September 12, 2013

Alan Caron: The pioneers of Maine's next economy are all around us

A series of presentations will give entrepreneurs a forum in which to share their ideas and strategies.

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Roxanne Quimby and Burt's Bees: Roxanne Quimby took another simple starting ingredient, beeswax, and moved from candles at a local crafts fair to a national brand that, again, fit Maine perfectly. Her company was worth well over $100 million by 2003 and many times that a few years later.

Jonathan King and Jim Stott at Stonewall Kitchen: Jonathan King and Jim Stott took their homemade jam from a farmers market in southern Maine to a line of world-class products that, again, enhanced the Maine brand while benefiting from it.

Across the state, from agriculture to software, and from new technologies to the arts, these and many other pioneers are building the foundations of Maine's next economy and inspiring others by their example.

It's time we celebrate their stories and hear more of their ideas for making Maine an entrepreneurial state for the 21st century.

I invite you to hear from some of them, and join a conversation about Maine's future, in a series of monthly breakfast presentations sponsored by Envision Maine. The first, scheduled for Sept. 24 in Portland, will feature Tom Chappell.

Each presentation will add to a larger conversation about Maine's future that you'll want to be part of. For more information, go to

Alan Caron is president of Envision Maine, a nonprofit organization that promotes Maine's next economy, and a partner at the Caron & Egan Consulting Group. He can be contacted at:


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