Winterport woman named finalist in national Carhartt contest

Winterport Water District Superintendent Amanda Smith has recently been selected as one of the nine finalists in the second annual Cintas & Carhartt Cold Crew contest.

Amanda Smith of Winterport is one of the nine finalists in the second annual Cintas & Carhartt Cold Crew contest.

Voting will take place through March 31 at the official contest website,, and the grand prize winner will receive an all-expenses-paid trip for two to the 2013 Country Music Association Music Festival June 6-9 in Nashville, Tenn.

“My husband and I are huge fans of earlier country music — Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, Merle Haggard, Johnny Cash — and Nashville is so rich in country music history,” Smith wrote in a recent interview by email.

Smith came across the Carhartt contest while surfing the internet for wastewater-related information.

“When I saw that last year’s winner was a woman in the wastewater field, I thought, ‘I can put in for this,’” Smith wrote.

Smith’s work at the Winterport Wastewater Treatment Facility requires durable and warm work clothes. Whether standing in a trench, up to her thighs in freezing water, or at home, farming with her husband, Smith relies on Carhartt products for protection, especially during the Maine winter.

“Not a day goes by that I don’t look like a Carhartt advertisement,” Smith wrote in her contest essay. “With miles of roadway to keep plowed, walkways and access points to keep shoveled, and 42 fire hydrants to keep clear from snowplows … I need layers!”

Her favorite Carhartt product are insulated coveralls.

“I can not afford to be too cold or too hot, and I certainly can’t afford outerwear that won’t hold up,” she wrote. “Away from work, my husband and I are making a first attempt at farming, or we are playing in the woods… so guess what you will typically find me wearing? Thank you for making a great product.”

Cintas Corporation and Carhartt launched the Cintas & Carhartt Cold Crew contest in September 2012, following this success of the previous year’s contest.

The contest targets workers in the U.S. and Canada whose jobs require them to withstand tough conditions in cold temperatures. These individuals were encouraged to share their stories and photos and explain why Carhartt workwear is essential to their jobs.

The other eight finalists are:

  • Armand Cournoyer, an electrical inspector from Lorette, Manitoba, Canada
  • James Tatem, a arborist foreman from Hooksett, N.H.
  • Rebecca Barrett, a property management laborer from Neguanee, Mich.
  • Paul Wright, a certified pump operator from Pineville, N.C.
  • Dawn Martin, a cattle rancher from Beulah, N.D.
  • Dave Bensette, a mailman from Tecumseh, Ontario, Canada
  • Cynthia Gottwald, a mail carrier from Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • Tim Ahlstrom, a framing contractor from Arvada, Colo.

“We’re excited for the voting round of the Cintas & Carhartt Cold Crew contest, a competition that truly highlights the hardworking spirit of men and women across the country, and we look forward to the continued success of our rental work wear partnership with Cintas,” said Rick Fecowicz, director of Carhartt licensing, in the press release.

Carhartt, established in 1889, is a global brand that develops rugged apparel for workers on and off the job. Headquartered in Dearborn, Mich., with more than 4,400 employees worldwide, Carhartt is privately owned and managed by the descendants of the company‘s founder, Hamilton Carhartt.

“This contest is a great reflection of the character of our companies,” said Brad Heizman, director of garment strategy at Cintas Corporation, in the press release. “Both Carhartt and Cintas are known for providing tough, durable products and quality, dependable service, and we want to recognize the workers who reflect those same characteristics.”

Cintas Corporation, headquartered in Cincinnati, provides a variety of services — from fire protection to document management services — to approximately 900,000 businesses, primarily in North America.

For information about the finalists and to vote, visit

Aislinn Sarnacki

About Aislinn Sarnacki

Aislinn is a Bangor Daily News reporter for the Outdoors pages, focusing on outdoor recreation and Maine wildlife. Visit her main blog at