People & Business

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Scarborough Land Trust has named Kathy Mills as its new executive director. She comes to Scarborough Land Trust from the Maine Audubon where she directed the grants program for seven years.

Dr. Michael Pleacher recently accompanied the U.S. Ski Team as team physician to the FIS Cross Country World Cup Final Races in Sweden.

PORTopera recently welcomed Anthony Fratianne and Alfine Nathalie to their board. Both are participants in the Institute for Civic Leadership Emerging Leaders Program.


Portland Education Foundation was recently awarded 12 grants to fund projects throughout the district. Hall Elementary School was awarded a grant to help students and their families build libraries at home. The project targets struggling readers who are socio-economically disadvantaged and those whose first language is not English. Longfellow Elementary was awarded a grant to help students conduct water quality studies on Baxter Wood Pond, the ponds at Evergreen Cemetery and the pond in the Longfellow School Garden. Lyseth Elementary used their grant to bring in a Chewonki animal presentation to help students learn about adaptations. West School partnered with ArtVan to bring therapeutic art workshops to its elementary students. King Middle School used its grant to fund the school’s Early Risers Book Group which meets weekly to discuss modern and traditional classics. Lincoln’s grant will educate students and the greater community about historically significant sites within Evergreen Cemetery. Lyman Moore is using their grant to fund equipment for eighth grade physical science activities. The school will also use funds to bring Paige Hernandez to the school for a performance of poetry, hip hop, visual arts, and live music; she will also give two workshops for students. Casco Bay High School is purchasing cameras to allow 9th grade art and biology students to record seasonal changes, use photos to help identify plants and create photo files on their computers. Deering High School’s grant will help fund the construction of twelve indoor estuaries. PATHS will use their grant to construct compost bins for the students to use. Finally, American composer, conductor and educator Gunther Schuller will present a workshop at the Portland Public Schools’ All-City Orchestra performance.

New Hires

Jessica May was recently hired as curator of contemporary and modern art at the Portland Museum of Art. She will be responsible for overseeing the interpretation and development of the museum’s contemporary and modern art collection, including annual exhibitions, the Biennial and the Circa series. May will join the staff in June.

Northeast Laboratory Services recently hired Suzanne Pillsbury Lacognata as its new business development officer in the environmental and food safety division. She graduated from the University of Maine Orono with a bachelor’s degree in business and was enrolled in the botany sciences program at Connecticut College. She is a certified master gardener. She was previously employed by Seligman Mutual Funds of New York and worked as an account executive with NEMA Manufacturers Representative Group in the lawn, garden and home division.

Hurley Travel Experts recently hired Sean K. Lando as director of technology and corporate travel solutions. Lando brings with him more than 27 years of experience in corporate travel management and technology with a focus on bringing new services to market. His background includes positions as senior global technology manager and project manager for American Express Advisory Services and other leadership roles providing services for Fortune 500 global clients.

Willis of Northern New England Inc. recently announced that Michael Sullivan has joined the agency as a property casualty commercial insurance account executive. He holds a Maine producer license and brings a strong commitment to Maine businesses and their risk management needs. He is responsible for new business sales and is based in the agency’s Portland office.


Laboratory instrumentation manufacturer Fluid Imaging Technologies in Yarmouth recently expanded its corporate headquarters. The expansion was completed on the heels of the company’s twelfth consecutive year of record-breaking sales.


Verrill Dana LLP celebrates 150 years of legal practice this year. The firm opened shop in Portland in 1862 and has since expanded to Boston, Mass., Stamford, Conn. and Washington, D.C.

Sidebar Elements

Habitat for Humanity recently held their annual volunteer awards ceremony. The Executive Director’s Award was presented to Caralen MacKenzie-Hicks. The Golden Hammer Award was collectively given to the “Construction Regulars” (above) consisting of Tim Mellen, Gerry Brookes, Mike Connelly, Wayne Gilbert, Doug Hardy, Jim McGurty, David Sellers, George Shaw and Hans van Willigen.