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Caitlin Frame ’05 started at Harley in Grade 9. She was a three season athlete all four years, playing volleyball, indoor track, cross-country running, swimming, and outdoor track. She also participated in Harley’s Hospice program and the Recycling Club.Following Harley she went on to Skidmore College to study early childhood education. She continued swimming and volunteered at a local Hospice home. She soon discovered that education was not her calling and having touched upon sustainability with her work in Harley’s recycling club, decided to take Environmental Science Studies 101. She said this class showed her the importance of being aware and engaged with the world around her and kicked her accountability into high gear. She started thinking about sustainable food systems and farming. While at school she started working on a local vegetable farm, the local farmer’s market, and did her environmental studies Capstone project on bioremediation (the introduction of plants to absorb and breakdown environmental pollutants). Her final semester was spent in Botswana studying ecology and conservation, and while she was there she learned about a farm apprenticeship program in Maine. Always having wanted to work a full season on a farm, she then applied for an apprenticeship where she met partner, Andy Smith.
Caitlin and Andy, together with their children Linus and Willa, now own and operate The Milkhouse Farm & Creamery, a certified organic, pasture based dairy farm where they also raise cows and pigs for meat. They currently milk between 25-35 cows. They sell milk and yogurt made at the farm to three dozen wholesale accounts throughout the state and also ship milk to Horizon Organic. Meat is sold directly to consumers and to their wholesale accounts. Their goal is to make their farm more sustainable by using an organic pasture based system to sequester carbon, lowering their environmental impact on their immediate ecosystem, and in very small part, their impact on the world. Additionally, yogurt is sold in glass jars, allowing them to ‘reuse & recycle’. Caitlin loves that their farm provides nourishing, healthy food for people throughout the state.
Caitlin said Harley trained her to think strategically and express herself. As a student, she was inspired by fellow students and teachers and is so appreciative of her Harley education. She admires Harley’s micro-farm and the holistic “community sustainability” that Harley is working toward. Harley continues to inspire her.