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Three reappointed to state service commission by Gov. Mills

October 23rd, 2019

Left to right collage of Celeste Branham, Ed Barrett and John PortelaAUGUSTA -- Three sitting members of Volunteer Maine, Maine's service commission, have been reappointed to serve an additional three-year term by Maine Governor Janet Mills. Volunteer Maine is the new identity of the Maine Commission for Community Service.

F. Celeste Branham, Chair, Brunswick, Maine: Branham, who retired in 2018 as Vice President of Student Services at the University of Maine Farmington, has been reappointed to another three-year term, and will continue to serve as Chair of Volunteer Maine through 2020. She began her two-year term as Chair in September 2018. Branham was first appointed to the Commission in 2011, and continues to represent institutions of higher education and local education agencies. Branham brings her expertise in civic engagement to the work of the board.

Ed Barrett, Vice Chair, Lewiston, Maine: Barrett will continue in his role of Vice Chair of Volunteer Maine. He also serves the Volunteer Maine commission as a representative of local government. While serving, Barrett helped to champion the adoption of the Commission's new identity, Volunteer Maine. Barrett has worked with AmeriCorps programs prior to joining Volunteer Maine in his work with the City of Bangor. Barrett is City Administrator in Lewiston, Maine, and has served on the grant selection committee since his appointment in 2014.

John Portela, Immediate Past Chair, Brunswick, Maine: The Immediate Past Chair of Volunteer Maine, Portela will continue to serve as the representative of a local labor organization. Portela is a sandblaster at Bath Iron Works in Bath, Maine. During his time as chair from 2016-2018, Portela led the efforts to establish Volunteer Maine's foundation arm, the Maine Volunteer Foundation, and development of the plan for Volunteer Maine's future direction.

Commissioner terms of service are three years with an option for reappointment. The Commissioners are a diverse, bipartisan group of citizens, actively engaged in community service, and represent every region of the state. They elect officers from their membership and the officers serve two-year terms.

The seats on the board are designated in statute such that each person represents at least one facet of the community volunteer service sector.

About Volunteer Maine

Volunteer Maine, the state service commission, builds capacity and sustainability in Maine's volunteer sector by funding service programs, developing volunteer managers and service-learning practitioners, raising awareness of the scope and the impact of the volunteer sector, and encouraging an ethic of service. As of October 16, 2019, the Maine Commission for Community Service has adopted the identity Volunteer Maine.

For all media inquiries

Contact: Bryan Roche, communications officer, Volunteer Maine 
Office: 207-624-7836 
Email: bryan.roche@maine.gov