience in both Canada and the U.S., he has worked for three of the biggest retailers in North America, and the two largest retailers in Canada. Doug joined Calgary Co-op in 2016, and deeply appreciates the organization’s purpose and culture, especially how members, team members and local vendors work together to provide the very best foods grown, produced, and manufactured in Alberta. Doug is GE School of Business Six Sigma Certified, bringing industry best practices and processes to the Co-op team, with a focus on utilising quality teams, process improvement and technology for efficiency and growth. Doug’s favourite local product? “So many great local products, it’s hard to decide!”
Damon began his career in Real Estate Development more than 21 years ago, working for retailers such as Shoppers Drug Mart, Rexall and Wendy’s, as well as development firms Windridge Properties and Hopewell Development Corporation. He has been a member of the Calgary Co-op team since 2017, valuing the cooperative culture that runs deeply through the organization, and how Co-op is part of the community, providing service and support to members. He brings an extensive background in real estate development, acquisition and divestiture, strategic planning and retail expansion. In addition to his role at Co-op, Damon sits on the Board of Directors at YMCA Calgary and is a key member of their Strategy and A&I committees. Damon’s favourite local product? Local beef, specifically the Cal & Gary’s Prime Rib Tomahawk Steak.
Bart began his retail career more than 40 years ago. He has 17 years experience in Store Operations with national retailers, having managed retail stores across the country. In 2005, he made the switch to Human Resources, and has been with Calgary Co-op for more than 23 years. Bart appreciates that Calgary Co-op is local and employs more than 3,700 individuals in Calgary and surrounding area, making Co-op a part of the fabric of Calgary, and contributing to the local economy. In addition to his career at Co-op, Bart has served on the Board of Hockey Calgary and currently sits on the Board of the Alberta Community and Cooperative Association (ACCA). One of Bart’s many hobbies is barbecuing, making Alberta Beef his favourite local product – “We have the luxury of living in the heart of cattle country and Alberta Beef is amongst the best in the world.”