People & Business: Feb. 2

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University of New England President Danielle Ripich, received the Robert R. Masterson Economic Growth Award from the Portland Regional Chamber of Commerce at the chamber’s annual Imagine Portland event Jan. 26 in recognition of her leadership in UNE’s contributions to the region’s education and economic expansion.

Hanley Wood’s ProSales Magazine selected Hancock Lumber as the 2017 ProSales Dealer of the Year. The Dealer of the Year Award honors outstanding achievements in construction supply operations, management and innovations, as well as meritorious service to the dealer’s community and to the lumber and building material industry. ProSales chooses just one construction supply dealer per year out of roughly 7,500 nationwide. As winner, Hancock Lumber is featured as the ProSales January/February cover story and on its website,

Intermed of Portland was the only Maine group of 52 physician groups in Massachusetts and Maine that were named to Harvard Pilgrim Health Care’s 15th annual Physician Group Honor Roll. The Harvard Pilgrim Honor Roll highlights physician groups that have achieved exceptional results in their approach to disease prevention and the treatment of acute and chronic illness for both adult and pediatric patients.

Burgess Advertising & Marketing, a communications agency serving Maine-based businesses for more than 30 years, was recently honored with three Maine Public Relations Council Golden Arrow Awards in a variety of categories for its distinguished communications efforts on behalf of clients in 2016.

Three local residents were among eight new entrepreneurs who recently graduated from New Ventures Maine’s Venturing Forth class, a 60-hour course in business planning. Sheila Cohen of Brunswick is the owner of Lingua Beat; Janine Valliere, owner of Echoes of New England in Hallowell; and Emily Weir is a fine artist based in Brunswick.

The Postural Restoration Institute has credentialed Jeff Eckhouse, PRT, from Back Cove Personal Fitness in Portland. To be Postural Restoration Trained, Eckhouse has completed advanced PRI courses, demonstrated a thorough understanding of the science, and successfully participated in both practical and analytical testing.

On the growth curve

Legacy Properties Sotheby’s International Realty, Maine’s leading luxury property company, with offices in Portland and Brunswick achieved record sales in 2016. The company reported annual sales growth of more than 20 percent when compared to its previous record year in 2015. Legacy Properties Sotheby’s International Realty also announced that, for the first time, it surpassed the $400 million mark for Maine real estate sales as reported by Maine Listings, at $408.8 million.


The New England Eating Disorders program became a part of Sweetser in January. The program was most recently affiliated with Mercy Hospital in Portland, where it was housed since 1998. Sweetser renovated a new home for NEED on its 380-acre Saco campus, located off U.S. Route 1 and Interstate 95. It’s the only comprehensive eating disorders treatment program in the state.

Giving Back

Portland Downtown and Machias Savings Bank presented a check Jan. 10 to the Milestone Foundation for $8,000. The funds were raised through Shop for a Cause Day, a community fundraiser that took place in November. Organized by Portland Downtown, Shop for a Cause Day is an annual event that encourages residents and visitors to shop local while giving back to the community. The Milestone Foundation is a nonprofit that supports people facing addiction and homelessness in Maine.

Portland law firm Verrill Dana donated more than 15 computers after a recent upgrade to Spark Academy, co-founded by Verrill Dana attorney Tom Bean, and to The Girls Foundation of Tanzania, co-founded by Beth Currier, now secretary of the Foundation and wife of Verrill Dana attorney Doug Currier.

Spark Academy is a public middle school in Lawrence, Massachusetts, that intertwines academics and physical activity throughout an extended school day. The Girls Foundation of Tanzania provides secondary school fees for promising young girls from impoverished families. The Foundation also provides a home, The Girls Center, where 18 girls live and study.

The Cumberland Fire Department, through its Membership Association, presented an $885 gift on Jan. 10 to the Community Food Pantry of Cumberland. Tom Gruber, charter member of the pantry’s board of directors, accepted the gift from Captain, Mark Stewart, and Special Projects Manager, Alan Small. The gift was presented at Cumberland’s town council meeting this past Monday. The funds were generated from the Cumberland, Maine Fire Association’s annual Christmas tree sales.


Maine Medical Center has been awarded $2.6 million by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute to study whether early tracheostomy in severely ill stroke patients who require mechanical ventilation improves survival, recovery and the patient and family experience. A tracheostomy is a temporary surgical airway that provides a more comfortable alternative for delivering oxygen to the lungs when a stroke patient’s breathing has failed. The research study will be led by David Seder, M.D., Director of the medical center’s Neurocritical Care team and a principal investigator at the Maine Medical Center Research Institute.

Hires, promotions, appointments

Evergreen Credit Union announced that Brenner “Brie” Allen recently joined the Board of Directors. Allen is a director with the law firm of Allen & Pinnix, P.A.

Evan Libby, of Freeport, has joined Bath Savings Institution as the vice president of compliance. Libby previously served as a senior bank examiner for the Maine Bureau of Financial Institutions.

Habitat for Humanity/7 Rivers Maine has hired Michele Ober to serve in the new role of ReStore Manager in Topsham.

The Principals of Macpage LLC, a Certified Public Accounting firm with offices in South Portland, announced that Kimberly Mills, CPA, of Brunswick, is the firm’s new manager.

Tabitha Lamontagne, CPA, MST, of Freeport, was one of two new principals named at Baker Newman Noyes accounting and consulting firms, effective Jan. 1.

The Telergee Alliance, a national network of CPA firms serving the telecommunications industry, has elected Julie Keim, CPA, principal at BerryDunn, as chair/president of the board for a two-year term effective in November 2016.

Friends of Casco Bay elected Malcolm Poole of Scarborough to its board of directors. He previously served as board president from 2008 to 2015. Poole is president of Poole Group of Companies, a family-based holding company focusing on commercial real estate, marine construction, and stormwater environmental controls.

Save the Date

New Ventures Maine offers an ongoing roster of classes to help people access the skills needed to become successful in business. Space is available on a first-come, first-serve basis, and classes are limited to 15 people. 

The following are being offered in February: “Work for Yourself @ 50+,” Thursday, Feb. 23, and “Your Next Career Move,” Tuesday, Feb. 28, both at Curtis Memorial Library in Brunswick.

Register online at, or call 386-1664 for more information or to register by phone.

“Darkness into Light: Cannabis and its impact on Commercial Real Estate in the Post-Prohibition Era,” will be discussed during a Morning Menu Breakfast Event hosted by Maine Real Estate & Development Association 7:30-9 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 16 at the Holiday Inn By the Bay. A panel discussion and presentation will discuss this industry has evolved, where things stand today and what the future may hold. The panel will be moderated by Justin Lamontagne, a Partner at NAI The Dunham Group specializing in commercial industrial brokerage. It will feature presentations by Dan Walker of Preti Flaherty and Gretchen Jones of Eaton Peabody, two legal experts with extensive experience in representation of both cannabis landlords and end-users. A buffet breakfast will be served 7:30-8 a.m., followed by the program from 8-9 a.m. Register by Feb. 9 at

LamontagnePooleOberSybil Reimensnider was honored Jan. 22, by volunteers at the South Portland Food Cupboard for her leadership of the organization over the past 20 years.