Who, How & Why We Serve

About Us

NWCDC is a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3), organization devoted to assisting new and existing cooperative businesses in every sector with a special emphasis on Resident Owned Communities, home care agencies, and converting existing businesses into worker-owned or community-owned cooperatives. Our service area is the three states of Oregon, Washington, and Idaho.


We understand that when consumers, producers or workers become business owners of a cooperative, their individual and collective responsibilities greatly increase.  New owners face significant challenges to organize, get started and stay on track with a new cooperative business.

To help with these challenges, NWCDC provides facilitation, advising, analysis, and access to information and tools for cooperatives.  Our pre-development work with startups helps to build business ownership, sound management practices, and economic health.

NWCDC is an active member of the National Cooperative Business Association (NCBA), US Federation of Worker Cooperatives (USFWC), and CooperationWorks!, the cooperative development network.

NWCDC aligns with the CooperationWorks! Principles and the Statement on the Cooperative Identity.

NWCDC follows the guidelines of this Non-Discrimination Statement

Team & Boards

NWCDC T-Shirts, Mugs & Bags

Your purchase supports our mission. There’s a Co-op for that! If you have an idea for one, let’s build a co-op for that!

We Acknowledge

NWCDC’s physical location is in Olympia, WA part of the region covered by the Medicine Creek Treaty of 1854 signed under duress. NWCDC acknowledges the Indigenous People of the Medicine Creek Treaty: Coast Salish People and Sahewamish Tribe who are the traditional custodians of this land. We also honor the Nisqually Tribe and Squaxin Island Tribe and pay respect to elders past and present and we extend that respect to other Native People with whom we engage throughout the Pacific Northwest region.

We Serve

NWCDC primarily supports cooperatives in Oregon, Washington, and Idaho but has also supported projects as far away as Alaska and Hawai’i.  Founded by cooperatives in 1979, the Center has grown into the Northwest’s leading provider of services for co-op business development.  We have a long history of collaborating with communities, governments, economic development agencies, and other cooperatives, sharing expertise and building cross-sector support for new and existing cooperatives



To be the recognized leader in the development of cooperative businesses.


The Mission of the Northwest Cooperative Development Center is to foster community economic development, primarily through the cooperative business model.


  • True to Cooperative
  • Spirit
  • Integrity
  • Professionalism
  • Quality
  • Innovative
  • Competence


NWCDC is the “Go To” agency, sought after for its skills and resources. It is recognized as the leader of co-op development, providing expertise and creative solutions leading to financial sustainability.

The Center provides services in a way that strengthens its own support network, in turn providing more stable funding opportunities for the future. Grants and investment based funding are supplemented by compelling successful projects to foster additional development through the Center.

Public Relations
NWCDC has a planned, proactive approach and culture of communication that informs the public of its skills and services. It continually maintains an ongoing dialogue and sharing of [project] stories.

NWCDC has the appropriate skills and resources to assist its clients in meeting their business development needs. In anticipation of a dynamic changing world NWCDC offers consistent opportunities for professional and individual development, which constantly improves performance and range of services.

NWCDC has a plan that empowers the staff and board to contribute to the success and direction of the Center. Information is shared regularly that fosters open problem-solving and creative solutions.

NWCDC clearly shows beneficial results of its work. It tracks and evaluates progress and challenges with transparent measurements.


NWCDC is a tax-exempt non-profit organization that facilitates the growth of co-ops in the Pacific Northwest by providing direct technical assistance. While we occasionally offer employment openings in the traditional sense, many employees work on a project-by-project basis depending on contracts we have received and the type of expertise needed. Students at The Evergreen State College can find internship opportunities on the Community Opportunities Database (CODa). If any of the following options for working with us interest you, then we strongly encourage you to send us your resume and set up an informational interview.

Computer Literacy Internship–proving basic IT education to directors and members of homeowner cooperatives.

We sponsor student interns for one or two academic quarters. These are volunteer internships that focus on project work for 20-40 hours per week. These internships typically involve assisting an ongoing project. For formal consideration, please submit a letter stating your interest, what you seek to gain, relevant experience, the time period you are interested in and the number of hours you can work. If you have a resume, please include it with a letter to our Intern Coordinator. In your Subject Line, please write “Your Name – Intern Coordinator Inquiry”.