People and Business

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AARP recognizes Portland volunteer

Portland resident Dottie Megna, a retired educator, was recently selected the 2014 recipient of AARP Maine’s Andrus Award. The award, named after AARP founder Ethel Percy Andrus, honors a community volunteer in each state who makes a difference in the lives of others and embodies Andrus’ motto of “to serve, not to be served.” The honor is AARP Maine’s most prestigious individual award, according to a press release from the organization.

For almost 30 years, Megna enriched the lives of Maine young people in her role as an educator, teaching kindergarten through fourth grade in school districts including Brunswick. Now retired, she is a math, language and reading tutor for refugees in the Portland area through the Literacy Volunteers of America. She served for 15 years on the board of directors of the Maine Educators Association – Retired, is a community outreach volunteer with the local chapter of AARP Maine, and contributes her time in several other volunteer capacities.

Megna was presented with the Andrus Award in December at AARP Maine’s annual volunteer recognition celebration in Augusta.

New Hires, Promotions and Appointments

Norton Financial Services, a Cumberland-based provider of retirement plans and investment management services, has hired Peggy Stewart as a marketing software specialist. Stewart previously worked as an HRIS analyst at Delhaize America. She is a graduate of Babson College and resides in Scarborough.

Sea Bags, a Portland-based manufacturer of handmade goods from recycled sails, has promoted Sokunthy Yean to vice president and general manager, and Carrie Fletcher to vice president of sail acquisition. Yean joined the company in 2010 as a bookkeeper, grew to become finance manager, and most recently added responsibility for operations and human resources. Fletcher has been with Sea Bags since 2007, sewing products and then progressing through a variety of roles.

Dr. James Wilkerson, a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon, recently joined the Portland office of OA Centers for Orthopaedics, a division of Spectrum Medical Group. Wilkerson holds a medical degree from Brown Medical School. He performed his residency at the University of Maryland, and completed a fellowship in hand, elbow and microvascular surgery at Columbia University.


Dr. Blaine A. Littlefield, of Brunswick, was one of only 110 optometrists throughout the United States to recently receive the 2014 Continuing Optometric Recognition Award from the American Optometric Association. The award is presented to doctors of optometry who have completed 50 credit hours of continuing education in their field over a one-year period.

Barbara Farrell, a 10th-grade science teacher at North Yarmouth Academy in Yarmouth, has been selected to receive a Teacher Research Sabbatical from The Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor. The sabbatical, offered in conjunction with The University of Maine and the Balfour Foundation, allows teachers from rural New England to work for a semester in the prestigious biological research lab. Farrell, a graduate of Rutgers University, has taught at NYA for 11 years.

The Portland Water District was recently awarded the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting by the Government Finance Officers Association. The certificate is the group’s highest form of recognition for government accounting and reporting. This is the 16th consecutive year that the district, a quasi-municipal authority providing water service to 11 southern Maine communities, has earned the distinction.


The Kids First Center, of Portland, recently received a $5,000 grant from Maine-based Fisher Charitable Foundation to support general operating expenses. The nonprofit center, founded in 1998, provides parenting education and children’s support groups for families experiencing divorce.

Coastal Studies for Girls has been awarded a $45,000 in-kind donation from Time Warner Cable. During 2015, TWC will nationally broadcast a promotional public service announcement about CSG’s Science and Leadership Semester School. Based in Freeport, this is the only semester-long science and leadership school for 10th-grade girls in the country.

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