Suzy O’Donovan wanted Montana Mills to be a community baker, not merely a bread store. That means being a part of each town or village in which the company does business.
Montana Mills donates all bread unsold after 24 hours to local charities. In Rochester, the firm works with FoodLink to disseminate the bread to charitable organizations.
In addition, a full-time staff person donates roughly 40 percent of her time to working with local fund-raising and community events.
In the last month alone, Montana Mills has worked with groups including the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, Camp Good Days and Special Times, Inc. the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and the Epilepsy Association. The company was the sole sponsor of the 1998 Lilac 10K, for which a special bread was developed.
In keeping with the idea of being a community baker, the O’Donovans have taken great care in choosing the locations for their stores. They select areas where residents are out and about, on their way to school, to church or running errands.
“You won’t find us at Eastview Mall. That’s not our image, that’s not where our business would prosper, I believe,” Eugene O’Donovan says.