Claire Bailey (She/Her) is the newest member of the Open Table MDI team and is very excited to take over the role of MDI Food Access Project Coordinator. Claire first became involved with Open Table MDI in the Summer of 2020 when she volunteered with the Tuesday evening supper, helping to chop veggies. She has had a lifelong connection to Mount Desert Island and spent many summers here as a visitor before working as an educational park ranger with Acadia National Park in 2020. Claire has also always had an interest in food, and has been cooking and baking at home since she was a child. While her academic background is in biology, Claire has a strong passion for social justice and expanding access to all kinds of services, including food, education, and community. When she isn’t working, you can find Claire reading a book by the water, hiking or biking in the park, or writing letters to her friends.
Growing up, family dinner was one of the most important parts of the day, whether it was just myself and my dad or a gathering of extended family. Both cooking and eating were shared experiences and served as a setting for open conversation and bonding. Even as I grew up and left home, preserving these rituals was very important to me. In college, I maintained a plot in a community garden and earned a reputation among my friend group for baking bread and cooking meals despite the easy access to unlimited food in the dining halls. This was one of the best ways I knew to build social connections outside of the classroom and allowed me to share my creativity and love of food with the people I cared about.
MY FAVORITE COMFORT FOOD
There are too many to choose from, but my top two favorites would have to be super spicy Thai curry or a good old-fashioned baked mac and cheese.