Behind the MountainMade.com website is a small, dedicated staff eager to make your visit to our website an enjoyable experience. All of us in some way contributed to delivering our artisan works to your door. We are deeply committed to MountainMade’s success and will strive to become one of your online bookmarks.
It takes quite a few people to seek out and gather the works of West Virginia artists, get it all to our retail locations and gallery, and ship off items purchased via the website. So, if you’ve ever wondered about the people who help make a handmade market possible, we’d like to introduce you to a few people.
When you visit our website, you’re likely looking to shop. Our Retail Manager, Gary Carr (front right) is responsible for selecting the product you see on the website and in our retail locations. He is always on the lookout for new artisans with unique and interesting products. When Gary’s not shopping for MountainMade or overseeing retail locations, he’s in the kitchen. Gary caters and is known for his baked goods, which are featured at a local coffee shop. (Try his cookies.)
Since we’re talking website and computers, Mike Broderick (front left) is our IT guy. Mike keeps our systems running efficiently and economically. Since this includes our point-of-sale system on the website, he’s always on call. But when he’s not here, he’s pursuing his music. Mike plays the violin and mandolin in Wolf Creek Session, a blend of traditional Appalachian songs and music deeply rooted in Celtic influences. Almost any night of the week, Mike can be found performing in the area.
From an office hidden in a corner in the back of the warehouse, Carrie Nestor (back, second from left) oversees the inventory and our computerized inventory system. From the moment the inventory is delivered, Carrie takes over. She checks it in and gets it posted to the website or distributed among the three retail locations. On rare occasions, she brings along her sidekick, Oliver, her son born in April. It’s our version of on-site day care.
You could call him our man for all seasons. Rich Whetzel (back, second from right), in charge of shipping and maintenance, makes sure your purchase gets to you quickly, in one piece and as economically as possible. Rich also fills in wherever we need him, from delivering and picking up product to that friendly face behind the counter. Although at the end of the day, we believe he prefers the company of his dog and two horses.
Another face behind the retail counter is Heidi Haldeen (back, center) who is also our Education Manager. Heidi can fill you in on the artisans and their products, enhancing your visit. As Education Manager, she runs our studio program and educational outreach in the community. Check studio classes for our offerings in a wide range of media, which routinely changes to meet our student’s and artisan instructor’s interests. You can also find Heidi behind the counter of her eatery located in a nearby historic tavern.
When you visit the Country Store, it’s play day with Kristie Owens (back right) as the calming influence amidst the toys. Kristie encourages you to play with the toys including the marble trees, yo-yos, Jacob’s ladder and many more. The toys are also for sale. Kristie has practice from raising her own two children.
What kind of organization would we be without our own resident “bean counter”? Stephanie Phillips (back left) is our Finance and Administrative Assistant responsible for paying our artisans, bills and the payroll. She works to make our accounting system as paper-free as possible, thus saving a tree or two.
I’m Becky Henderson (front center), General Manager, the one with “the buck stops here” sign on my door. If you have a problem or concern when shopping on our website, send me an email and I’ll make sure you receive a prompt response. .
Visit us in Thomas, West Virginia, at either the Gallery or Country Store. If you’re traveling along I-79 in central West Virginia, stop by the Stonewall Resort and visit our retail location in the Lodge.