Jo Bird has been a successful and practical co-operator since 1993 when she co-founded a housing co-operative in Manchester. Specialising in housing, policy, local government, and community engagement, she works freelance to help people take control through locally owned democratic businesses of all kinds.

Community Shares experience includes Northern Ireland Community Energy (£150,000 from 86 members), Boundary Brewing Belfast (£100,000 raised in ten days), Hayfield Sustainable Transport (£50,000), Village Greens (£100,000 from 400 members), Greater Manchester Tree Station (£140,000 raised from 200 members), FC United of Manchester (£2m from 2,000 members), and Shared Interest Society (£29m raised from 9,000 members).