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A Harpswell girl was among the half dozen honored by Hardy Girls Healthy Women at the 12th annual Girls Rock! Awards on March 22.
Hannah Leary, 12, who is affectionately called “The Mayor of Lowell’s Cove,” won for the category of Entrepreneur. Leary comes from a six-generation fishing family and, while she may not like fishing per se, she saw an opportunity in making lobster rope baskets using the excess supply of lobster rope from her father. Faith Barnes, a community member, first read about Leary in the Coastal Journal and was struck by Leary’s entrepreneurial spirit. Not only does she make the lobster rope baskets, Leary also sews eye pillows and small satchels, writes books, helps her mother with her dried herb and essential oils business, and dog sits. All of Leary’s earnings “bring me one step closer to owning a horse. It feels good to support something that I love!” She taught herself how to make the baskets and pursued local businesses in Harpswell to sell them. In 2018 Leary sold 100 baskets and is looking to increase production this year. Her mother, Kelly Merrill, says, “Hannah is very good at managing her time – she can get down to business when she needs to, but she can also ride a bike around her neighborhood and jump off the wharf.”
The girls were nominated by their communities to be honored for their outstanding achievements in one of the following categories: STEM, athletics, entrepreneurship, health advocacy, community organizing, and defying the odds for success.
The Freeport Middle School 7th Grade Math Team won second place overall at the December Southern Maine Math League meet at the Holiday Inn By The Bay in Portland. From left are Abigail Caouette, Yilin Wang, Connor Mills-Dudding, Teo Steverlynck-Horne and Ian Smith.
Hannah Leary of Harpswell was named entrepreneur of the year by Hardy Girls Health Women at its annual awards ceremony on March 22.