NYA Learning Commons Terrace

Alumni Profile – Chris Curran ’04

Alumni Profile

Chris CurranChris Curran ’04
Portland, ME
Director, Maine Chapter, Frontline Foods

From Ohio to California to New York, entrepreneurially driven Chris Curran ‘04 found success in the medical device, fashion, wine, and restaurant industries. It was the global COVID-19 pandemic that brought him back home to Maine.

Chris, a graduate of The College of Wooster, returned to the East Coast in early 2012 after spending four years in California. He lived in Brooklyn and made his own wine, Strider Wine, while he also worked as an executive for OpenTable, the online restaurant reservation service that allows users to book dining experiences in over 52,000 restaurants worldwide.

Chris credits NYA with giving him the the foundation that prepared me for life and success. NYA teachers, he said, taught him how to think, critically and creatively, which has been a baseline to navigating his life.

“I was working my dream job, the perfect mix of passion and business, when COVID-19 hit,” remarked Chris. “Once New York City went into lockdown, I headed home to Maine. Just as I was leaving, I heard about Frontline Foods.” With chapters nationwide, Frontline Foods provides healthcare workers with healthy meals from local restaurants. The volunteer-run chapters raise funds from individual donors and businesses to support local restaurants to make meals for healthcare workers.

When Chris arrived in Maine, he and his friend and fellow Portland area native, Lyle Divinsky, set up the Maine chapter of Frontline Foods. “This community has given so much to us, and we want to be able to give back to it in ways that we are able,” noted Chris. The Maine chapter of Frontline Foods has distributed more than 600 meals to workers at the Northern Light Mercy Hospital system.

“NYA was the foundation that prepared me for life and success. My NYA teachers, at the core, taught me how to think, critically and creatively, which has been a baseline to navigating life. Getting accepted to NYA was one of the best things that has ever happened to me,” said Chris, who applied to NYA because he wanted superior academic and athletic experiences. He played soccer, hockey, lacrosse, and participated in chorus.

“Growing up, life definitely threw me some heavy challenges, but thankfully, the faculty, coaches, and staff believed in me, showed me kindness and support, and, ultimately, pushed me to be my best. I am very fortunate and grateful to NYA.”

Alumni are invited and encouraged to share their stories and updates with the Academy by reaching out to alumni@nya.org.