Berkshire Food Co-op Welcomes New General Manager

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GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — After conducting an eight-month-long, nationwide search for a new general manager, the board of directors of Berkshire Food Co-op has tapped Troy Bond to helm the newly expanded cooperative grocery store.

"We are thrilled to welcome Troy to the Berkshires to lead our co-op as we grow into our new store. He brings not only an extensive background successfully managing natural foods stores, but also superior communication skills and a history of community building," said Erica Spizz, president of the board of directors.

Bond started his career in natural foods by opening The Market in his hometown of Cedar Falls, Iowa, in 1998. The Market was the first retailer in the area dedicated to selling natural foods after the Cotton Top Co-op closed in the 1970s.

His interest in natural foods springs from a desire to provide healthy foods to support optimum well-being. Prior to opening The Market, Troy was certified to teach integral yoga, and served as the stress management specialist with the Ornish Program, an experimental program to reverse heart disease at Mercy Hospital and the Iowa Heart Center in Des Moines.



After selling The Market, Bond went on to work for Whole Foods Market as a store team leader and was named as an All*Star in 2004 after turning around an under-performing location and doubling sales. His career continued as a consultant for natural foods and specialty food service start-ups, a category manager, and a new store opening director. Recently he served on the executive team of the Independent Natural Foods Retailers Association (INFRA) as the director of member relations overseeing the retail operations of 250 retail members with 360 storefronts, and then as the store manager for an INFRA store in Florida.

"Considering how much we've been able to accomplish during this transitional phase, we think we'll be able to achieve great things working with Troy. We're looking forward to building an even more successful business with him that will become a powerfully positive force in our local economy," said Ted Moy, store manager.

Bond is moving to the Great Barrington area from Florida, with his two children, Donovan and Siena, both in high school. In his spare time, Troy enjoys writing fiction, cycling and making pizza from scratch.

 

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Let's Reverse the Rural Physician Shortage

By Lia Spiliotes

Across the nation, unequal access to health care raises urgent, pressing problems for individual and community health. For rural and underserved communities, the most urgent challenge for patients is our shrinking supply of primary care physicians.

Data show that by 2030, the United States will face a primary care physician shortfall as high as 49,300. Only 25 percent of medical school graduates enter the primary care field; many head straight to higher-paid medical specialties.

In rural regions, this looming physician shortage is already hurting patients. A new poll by Harvard, NPR, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation found that one-quarter of those surveyed had trouble accessing health care recently.

Viewed in a national context, the doctor shortage issue will be most dire for Texans. The other extreme is here in Massachusetts, which has the apparent luxury of a projected surplus of primary care doctors. However, regardless of the area of the country, rural regions — such as ours, in the Berkshires — face persistent challenges in attracting and keeping primary care doctors.

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