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MAND 2023 Summer Newsletter

Letter from our President

Hello and welcome to the new year of MAND! I am honored to be serving as the Maine affiliate president over the next year. I would like to thank Sue Sullivan for her work and dedication as president last year and for her continued support this year in the role of past president. I currently reside in southern Maine and work primarily as a renal dietitian. I have participated in MAND since moving to Maine in the Spring of 2019, primarily volunteering with the Conference Planning Committee as a member and as the chair.

I would like to welcome many new board members this year; Laurie Copithorne as president-elect, Paul Blakeslee as secretary/historian, Shari Bowden as DTR representative, Lily Brickman as a nominating committee member, and Amelia Sullivan as conference chair. Many of our previous board members have remained in the same position or have moved into new roles on the board. I am excited to start working with our new members as well as continue to work with other board members. At the beginning of June, the board met to transition and start the new year. Here are some of the things we will be working on:

  • FNCE - for those attending FNCE in Denver Colorado this October, MAND will be participating in a joint affiliate reception for networking among ourselves and members from other participating affiliates. There will be light appetizers and a cash bar. This will be held Sunday, October 8th from 4:30-6:30pm local time at the convention center in rooms 108, 110, and 112. More information is found in this newsletter and on the MAND website.

  • Strategic planning - this committee will continue to work on updating MAND’s strategic plan. Be on the look out as you may receive a survey for your input!

  • Public Policy Panel - this continues to be a very busy committee and continues to work on providing feedback on rule making for Maine Dietetic Licensure. As of recently, two new appointments have been made on Maine’s Dietetic Licensure Board. Audrey Morgan, a member of the Public Policy Panel and Dr. Linda Sanborn, MD have been appointed as a dietetic technician, registered, chair and public member, respectively. Swearing in for these appointments is expected to happen in August.

  • IDEA - MAND will continue to look for ways to incorporate and join the Academy’s initiative on Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access.

  • Conference Committee - this committee has started planning for 2024’s annual conference. Say tuned for more information as it becomes available.

Please reach out via email,, if you have any questions or if you would like to be involved with MAND this year!

Sarah Gilbert, MS, RD, LD

MAND President 2023-2024



Tell us about yourself!

I am a Registered Dietitian and PhD student studying Food and Nutrition Sciences at the University of Maine. During my first year as a dietitian I worked in a clinical inpatient setting at Maine Medical Center while continuing my graduate studies. This fall I will be co-teaching the introductory nutrition course at the University of Maine with my friend and colleague, Kayla Parsons. After my doctoral studies, my hope is to become a professor and researcher in a university setting where I can continue to generate meaningful contributions to nutrition sciences and serve as an educator and mentor to undergraduate and graduate students.

What are some of the favorite things about your current job(s)?

One of my favorite things about being involved with research is that I have the opportunity to pursue areas of study that are both interesting to me and can lead to meaningful change in policy and practice. My research areas thus far have been focused on serving populations vulnerable to poor health outcomes including college students, the LGBTQ+ community, and low-income perinatal individuals. The ability to support equitable access to information and resources to promote health is a major driver for me to continue working in a research setting.

What are current research projects you are working on?

My current research is a USDA funded project that is focused on the development and implementation of a web-based program to support the physical and mental health of low-income perinatal individuals living in rural Maine. We’ve used Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) methodologies to do this, which means that we’ve had community members involved in every step of the process. Using this methodology has been extremely rewarding and has helped us to create a pilot program that is not only reliable but also relevant to the needs of our target population.

Why did you choose to practice in Maine?

I have been a student at the University of Maine for over a decade now and I have had a wonderful experience. The faculty in the nutrition department are very invested in the success of their students. There is also a wide array of expertise and areas of study, which is an inspiring atmosphere to be able to work in. Additionally, I am from the Penobscot Nation, so I feel wholly connected to this area, as my family and community have been here for generations. I hope to continue to practice here after my doctoral studies so that I can stay connected to both my academic and cultural communities.

What are your favorite hobbies or pastimes when you’re not working?

When I am not working, I love creating art and music. I make handmade beaded earrings which you can find online or at local craft fairs. I also enjoy hiking, yoga, watching netflix, cooking delicious vegan meals, playing with my bunny, and spending time with my friends and family!

What is your favorite food?

I have a lot of favorite foods, but in the summer I would say honey mangoes!

Do you have any advice for new dietitians, dietetic interns, or students?

My advice would be to explore all the avenues of dietetics. When I began my nutrition studies, research was not on my radar at all, but once I was exposed to it I quickly became invested in honing my skills and pursuing research as a career. There are so many areas out there that dietitians can work in, so take the time to look into as many as you can and find a setting that inspires you.



Join MAND at the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo in Denver, Colorado!

Early bird registration is open for FNCE 2023! This year FNCE will be held October 7-10 in Denver. For more information visit please click here.

Join us for a MAND Member reception! We will be meeting up onsite at FNCE on Sunday, October 8th after the last session. Please see the event details below. Registration is required.

Reception Details

Sunday, October 8, 2023

4:30 – 6:30pm local time

Colorado Convention Center (Denver, CO)

Rooms 108, 110, 112



MAND Communications

The MAND leadership team communicates with members through several channels.

Join us on all of our platforms!

MAND Wants to Hear from You on its Future Strategic Direction!

This Fall, MAND will launch a “Strategic Priorities Insight Survey” to help us better understand members’ priorities, future direction of the profession and get a pulse on current realities in our members’ work environments. Equity, diversity, and inclusion are high on the priority list. The survey will be completely voluntary and confidential. The Board encourages everyone to participate to ensure we capture the most meaningful and representative picture of our members’ needs, advancement, and workforce. For more information on this initiative, please contact Thank you in advance for your engagement, insights, and honesty. Together we can advance the profession, create a more inclusive and equitable organization, and build a strong and growing professional community.

Public Policy Panel Update

Reflecting on last year, the Public Policy Panel (PPP) had the opportunity to participate in rulemaking, plan a legislative event, and attend multiple Academy-led advocacy webinars. As we enter into a new fiscal year, the PPP is energized for what lies ahead.

Many of these efforts would not have been possible without Patsy Catsos, a long-term active member of the PPP. Patsy is retiring from the panel, and we couldn’t be more grateful for the knowledge that she has bestowed on members. An expert in the world of advocacy, Patsy has held several positions on the MAND board including state policy representative, affiliate delegate, and president. During her time on the PPP, she inspired confidence in those around her by building a supportive environment. She initiated (the now annual) Legislative breakfast and has contributed multiple oral and written testimonies representing RDNs in Maine. In addition to her advocacy efforts, Patsy has received the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Excellence in Practice award for clinical nutrition, the Academy’s Outstanding Maine Dietitian of the Year, and the Maine Dietetic Association Outstanding Leadership Award. Patsy is a nationally recognized FODMAP expert and is the author of several peer-reviewed publications. Members agree that it was an honor and a privilege to work alongside Patsy, and we wish her all the best!



MAND member Audrey Morgan, DTR, has been appointed to the Board of Licensing of Dietetic Practice. She took her oath on July 23,2023 with Rev. Will Rankin officiating. Audrey will be filling the vacant dietetic technician seat on the board. She comes to the board with 25 years of clinical experience as a dietetic technician in Southern Maine. She was honored by the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics Excellence in Practice Award in 2013.

Dr. Linda Sanborn, MD has also been appointed the Board of Licensing of Dietetic Practice as their public member. Dr. Sanborn is a retired Family Practice Physician. She has served in the State of Maine Legislature as a representative and as a senator representing the Gorham area. She has served as chair of the First Parish Congregational Church Social Committee, corporator of Gorham Savings Bank, member of the American Academy of Physicians, and diplomat with the American Board of Family Medicine.

These two appointments complete the licensure board. We are hopeful the new board will be able to meet and work on rule making. MAND’s Public Policy Panel drafted recommendations for updates for the current rules as well as recommendations to address the three new laws that were enacted Oct 18, 2021:

Public Law Chapter 291 An act Regarding Telehealth Regulations

Meetings of the Board of Licensing of Dietetic Practice are open to the public. For dates of the upcoming meetings please monitor this page:


What's New - The Academy

Throughout August: Celebrate Kids Eat Right Month®

The Kids Eat Right Month® campaign website offers resources for RDNs and NDTRs, community leaders, schools, parents and caregivers. Access links to media materials and an interactive social media toolkit that has key hashtags, cover photos and shareable graphics with messaging.

Seeking Note Takers: August 16 HOD Meeting

The House Leadership Team invites members to serve as note takers for real-time dialogues at House of Delegates meetings. Get to know the HOD and play a critical role in supporting your delegates as they discuss issues affecting the profession. Learn More

August 15 Live Webinar: Diabetes Technology: The Latest on Continuous Glucose Monitors, Insulin Pumps and More

In a live webinar on August 15, hear the latest on the ever-changing world of diabetes technology and learn how to employ new tools in your practice. The webinar is free for Diabetes dietetic practice group members. Learn More

August 23 Live Webinar: Key Concepts in Nutrition Therapy for Chronic Liver Disease

In a live webinar on August 23, learn how nutrients and liver functions are intertwined and discuss tools to assess nutrition status in individuals with chronic liver disease. Learn More

October 5-6 Obesity in Pediatrics and Adults In-Person Course in Denver

Registration is open for the Commission on Dietetic Registration’s Certificate of Training in Obesity for Pediatrics and Adults, to be held October 5 and 6 in Denver, Colo. The course includes pre-work, a two-day in-person event and a post-test. Tuition is $495 until August 30. The course offers up to 61 CPEUs. Email questions to Click here to learn more.

Certificate of Training: Chronic Kidney Disease Nutrition Management

Receive in-depth instruction on chronic kidney disease nutrition management with the goal of expanding knowledge, skills and competencies. Five unique modules will explain the role of hypertension, diabetes and cardiovascular disease in CKD progression; analyze potential complications; provide recommendations for individualized diet; and more. Learn More

Health Professional's Guide to Nutrition Management of Food Allergies

Get expert-level knowledge that combines food allergy physiology, diagnosis, nutrition management and prevention and treatment in one comprehensive resource. The guide was written, edited and reviewed by physicians and RDNs from around the world with expertise in food allergies, in partnership with Food Allergy Research and Education. Learn More

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