Meet the Team

Appleseed is headed by an experienced food industry leader and backed by a team that has successfully grown companies by aligning sales and operations behind distinctive competitive positioning. We understand the market landscape and can help business leaders formulate an achievable growth plan.

Carol Cheswick Wilson

Managing Director

Carol has boundless energy helping food entrepreneurs. She has extensive experience working with a variety of individuals and businesses interested in increasing profitability and scaling their companies to the next level. Her expertise in consulting and coaching helps our clients take advantage of their unique strengths while identifying areas where they would benefit from additional support. Carol also has extensive experience in investment counsel and portfolio management having co-owned and managed an investment management firm for high-net-worth clients. This is particularly helpful when working with angel investors. Additionally, she gained experience in finance, marketing, and strategic planning through her years working at Scudder, Stevens & Clark and Citibank . Carol is a graduate of Wellesley College and has an MBA in Finance from NYU’s Stern School of Business. Carol is also a Certified MBI Life Coach and a Kolbe™ Consultant.

James (Jim) H. Riehl, Jr.

Senior Brand and Strategy Consultant

Jim is passionate about helping companies to grow revenue and profit through “SPOT ON” marketing performance… “SPOT ON” being Strategy, and aligned Planning, Operations and Tactics. Having grown products and services in over 20 categories on over 50 individual brands, Jim has successfully set strategy and aligned planning, operations and tactics for B2B and B2C products and services spanning Fortune 500, mid-sized, entrepreneurial and family-owned companies. He holds a BA from Dartmouth College and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

Kristine Cass

Brand Strategy Consultant

Kristine began her career with Charles River Associates developing pricing, marketing, and launch strategies for pharmaceutical and biotech manufacturers. Since then, she has pursued her passion for great food, identifying and prioritizing growth opportunities for several Boston-based food companies. Kristine is a graduate of Williams College and holds an MBA from MIT Sloan School of Management with a Certificate in Sustainability.

Cynthia Lyon

Brand Strategy Consultant

Cynthia has a strong background in operations and management consulting for clients including AT&T, IBM, and the Business Council of Fairfield County. Cynthia is a graduate of Cornell University’s College of Engineering and holds an MBA from the University of Chicago, Graduate School of Business.

Sandy Young

Financial Manager

Sandy has been managing small business accounting for over 20 years. Prior to joining Appleseed, Sandy spent over 15 years managing accounting for private clubs throughout the Northeast for Club Corporation of America, before becoming the Administrative Director of the Stamford City Ballet School. Sandy holds a BFA in Dance from the University of Hawaii.

Janet Steinmayer


Prior to founding Appleseed, Janet was the President and CEO of Centerplate, Inc., an $800 million company serving large institutional accounts, chiefly in the sports and entertainment world. There she led the company to customize services for clients, drive clients’ branding, and introduce local products to create a sense of place, resulting in record new business and profitability. Janet began her career as a corporate lawyer in private practice in New York and was then general counsel at Trans World Airlines, when it was a Fortune 500 company owned by the Icahn organization. She graduated from Bryn Mawr College, where she serves on its Board of Trustees, and the University of Chicago Law School. She also serves on the boards of the Eagle Hill Southport School, where she is Chairman, Lesley University, Command Security Corporation, the Business Council of Fairfield County, and the Fairfield County Community Foundation. Janet is currently the President of Mitchell College in New London, CT.

Laura Guaglianone


Laura is passionate about bringing strong food and beverage brands to market. While with Appleseed, she managed the business growth plans for Appleseed’s portfolio of entrepreneurial food and beverage brands before joining PepsiCo’s marketing organization in 2013 where she currently supports the company’s foodservice equipment innovation business. Prior to Appleseed, she also worked with a Boston-based local food distributor and with a mid-sized Connecticut-based consumer packaged goods food company, building the brand strategy for a new product launch. Laura is a graduate of Scripps College and holds an MBA from MIT Sloan School of Management.