Last winter my oldest son Ben came to me with an interest in coming into textiles -a family tradition - with the goal of bring back manufacturing and creating good jobs which we had done many years ago.
He was raised in textiles . He had spent the last 12 years advising the national AFL-CIO in Washington and wanted to come back to his home state and create something great for Maine.
Over the past 8 months with Dan and I giving guidance and space to Ben and his fiancee Whitney Reynolds we have collectively met some pretty amazing goals and our mission to continue creating the highest quality products -100 % made in America and create good jobs is actually coming to life !!
To begin with in July we created a school of stitching to train stitchers to manufacture the best quality Polartec Fleece Jacket , vest and pullover and we cross trained these workers to sew wool shawls and polartec fleece blankets with a focus on company apparel .
I reached out to local agencies like GoodWill , Costal Enterprise , Portland Adult Education (PAE) and the Portland Workforce Alliance who I had worked with many years ago they helped provide funding for a sewing teacher , as well as a teacher to work on Math and Language skills with our new students and some other materials.
PAE class enrollments were informed of the training which was open to anyone and everyone. Many of our first students were new Americans , people living in challenging times financially and refugees . We had diverse selection - some with experience , some without - coming from many different places in the world but Maine is now their home.
American Roots Wear LLC was launched after our first 8 week class ended . Of the 6 students we hired 4 (2 left the area) and we have started a new training this week with 8 new wonderful students ! Visit www.americanrootswear.com
Below are a couple of very thoughtful pieces on what we've been doing and also a link to American Roots Wear . Please call if you have questions or would like to learn more . Wishing you a beautiful holiday from our home to yours !
Dory and Family
NEWS ! http://www.wmtw.com/…/maine-company-creates-americ…/36525904