AUGUSTA — Cooperators of all stripes from across Maine will converge at 8:30 a.m. at Viles Arboretum Saturday, April 30, for the third annual Principle Six Conference, to learn, network and organize together. The conference is inspired by the global Cooperative Principle of “Cooperation Among Cooperatives.” This year’s theme is “Growing a Cooperative Ecosystem.” The event is collectively organized by Cooperative Maine, the Cooperative Development Institute and many Maine cooperatives.

The day will begin with registration and then moves into Open Space discussion groups, where participants can direct the flow of conversation as the group explores strategies and approaches towards a cooperative and just economy. Keynote speaker, Joe Marafino, with the Democracy at Work Institute, will share his thoughts on connecting our Maine cooperative movement to the broader cooperative movement happening around the world.

Lunch will be prepared by Good Tern Cooperative of Rockland. After lunch there will be a host of peer learning opportunities as cooperators develop skills in facilitation, open book management, best practices of working with local food systems and more.

All cooperators, no matter their roles, are encouraged to participate in this grassroots event. A sliding fee scale, carpooling and overnight hospitality are available. The venue is handicapped accessible. Conference schedule, workshop descriptions, presenter bios and registration details are available at

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