Elizabeth Nesbit and Gretchen McIntyre: Spirit of Gainesville nominees
Published: Monday, September 9, 2013 at 11:37 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, September 9, 2013 at 11:37 a.m.
In 2011, childhood friends Gretchen McIntyre and Elizabeth Nesbit realized their dream in opening Citizens Co-op: A Community-owned Market. After five years of planning and fundraising, this duo raised 100 percent of the capital needed to open the store debt-free and purely through community investments. The co-op is now 1,600 members strong and recently celebrated their 2nd year anniversary.
About Elizabeth Nesbit and Gretchen McIntyre
Occupation: Liz-Marketing consultant, Gretchen-Finance Manager
Years in Gainesville: 30
Spouse: Gretchen/Wes Hogan
Children: Liz-2, Gretchen-1
The co-op carries more than 150 locally made items and works with Florida farmers to ensure Gainesville has the finest local and organic food available. The cooperative structure of the business puts members and worker-owners in democratic control of the company while sharing in the profits and losses.
Gretchen and Liz’s hard work and determination has given our community a powerful gift: control of our food supply. They also sponsor community services such as a food film series, education and outreach workshops, a downtown garden bike tour, the development of a community garden in the Porters neighborhood, and many other affiliated programs in the community.
Citizens Co-op, at the center of Gainesville’s thriving local food movement, is a place that nurtures the relationship between people and the food they eat.
Nominated by Lucian Kragiel