top of page

Our Staff

Andrew Delmonte

Andrew Delmonte

Executive Director

They/them pronouns

Andrew is an organizer, facilitator, and business developer who believes in the power of communities and workplaces to govern themselves. A lifelong resident of Buffalo's West Side, Andrew has 10+ years' experience assisting cooperatives, social enterprises, independent small business owners, and frontline community organizations with planning and management decisions, financial strategy, governance, group dynamics, and conflict resolution.

Mike Zak

Mike Zak

Cooperative Developer

He/him pronouns

Mike is a seeker of knowledge, justice, and sustainability. He was the Co-Founder and a worker-owner of Gro-op, an aquaponic vertical farm, for the past 10 years. Mike co-created Gro-op as a model of what an ethical business could be: ever striving towards utilizing the most environmentally sustainable urban farming practices, empowering workers through democratic cooperative ownership, and investing in its community by providing on the job training programs for Opportunity Youth in Buffalo's East and West Sides.

Michael Heubusch

Michael Heubusch

Cooperative Developer

They/them pronouns

Michael is a community organizer and economist who works as a cooperative developer and educator for Cooperation Buffalo. Michael began their professional relationship with Cooperation Buffalo as an intern while they were a graduate student at Buffalo State College, where they graduated with an M.A. in Applied Economics in December 2018. Their areas of interest include cooperative economics, radical political economy, and macroeconomic policy.

Cecilia Johnson

Cecilia Johnson

Cooperative Developer

She/her pronouns

Cecilia is an organizer and social media manager who is passionate about working to build a new economy that meets everyone’s needs. After spending more than a decade at a large international bank, Cecilia was glad to leave behind the extractive, exclusionary, and profit driven big banking industry and join the movement to normalize non-extractive financing and democratize our workplaces with Cooperation Buffalo.

Our Board

Harper Bishop

Harper Bishop

Director

He/they pronouns

Harper is the Deputy Director of Movement Building at PUSH Buffalo, whose mission it is to mobilize residents to create strong neighborhoods with quality, affordable housing; to expand local hiring opportunities; and to advance economic and environmental justice in Buffalo, New York. He has a decade's worth of professional experience in community-based organizations. In that time, Bishop has trained and developed grassroots leadership, written and advocated for progressive policies, and organized for economic, social, and racial justice.

Adam Alas

Adam Alas

Secretary

He/him pronouns

A native of Staten Island, NY, Adam developed a passion for learning and service as a high school student after working part-time at the Specialized High School Institute. This stuck with him though college, leading to him earning his BA in Sociology from SUNY Stony Brook, and his MSW from Washington University in St. Louis.

India Walton

India Walton

Board Chair

She/her pronouns

India is a native and lifelong resident of the “city she loves,” Buffalo, New York. She is the proud mother of four awesome sons. Walton graduated from Buffalo Public Schools, Erie Community College and is pursuing a master’s degree in nursing leadership and informatics. Her toolkit having been enriched by AFL- CIO organizer training, Community Health Worker Network of Buffalo Training, Open Buffalo’s Emerging Leaders program, and Leadership, Organizing, and Action at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

Tori Kuper

Tori Kuper

Treasurer

She/her pronouns

Tori is dedicated to growing people, business, and community. Tori is a Cooperative Developer and Board President of Cooperation Buffalo and is also the Operations Coordinator for the New Economy Coalition, where she organized logistics and programming for CommonBound 2016 and 2018. She is part of the 2016 Democracy at Work Institute Cooperative Developer Fellowship Program.

Kathryn Franco

Kathryn Franco

President

She/her pronouns

Kathryn is a lover of community and connection. Having been raised in Buffalo, she is a proud product of Buffalo Public Schools and has witnessed the many changes to her city over the last decade. After working in the field of HIV/AIDS, Kathryn returned to school to pursue her Masters of Social Work and Public Health.

bottom of page