Nordic Aquafarms announces leadership transition for Belfast project

Tue, 07/05/2022 - 7:30pm

    Nordic Aquafarms, Inc., announced today a change in the Norwegian company’s U. S. leadership.

    Brenda Chandler, who has served as Nordic’s Chief Financial Officer for the past three and a half years, has been appointed interim CEO.

    Chandler assumed her new position over the weekend and will split her time between Humboldt, California, and the Nordic corporate office in Portland. Erik Heim and Marianne Naess have left the company to pursue other opportunities, according to a July 6 news release.

    Bernt Olav Rottingsnes, the CEO and chairman of the board for parent company, Nordic Aquafarms Group AS, will continue to serve as chairman of Nordic Aquafarms Inc., while the remainder of the company leadership and staff in California and Maine remain unchanged, the release said.

    Chandler is a Maine native with family roots in Belfast and Jonesport. She joined Nordic Aquafarms as Chief Financial Officer in March 2019 after a career in the technology and paper sectors.

    She has experience in treasury, risk management, finance, accounting and real estate. She has also served on the boards of nonprofit youth organizations whose mission is enabling education for at-risk teens.

    “We are thrilled to have Brenda step into this important role,” said  Rottingsnes. “She is a proven leader who has served as key counsel in our permitting and project planning efforts to date. Her knowledge and understanding of developing bi-coastal sustainable land-based aquaculture in Maine and California is unmatched. She is exactly what we need at this time as we move towards project completion.”

    Chandler said: “Nordic Aquafarms has a strong organization in Maine, California and the Nordics (Norway and Denmark), and continues to work closely together to develop NAF into a leader in the production of high quality locally sourced seafood. This is an exciting time in our industry. I am honored to have been chosen to lead the company and I look forward to working alongside the good people in Belfast and Humboldt to develop projects their communities can be proud of.”

    Chandler holds bachelor of science and associate of science degrees from the University of Maine at Augusta.

    The release said Nordic Aquafarms, Inc., has local, state and federal permits for its Belfast project, allowing  development of the 56-acre site.

    The company is currently engaged in project planning with detailed design and pursuit of building permits, the release said. A similar project is underway in Samoa, California, where the company is currently pursuing permits.

    The salmon farms, according to Nordic: “will complete Nordic Aquafarms bi-coastal production service initiative, providing a delivery of sustainably grown salmon to major populations on the east and west coast. The U.S. market for salmon is stronger than ever, and Nordic Aquafarms looks forward to being a leader in the production of high quality, locally sourced seafood. In addition, the projects will provide significant economic impact to the local areas.

    Nordic Aquafarms has posted its California Environmental Impact Report for the Humboldt County project: .