Class of 1977 Winter 2022 Class Note

Hello, everyone. As I write, it’s a cool fall day here in Maine. When you read this, it’ll be the middle of winter!

Our class president, Elizabeth Downing ‘44H, is a faculty member at UMaine. She teaches flute and coaches chamber music. Additionally, she is advisor to the UMaine Tennis Club, Mainely Voices, and the UMaine Flute Ensemble. Liz worked for 29 years in the offices of Enrollment Management, Recruitment, Admissions, and New Student Programs. She lives in Brewer with her husband, Dr. Dennis K. Cox, Professor Emeritus of Music.

Steve Hewins, retired president and CEO of HospitalityMaine, has built a retirement home in Rangeley. From the log cabin 150 feet above Rangeley Lake, he and his wife, Kathy, can relax, watch the sun cross the sky, and “see eagles roosting in the trees nearby.”

Michael Reisman has retired from the Beth C. Wright Cancer Resource Center in Ellsworth, where he served as executive director since its inception in 2004.

The Rev. Robert C. Vaillancourt, often called Father Bob, was ordained to the priesthood in 1982. Over the years he has served at parishes in Biddeford, Madawaska, East Millinocket, Old Town, Hampden, Winterport, and Rumford.

Steve Kahl ’82G writes that he is semi-retired as professor of environmental science at Thomas College in Waterville. Over his seven years there, he started three majors and two minors, including the first two science majors at the college. He says that after mentoring graduate students for 25 years, being able to share his experiences with undergraduates has been a great wrap-up to his research career. Steve goes on to offer the following history lesson:

“On the 50th anniversary of the Clean Water Act on September 29, I was named a Clean Water Champion by the Natural Resources Council of Maine, at a ceremony in Lewiston on the banks of the Androscoggin River. The Andro was ranked as the sixth most polluted river in the country in 1969 when then-Senate intern George Mitchell of Waterville, working for Senator Ed Muskie of Rumford, drafted the Clean Water Act that was sponsored by Muskie and was passed unanimously by the Senate (yes, unanimously — how times have changed). And of course, while I was at UMaine as director of the Water Research Institute, George Mitchell agreed to lend his name to what became the Senator George Mitchell Center for Environmental Research in 2000.”