BY JINA PENN-TRACY, SENIOR WEALTH MANAGER, CENTERED WEALTH
I joined my first co-op when I was 15, while living on my own, going to school at the Children’s Theatre Company, and subsisting on bags full of tamari-roasted almonds and organic raisins. After surviving an aggressive form of cervical cancer at 19, I became macrobiotic, and Saint Paul’s original Mississippi Market became my new lifeline.
My three kids grew up in that co-op, and its next iteration on Cleveland and Randolph, where co-op workers watched my babies in their car seats while I dug for the best apples or squashes. In the ’90s, clean eating influenced my push into consumer advocacy, which in turn drove my personal interest in socially responsible investing. By 2003, it became my full-time career.
As my sights shifted from raising little ones (my oldest now works with me) to trying to ensure we still have a planet for the following generations, I find it easy to get focused on issues too far away from our local community. I firmly believe we must change the behavior of huge multinational corporations—which is the focus of much of my investment practice. However, without a strong sense of community around us, we lose our anchor point for dealing with larger challenges.
“Think Globally—Act Locally” has never been more important. How do we put this rationale into practice? Look at money as if it were water; what are you nourishing where your water flows? Are you buying from businesses that pay fair wages to their employees? Where are you banking? Does that money flow into communities that you want to invest in? Does it create opportunities for people you want to see succeed? What are you investing in? More than ever, we have options for investing in what we want to see make a profit in the world: environmental solutions, gender and racial equity, water protection, and solving the big problems ahead.
Being a co-op member is such an important way to reinvest in our local community. Since I moved to Linden Hills in 2003, the Linden Hills Co-op has been a critical staple of my daily wellbeing. I am so grateful for the many ways our co-ops support both our immediate communities but also the communities of farmers that supply us from around the world. I’m glad to be a member with a very old member number.
Centered Wealth and Vanderbilt Financial Group are separate and unaffiliated entities. Vanderbilt Financial Group is the marketing name for Vanderbilt Securities, LLC and its affiliates. Securities offered through Vanderbilt Securities, LLC. Member FINRA, SIPC. Registered with MSRB. Clearing agent: Fidelity Clearing & Custody Solutions. Advisory Services offered through Vanderbilt Advisory Services & Consolidated Portfolio Review. Clearing agents: Fidelity Clearing & Custody Solutions, Charles Schwab & TD Ameritrade. Insurance Services offered through Vanderbilt Insurance and other agencies. Supervising Office: 55 Main Street, Suite 415 Newmarket, NH 03857 603-659-7626. For additional information on services, disclosures, fees, and conflicts of interest, please visit www.vanderbiltfg.com/disclosures.