Lorimer is the founder of Vermont Bread Company and lifelong Vermont resident
CINCINNATI – Union Institute & University (UI&U), a university offering interdisciplinary plans of study for adult learners through its distance learning programs, and academic centers located in Cincinnati (OH), Los Angeles and Sacramento (CA), Miami (FL), and on its Vermont College Campus in Montpelier and the Brattleboro Center (VT) today announced the election of Lisa Lorimer as chairperson of UI&U’s Board of Trustees.
Lorimer is a Vermont native and the founder and former president and CEO of the Vermont Bread Company. She was first appointed to the university’s Board of Trustees in September 2003.
Union Institute & University President Roger H. Sublett, Ph.D. is excited about Lorimer’s appointment. “Lisa brings a strong entrepreneurial spirit to our university, in addition to a keen sense of business,” he said. “Her considerable acumen and intelligence will serve Union well, particularly as we look at how we can better serve adults throughout the nation and overseas.” Past Board Chair Cheryl Foley calls Lorimer a “leader for the future.”
Often credited with helping fuel the boom in organic food sales over the past two decades, Lorimer sold her controlling interest in 2004 but continues as a significant investor and board member of the company she helped found in 1978 in a country barn in Brattleboro. With nearly $20 million in sales per year, the Vermont Bread Company was the largest producer of all-natural, premium, and certified organic breads and muffins in the Northeast United States. Under her leadership, it was the largest woman-owned manufacturing firm in Vermont and has been featured in magazines such as Inc., Baking Management, and Family Circle.
Lorimer is 1993 alumna of UI&U’s undergraduate program in Vermont, formerly known as the Adult Degree Program (ADP and the first Vermont College graduate to be appointed a UI&U trustee. Already a successful entrepreneur when she began her degree, she is passionate about the education she received at UI&U.
“My experience (as a U&IU learner) was transformational,” said Lorimer, who is currently co-authoring a book on how to run a business. “My advisors helped me find my voice as a writer.”
Lorimer serves on the Board of Directors of the Vermont Community Foundation and the Snelling Center for Government at the University of Vermont. A fundraising volunteer for the Women’s Crisis Center, she is also a member of the Education Committee for Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility. Lorimer was a delegate to the 1995 White House Conference on Small Business, where she served on the Research Advisory Committee for the Peace & Justice Center’s Vermont Job Gap Study Basic Needs and Livable Wage report in 1998.
In addition to her B.A. from the UI&U’s Vermont College ADP program, Lorimer completed the three-year Owner President Management Program at Harvard Business School. An alumna of the Vermont Leadership Institute’s inaugural class of 1996, she now serves as a faculty member. She is also a licensed respite foster care provider who extends her services voluntarily.