Twig Farm People Bios

Helen Cowan

13434911_10209192791798429_2884767363581379784_nHelen Cowan joined Twig Farm in June of 2015 with credentials tailor-made for this line of work. Throughout high school and college, she worked part-time at her local veterinary clinic in Vergennes, Vermont. Shortly after graduating from Cornell, where she studied biology and animal science, Helen spent a year at a small cow dairy in Addison, Vermont, helping to raise and care for calves and pigs and experimenting with small scale home cheesemaking in her spare time.

Nowadays, you will find her merrily crafting our Mixed Wheels and Squares, often whilst singing everything ranging from a  madrigal to the latest Adele cut. (While in college, Helen was part of the Cornell University Chorus and the After Eight A Cappella Group, so this girl has chops.) She is a maestro with fencing, which comes in handy when practicing intensive rotational grazing. And while she’s an ace when it comes to monitoring the microflora in our cellar and helping to draft a notoriously arduous HAACP Plan, her true passion is animal care. She’s happiest when nuzzling the various members of our herd, mostly especially the loquacious Boca. (See: goats who think they are cows.)

Favorite Cheese to eat: Big Cow

Favorite Cheese to Make: Washed Wheel

Hobbies: Crocheting, gardening, making soup, playing Pokemon, refining her sarcastic wit

Side hustles: officiating weddings, knitting cat toys, reading fanfic

Lauren Gitlin

775054_10153867016472224_2492376274220913005_oBorn and raised in the Midwest, Lauren Gitlin spent 12 years in the small town of New York City, working variously as a music and pop culture writer, wine professional and graduate student (she holds a masters in Culinary Anthropology from NYU) before decamping to Vermont to pursue her cheese dreams in 2014. She spent a year in the Northeast Kingdom working for her cheese hero Laini Fondiller at Lazy Lady Farm before joining the crack team at Twig in October 2015. What she lacks in technical know-how she makes up for in jokes worthy of the finest popsicle sticks in this fair land. She also hand-hugs each of our goats to help ensure optimum milk quality (science still iffy on this) and has found a unique joy in clearing brush with a large pair of loppers.

Favorite cheese to eat: Washed wheel (even though it’s the biggest pain in the ass to make)

Favorite cheese to make: Mixed Drum

Hobbies: Cooking, dancing (while cooking), writing, talking to inanimate objects, buying expensive vegetable juices and wines and anything that might fall under the category of luxury liquid

Michael Lee

michael_goatMichael Lee is the artist and brawn behind Twig Farm.  He has a vision and passion which inspires our business and sometimes wears us out.  His bio will be here once Lauren writes it!

Favorite cheese to eat: Mixed Drum

Favorite cheese to make: Square

Hobbies: Biking, Ordering Wine, Baseball

Side hustles:  Cider Making, Four Winds Science Teacher, Duck Eggs

Emily Sunderman

emily_profileEmily Sunderman is Twig Farm’s musician bookkeeper and accountant. Her accounting career began right after graduating from Hampshire College in 1994 where she studied painting.  Her father trapped her en route from college to New York City to teach her the rudiments of Microsoft Excel which combined with her high word per minute typing skills got her a job doing payroll, invoicing and accounts receivable for a construction company which then led to a business analysis career in finance and media including a stint as a business consultant for a mutual fund accounting company. She doesn’t paint anymore.  Not true, she’s started painting the barn.  Everyone is grateful that she makes sure the employees and bills are paid and that she stays out of the way for the most part.  She updates our web site when she feels like it as well but mostly spends her time practicing her violin. 

Favorite cheese to eat: Tomme

Favorite cheese to make: Not involved with that

Hobbies: Facebook, Practicing, Walking the dog, Teaching Suzuki violin lessons