Board of Directors

Colette Twigg-Rowse, Board Chair, brings a wealth of knowledge and experience as a banking executive and small business owner.  Colette holds a BA in Economics with a minor in mathematics from the University of Vermont.  Colette is currently SVP-Portfolio & Credit Manager at CEI 7(a) Financing LLC, a national SBA 7(a) lender and is also a member of the Board of Directors for Pine Tree State Certified Development Corp. and Community Financial Literacy.

 

Dr. Rebecca Bloch, Board Secretary, is the Associate Medical Director of Maine Medical Center’s (MMC) Emergency Department, Medical Director of Brighton First Care, as well as attending Physician and Director of Women's Health for MMC Emergency Department.  Becca is also an Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine at Tufts University School of Medicine.  Becca holds an MD from the University of California’s San Diego School of Medicine and a BA, Psychology Magna cum Laude from Amherst College.  Becca’s current memberships include the MMC Emergency Department Quality Leadership Committee and Patient Experience Team.  She is the MMC Sexual Assault Forensic Examiner Medical Director and a Leader in the MMC Emergency Department Communication and Patient Experience Group.

 

Abusana Micky Bondoa native of the Republic Democratic of Congo, is the mother of 5 children. She holds a BS in biochemistry, specializing in microbiology laboratory and is licensed in phlebotomy. She is an interpreter/translator of French and Lingala at the Portland Public Schools and a Coalition Parent Leader Organizer for Portland Empowered, a platform for the Muskie School at USM which bridges the Public School, Parents, and Community. She is a co-founder of In Her Presence, an organization led by immigrant women to navigate the integration process.

 

Elizabeth Conrad, is the lead advisor for Conrad HR Advisors, providing specialized HR support to healthcare organizations experiencing the challenges and opportunities that financial stress, mergers, and acquisitions create. Elizabeth has held increasingly responsible leadership positions for healthcare organizations over her nearly 30 plus year career. Most recently she served as system level Chief Human Resources Officer for Lahey Health for 5 years until September 2018.  Lahey Health was a $2B integrated healthcare system in Greater Boston with six hospitals, 950 beds, and approximately 15,000 employees including over 900 physician providers. Previously, Elizabeth served as the top HR executive for Saint Raphael Healthcare System in New Haven CT for ten years, from 2002 until 2012. Her background also includes leadership in community hospital settings, integrated delivery systems, and consulting.  She has worked with healthcare leaders in a wide variety of settings including acute care, physician practices, ambulatory clinics, nursing homes, home care and hospice, and both inpatient and outpatient behavioral health. 

 

Jeanne Hulit is President of Village Candle Company, a 25-year-old Maine manufacturer of premium scented candles located in Wells, Maine.  Prior to joining Village, Jeanne was President of the Northeast Bank in Maine, a community bank headquartered in Lewiston.  She has a 20-year commercial banking career as well as five years of service in the federal government. Jeanne served on President Obama’s Cabinet as the Acting Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration in Washington, DC. Before being asked to lead the Agency, she oversaw the SBA’s loan guarantee programs as Associate Administrator for SBA’s Office of Capital Access and served as New England Regional Administrator.  Prior to her banking career, Jeanne worked for the State of Maine in the Department of Economic and Community Development.


Larry Kaplan, (bio coming soon)


Bernard Kavanagh, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Large Fleet at WEX, Inc. Bernie has P&L responsibility for that line of business which includes establishing the strategy for long term growth as well as overseeing all aspects of sales and operations. He has spent 22 years at WEX and prior to that spent 6 years with Enterprise Holdings. He received a Bachelor's degree in political science from The College of New Jersey and serves on several industry related boards.


Yueying LaFluer, (bio coming soon)


Anne LaFond, spent her professional career in the cable television industry, most recently as Vice President of Candidate Development for Carlsen Resources, Inc., a telecommunication retained search firm. Anne volunteers at Portland Adult Education as a citizenship tutor and classroom aid and as a teacher with In Her Presence. She is a co-founder of the Welcome, New Mainers Mission at Saint Mary's in Falmouth, and co-chair of the Habitat of Humanity Falmouth Foreside 5K Run.


Katherine Pelletreau, (bio coming soon)


Steve Poulos, is a Partner and Portfolio Manager at HeadInvest, a Portland investment advisory firm. He has been a member of the firm's investment committee since 2016 and manages over $100 million in portfolio assets in personal and trust accounts. He has over 35 years experience in the investment field starting as a stock analyst at an investment boutique firm in Baltimore. A native of Bath, Steve returned to Maine to work as a portfolio manager at Maine National Bank, later becoming Head of Trust Investments for the Bank. After Maine National, Steve continued to work as a stock analyst and portfolio manager for several Portland advisory firms. Steve holds a B.A. from Johns Hopkins and an M.B.A. from Loyola College. He earned his Certified Public Accountant designation and is a member of the Maine Society of CPAs. He has served on several nonprofit boards. Steve's interests include traditional jazz music and jazz standards, history and public policy, and antique cars.


Marie-Christine Simbizi is employed by Support Solutions of Lewiston with expertise in geo-information data processing, analysis, quality and editing, production of maps and reporting. Marie-Christine has extensive volunteer experience as a translator. She volunteered during resettlement programs of African refugees in Florida. 

 

Rebecca Smith, (bio coming soon)

 

Josh Steirman, (bio coming soon)


Jim Vachon, Board Treasurer, has worked in various financial roles for over 30 years and previously held finance positions at Intermed, PA., WEX, Energy East, Napster, eTime Capital, and LL Bean.  Jim holds an MBA from Thomas College as well as a Business Administration degree from the University of Southern Maine.  Jim is a former board member of The Portland Harbor Museum and an active volunteer in the Portland school programs.

 

Penelope Wheeler - Abbott is a consultant at the law firm of Drummond Woodsum where her practice focuses on education and human resource issues for the firm's school clients.  Prior to joining Drummond Woodsum, Penny spent 17 years working in a Portland-area school district, first as a middle school teacher then as an administrator, also at the middle school level.  Penny received her BA in history and environmental studies from Macalester College and holds master’s degrees from the University of Montana and the University of Southern Maine in environmental studies and education, respectively.  She enjoys spending time with her family, reading, knitting, and coaching high school ultimate.  Penny also serves on the board of a small land trust in the southern White Mountains of New Hampshire.