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Our annual overview of businesses and organizations providing innovative prod ucts and services to your community Advertising supplement to the Sun Journal, Saturday, April 26, 2014


2A PROFILE 2014

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

Photo by Jackie Rybeck

From left, front row: Sandy Tarr, Rhonda Cox, Kathie Leonard and Joyce Brooks; back row: Matt Lampron, Jim Craig, Steve Merrill, Phillis Pickard, Susan Dufour and Ken Block.

Photo by Jackie Rybeck

Kathie Leonard, President and CEO of Auburn Manufacturing Inc.

Photo by Rene Minnis

Kathie Leonard, President and CEO of Auburn Manufacturing Inc., stands with the company's employees at the grand opening of the Auburn facility's expansion locationed in Kittyhawk Industrial Park. The $1.4-million addition will allow the company to optimize its manufacturing process, with plans to grow the business substantially within the next three years, according to Leonard. AMI produces advanced textiles for hundreds of extreme temperature industrial/ institutional applications throughout the world.

Submitted photo

The late Claudette Hutchins, Human Resources Manager of Auburn Mfg., chatting with Derek Volk of Volk Packaging, at AMI’s open house last year.

Auburn Manufacturing:

Photo by Rene Minnis

The safest name in extreme temperature textiles By Jackie Rybeck Feature Writer

S

ince its founding in 1979, Auburn Manufacturing, Inc. has become the industry’s leading expert in the development and production of high performance textiles for extreme temperatures. According to President and CEO, Kathie Leonard, AMI’s textile solutions have been utilized around the world, selling through distributors and also to manufacturers for hundreds of extreme-temperature needs. Designed for high-heat conditions, these textiles protect people, processes and equipment in the industrial metals, petroleum, chemicals, glass, and paper industries, in institutions and government facilities, and the digital data storage industry – anywhere extreme heat or flames could be a risk. “Basically what we do is develop, manufacture and market textile solutions,” explained Leonard. “We provide the most advanced, safest and high-quality f lexible barriers against extreme temperature challenges to a worldwide market.” Leonard began the business with a partner 35 years ago, and what started as a small shop on the second floor in Mechanic Falls’ town library has grown to over 50 employees and two facilities totaling close to 100,000 square feet of office and manufacturing space in Mechanic Falls and Auburn. “We started out as a supplier of heat-resistant, asbestos-replacement textiles for heavy industry back when OSHA banned asbestos from the workplace,” she said. “Initially we bought fabric in ‘mill rolls,’ which were manufactured to our specifications for fiber content, weight and thickness. We would then convert the larger rolls of fabric into smaller, narrower sizes to meet our customers' needs for specialty insulation applications. Our customers included refineries, petro-chemical plants, auto makers and other transportation companies.” In 2000, Leonard’s partner retired, making her sole owner and CEO of the business, which has continued to be the ‘go to’ extreme temperature textile provider globally. Since AMI’s inception, she has developed effective growth strategies to help her small business grow to what it is today. “We’ve been surviving and growing by taking good care of our customers with safe, high-quality products” she said. “But also by developing new products as the markets’ needs change.” “With continuous investment in coating research and heat protection enhancements we have dramatically expanded our line of safety fabrics,” she added. “And we’re always looking at ways

to combine our yarns and fibers with new technologies to meet unique customer requirements.” AMI's research and expertise in textiles and specialty coatings has culminated in several new product introductions including its own line of EverGreen® Cut n Wrap™ modular insulation, EverGreen® HS for indoor steam and hot water distribution systems, ET for elevated temperature environments, and EverGreen® Chill-In for chilled water systems. AMI's hot work product line includes AMI-TUF® TR translucent heat and fire barrier for data center protection, hot and cold aisle containment, and hot work containment enclosures; a line of extreme barrier composites for heat containment; and an extended line of extreme temperature tapes and tubing for the pyrotechnics industry. Bolstered by positive market reaction to their latest product introductions, and a sales forecast indicating steady demand, along with outgrowing their current space, AMI expanded their facility in 2013, nearly doubling their manufacturing space. "The expansion will increase manufacturing capacity, efficiency and quality with new, state-of-the-art equipment and use of lean manufacturing strategies. Our cutting-edge manufacturing technologies will enable us to make an even better product line," said Leonard. Committed to manufacturing domestically, Leonard wanted to provide customers with assurances that AMI textiles were produced in the U.S. In 2014 she created a “Country of Origin” certification for the company’s products. “We wanted to differentiate ourselves in the marketplace,” she stated. “This certifies that 97 percent of our finished products are “Made in the USA” and not just warehoused or assembled, but actually made in the United States from U.S.made components. She added, "It is further assurance for our customers, that we always meet the highest quality standards. And we know from our customer surveys that this is important to them. ” Where and what does Leonard hope for the future of AMI? “To continue research in order to provide customers with the best possible specialty textiles, in performance, design and functionality. I hope to continue being a state-of-the-art manufacturer located here in the state of Maine,” Leonard said. “This state has a strong tradition of quality production and craftsmanship plus a sophisticated telecommunications infrastructure that enables us to serve our customers worldwide with efficiency and competitive pricing.”

Photo by Rene Minnis

Helen Moore, Yarn Spinning Machine Operator

Contact information: Auburn Manufacturing Inc. 34 Walker Road P.O. Box 220 Mechanic Falls, Maine 04256 USA Toll Free: 1-800-264-6689 Phone: 207-345-8271 Fax: 207-345-3380 www.auburnmfg.com

Left to right: Steve Boulet, HR Manager; Joy Campbell, Accounting Manager and Garrett VanAtta, VP Innovation Engineering.

Kim Cushman, R & D Lab Technician Kirk Hall, Weaving Loom Operator

April Sidebotham, Sewing & Quilting Fabricator

Jim Serpico, Coating Oven Operator

Shipment To Government Facility


PROFILE 2014 3A

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

ADVERTISER INDEX Education Saint Dominic Academy ..............................................................................................................11A

Entertainment Auburn Community Concert Band ...............................................................................15A Great Falls Balloon Festival..........................................................................................................8B Portland Sea Dogs ........................................................................................................................11B

Finance Androscoggin Bank ......................................................................................................................5A Champoux Insurance ...................................................................................................................7A Downeast Financial Group .........................................................................................................8A Franklin Savings Bank ..................................................................................................................6A Greg Strong ...........................................................................................................................14A Modern Woodmen....................................................................................................8A Monmouth Federal Credit Union ..............................................................................................9A Nor t he a st Ba n k ...............................................................................11 A Rainbow Federal Credit Union ...............................................................................12A

Government Androscoggin County Chamber of Commerce ....................................................................16A Androscoggin Land Trust ............................................................................................................4C Androscoggin Valley Council of Governments .......................................................................9A Lewiston-Auburn Economic Growth Council ......................................................................10A

Health Androscoggin Home Care & Hospice ...............................................................................3C Central Maine Medical Center ........................................................................................5-6-7-8C Hanger Clinic ..................................................................................................................................9C Maine General Medical Center ............................................................................................2, 12C Montello Heights Retirement Center .......................................................................................11C Pine Tree Orthopedic Lab .........................................................................................................10C Sasseville Chiropractic ................................................................................................................4C The Meadows Living Center ........................................................................................................9C

Home Above and Beyond Home Improvement...............................................................................B6 Bouffard & McFarland Builders...................................................................................................B5 Electrical Systems of Maine........................................................................................................B10 Fielding’s Oil & Propane Co., Inc. ................................................................................................B9 Fontaine Family – The Real Estate Leader.................................................................................B6 Hammond Lumber Company ..................................................................................................B12 Redlon & Johnson...........................................................................................................................B9 Sherm Arnold’s Flooring & Kitchen ............................................................................................B2 L&S Windows.................................................................................................................................B4

Non-profits American Heart Association ......................................................................................................11C American Red Cross ....................................................................................................................13A Franklin County Children’s Task Force ...................................................................................11B Good Shepherd Food Bank...........................................................................................................4A Greater Androscoggin Humane Society....................................................................................5B Loaves and Fishes.........................................................................................................................10B Responsible Pet Care of Oxford Hills, Inc. ................................................................................6A United Way of Androscoggin .....................................................................................................15A Woman’s Literary Union of Androscoggin County................................................................2B

Retail Auburn Manufacturing ...................................................................................................Cover, 2A Everything Warehouse ..............................................................................................................14A R.S. Osgood & Sons ........................................................................................................................3B Sun Media Group.............................................................................................................................7B Sun Journal ....................................................................................................................................12A Tambrands Inc./P&G ....................................................................................................................3C

Sun Journal 104 Park Street, PO Box 4400, Lewiston, Maine 04243 Lewiston 207.784-5411 Farmington 207.778.6772 Rumford 207.364.8728 Norway 207.743.9228 The Sun Journal’s 2014 Annual Business Profile again covers a wide range of organizations from across our readership area. Finance, industry, technology, health and home are reviewed in detail. Large and small businesses offer in-depth editorial insight and photos to illustrate what makes them unique and successful. Take time to read through this valuable section and we are sure you will learn more about people, places and trends that are relevant to you. Find out how many of the areas interesting and well known companies are planning for a successful tomorrow.


4A PROFILE 2014

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014


PROFILE 2014 5 A

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

By David A. Sargent Feature Writer Community matters at Androscoggin Bank, and supporting the businesses of the Twin Cities is an important component of that commitment. Since its formation 144 years ago, Androscoggin Bank’s growth has focused on the power of relationships. A prime example of that business-bank relationship is DeBlois Electric of Lewiston, which won the 2013 Family Business Award from Maine’s Small Business Administration. As an active SBA Lender, Androscoggin is proud to have nominated DeBlois for this prestigious honor. “DeBlois Electric has grown into one of Maine’s leading electrical contractors,” said Dave Eldridge, Androscoggin SVP and manager of commercial lending. “I enjoy getting to work with great clients like Deblois and watch them succeed.” DeBlois Elctric has grown since 1967 to be one of Northern New Engand’s leading electrical contractors. Awards such as DeBlois Electric’s SBA honor illustrate how Androscoggin Bank works hand-in-hand with businesses of the area. And it’s the people at the bank who know how to make this happen. Chuck Schwab, who has been a commercial lender in Androscoggin County since 1987 and with Androscoggin Bank since 2004, was named the bank's 2013 Employee of the Year. He received that distinction through direct recognition of his peers. Employee engagement and recognition is an important part of the bank’s philosophy. As such, the Bank was named to the Maine Best Places to Work list for three of the last four years.

Amber Waterman photo

Paul H. Andersen, Androscoggin Bank's president and CEO.

With the addition of its Scarborough Business Development Office in November 2013, the Bank is expanding its commercial reach into Southern Maine. From its headquarters at 30 Lisbon St., Lewiston, Androscoggin Bank serves communities from Jay to Scarborough, South Paris to Brunswick and everywhere in between.

The MainStreet Foundation is Androscoggin Bank’s $1,000,000 foundation aimed at helping keep at-risk kids in Maine safe, healthy, active, happy, educated, and nourished. Four times a year, grants up to $5,000 go to non-profit agencies actively working to help kids thrive. In 2013, MainStreet Foundation awarded the first $25,000 grant to Good Shepherd Food Bank and its school backpack program.

Paul H. Andersen, who has been a member of the Androscoggin Bank team for well over 20 years, became president and CEO on January 1, 2012. He assumed that role after Steven A. Closson, who had led the bank since 1991, retired.

Androscoggin Bank also is proud to support numerous local social and civic organizations. Among them are Franco Center, The Public Theatre, St. Mary’s Health Systems, L/A Arts, Androscoggin County Chamber of Commerce and others.

Androscoggin Bank has a role of responsibility to all the residents of the communities it serves. There are several ways in which that obligation is addressed.

The bank’s name is proudly displayed on Lewiston’s Androscoggin Bank Colisée, a major sports and entertainment destination for residents and visitors to the area.

Banking is constantly evolving, and Androscoggin Bank strives every day to earn relationships and foster its clients’ prosperity. More and more, clients of all stripes are asking for more immediate access to their money, smarter solutions to manage their finances and sage advice for planning for the future. As people move to mobile use, it’s incumbent upon banks to provide ways for clients to have immediate access to their finances. Our Mobile phone app and Mobile Banking is a great way to do that. Androscoggin Bank offers individuals, commercial clients and government entities options for all of these needs and more.

Submitted photo

Pictured are bank employees who volunteered in December 2013 to help pack backpacks for the Good Shepherd School Backpack program. From left: Chris Logan, Genevieve Hering, Tracy Jarvis, Carrie Lacasse, Melissa Rock, Christina Drinkwater, Laurie Hodgman, Paul Andersen, Julie Andersen, Lee Upton.

Submitted photo

Chuck Schwab -- Employee of the Year 2013.

David A. Sargent photo Submitted photo

Androscoggin Bank employees, from left: Robin Robbins, Amanda Goodfellow and Tracy Jarvis delivering holiday gift bags with toiletries, necessities and niceties to Marian Carney, shelter director for New Beginnings in Lewiston.

Family-owned DeBlois Electric of Lewiston won the 2013 Family Business Award from Maine's Small Business Administration. From left are Mitch DeBlois, president of DeBlois Electric; Dave Eldridge,SVP, Commercial Lending Manager, Androscoggin Bank; Wilfrid DeBlois and Gaetane DeBlois, founders; and Raymond DeBlois, chief financial officer of the firm. Androscoggin Bank nominated the firm for the award.

Locations in Lewiston and Auburn: 30 Lisbon Street Lewiston, ME 04240 (207) 784-9164

505 Sabattus Street 649 Turner Street., Suite 300 683 Minot Ave. Lewiston, ME 04240 Auburn, ME 04210 Auburn, ME 04210 (207) 777-6644 (207) 777-6642 (207) 777-6646 Visit www.androscogginbank.com for locations in Brunswick, Gray, Jay, Lisbon Falls, Portland, South Paris, and Turner.


6A PROFILE 2014

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

Responsible Pet Care of Oxford Hills, Inc. Hungry, cold and afraid, the homeless cat searches for shelter. No one cares about it anymore, if they ever did. There is no food, no warm bed to rest in and the cat is alone looking for a place. The cat reaches out to a friendly face in search of comfort, instead it is rescued. The dog breaks loose from his tether. He explores the neighborhood, but goes too far. The dog is lost, or knows it is better not to go back. No one cares or comes looking, because they think that the dog is stupid and they are glad it is gone. The dog reaches out to a friendly face in search of comfort, instead it is rescued. Both cat and dog arrive at the shelter. They are comforted, fed and given warm beds. Soft music plays and they receive medical attention needed. The cat and the dog also receive love and respect in this temporary home, as do countless others like them in the same situation... People come to visit this shelter. They look, they touch, they feel and they willingly have love to give and a home to share. The cat and the dog get another chance for love, respect and responsible care they deserve. Responsible Pet Care of Oxford Hills, Inc. is a 501c3, non-profit organization founded in 1993 to serve the needs of homeless pets in the Oxford Hills area. The “RPC” philosophy is no-kill and nosuffer. Life is only terminated in the event of terminal illness, an extenuating medical reason that is not financially feasible to support, or suffering that cannot be alleviated. Last year, the shelter relocated from Norway to a larger, building in Paris. Fundraising is still underway to complete renovations. Responsible Pet Care emphasizes adoption, education on pet care responsibility and spaying and neutering to control overpopulation. The shelter, located at 9 Swallow Road in Paris, is able to house 85 to 100 cats and 12 to 15 dogs at any one time. Many other animals are cared for in approved foster homes as well. Preference is given to stray animals first, then to owner surrendered animals if space allows. While there are always enough strays to fill cat spaces, there aren’t always enough stray dogs to fill dog spaces. In that case, dogs are brought in from other shelters where they would otherwise be killed. This could be from either a shelter in Maine or from out of the state. “It takes a village.” Because funds are tight, “RPC” can only employ a limited amount of people. It is dependent upon, and highly values the volunteers that provide support to the organization. There are administrative volunteers, as well as volunteers that assist with the animals. Animal care volunteers are vital in meeting the many needs of the cats and dogs at the shelter. Cat volunteering is light-duty and carefree, but for the dogs, that is not the case. They are needy and crave human companionship; many of them come to the shelter abused, malnourished and with behavior issues that need to addressed with training expertise. Dog volunteers are exceptional people prepared to deal with various issues or needs that each dog might have. One group commits to coming each night to get every dog outside to eliminate and exercise. This happens no matter what the weather, and in the darkness during the winter months. This volunteer act alone means that the dogs will be more comfortable during the time between closing the shelter and opening the next day. It also makes life easier for the kennel cleaners the next morning! Volunteers also assist with fundraising and with quarterly mailings. “Pawsibilities” is the name of the thrift shoppe operated by “RPC”, to raise funds used to operate the shelter. It is located in Norway at 124 Waterford Road. It is open year round Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 10 am to 4 pm. Donations are always needed, particularly furniture items. Limited space at the shop doesn’t allow for clothing, but there is everything else to be found there. It is worth the trip to visit this charming little shoppe and help the animals at the same time! Every June, the Sunday after Father’s Day, Responsible Pet Care holds an event called “Fun Dog Day” at the Oxford Fair grounds. The purpose of the event is to raise funds and bring together dog lovers and dogs. It is both educational and fun for the entire family. The event always begins with a sponsored dog walk. There are vendors, speakers and demonstrations, all dog related. An informal, very fun dog show is a highlight of the day, guaranteed to have a category that will fit each and every dog that wishes to attend “Fun Dog Day”! The Responsible Pet Care Mission Statement is “To improve quality of life and promote the responsible way to treat all pets.” It holds itself to a high standard in the care of the animals and making the best possible match in locating forever homes for each one. “RPC” is grateful for the donations that allow it to continue to serve homeless pets. Private support and fundraising are what primarily funds the good work it does. For more information about “RPC”, call 207 743-8679, visit Facebook or www.rpc.petfinder.com. Photos by Sandy Geddry


PROFILE 2014 7 A

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

Known by the companies they keep

ALL IN THE FAMILY: Diane Champoux joined her father in 1978 and bought the business in 2000. Champoux now has been joined by all four of her children, who are working in the agencies at different capacities. From left: Michele Bolduc, Stephen Nagy II, Diane Champoux, Christopher Nagy, Jonathan Nagy. By Rich Livingston Feature Writer

W

hen Cha mpou x Insu ra nce opened its doors in June of 1954, a first class stamp cost three cents. The first book in the Lord of the Rings trilogy – book, not movie – was just published and Bill Haley and the Comets was the hottest thing in pop music! “One of the best parts about celebrating a 60th anniversary,” said Champoux Insurance President Diane Champoux, “is that it’s a great time to celebrate not only where we’ve come from, but also where we’re going. It’s a time to ‘make new friends, and thank the old friends,’” an affirmation of how much faith Champoux clients have placed in the agency for three generations. It’s personal. It’s family. It’s community. It’s tradition. Champoux Insurance has been providing a wide array of protection to individuals, families and businesses for more than half a century by being dedicated to their slogan, “Delivering on the Promise.” It’s a promise,” explained Champou x, “that is fulfilled by a staff of 35 people with over 400 years of combined service in four owned and operated offices strategically arrayed around Maine, people who are totally dedicated to the safety, security and peace of mind of their customers.” Champoux Insurance Agency is all about family. The agency was started by Maurice Champoux in 1954 when he purchased the Robitaille Agency, then a very small agency. He and his wife, Pauline, started the business at the kitchen table and grew it to the point where it took over the entire three stories of their Pine Street property. Diane Champoux joined her father in 1978 and bought the business in 2000. Champoux now has been joined by all four of her children, who are working in the agencies at different capacities. “This is a family business and our staff is just an extension of our family,” said Champou x. Three generations of validation through long-term relationships, a steady flow of new business expressing confidence in Champoux’s ability to handle their insurance needs, and a commitment to the future are all reasons to celebrate -- and the firm will be doing exactly that with a 60th anniversary open house this June. Champoux helps protect dozens of prominent Maine businesses and often provides personal and life insurance for those business owners and their employees. “The broad range of our clients has helped us achieve a really unique kind of expertise. There is no insurance-related challenge that we can’t handle. We have enormous resources to find the best solutions for our clients,” Senior Vice President Dick Albert explained. The agency helps meet the diverse standards of banking customer Mechanics Savings Bank, with all its special regulatory requirements, as well as the unique needs of such long-term clients as Central Distributors, Inc., Maine Awards, Penmor

Champoux Insurance 150 East Ave Lewiston, ME 04240 888-783-2246 Lithographers, E.W. Mailhot Sausage, and St. Laurent & Son. Champoux is affiliated with the Maine Restaurant Association, Maine Innkeepers, Maine Veterinarians, and the Maine Association of Nonprofits. The firm has acquired an unusual expertise in the field of equine insurance, a service it is licensed to provide in 43 different states. “Because we represent more t ha n 30 insurance carriers, and offer all types of business, personal and life insurance,” Albert explained, “we can always help clients identify their needs and find the best coverage at the best prices, ensuring that their needs are met. We’ll make sure you have the right coverage, at the best possible price, and that if you ever do have a claim, it gets settled quickly and efficiently so that you can get on with your life!” Today’s roster includes a balance of those whom Champoux has protected for half a century, some that are new to the firm or new to the Maine business community, and a wide range of civic, faith-based, arts and other nonprofit organizations. Champoux has also been able to work with companies such as the area NAPA stores, Spillers, Bedard Pharmacy, Sam’s Italian Foods and Neokraft Signs for many years.

Maurice Champoux and Diane Champoux on the 50th anniversary of Champoux Insurance.

A drawing of Champoux Insurance's first location at 215 Pine St., in Lewiston, which burned to the ground in 2011.

Champoux Insurance's new location at 150 East Ave, Lewiston.

Davinci’s Restaurant chose Champoux when they first moved into their iconic Mill St. venue in the Bates Mill. Rancourt Shoe and Baxter Brewing Co. have been Champoux clients since their inception. “Reta il, ma nufacturing, food ser v ice, finance -- there’s no form of business practiced in Central Maine that we haven’t worked with, some for longer than their current owners have been with them,” Champoux added. Among the extensive roster of nonprofits helped by Champoux is College for Me-Androscoggin, a tenant in Champoux’s new building, next to the Y WCA on East Avenue, in Lewiston. The former landmark Knights of Columbus building was built in 1963 and was completely rehabbed by Champoux last fall. “We had simply outgrown our old space on Sabattus Street,” Champoux explained. “We’ve gone from a 7,200-square-foot building to 12,000, but most noteworthy is that we now have plenty of easily accessible parking, both for staff and visitors.” Other nonprofit agencies served by Champou x include the Franco Center, Kora Shrine, Museum L/A, the Lewiston Auburn Economic Growth Council, Community Little Theatre, Maine Music Society and the United Way, to name only a few. “The fact that we all live here, we are all connected to the communities we serve, we

The staff at Champoux Insurance in Lewiston. are all active in community affairs and that as a company we are still family-oriented and committed to serving our clients with complete dedication is really important,” said Albert, himself a former Lewiston city councilor and the current board chair of the United Way. “These communities are our homes, too. We care about where we live, we care about our friends and neighbors, and so we care deeply about providing t he ver y best produc t s a nd ser v ice possible.”

How has Champoux managed to stay so successful through all the ups and downs of the economy? It is all about partnerships. Champoux actively partners with each and every one of its clients. By the same token, Champoux partners with each and every one of its companies. Champoux represent the interests of both!


8A PROFILE 2014

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

Shouldn’t financial guidance be about

trust,

Richard Courtemanche, FIC 184 Webster St., Ste. 102 Lewiston, ME 04240 207-786-3622 Richard.Courtemanche@ mwarep.org

Art Chamberlain FIC, LUTCF, ChFC, CLU 184 Webster St., Ste. 102 Lewiston, ME 04240 207-514-7003 Arthur.R.Chamberlain@ mwarep.org

Paul Colasante, FIC, LUTCF 184 Webster St., Ste. 102 Lewiston, ME 04240 207-782-8823 Paul.Colasante@ mwarep.org

Mike Courtemanche FIC, LUTCF 184 Webster St., Ste. 102 Lewiston, ME 04240 207-783-8921 Michael.Courtemanche@ mwarep.org

Kim Pelkey, FICF, LUTCF 184 Webster St., Ste. 102 Lewiston, ME 04240 207-786-2573 Kim.Pelkey@ mwarep.org

Debi Wagemann, FICF, LUTCF, CASL, RICP, ChFC, CLU Taylor Brook Mall 14 Millett Dr. Auburn, ME 04210 207-539-8664 Deborah.J.Wagemann@ mwarep.org

not sales? I can give you trusted, understandable – and FREE* – financial guidance to help you achieve your financial goals. Let’s talk – I can help you plan for life.

*There is no obligation to buy.

Modern Woodmen of America

Darren Hartley Senior Benefits Specialist

Lena-Jo Hartley President/Owner By Dan Marois Feature Writer / Photographer Work ing her way up t he ranks at Downeast Financial Group, Lena-Jo Hartley f irst started as the company’s top producer before being na med v ice president in 2008. She took over the company from former ow ner a nd president Michael J. Poulin. Now, she leads a dynamic financial services agency, “ t o s e r v e c l i e nt s w i t h passion, respect a nd honest y,” t he t radema rk qualities taught to her by her late mentor. Hartley grew up in Lewiston and graduated in 1994 from Penn State University with a bachelor of science degree i n Fi na nc e a nd He a lt h Policy Administration. She has been in the financial industr y since 1996, and hold s a c omprehen si ve list of securities licenses, through Investacorp, Inc., a Registered Broker Dealer, Member FINRA, SIPC. She is also licensed in life and health insurance and is an

independent broker who can shop for services and products from among many providers rather than just one. “At our firm, we have the client – and only the client – in mind,” said Hartley. “Our mission is to get to know and understand our client’s needs, wants, and long-term goals. We want to help develop, implement, and monitor a strategy that’s designed to address an individual’s situation.”

said Hartley, noting that the compa ny website a l lows clients online access of consolidated financial reports. “ You r i n f or m at ion c a n be accessed online and is updated daily. “Over the years, we have found that a team approach i s t he b e s t me t ho d t o help clients who have a w ide variet y of needs as they maneuver through a complex financial-services world,” said Hartley, noting that she has a team of professionals ready to help her clients.

Her husba nd, Da r ren Hartley, a former teacher who taught school-to-work transition and career preparation at Lewiston Regional Technical Center for nearly 20 years, joined the firm last year and now focuses in life insurance and voluntar y benefits/group plans. He is one of only a small group of certified educators in personal finance in Maine as designated by the Institution for Financial Literacy. Ot her tea m resources at Downeast Financial Group include Carter Mansbach

equites; Dan Goff, Medicare specialist; Melonie Coutts, administrative assistant; and Martha “Muffy” E l l i s , d i r e c t or of F i r s t Impressions. Ha r t le y love s her work and is eager to share her k nowledge w it h cu r rent customers as well as new customers seeking financial guidance. “Every day is new and exciting. My indust r y is ever changing; it keeps me sharp and on my toes,” admitted Hartley. “The best part is working to meet client

needs, product diversit y, dept h of ser v ice prov iders, product choices and to keep up with the fast-paced environment.” Downeast Financial Group is at 460 Main Street, Suite A in Lew iston w ith business hours, 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday; and by appointment on Saturday and Sunday. Hartley can be reached at 207-777-5400 or at dow neast@midma ine. com. For more information, visit www.downeastfinancial.com.

Downeast Financial Group of fer s a comprehen sive approach to persona l finance. The firm is able to ser v ice investment portfolios, monitor retirement funds, chart money saving goa ls, a nd ident i f y a nd prov ide insurance needs whether for life, short-term disabilit y, critical illness or accident planning. They even offer corporate and i nd iv idua l ta x prep a nd estate planning. “We can cover a variety of financial planning for indiv idua ls and businesses,”

Martha “Muffy” Ellis

Melonie Coutts

Dan Goff


PROFILE 2014 9 A

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

Meeting the Needs of Western Maine for Over 50 Years!

Building Partnerships in Western Maine Communities Working Together

www.avcog.org

Regional Business Development

Regional Services

Small business loan programs

Community and economic development project assistance for Androscoggin, Franklin and Oxford Counties

Small business counseling Assistance for manufacturing firms

Regional Promotion Regional promotion efforts for the Maine’s Lakes & Mountains region Staff support, grant writing expertise and fiscal management services to the regional tourism council

Environmental management services to towns, solid waste districts and associations, water districts and lake www.avcog.org associations Transit and transportation planning Household Hazardous Waste Disposal information and services

Inquiry fulfillment

Regional Capacity Development Fiscal management services for regional projects

Transportation and transit planning and program administration Joint Purchasing

and programs GIS Services Agriculture assistance programs Mobilize Western Maine statewide asset based development strategy

125 Manley Road, Auburn, ME 04210 Tel: (207)783-9186 Fax: (207)783-5211

r e a d l e Credit Un F h t u o m ion n o M “We Invest in You” By Jackie Rybeck Feature Writer / Photographer

secure access to their accounts from anywhere in the world.”

T

Coming soon, members will be able to get paperless e-statements and mobile banking.

he Mon mout h Federa l Cred it Union was formed in 1953 and is a member-owned, not-for-profit organization serving the communities of Monmouth, Leeds, Litchfield, Turner, Wales and Greene. To better serve its busy members, MFCU has two convenient locations, one in Monmouth at the Walker building, 1176 Main Street, just off Route 202. Greene’s branch office is located on the Patten Road, just off Rt. 202 as well. According to MFCU’s president, Margie Gagne, the credit union’s mission is to be their member’s primary financial institution; to strive to provide personalized, quality services at fair and reasonable rates while maintaining financial stability. “Our members are not just a part of this community, they are this community. Each one has goals and dreams in life. They work hard to feed their families; they go to soccer games and save whenever they can," said Gagne, adding that some are saving for college, putting money aside to retire or taking care of an elderly parent. They’re young, old and everywhere in between. “That is what makes this credit union what it is!” she added. “We are a part of thousands of success stories.” Many of the Monmouth Federal Credit Union’s values came from one of the board members who had dedicated over 50 years to the success and leadership to this institution. “Bob Walker believed it was a community of people helping each other,” said Gagne. “'It’s all about the people,' he used to say.” And with the members in mind, MFCU has recently introduced new services for its members. “We now offer Net-Teller,” said the president. “It’s a free online banking service. Once enrol led, members w i l l have

“Members are very excited knowing that in the near future, they can do most of their banking by just a few taps on their smartphone. All three of these benefits have been very much in demand.” MFCU is a lso a pa rt of t he Sha red Branching Network, which is a group of credit unions allowing members to perform transactions such as cashing payroll checks, making deposits, transfers and loan payments at any other participating credit union. MFCU is also proud to be involved with many community activities and charitable causes. “One such charity is Maine Credit Union League’s Campaign for Ending Hunger in Maine. We have a golf tournament and do many other fundraising campaigns throughout the year such as selling candy bars, baked goods and candles -contributing over $800 to each of four, local food pantries," said Gagne.

Monmouth location staff include, front center: President Margie Gagne; from left, back: Melody Danforth, Stacey Hamner, Lena Galipeau, Charlene Vannah and Nicole Allen.

“It feels good to help the community,” she added. “And every penny stays in the state of Maine.” With Walker’s initial help, both branches have grown to what they are today, offering access to a full array of services such as savings and checking accounts, loans and Visa debit cards -- competitive rates, drive-thru services, ATM machines and outstanding member service. “Bob’s thoughts were always to do for the people,” the president said. “He told me that as long as we remembered we were here for the members we can never go wrong. We’ve always felt that we owed it to him to stand up to his standards.” For more information, find them on the web at monmouthfcu.com or call Monmouth at 207-933-2667 or Greene at 207-946-2463.

Greene branch staff, from left: Patricia Cantin, Trista Dube and Kayla Lamontagne.

Monmouth Federal Credit Union 1176 Main Street, Monmouth, Maine 04259 • 207-933-2667 19A Patten Road, Greene, Maine 04236 • 207-946-2463 infor@monmouthfco.com


10A PROFILE 2014

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

Lewiston-Auburn Economic Growth Council

Deborah Carroll photos

The majority of what LAEGC does is for the benefit of small business innovations, for entrepreneurs who often don’t have the resources to manage all the challenges of site selection, financing, business planning, licensing, permitting; all those logistical details that aren’t part of their core business or vision, but which are essential to their eventual success, according to LAEGC's president, Lucien Gosselin. From left: Lucien Gosselin, president; John Belisle, loan portfolio manager; Stephanie Lewis, accountant; and George Dycio, economic development specialist.

Actions speak louder than words By Rich Livingston Feature Writer

T

he collaborative approach to economic development t hat has cha racterized t he L ew iston-Aubu r n com munity for the past generation has been the env y of ever y municipality in Maine, many of which have tried to copy the local formula. Long before there was widespread chatter about encouraging business in Maine, the Lewiston-Auburn Economic Growth Council was doing something about it, and in a way that created more jobs – in real terms and especially per capita income – in this region than anywhere else in the state. For more than three decades, LAEGC has been the catalyst t hat has enabled complex, sophist icated f ina ncia l investments and oversight, c o op er at ion b et w e en t he two cities, federal and state agencies, and a wide range of private sector businesses. The Growth Council was created in 1980-81, as an evolution from the previously independent status. The Lewiston Development Cor p., fou nded i n 1952, and the Auburn Busine s s D e v elopment C or p., established in 1972, have since become affiliated and staffed by LAEGC. The impetus for the collaborative Growth Council model came in the 1970s, a turbulent time of upheaval in the local e c onomy. T he m i l l-ba se d economy of L-A was established well before the Civil War, and the growth of the textile and shoe industries fueled the expansion of the community, t he g row t h of dow ntow ns, immigration of countless new Americans – first from Ireland, then from Canada, and from Eastern Europe; more recently from Africa and elsewhere – and built the great American middle class right here in the commercial heart of Maine. T he bu r ge on i ng pr o s p erit y created by mu lt iple generations working hard to provide for themselves, their families, and their community enabled the growth of a local retail infrastructure that attracted Ma iners from a ll corners of the state. But then the mills came under pressures f rom a lter nat ive sources for production; in the case of textiles, manufacturing moved south to be closer to the cotton supply chain. The good jobs upon which L-A had depended for more than a century were bleeding out of town, and eventually out of the country. At t he sa me t i me, “u rba n renewal” had decimated the dow ntow n i n f ra st r uc t u re. The city of Lewiston curtailed its ow n economic develop-

ment office. L-A was on the verge of passing into the ghost town status of countless New England mill towns.

the long term. We recognize t hat cit y budgets w ill continue to be squeezed for the foreseeable future, and so we need to gradually eliminate our dependence on municipal funding.”

At the height of its product iv it y, some 6,0 0 0 people worked i n t he Bates Mi l l, but at its lowest point t he number had dwindled to just a couple of hundred. But the local economy has not only survived the end of big-time local manufacturing, it has thrived through a transition into a diverse employ ment base driven by technolog y, healthcare and logistics – the keys to 21st century prosperity: Employment in the mill buildings is back in the range of 2,000 jobs. L e w i ston-Aubu r n suppor t significant industrial parks t hat were established wel l before the rest of Maine caught on to what was happening here, and the community has become a transportation hub for t he movement of internationa l cargo; a center of e d u c a t i on , r e s e a r c h a n d culture; unemployment in L-A has consistently been lower than throughout Maine, and there has been a meaningful rebound from the depths of the great recession. “To some extent,” said LAEGC’s long-time CEO, Lucien Gosselin, “we have been in the right place at the right time. But we’ve enabled the cities to accompl ish t h i ngs t hat just could not have been done entirely by the public sector. And we’ve used public participation to leverage private investments in ways which c o u l d n’t h a v e h a p p e n e d w it hout t hat cata lyst, too. Ever ybody w ins, especia lly twin city residents,” because the property tax burden does not fa ll primarily on home owners, he explained. G ossel i n k now s what he’s t a l k i ng a bout . S che du le d to ret ire f rom t he helm of LAEGC this June, Gosselin has been deeply involved in the local economy for some half century. As the city controller/ chief finance officer of the city of Lewiston – the senior-most administrative position before the creation of the city administrator role that Gosselin also held for many years – he was in place during the period of the greatest out-flow of local jobs. In 1975, to address the upheava ls i n ma nu fact u r i ng, t he LDC formed a private/public partnership with the city of L ew i ston ; a more pro-active semi-private arm of the mu n i c i p a l i t y. F i v e y e a r s later, Gosselin – by then city ad m i n ist rator of Lew iston – along with Chip Morrison, city manager of Auburn at the time, and local businessman, John Turner – helped bot h cities address centuries-old innate distrust of one another,

T he Grow t h Cou nci l is responsible for some complex f ina ncia l inst r u ments a nd investments, and is assembling new pools of funds that can be loaned to local businesses at preferred rates. “We have different tolerances than conventional lenders,” Gosselin explained, “because we are nonprofit. We have a little higher risk tolerance, and we are very supportive of traditional and non-traditional lenders.”

Scheduled to retire from the helm of LAEGC this June, President Lucien Gosselin has been deeply involved in the local economy since 1963.

Lewiston Auburn Economic Growth Council 415 Lisbon Street, P. O. Box 1188 Lewiston, Maine 04243-1188 Phone: 207-784-0161 www.economicgrowth.org embrace the opportunities of private sector investment and development – along with what private development could do for the cities’ tax bases and for the recovery of lost jobs, and founded LAEGC.

client inquiry, than either city could have done if we hadn’t been here. If we hadn’t been, there’s a good chance the communit y would have missed that opportunity,” Gosselin said.

A major emphasis was to help eliminate the historic competition between the cities, based on the reality that what was good for either city would benefit both. And the council has been pa r t of v i r t ua l ly every significant development in the area ever since, even though, as Gosselin explained, “The vast majority of what we do is for the benefit of small bu si ne s s i n nov at ion s, for entrepreneurs who often don’t have the resources to manage all the challenges of site select ion, f i n a nc i ng , bu si ne s s planning, licensing, permitting; all those logistical details that aren’t part of their core business or vision, but which are essential to their eventual success.”

And on the Auburn side of the bridge, L A EGC has, among many other ventures, been a major force in the development of the Auburn Industrial Pa rk, a project wh ich had stalled when the limited economic development resources of the city had been overext ende d . T he c ompl ic at e d project required coordination between the city, ABDC, Maine DEP, Army Corps of Engineers, the EPA, Fish and Wildlife. A major wetlands mitigation site had to be identified, acquired and prepared.

Probably the biggest single score in the past 20 years or so was the creation of 700 jobs at one time, the result of a $93m i l l ion i nvest ment i n t he WalMart distribution center, in Lewiston, one of the biggest in the entire northeast. “We were really in an ideal position to respond quickly, in greater detail, to an unknown

Gosselin has served as president of LAEGC for 17 years, and as he, and the Council, prepa res for his imminent retirement, he ref lected on what the organization is doing these days. “Our first responsibility,” he said, “is to answer when opportunity knocks, as we did with WalMart. But the nature of economic development has changed, along with 21st-century technology, and the way we work has changed, too. We have to reinvent ourselves to be financially sustainable in

At the same time, operating such loan pools can help generate the operating revenue t he Cou nci l requ i res. “By providing subordinate debt ” Gosselin said, “we may leverage up to a 10-to-one ratio in private investment funds.” L AEGC staffs the B2B Trade Show every spring, the biggest event of its kind in the state, and also prov ides management a nd sta f f i ng for t he Lew iston and Auburn Railroad Co., owners of significant transportation infrastructure in both cities. The Council has a renewed focus on helping redevelop bot h dow ntow n a reas, en h a nc e t he oppor t u n it y for the Port of Auburn designation and its role in supply chain logistics. The agency hopes to offer sophisticated back room, technology-driven data mining services; and both upstream and dow nstream logistics support. “We’re especia l ly proud of the L/A Future Forum,” Gosselin added. “This is the best example of true civic leadership, gathering some of the most prominent business and civic leaders in L-A to address public/private policy around the three most vital economic development issues in our f uture: Our riverfront as a unique asset; ensuring accessible, affordable and meaningful educational opportunities for our residents and the workforce requ i rements of ou r employers; a nd t he imperat ives of a comprehensive immigration policy to ensure that we continue to offer a steady stream of talented and committed employees to both expanding existing businesses and those that will be attracted by that supply.” Finally, Gosselin concluded, “We’re busy. I’ll miss being at the center of the action, but the Growth Council will continue to prov ide the leverage the cities need to continue to grow and prosper.”


PROFILE 2014 11A

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

Community Banking, since 1872. At Northeast Bank, we offer a wide array of business and personal banking accounts that are designed to help meet your financial goals. From basic checking and high-yield money markets to personal mortgage loans, we have the products that will serve your needs. If you are looking to start a new business or grow an existing one, our business bankers have the experience to help take your business to the next level. Our New Community Banking Division President: Jeanne A. Hulit We are pleased to introduce Jeanne A. Hulit, the new President of the Northeast Community Banking Division. She joins the bank directly from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) where she most recently served in President Obama’s Cabinet as Acting Administrator. She brings us 30 years of commercial banking and economic development experience in Maine, and a demonstrated record of success both as a banker and a national small business advocate. Delivering Effective Small Business Lending Products When it comes to lending for small businesses, Northeast Bank has a long history of providing local companies access to capital. We offer a full range of business lending options, including lines of credit, equipment loans, and commercial real estate loans, as well as government guaranteed programs and special financing. As a longtime Preferred Lender with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), we are

pleased to offer loan programs that include both micro loans for small businesses, as well as larger loans to established companies looking to expand or re-tool their operations. Maine’s economic strength is deeply rooted in small business, and Northeast Bank is here to help.

we live and work. Our ongoing commitment to provide charitable donations and volunteer support focus on the following key issues:

• Economic Development - We

support programs that encourage entrepreneurship, create new jobs, attract industry and enhance the overall well-being of the communities we serve.

Commitment to Technology At Northeast Bank, you can feel confident that our technology is stateof-the-art, safe and secure. In addition, we’ve recently invested in exciting enhancements to our core systems, including improvements to our online banking, bill pay, and account opening platforms—as well as updated capabilities for our remote deposit capture and mobile banking users. These enhancements will allow us to offer customers more tools and even better service to accommodate their personal or business banking needs. Competitive Mortgage Products We offer a large array of mortgage options, offered at some of the most competitive rates in the marketplace. Our experienced mortgage team can help you sort through the options to find the loan that best fits your needs. We even offer practical tools that allow consumers to start the mortgage process from the comfort of home. If you’re shopping for a home, be sure to contact us about getting pre-approved for a new mortgage. Commitment to Community As a valued member of the community, we are committed to serving the neighborhoods where

• Affordable Housing - The bank

supports initiatives that provide assistance to low-to-moderate income borrowers. We believe that helping provide affordable housing leads to stronger communities and a sustainable economy.

• Basic Needs - We support programs

that directly impact and service lowincome individuals or families, providing support for unmet basic needs including: shelter, food, clothing, as well as adult education and workforce development initiatives.

We invest in our employees as advocates in building their own communities. This commitment is reflected in our Community Involvement Program through which we provide each Northeast Bank employee two paid days per year to volunteer in their community.

Dan Marois photo

Jeanne A. Hulit, new President of the Northeast Community Banking Division Established in: 1872 # Of Employees: 198 Headquarters: Lewiston, ME Ownership: Public NASDAQ Ticker: NBN President & CEO: Richard Wayne President, Community Banking Division: Jeanne A. Hulit

Total Assets: $733 Million Branches: 10 Loan Production Offices: 7 Markets Served: Western, Central, Midcoast, and Southern Maine, Seacoast New Hampshire and Massachusetts

2013 Dempsey Challenge Team

With our corporate headquarters located as an anchor tenant to Lewiston’s Southern Gateway, we continue our long-standing commitment to community banking. You can be confident that we will be here to serve the financial needs of Maine’s families and businesses as we have since 1872.

Saint Dominic Academy

Pursuing Excellence in AthleticsSince Since 1941 1941 in Academics & & Athletics • Grades Pre-K  Grades Pre-K – --1212 • Values based curriculum  Values based curriculum • Nurturing atmosphere  Nurturing atmosphere • Individual attention  Individual attention • College Prep., Honors & A.P. courses  College Prep., Honorsprogram & A.P. courses • Time-test instruction  Time-test instruction program • Motivated student body  Motivated studentrate body • 100% Graduation  100% Graduation rate rate • 97% College attendance • Tuition assistance for all who  97% College attendance ratequalify • Sports and extra-curricular activities  Tuition assistance for all who qualify for all interests  Sports and extra-curricular activities for all interests Check us out at: www.stdomsmaine.org

FMI 207.782.6911

207.783.9323

Check us out at: www.stdomsmaine.org


12A PROFILE 2014

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

Serving the Community You Call Home Serving all of Androscoggin and Oxford Counties

We are a full service Credit Union offering a wide range of products from Checking and Share Accounts, to Mortgage and Auto Loans. We offer four convenient branch locations in addition to 24/7 account access through mobile and online banking.

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As a Sun Media Group subscriber to one of our many print and digital membership plans, you have access to the news ANYWHERE and ANY TIME you want.

Don’t miss out on your exclusive MONEY-SAVING membership benefits! Register your online account today to begin taking full advantage of your membership by clicking on MEMBER BENEFITS. If you have any problems or concerns, please contact our Customer Service Department Monday-Friday 7 am – 4:30 pm at 784-3555 or 800-482-0753. You can also email us at subscribe@sunjournal.com.


PROFILE 2014 13A

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

Not all heroes wear capes.

Every nine minutes, the American Red Cross brings help and hope to people in need. Every dollar you give helps us do more of what we do.

Be a hero. Donate or volunteer today. Maine

Learn more at redcross.org/maine

82111A


14A PROFILE 2014

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

The name explains it all! You need it and we have it or we will try our best to find it! Owner Matt Lajoie has been in the business for over 20 years. "We're literally stocked to the rafters with tons of great inventory," said Lajoie. "Our extensive inventory consists of closeouts, surplus and salvage from major department stores. For the bargain shopper you will find items like paper goods, small appliances, toys, clothing, household goods, furniture, dog food, diapers and lots more.” Lajoie goes on to say, “But my specialty is the massive amount of used office furniture that I sell. I feel that I am Maine’s largest and fastest growing used office furniture dealer with rows of filing cabinets, office chairs, desks, tables and office cubicles. Every week I am bringing in a new trailer load. And there is plenty of room for inventory with the warehouse being over 30,000 square feet. Chances are we already have what you are searching for and lots of surprises, as well! And I promise lower prices that anywhere else you may look for office items. And no job is to big or too small.” In addition to the large office inventor y, Ever y thing Warehouse, a lso specializes in material handling products including pallet racking and light, medium and heav y duty industrial shelving.

We a re loc ated at 12 West m i nster St reet in Lew iston nea r t he Chick-A-Dee Restaurant. Turn on to Westminster Street at the traffic light from Lisbon Street and the Warehouse is the second building on the left. You can’t miss it with the front of the building colors being blue and yellow – and of course there is a big wrecking ball hanging by the entrance! Customers wanting to find information about Everything Warehouse can go online at w w w.everythingwarehouseme.com or go to Facebook where you can “Like” them as well. Warehouse hours are Monday and Tuesday from 9-5, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 9-6, Saturday 9-6 and Sunday 10-4. You can contact Matt Lajoie with any questions at 207-782-6300 or 207632-5302 or email everythingwhse@ yahoo.com. Everything Warehouse is truly a onestop shopping place for those looking for a specific item and for those who like to explore to find an unexpected bargain. Matt and his staff hope to see you there!

Find the unexpected, but useful, at Everything Warehouse in Lewiston.

A recent online review of Everything Warehouse states, “There’s a ver y interesting assortment of items there. Need to set up an office or business? Make this your first stop. You’ll find very helpful staff that are courteous and sincere in finding what you need.”

Photo by Dan Marois

Office furnishings

Clothing

Wrecking ball is located in parking lot.

• Learn action steps you can take right away to help avoid being one of them. • Tired of market volatility??? • Strategies to help protect your assets. • 10 IRA mistakes to avoid!

Gregory E. Strong ChFC, CLU Helping fellow Mainers with their Retirement strategies since 1975. 40 Forest Falls Drive, Yarmouth, ME 04096

207-846-0734


PROFILE 2014 15A

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

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16A PROFILE 2014

Advertising Supplement to the Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine, Saturday, April 26, 2014

Androscoggin County Chamber of Commerce board members.

Androscoggin County Chamber of Commerce: At your service By Rich Livingston Feature Writer The Androscoggin County Chamber of Commerce continues to be the largest business membership and advocacy organization in the state; a position it achieved just over a year ago, even though t he economy of Lew iston-Auburn a nd greater Androscoggin County is still smaller than that of the Portland area. But the L-A economy is continuing its vigorous rebound from the depths of the recession, with more business formation, more downtown activity, more new jobs, a greater role as a regional transportation and logistical hub, more festivals, arts events and restaurants than there has been in decades. “We are really proud of this community,” said Chip Morrison, long-time Cha mber president, “a nd everything we’re all doing together to make this the best place to live, work and play in Maine. I think the extraordinary success of the Chamber is simply a reflection of the improving prosperity and quality of life in L-A. And,” he added, “and we have a renewed commitment to pay back the support the community has demonstrated for the Chamber with a big, new agenda of services and programs for our members.” With about 1,400 members, there are at least a thousand reasons folks have chosen to join, Morrison said. “Some simply want to be supportive of the community, to give something back. Many join for the countless networking opportunities we offer, or the enrichment and educational programs." Others join the Chamber for access to its unique programs and services; but regardless of why they’ve joined, the Chamber wants to do all it can to make sure that membership is worthwhile and that everyone gets a great return on their investment not only of dues, but especially their time and commitment. Between seminars, networking events, committee meetings and a social gathering or two, there have been about 20 different Chamber-sponsored activities scheduled in April and May alone, and that’s before the advent of the summer festival season in which the Chamber is a major partner. “We survey our members ever y year,” Morrison explained, “to keep updated about those things they

find most important or worthwhile, and then try to offer more of them. Plus the Member Services Committee led by Stephanie Gelinas and Kurk Lalemand, a collection of about 30 high-powered and dedicated individuals, focuses a lot of time and energy to the subject of how best to serve member interests.” The Chamber’s own Resource Guide, the most comprehensive hard copy compendium of everything one needs to know about making the most of being a part of L-A, explains the Chamber’s attitude about economic development in this context: “From civic pride to downtown charm, the greater Lewiston and Auburn is in the midst of an electrifying revitalization [predicated on] Recreational Opportunities, Logistics, and Education.” And the Chamber’s work addresses each of those drivers of community growth and prosperity. Monthly Chamber breakfast meetings regularly attract crowds of upwards of 250 people, as do the Business After Hours gatherings hosted at member locations. In addition to facilitating connections between and among its members, the Chamber provides a continuing series of educational, training, critical thinking and organizational development classes, seminars, workshops and discussion groups, all designed to help members work smarter, not harder; and to derive maximum satisfaction from the work they do. And in that spirit, the Chamber has instituted a new monthly program designed especially for small businesses: Chamber Mastermind. Meeting on the third Tuesday of the month, from 5-7 p.m. at the Chamber office, 415 Lisbon St., downtown Lewiston, each session includes networking opportunities, a short presentation from a specially chosen guest speaker, and a vigorous round table discussion intended to help participants find answers to perplexing challenges, expand their vision, and generally help them become more successful at what they do, whether they are in start-up, survival, growth, or mature stages of business evolution. The series began in March with the topic "Top Five Tips for Working On Your Business, Not In It." Other sessions are devoted to:

selling something, all the time) • Top five people tips (how to engage productively with just about anyone, anytime) • Top five cash management strategies • Top five tips on productivity • Top five things you can do to motivate staff • Selling your product or service • Top five prospecting tactics • Top five marketing tactics • Top owner’s skills The series is facilitated by Kurk Lallemand, LPBC, of Next Level Business Coaching, and sessions cost only $10 each, or $50 for the year-long program of 10 sessions. Interested participants can attend any number of sessions, from one to all. Together with other Chamber initiatives, such as the Androscoggin Leadership Development Institute, the work of the Young Professionals of Lewiston Auburn Area, and a wide array of brown-bag discussions and workshops, the Chamber Mastermind series is intended to provide busy business owners and managers with support, actionable information and continuing education, and respite from the grind of business operations; to enable those caught up in daily responsibilities to also take a long view of how they and their employees can grow and thrive. “Widget makers are terrific at making widgets,” Morrison observed, “but not everyone has had time to fully develop all the special skills required to operate a successful 21st-century business in a crowded marketplace. The Mastermind series is intended to help fix that. It’s a refresher, a source of new thinking, a chance to compare notes. It’s just part of what we do every day to try to help our members get better at what they do. We think of it as continuing professional education for small business people, and we are excited to be able to provide this kind of experience for our members.” Visit, call or write the Chamber at: The Business Service Center at KeyBank Plaza 415 Lisbon Street, PO Box 59 Lewiston, Maine 04243 207-783-2249

• Top five sales tips for those who hate to sell (recognizing the principle that everyone is engaged in

Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

Shanna Rogers of Community Concepts, second from left, received the YPLAA Award during the 2014 Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet at the Ramada Conference Center in Lewiston.

Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

Michael Malloy, center, received the YPLAA Award during the 2014 Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet at the Ramada Conference Center in Lewiston.

Sandra Jones, center, received the YPLAA Award during the 2014 Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet at the Ramada Conference Center in Lewiston.


2014 Profile section A