Paris France Recognizes United States Cheese Experts and Professionals in Seattle, Washington

October 10, 2010 – Roland Barthelemy, President of Guilde Internationale des Fromagers travelled from France to recognize and induct 15 cheese professionals from the United States on August 27, 2010 in Seattle, WA during the 27th Annual American Cheese Society Conference.  The individuals inducted are considered not only experts in the making of cheese, but also experts in the production and preservation of standards, quality and education of fine cheese.

Cathy Strange, Philippe Chrevrollier, Roland Barthelemy and David Gremmels

Included are some of the United States finest Cheese Makers, Cheese Mongers and Food Writers, all part of a group of dedicated culinary experts receiving the high honoree.  Twelve individuals were recognized at the level of Garde et Jure and three at the level of Ambassadeur of the Guilde de Fromagers.  Inductees of the Garde et Jure level included: Tirza Brue, Regional Specialty Cheese Buyer and Educator, Whole Foods Market, Chicago, IL; Kurt Dammeier, Cheese Maker and Founder, Beechers Cheese, Seattle, WA; Christine Damour, Account Executive, Sheila Marie Imports, North Reading, MA; Sasha Davies, Cheese Monger and Writer, Portland, OR; Sarah George, Assistant General Merchandise Manager, Costco Wholesale, Dallas, TX; John David Harmon, Regional Specialty Buyer and Educator, Peterson Cheese, Seattle, WA; Mary Keehn, Master Cheese Maker and Founder, Cypress Grove Chevre, Arcata, CA; Shelli Morton, Account Manager, Crystal Foods Imports, Somerville, MA; Tami Parr, Cheese Writer and Critic, Portland, OR; Kurt Timmermeister, Cheese Maker, Kurtwood Frams, Vashon Island, WA; and Christine Bonney-Hyatt, Cheese Writer and Filmmaker, ””, Phoenix, AZ.

Inductees of 415th chapter

The ceremony was held on the top floor of the Westin Hotel in Seattle, WA, following a forty year tradition of pomp complete with robes, French Champagne, and a presentation of medals and certificates. The evening concluded with an outstanding cheese plate of American farmstead and artisan cheeses from Cypress Grove Chevre, Kurtwood Farms and Rogue Creamery; fine Pinot Noir and Reisling wines from Willamette Valley Vineyards and Chocolate Stout and Chatoe Rogue from Rogue Ales, presented by Rogue Creamery.  The ceremonies were mastered by internationally renowned cheese expert and current president of the Guilde, Mr. Roland Barthélemy and further remarks were presented by Mr. Luc Sénécal, President Isigny Sainte-Mère Dairy Co-operative, Isigny, France and Mr. Louis Aird, Import/Export Director, Saputo Canada.  The first Guilde Chapter for the United States was created in history during the ceremony and included the induction of Philippe Chevrollier, Director, ACMA, Philadelphia, PA and Cathy Strange, Global Cheese Buyer and Cheese Monger, Whole Foods Market, Austin, TX.  In addition David Gremmels, Cheese Maker, Rogue Creamery, Central Point, OR was recognized at the prestigious level of Ambassadeur of the Guilde Internationale des Fromagers.

The « Guilde des Fromagers » and “Confrerie of Saint-Uguzon » was created in 1969 in Dijon, France by Mr. Pierre Androuët, a cheese maker, epicurean and intellectual with a degree in fine arts. The Guilde, for dairy professionals who were dedicated to preserving standards in cheese making throughout the world, and the Confrerie, for cheese aficionados and experts such as chefs, restaurateurs, food scientists and food journalists whose objective was to share their knowledge and the knowledge of the cheese makers.

The Guilde des Fromagers and the Confrerie de Saint-Uguzon has 5500 members in 33 countries.  The induction on August 27, 2010 was the first induction in the Pacific Northwest, the first time citizens of the United States have been recognized at the Ambassadeur level and was the historical formation of a United States Chapter in the Guilde’s forty year history.


Cheese Masters of American, New Holland, Pennsylvania
Ambassador Guilde International des Fromagers
T. 1.717.355.8536 * E.

Cathy Strange, Global Cheese Buyer, Whole Foods Market, Austin, Texas
Ambassador Guilde Internationale des Fromagers
T. +1.512.542.0848 * E.

David Gremmels, President and Cheese Maker, Rogue Creamery, Central Point, Oregon
Ambassador Guilde Internationale des Fromagers
Chairman American Cheese Society
M. +1.541.601.7758 * E.