Central Maine business briefs: Colby names director of Lunder Institute of American Art

WATERVILLE — The Colby College Museum of Art has announced that Erica Wall will become the new director of the Lunder Institute for American Art. A creative, collaborative and dynamic educator, curator and arts leader, Wall brings extensive community-building experience to Colby, where she will advance the mission of the Lunder Institute as a leading incubator and convener of scholarship and artistic practice in ways that evolve how American art is understood and how it is studied, taught, interpreted and made.

Wall comes to Waterville from North Adams, Massachusetts, where she serves as executive director of Arts and Culture at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts. Prior experience included founding a gallery that gave emerging artists the opportunity to exhibit their work, connected them with curators and patrons long-term, and enabled them to build an artistic community and a framework of support. She has also served as a museum educator at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Crocker Art Museum, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

She begins her new position with the Lunder Institute July 1.

Jacqueline Terrassa, Carolyn Muzzy Director of the Colby College Museum of Art, said that Wall will grow the Lunder Institute and further connect it with the field of American art and contemporary art more broadly, emphasizing principles of access and equity. She also will help Colby continue his effort to integrate and expand the arts across the campus, involving students in national and global conversations about art and the key questions of our time. With research, convening and studio space in downtown Waterville at the Greene Block + Studios, the Lunder Institute is informed by place, and works in collaboration and in the community as it seeks to expand who shapes American art and ages its contours, while demonstrating the value of art as a public good.

“I am thrilled that Erica will now lead the Lunder Institute and become a member of the Colby Museum’s senior team,” Terrassa said.

Wall arrives at Colby during a time of artistic momentum on campus and in the community. The Greene Block + Studios opened last fall in downtown Waterville, the Paul J. Schupf Art Center is under construction and will open early next year, also downtown, and the Gordon Center for Creative and Performing Arts will open on campus in fall 2023.

Wall said she was eager to begin her work with the Lunder Institute.

“I am excited and honored to lead an institute that provides the community the opportunity to engage in the discussions and explorations that celebrate, challenge and illuminate the many layers of American art, its past, its present and its future,” Wall said.

Maj. Ian Hepburn, center, accepts the unit guidon from Col. Sean Harmon, left, signifying his assumption of command of the 11th Civil Support Team on May 6 at Waterville. Maj. Carl Lamb photo/Maine National Guard

11th Civil Support Team changes hands

The 11th Weapons of Mass Destruction Civil Support Team held a change of command ceremony May 6, in which Lt. Col. Paul Bosse handed over command to incoming commander Maj. Ian Hepburn. The ceremony was at the unit’s headquarters facility in Waterville, according to a news release from the Maine National Guard.

“I cannot think of a better officer to lead the CST through whatever challenges may lie ahead,” said Bosse in his remarks. “Not only is Maj. Hepburn a tactically proficient leader, he is of the highest character and cares deeply for those he leads. The unit is in great hands.”

Hepburn thanked Bosse for his years of friendship and collaboration, as well as for maintaining a high level of readiness and esprit de corps within the unit.

“I am excited to be part of this team once again,” said Hepburn, who previously served as the deputy commander of the 11th. “Few units within the Armed Forces have the word ‘team’ in their title, and it is meaningful that it is part of the title of this unit. We are not a troop, battery, detachment or squadron — we are a team. That mentality and ethos drives what we do.”

The 11th CST is comprised of 22 active duty soldiers and airmen who support local, state and federal emergency management and response agencies across Maine and Northeast region. The unit specializes in supporting domestic authorities during incidents involving the potential for chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear or explosive threats.

Lt. Col. Paul Bosse speaks May 6 during the change of command ceremony in Waterville. Maj. Carl Lamb photo/Maine National Guard

University Credit Union gives $2,000 to UMaine at Augusta campus food pantries

University Credit Union presented checks to the University of Maine at Augusta totaling $2,000 for its student-run and campus-sanctioned food pantries on its Augusta and Bangor campuses, respectively, according to a news release from the credit union.

The Augusta Campus check of $1,000 was presented to Sal Cardinale, UMA’s Student Government Association president for its student-run campus food pantry, The Community Cupboard. A check in the amount of $1,000 was presented to Food for Thought Student Coordinator Jess Patterson for the Bangor Campus Food for Thought pantry.

For the past five years, UCU has raised funds for its Ending Hunger in Maine campaign to support local food pantries on campus and in local communities throughout the state. During this time, UCU has donated $8,316.44 to the UMA Augusta and UMA Bangor campus pantries in addition to other donations across Maine.

The donations from UCU will allow the Community Cupboard and the Food For Thought pantry to supplement their offerings. Current supplies are obtained through funding from the Hunger Dialogue Grant, as well as SGA funds allocated to the Community Cupboard and in-kind and monetary donations to the Food for Thought pantry. The Food for Thought pantry also has a partnership with Good Shepherd Food Bank of Maine and receives vegetables from the UMA Bangor Community Garden.

Inland Hospital nationally recognized with an ‘A’ Hospital Safety Grade

WATERVILLE — Northern Light Inland Hospital has received an “A” Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade for spring 2022. This national distinction recognizes Inland Hospital’s achievements in protecting patients from preventable harm and error in the hospital, according to a news release from the hospital.

“We’re delighted to receive this honor, and it’s wonderful that it is being announced during national Hospital Week,” said Tricia Mercer, president. “We are celebrating our employees for their dedication to our patients and the A grade award is the icing on the cake! It’s recognition that the staff’s constant focus on the safety of our patients is making a difference. We couldn’t be prouder!”

The Leapfrog Group, an independent national watchdog organization, assigns an “A,” “B,” “C,” “D,” or “F” grade to general hospitals across the country based on more than 30 national performance measures reflecting errors, accidents, injuries and infections, as well as systems hospitals have in place to prevent harm.

The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade is the only hospital ratings program based exclusively on hospital prevention of medical errors and harms to patients. The grading system is peer-reviewed, fully transparent and free to the public. Grades are updated twice annually, in the fall and spring.

“As our health care system continues to feel the strain of the pandemic, I thank the workforce and leadership of Inland Hospital for sustained commitment to patient safety, day in and day out,” said Leah Binder, president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group. “An ‘A’ Safety Grade is an outstanding achievement, and one that is not possible without a 24/7 effort by the entire health care workforce to protect patients from harm. This community should be proud.”

From left to right: Ariel Carron, Nichole Lee, Jason Hilt and Chris Kovacs

Four leaders join Maine State Credit Union

AUGUSTA — Maine State Credit Union has hired four new employees — Ariel Carron joins as a marketing specialist, Nichole Lee is the new branch manager in Waterville, Jason Hilt as vice president of finance, and Chris Kovacs will lead the commercial banking effort in Portland.

Carron will report to Jennifer Roper, vice president, marketing and communications. Carron will oversee the organization’s social media and digital marketing efforts in her role. Prior to joining Maine State Credit Union, she worked at Downeast Toyota.

Lee will report to Shane Abbott, senior vice president and chief retail officer. In her role, Lee will manage the day-to-day operations for the branch and help increase awareness of Maine State Credit Union in the Waterville community. Prior to joining, she was the branch manager at Camden National Bank.

Hilt will report to Erin Campbell, senior vice president, chief financial and people officer. In this role, Hilt will manage the accounting team’s day-to-day activities and help increase efficiencies for the organization. Prior to joining Maine State Credit Union, he worked at Lisbon Community Federal Credit Union.

Kovacs will report to Bruce Harrington, vice president and manager of commercial lending. In his role, Kovacs will help to grow business banking in Cumberland County. Prior to joining the organization, he worked at Bank of America.

“Our organization is growing, and we are excited to have such talented people join our team,” said Stephen Wallace, executive vice president and incoming chief executive officer. “Ariel, Chris, Jason and Nichole, bring a wealth of experience with them, and I am excited to see the contributions that they will make at Maine State Credit Union.”

For more business news, visit CentralMaine.com.

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