Summit ’16 Leaning Into Change: Maine-Grown Solutions


Wednesday, October 19th
9AM – 4:30PM  Reception 4:30-5:30PM
Thomas College and Downtown Waterville

Come to GrowSmart Maine’s 2016 Fall Summit, LEANING INTO CHANGE, to discover how to move your piece of Maine in the right direction – without losing what you love most. October 19, 2016, Waterville, Maine. Morning tours around Waterville & afternoon sessions at Thomas College.

Online registration is now closed for this event. Same-day registration is available in person at the Summit on Wednesday October 19th at 9 AM at one of the morning sessions or between 11:45-12:45 PM at Thomas College, Ayotte Auditorium. Summit registration includes a morning session, lunch, and the afternoon Summit program. See below for full program and locations of morning sessions.


Read full bios for presenters here


9:00 – 11:00AM Morning Sessions throughout Waterville (Registration is at morning session sites at 9am.)

Choose an Optional Morning Session:

  1. Downtown Revitalization Walking

What does it take to create a thriving downtown? People! Join this walking tour of downtown Waterville led by representatives of local businesses and Colby College.We’ll be offering a view of ongoing downtown revitalization efforts as well as Colby College’s investments in the downtown. Take back to your community tools and strategies to bring new energy to your downtown.

Meets at Selah Tea, 177 Main St, Waterville ME

  1. Arts & Culture Collaborations: Driving Maine’s Creative Economy  

Join us for a lively roundtable discussion with dynamic leaders from across the state who are helping to advance downtown revitalization and economic and community development efforts through meaningful collaborations around arts and culture. Through cultural planning, exciting collaborative programming, artist support services, compelling marketing, and much more, these individuals and their organizations are not only enriching the lives of Maine residents and visitors, they are positively impacting their local economies. Panelists include Tammy Ackerman, co-founder and executive director of Engine Incorporated, a community arts organization based in Biddeford; Hugh French, Director, Tides Institute & Museum of Art in Eastport; Kristina Cannon, Executive Director, Main Street Skowhegan; Martha Piscuskas, Co-Director of Waterfall Arts; and Shannon Haines, President & CEO of Waterville Creates!. Moderated by Janet Sawyer, Business Development Director for GrowSmart Maine.

Held at Waterville Creates!, 93 Main St, Waterville ME

  1. Innovation and Infill in Maine’s Food Sector

Maine’s food economy is booming from farms and fisheries to culinary arts and all steps in between. Learn about success stories in Maine’s entrepreneurial food system, meet the people behind the foods you eat, and explore the delicious potential for your community with this engaging panel discussion. Panelists include Amber Lambke from Maine Grains in Skowhegan, Colleen Hanlon-Smith from the Unity Food Hub, and Bo Dennis, Farm Manager at Kennebec Valley Community College Sustainable Agriculture Program. Moderated by Tyler Kidder, Community Outreach Director for GrowSmart Maine.

Held at Hathaway Creative Center, 10 Water St, Waterville ME

  1. Interchange Economics: I-95 and I-295—Smart Growth Centers?

Interstate 95 (the Maine Turnpike in southern Maine) and I-295 are the primary economic connectors of the state, and for the State to the rest of the US and Maritime Canada.  However, the system is dependent on access at interchanges which often attract unplanned service-oriented development, often impeding mobility and safety especially when located in neighborhoods.  This session will explore recent and ongoing planning at or near interchanges along the I-95 and I-295 corridors, seeing what a new generation of development or modifications can do for these important growth nodes.  Cases include Saco/Scarborough, Portland, Falmouth, Topsham, Waterville, and Bangor. Panelists include Bruce Van Note, Maine Turnpike Authority; Dan Bacon, Town Planner for Scarborough; and John Melrose, former DOT Commissioner. Moderated by Carl Eppich, Portland Area Comprehensive Transportation System.

Held at Ayotte Auditorium, Thomas College, 180 West River Rd, Waterville ME

  1. Imagine People Here: Inclusive Downtown Transportation Tour & Demonstration

How can we make our transportation built environment safer and more welcoming for anyone looking to go somewhere, regardless of modality or ability? Explore a temporary demonstration project and accompanying presentations about accommodating all users of streets and sidewalks in downtown Waterville and beyond. Learn solutions to take back to your community for bicyclists, pedestrians, people with disabilities, and anyone needing to get from one side of town to the other. Panelists include Samantha Herr and Jim Tasse, Bicycle Coalition of Maine; Theresa Savoy, Civil Rights Director and ADA Compliance Coordinator at Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT); Jill Johanning, AlphaOne; Coretta Trembley, Maine Division of the Blind and Visually Impaired; and Peter Garrett of Kennebec Messalonskee Trails. Lead by Ethan Boxer-Macomber, AICP, LEED AP from Anew Development.

Meets at Jorgensen’s Cafe, 103 Main St, Waterville ME

Parking: There is free all day parking in downtown Waterville in the Concourse parking lot. To find it, enter ‘Concourse West, Waterville’ into GPS or a smartphone maps application or take exit 130 off I-95 and follow signs to downtown, then to public parking. There is free parking in Hathaway Creative Center. There is also free parking at Thomas College near the Ayotte Center; follow the signs once on campus.


11:45AM – 12:30PM   LUNCH AT THOMAS COLLEGE, Mahaney Gymnasium.



Ayotte Auditorium, Ayotte Center, Thomas College, Waterville

12:45-1:15  Welcome, brief business meeting and election of board members by GrowSmart Maine board chair, David Webster. Financial report by board treasurer Ethan Boxer-Macomber. Annual program update by executive director Nancy Smith.

1:15-1:30  Laurie Lachance, President of Thomas College: Thomas College’s perspective on Leaning into Change.  

1:30-2:30   Three effective tools to direct development downtown and protect rural landscapes

Learn tools available to communities seeking to bring new development within growth areas while alleviating development pressure from rural working landscapes.

Rachel Bouvier, rbouvier Consulting, moderating

  1. Maine Vernal Pools Special Area Management Plan, piloting in Topsham and Orono.  Improving management of small natural features on private lands by negotiating the science–policy boundary for Maine vernal pools – Aram Calhoun, Professor of Wetlands Ecology at the University of Maine and Elizabeth Hertz, Planning Consultant
  2. Maine Natural Resource Conservation Program – Alex Mas, Associate State Director-Conservation at The Nature Conservancy of Maine
  3. Voluntary Municipal Farm Support Program – Judy Mathiau, CMA, Tax Assessor for the Town of Winslow


2:30-2:50  BREAK

2:50-3:00  Brief remarks by John Moore of Bangor Savings Bank

3:00-4:00  Maine’s Newest Workforces: Adaptation 101

A discussion reflecting on the absolute need for and challenges associated with a changing workforce. Hear SOLUTIONS from people who are in the thick of employing immigrants and millennials and from the employees themselves.

Carol Morris, Morris Communications, moderating

Immigrant Panel:  Omar Qudah, Assistant Manager, LL Bean and chair of the company’s Diversity Council; Liz Greason, co-founder of Maine Intercultural Communication Consultants; E’nkul Kanakan, Director of Human Resources at Granite Bay Care

Millennial Panel: Brandy Mills, Director of Donor Relations and Marketing for the Travis Mills Foundation; Samantha Herr, Community Outreach Coordinator, Bicycle Coalition of Maine; Andy Jones, Community Organizer, Toxics Action Center; Dawn Palmer, Human Resources Director, Backyard Farms

4:00-4:30   Roderick Scott, CFM – L & R Resources, LLC: What to do as severe weather events and changes to the National Flood Insurance Program challenge our historic downtowns

Coastal and riverine areas in America are facing increased dangers from a changing global climate that will feature more frequent and more intense storm events and associated flooding. Sea level rise in this century will bring new flooding challenges, never before seen, for adaptation to coastal communities and the property owners in those communities. This is the greatest challenge to American coastal communities in our history as a nation.

Climate changes, sea level rise and dramatic changes in flood insurance policy rates for our older historic buildings present multiple challenges for coastal and riverine communities. Historic preservation, at the Federal, State and local level, will continue to face significant challenges in the next 10-20 years due to property owners determining how they will adapt to these changes.  What are the options?  What is the impact on our communities?


4:30-5:30   Summit Reception and Discussions:  What’s your first next step?


Our host for lunch and the afternoon Summit sessions is Thomas College, 180 West River Rd, Waterville ME. Visit Thomas’ map and directions page here. Once on campus, there will be signage to free parking and check in at the Ayotte Auditorium.


Fee including optional morning session and boxed lunch:growsmartlogosq

  • $60 GrowSmart Member
  • $75 Non-Member (includes a one-year GrowSmart Membership)
  • $25 Student with ID

Continuing Education Credits available for Planners (click here for APA site) and Attorneys. Real Estate Agents can request a certificate of attendance from the event organizers and submit documentation of sessions to the Real Estate Commission to be considered for CECs.

Overnight Accommodations: Discounted hotel rates are available at the Waterville Grand Hotel. Mention the GrowSmart Maine Summit and the Thomas College Rate to receive the discount. Visit the hotel’s website here for contact and reservation information.

Read full bios for presenters here

Online registration is now closed for this event. Same-day registration is available in person at the Summit. Summit registration includes a morning session, lunch, and the afternoon Summit program. Even if you haven’t registered, plan to join us at either a morning session or Thomas College in the afternoon and you can pay when you check in.

 2016 GrowSmart Maine Summit is Generously Sponsored by