People & Business: Dec. 21

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Bath Housing Executive Director Debora Keller was the recipient of the 2016 Stephen B. Mooers Award from Maine Housing. The award recognizes the contributions of those who exemplify a lifelong commitment to help Maine people get quality affordable housing and services.

The 2016 Maine Innkeepers Association Innkeeper of the Year is Jeanne Carpentier, regional director of sales and marketing for Emerald Hospitality. Carpentier was previously the general manager of the Hilton Garden Inn in downtown Freeport, chairwoman of the Maine Innkeepers Association in 2014 and 2015, and has served on the MEIA Board since 2006.

Harvard Pilgrim Health Care received a perfect score on the 2017 Corporate Equality Index, a national benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices related to LGBT workplace equality, administered by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation.

Bud Striker of Yarmouth, Leigh-Anne Fulda of Durham, Jeff Bennett of Portland and Becky Bryant of Cape Elizabeth were among a half dozen recognized by the American Cancer Society with the Sandra C. Labaree Volunteer Values Award for their selflessness in giving their time to the Society to help those battling cancer.

OceanView at Falmouth won the People’s Choice title for the second year in a row at the annual Very Merry Falmouth Soup Challenge Dec. 6. OceanView also earned the Judge’s Pick for Chef Chris McLaughlin’s butternut squash soup. McLaughlin featured local ingredients with chipotle oil, candied maple bacon, and goat cheese to fend off competitors from local restaurants and organizations.


A grant from the Windgate Charitable Foundation for $300,000 to invest in Maine College of Art’s four Craft Programs (Ceramics, Metalsmithing & Jewelry, Textile & Fashion Design and Woodworking & Furniture Design), will fund three areas key areas at the College: tools and equipment; visiting artists; and the endowed Belvedere Fund for alumni professional development at the Portland college.

Manomet, a Brunswick-based environmental nonprofit, announced that its U360 program – an internship designed to foster college students’ understanding of sustainability and small business management – was recently awarded a $90,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

New Ventures

Izzy’s Cheesecake, a Portland-based cheesecake manufacturer, announced that its line of gluten free cheesecakes is now available in 30 additional Whole Foods stores throughout the North Atlantic region. The addition boosts Izzy’s Cheesecake availability to 40 Whole Foods stores in Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island.


John T. Leonard, the first and only president and CEO in the history of The MEMIC Group, announced he will retire in September 2017. Leonard was recruited to help start the company in 1993, and, under his direction, the company grew from a Maine operation to a company with assets of more than $1.2 billion and offices from Maine to Florida. By most accounts, the company has been the catalyst for significantly reducing workplace injuries and their associated costs in its home state of Maine.

Hires, Promotions, Appointments

The Council on International Educational Exchange of Portland, a nonprofit study abroad and student exchange organization, has hired Peter Morales, Ph.D., as chief information officer.

Kirt Bell is the new branch manager at Caliber Home Loans Inc., located at 477 Congress St., Portland.

The MEMIC Group has promoted Eileen Moran Fongemie to the position of vice president of finance and assistant treasurer, and Deb Sabatino has been promoted to the director of Human Resources.

Save the Date

E2Tech will host Maine’s air, land, water, and waste leaders from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, who will discuss environmental and regulatory challenges and goals in the year ahead on Tuesday, Jan. 17. The event will be held 7:30-10 a.m. at Maple Hill Farm Conference Center, 11 Inn Road, Hallowell. During a panel discussion titled, the “State of the Environment” in Maine, questions will be fielded that include: What are the trends in environmental quality? What regulatory actions are making a difference and what’s new on the horizon? What are emerging contaminants and issues of concern? Also up for discussion will be how the DEP assists businesses through the state regulatory maze to promote jobs and businesses in the environmental services sector. Register at

The Environmental & Energy Technology Council of Maine (E2Tech) works to  expand the state’s environmental, energy, and clean technology sectors. E2Tech acts as a catalyst to stimulate growth through networking, serving as a clearinghouse for objective information, and leading efforts to promote the sector.


The Natural Resources Conservation Service is accepting proposals for grants to improve conservation in Maine. Conservation Innovation Grants promote the development and adoption of innovative conservation technologies and approaches in conjunction with agricultural production. The application deadline is Feb. 15; for more details, contact Christopher Jones, assistant state conservationist for special projects, at 990-9563, email or go to

From left, St. Mary’s Garden members Carolyn Davis, Katy Gannon-Janelle, and Norma Jean Brilliant, who hung a memorial wreath on the Blue Star Memorial marker at the intersection of routes 1 and 88 in Falmouth. Like many garden clubs in the state, St. Mary’s maintains the garden at the marker in their town, and hung the wreath this year to honor all who have served and are serving the country.