They are well-versed in education, agriculture, business, marketing, and personnel. They are some of WNC’s strongest allies, and they help keep us working towards our mission.
David Bennell is the North American lead for Food and Nature at the World Business Council for Sustainable Development where he focuses on sustainable agriculture, natural climate solutions, and global food systems reform. Previously, he was Director of Food and Capital Markets for the investor network Ceres.
He’s worked for Microsoft, REI and LL Bean in leadership development, product development and sourcing positions. His career also includes working as a funder focused on sustainable forestry, the co-creation of the for-profit social enterprise company CottonConnect, co-creation of an impact investing fund focused on food and agriculture investments and leading the apparel industry NGO Textile Exchange focused on standards development for responsible sourcing of materials.
David created the world’s most-watched sustainability series Sustainability Strategies hosted on Linked In Learning and previously held a five-year adjunct faculty position at MIT where he taught sustainable design and development.
How did you first become connected with WNC? I am a neighbor.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? I will contribute to WNC’s mission in any way I can.
What is your favorite thing about WNC? The trails. They are full of lady slippers in the spring!
Name: Morgan C Cuthbert
Occupation/Title: Educator, Yarmouth School System
How did you first become connected with WNC?
I grew up in Brunswick and remember my family coming to the farm as a child to see the animals. I now have my own family and have settled in Freeport with my two boys and wife, Christina. We very much enjoy all the farm offers since the transformation that has taken place over the last 30 years. The camps, the dinners and all the workings of a salt water farm allow for a connection to nature and a direct link to understanding where our food comes from.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board?
I always had a love for science and the workings of the world around us. As an science educator of over 15 years I encourage students to use the inquiry process and become aware citizens. I can not think of a better location then WNC to be a base for these methods. Place-based learning and authentic science bring community and education together where students end by understanding and not memorizing content. My hope is that I can help to develop more experiences like this at WNC. Further, I hope to share the amazing science that is going on at WNC with other educational professionals and institutions.
What is your favorite thing about WNC?
My favorite thing about Wolfe’s Neck Center is the part it provides within our community. WNC is an establishment that links our busy lives with nature and allows a center for people to come together to experience growth and life. Whether it is driving out to see the baby lambs, dropping my kids off at a Summer Camp or taking a Sunday evening to see friends and celebrate the local food WNC provides at a Farm Dinner driving down the road to WNC I decompress and I think my blood pressure drops.
Richard (Rick) Ganong has more than 25 years of experience in the financial services industry with a focus on venture capital and hedge fund investing. He was a Partner at the Tudor Investment Corporation, an internationally recognized diversified investment management firm, and was a founding General Partner of the Tudor Venture Group which managed a series of funds providing growth capital to private companies in various information technology industries. Most recently, Mr. Ganong was the Senior Vice President of Development and Alumni Relations at Bowdoin College.
Mr. Ganong’s education background includes an MBA from the Tuck School at Dartmouth, 1992 and a BA from Bowdoin College, 1986.
Mr. Ganong has dedicated time and resources to many not-for-profit institutions. He is an emeritus member of the Board of Overseers at The Tuck School at Dartmouth. He is also the Chairman of the Corporation of The Belmont Hill School and is President Emeritus of the Board of Trustees of the Belmont Hill School (2007-2012). From 2008-2012, he was an Overseer at Newton Wellesley Hospital and member of the finance committee. He is currently a member of the Board of The Maine Technology Institute and the Board of the Gulf of Maine Institute.
Mr. Ganong and his wife, Kristine are co-founders of Five Pine Farm in Brunswick, ME.
How did you first become connected with WNC? We have been to numerous WN farm dinners and we leased property from WNF.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? Perhaps looking at new business opportunities.
What is your favorite thing about WNC? I love the animals!
Associate Professor and Program Director – Agriculture Food and Environment
Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Boston MA
How did you first become connected with WNC? My first university faculty position, starting in 1992 (until 2000) was at the University of Maine. My expertise includes grazing management, and I visited WNC during my first week of work. I have been involved, off and on, since that time.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? My recent and current work focuses on the food system, from production to nutrition and health. I want to help WNC become a central and important research center that links all of these areas.
What is your favorite thing about WNC? Two things: just being there. And that our kids grew up coming to the farm and still talk about it (and visit).
Senior Program Director, Food Systems & Natural Resources
How did you first become connected with WNC? I visited with my girls when they were young, but it was when I got to know current board President, Fiona Wilson, when I was introduced to all the exciting developments happening on the farm, and was invited to sit on the board.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? I love strategic planning that leads to action on the ground, and WNC has plenty of that going on! In particular, I hope to assist in building out the organic dairy program to be a premier national training site for the next generation of organic dairy farms in Maine and the northeast.
What is your favorite thing about WNC? The extraordinary energy embodied by the staff and the board to make things happen and move things along. The work of building a robust, resilient and regenerative food system is tough, and the work of the long game. It’s a privilege to work with such intelligent and thoughtful leaders dedicated to making that goal a reality.
Attorney, Energy and Utilities Law
How did you first become connected with WNC? I grew up in Freeport and started visiting the Farm as a child. Over 45 years later, I enjoy spending time at Wolfe’s Neck now more than ever.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? I hope to bring my perspective as a Freeport resident that is interested in supporting farming, food security and preserving WNC’s historic buildings and outstanding landscape.
What is your favorite thing about WNC? Among other things, WNC operates an authentic working Farm that strives to support agriculture throughout Maine and the region and is open and accessible to the public for free, seven days a week.
How did you first become connected with WNC?
After knowing about the farm from living in the area in the early 2000’s, I was reacquainted with WNC’s work in 2019. Dave Herring presented the Center’s programs and how sustainable agriculture could be a tool to fight climate change to a group from my work. I was instantly sold on the mission, and then became gradually more involved as my kids experienced farm camp and my family began to explore more of the great programming that the Center offers.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board?
I’m very committed to finding solutions that address climate change and healthier eating at the same time. With my background in sustainability of food retail, training in environmental science, and time spent working on land conservation, I’m excited to contribute to the long-term strategic planning for WNC. They are fast becoming established as a research center and testing ground for a healthier food future, and I can’t wait to see that extend in its scope and impact.
What is your favorite thing about WNC?
The diversity of the Center is so rich, from teaching young farmers and kids about raising and eating good food, to actually raising a diverse set of crops and experimenting with how to do it better, to driving creation of innovative tools so farmers can play a role in reversing climate change… That is my favorite thing: the energizing ecosystem WNC has built that connects people, good food, and a better future for the planet.
How did you first become connected with WNC? I’ve been connected my whole life beginning with the summers I spent here as a child when it was still my grandparent’s farm and summer residence.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? I moved to Maine in 2010 largely because I wanted to be here in order to help the farm in as many ways as possible. I have always been an advocate for environmentally conscious agricultural practices and my youth, enthusiasm, knowledge of the property and its history, and connection to the neighborhood are all beneficial personal qualities for the organization.
What is your favorite thing about WNC? My favorite thing about Wolfe’s Neck Center is the beauty of its coastal farm landscape that has remained relatively unchanged for over two hundred years and continues to be actively farmed.
Raina is Vice President, Customer Satisfaction at L.L.Bean. She is a graduate of the Darden Graduate School of Business Administration at the University of Virginia.
Large Animal Rescue (welfare & emergency) & Grant Seeker/Proposal Writer for NGOs- Self employed. Also volunteer with Technical Large Animal Emergency Rescue and The American Red Cross.
How did you first become connected with WNC? I’ve been coming to the Farm since I was a baby. I’ve spent every summer of my life on the Farm, going with my Grandfather, as a child, to check the cattle or the hay; learning about forage & soil quality, as a teen, from Charlie DeGrandpre; exploring the woods and learning about native plants & medicinals from my Grandmother.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? Education, conservation, history and alternative farming practices are all in my DNA, and are all areas I have been very involved in while living on our farm in Tennessee as well as during my summers on Wolfe’s Neck. As my husband and I transition from our lives in Tennessee to Maine, I plan to be even more active in the continued success of my Grandparent’s experiment with organics and other alternative methods on their historic saltwater farm.
What is your favorite thing about WNC? That it not only continues to be relevant, but is now becoming a leader in education and research into alternative agricultural methods and how those methods better our environment- locally, regionally, nationally and globally. AND… that it does all this while still honoring the legacy of Wolfe’s Neck Farm as it was and as it grew to become Wolfe’s Neck Center.
Executive Director, Meridian Stories
How did you first become connected with WNC? I moved into the neighborhood and my kids both went to camp there. My son eventually became a junior and then a full counselor, in addition to other positions that broadly shaped his interests, character and values.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? My passion and expertise lie in progressive educational development. My background is in media program development around educational goals, as well as in classroom teaching. At WNC, there are many utterly unique opportunities for both formal and informal learning and I hope to be a part of the shaping of those opportunities, to make WNC an exciting and extraordinary educational environment.
What is your favorite thing about WNC? The beauty. The trails. The peace of the cows. The stray cat. The estuary. The vista. And again, the trails.
Retired from a career in law and business.
How did you first become connected with WNC? After retirement, we moved to Freeport, near Wolfe’s Neck Center.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? We are supporting WNC financially and by way of my legal and business skills.
What is your favorite thing about WNC? The regenerative farming initiative is very exciting and promises to put WNC among the leaders of this potentially global endeavor. Plus, WNC is a gorgeous, wholesome and altogether inviting place for our local Maine community.
Sam is a journalist and author of four books
How did you first become connected with WNC? As a youth when my parents started the farm. Was driving a tractor and a six-wheel Army surplus truck when I was a young teen
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? Experience, ideas, enthusiasm
What is your favorite thing about WNC? Being so involved with nature with such a wonderful operation and a great staff
Executive Director, Center for Social Innovation and Enterprise, and Associate Professor, Paul College of Business & Economics at University of New Hampshire
How did you first become connected with WNC? My husband and I bought a home located very close to WNC in 2000. We were drawn to the area in large part because of the incredible open space and stunning landscape of WNC. We quickly became almost daily visitors year-round, hiking the extensive trails in summer and skiing or snowshoeing them in winter. One of our favorite moments was when the two farm cats joined us early one snowy morning for a long snow shoe into the woods! After our daughter was born, we also started becoming frequent visitors to the farmyard. When she was three, we got to see a lamb being born in the barn, which definitely the start of her deep interest in animals. A good friend and neighbor was on the Board of WNC and one day asked if I might be interested in using some of my professional expertise to help with the organization’s strategic direction. I jumped at the chance, first joining an advisory board, and then the Board of Directors in 2011.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? I have been deeply involved since 2011 with the strategic direction of WNC. WNC is an amazing and unique location, a stunning historic saltwater farm on the coast of Maine. We also have an incredibly talented and passionate staff. I am passionate about continuing to help WNC most fully use all of these gifts to achieve our mission of transforming people’s relationship with farming and food. WNC has been on this mission for decades, and was an early innovator and pioneer in sustainable farming, but it’s so exciting to see that these ideas are now becoming more mainstream and more and more people are interested in where their food comes from, how it is grown, and how we can create a farming system that is in ecological and economic balance. I am excited to continue helping WNC expand its reach and impact – playing a role not just locally but regionally, nationally and internationally.
What is your favorite thing about WNC? How to pick just one thing?! It’s really about the overall experience – the amazing location, the people and the really cool hands-on learning programs for all ages all combine to give people a really meaningful and authentic opportunity to learn more and get more involved in farming and food.
Senior Development Program Advisor at The Nature Conservancy
How did you first become connected with WNC? As is the case for many lucky people, I first got to know Wolfe’s Neck Center through farm visits with my children. Between the engaging animals, the opportunities to get hands dirty chaperoning school trips, the fall and spring festivals, touch football on the Wedding Field, and the stunning views, there’s a lot of incentive to keep coming back. I volunteered at a couple of the festivals and that was my entrée to deeper involvement.
How do you hope to best contribute to WNC’s development through your tenure on the Board? Over the past several years I’ve had the benefit of watching WNC build a vision for the future – both the farm’s future and the future of our region’s farms and food systems. It has been tremendously exciting to see WNC build on the remarkable foundation laid by the Smith Family in founding the organization, with an eye to delivering impact locally, regionally, and now, even globally. I hope to help WNC and its many supporters ensure that we are able to deliver on that vision through strong programs and sustainable funding.
What is your favorite thing about WNC? There are the smart and dedicated people behind the vision and the programs. There are the charismatic animals populating the barns and fields. There are the fabulous campsites nestled along the bays. There are the historic buildings now finding new life and renewed purpose. And there’s the amazing mix of woods, fields and coastline. Do I have to choose? If so, I’ll choose the oceanside rocks below campsite 716 – perfect for watching seals at sunset.
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