Portland, ME (November 16, 2020) – The Maine Cheese Guild is pleased to announce the election of its new President, Holly Aker, founder of Local Goods Gathered and Broken Arrow Restaurant in Portland. This marks the first time the Maine Cheese Guild has selected a retailer to serve as President and representative of Maine’s largest and internationally decorated commercial cheesemakers. In addition, four new board members were nominated including: Ed Fredrikson of Fredrikson Farm, Chef Ciana Godin of Alice & Lulu’s, Annie Lampen of Gathering Board Maine, and Amy Rowbottom of Crooked Face Creamery.
The Maine Cheese Guild is the oldest of the American Cheesemaker Guilds, founded as an education focused not-for-profit in 2003 to support and encourage the Maine cheese making community. The Guild uses their collective voice to promote Maine cheese and cheesemakers, educate cheesemakers and consumers, coordinate resources and share the joy and art of regional cheeses. This includes workshops led by cheesemakers from around the world, Open Creamery Day across Maine in October, and our annual fall Cheese Festival. In 2021, the Guild will be announcing its first Maine Cheese Awards to celebrate the talent of our community.
“I am honored to represent the talented cheesemakers of this state and those who work to promote them,” said Aker. “I have always been in admiration of the time, energy and work that goes into making incredibly delicious cheese and sought ways to support all of those involved in the entire process from the farm to the table.”
Holly Aker is well respected in Maine’s cheese industry as a true advocate for Maine cheese makers. As a Local Forager for Whole Foods Market, her focus has been primarily retail focused, working with cheesemakers to develop new relationships and opportunities for growth. An American Cheese Society Certified Cheese Professional, she operates Local Goods Gathered, an online retail site dedicated to promoting Maine cheese through a monthly subscription series As a retailer and restaurateur (Broken Arrow), she brings a wealth of experience from all sectors of the industry and has partnered with creameries over the years to support best practices for retail, food safety, wholesale, and marketing and communications strategies.
The 2020-2021 Board of Directors includes:
Holly Aker, Local Goods Gathered, President
Mark Whitney, Pineland Farms Dairy Co., Vice President
Eric Rector, Monroe Cheese Studio, Treasurer
Heather Donahue, Balfour Farm, Secretary
Beth Calder, University of Maine
Ed Fredrikson, Fredrikson Farm
Ciana Godin, Alice & Lulu’s
Jena Koons, Kennebec Cheesery
Annie Lampen, Gathering Board Maine
Amy Rowbottom, Crooked Face Creamery
Sarah Spring, Spring Day Creamery
Maine Cheese Guild’s mission is to support and encourage the Maine cheesemaking community through the development of a collective voice to promote Maine cheese and cheesemakers, educate cheese makers and consumers, coordinate resources and share the joy and art of regional cheeses.
~ Mark Whitneuy, Vice President, Maine Cheese Guild