Seven Maine Community College Students Awarded The Leon A. Gorman Endowed Scholarship

May 17, 2017
Janay Wright of South Berwick and YCCC President, Dr. Babrabra Finkelstein

Janay Wright of South Berwick and YCCC President, Dr. Barbara Finkelstein

SOUTH PORTLAND, ME — Seven Maine community college students were awarded scholarships in honor of Leon A. Gorman at a ceremony held Monday at L.L.Bean’s Corporate Headquarters in Freeport.

This is the second year the scholarship has been given and marks the first time the award has been expanded from one recipient to seven, one from each of Maine’s community colleges. Each Leon A. Gorman Scholar receives an award equal to a full year of tuition at a Maine community college.

The expansion of the scholarship to seven students was made possible by the generosity of Lisa Gorman, who last year announced an additional gift to the scholarship fund in her late husband’s name.

The Leon A. Gorman Endowed Scholarship was established in 2014 by the children of Leon and Lisa Gorman in honor of Mr. Gorman’s 80th birthday. The scholarship supports Maine community college students who demonstrate strong academic achievement, financial need, and a commitment to community service, a hallmark of the scholarship’s namesake.

“Leon would be proud to be associated with these outstanding students, and our family is delighted that the scholarship is now available to a student at each of the community colleges. We are pleased to support their educational aspirations and the good work of Maine’s community colleges,” said Lisa Gorman on behalf of her family.

The 2017 Leon A. Gorman Scholars are:

  • Fanie Wabwende, Life Sciences, Central Maine Community College, Auburn;
  • Jordanna Sprague, Fire Science, Eastern Maine Community College, Bangor;
  • Sonya Dodson, Mental Health Technology, Kennebec Valley Community College, Fairfield and Hinckley;
  • Genesis Hart, Business Administration, Northern Maine Community College, Presque Isle;
  • Moriah Negley, Nursing, Southern Maine Community College, South Portland and Brunswick;
  • Sarah Merrill, Adventure Recreation and Tourism, Washington County Community College, Calais; and
  • Janay Wright, Early Childhood Education, York County Community College, Wells.

“Leon Gorman was passionate about the state of Maine. His investments in Maine’s community colleges were emblematic of his desire to do all that he could to build a better, more prosperous future for Maine people. These scholarships continue his remarkable legacy, and we remain extremely grateful for his dedication and commitment.” said Derek Langhauser, President of the Maine Community College System, in remarks at the awards ceremony.

Leon Gorman, the longtime president and CEO of L.L.Bean, was deeply committed to the people and places of Maine. Recognizing the power and potential of Maine’s community colleges to transform people’s lives, Mr. and Mrs. Gorman worked quietly behind the scenes supporting the colleges. The couple was central to the 2009 establishment and success of The Foundation for Maine’s Community Colleges for which Mrs. Gorman continues to serve as vice chair.