FROM: John Rossetto, Riverwest Investment Co-op =============================================== The newly founded Riverwest Investment Cooperative held its inaugural investor/membership meeting on April 10th at Dino’s Restaurant. Over forty residents from Riverwest and the City of Milwaukee were in attendance to learn more about this community-driven venture. The Riverwest Investment Cooperative (RIC) was created by a group of Riverwesterners interested in creating a vehicle to positively influence the neighborhood for current and longtime residents. Quinn Wilder and Tom Stocco, two of RIC’s founding members, provided an overview of the mission and goals of RIC, explained the membership and operational structure of this cooperative, and addressed several questions that were raised by those in attendance. Among those questions: What are RIC’s goals? How does Riverwest benefit from this cooperative? How does RIC make property investment decisions? What’s in it for individual investors–including investment terms, conditions, and returns? RIC’s stated mission is “to build a stable, diverse, and vibrant community by directing member-owned resources to agreed- upon investments in the Riverwest neighborhood.” Bottom-line: RIC wants to purchase distressed property, perform necessary repairs, and match those properties with new owner occupants who share a direct stake in the well-being of the Riverwest community. But RIC cannot take its first step without support from the community. The success of RIC in fulfilling its mission is dependent on the financial investment of individual residents of Riverwest and the Milwaukee area. Anyone who is committed to improving Riverwest’s stability and maintaining its valued diversity can become a member of RIC by investing (initial member investment is $1,000). With member resources, the member-elected Board of Directors and Officers of RIC will then direct the investments in Riverwest property, while the individual members receive a competitive return on their investment (how much? That is among the first decisions of the elected board of directors). RIC will be hold its next meeting on Thursday, April 24, 7:00 p.m., at the YMCA CDC Office on 604 E. Center Street. RIC will be accepting new members/investors and will begin the process of establishing a permanent board of directors and officers. All residents of Riverwest are welcome and encouraged to attend.