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February 11, 2019

Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative executive director to step down

Photo / Tim Greenway
Photo / Tim Greenway
Matt Jacobson, executive director of Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative since 2013, is stepping down, effective Feb. 25.

Matt Jacobson, who has led the Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative since its inception in 2013, is stepping down as executive director on Feb. 25.

A formal search process will be launched for Jacobson's replacement, led by the collaborative's board of directors.

The Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative is funded by Maine lobster harvesters, dealers and processors to grow demand, both for whole live lobster and a variety of value-added products. It supports that objective by promoting the core values of the Maine lobster industry, which are sustainability and traceability that's deeply rooted in tradition.

Maine lobster achieved the Marine Stewardship Council certification in 2013, allowing the state's lobster industry to certify its long-standing sustainable practices. The industry has been self-regulating for more than 150 years.

Luke Holden, owner of Luke's Lobster and Luke's Lobster Seafood Co. and a member of the collaborative's board, said that during his tenure as executive directory Jacobson helped the organization establish itself as a "strategy-driven marketing force, spreading the Maine lobster story across the globe and managing everything from consumer education, chef events and media relations to issues management and stakeholder support.

Holden said the board, in its search for the next executive director, is confident it will find someone who will "drive forward" the collaborative's 2019 marketing plan as the industry approaches peak season, "ensuring the continued growth of the industry."

Prior to his role with the Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative, Jacobson's career spanned 20 years in sales, marketing and politics. He served as president and CEO of the nonprofit Maine & Co. and helped build Canadian National Railway's intermodal business into a $1 billion a year enterprise.

"On behalf of the entire board, we want to thank Matt for his dedicated service in this role over the past five years," said Frank Gotwals, the collaborative's board chairman and a fisherman based in Stonington. "Maine's lobster industry is not only an economic powerhouse that sustains so many local fishermen and families, but also a core piece of our state's identity. We offer him our sincerest congratulations as he takes the next step in his career and we look forward to beginning the search for our new executive director."

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