NEW GLOUCESTER – Opportunity Farm for Boys and Girls has started a new chapter in its history. The board of trustees announces a new level of governance call the Leadership Council.

After recently completing a successful two-year capital campaign and constructing and opening the first girls’ home a short distance from the boys’ campus, the timing was right to establish the new group.

Board Chairwoman Catherine Cloudman said, “During the campaign there were many individuals who expressed a strong interest in becoming actively involved with Opportunity Farm. The Leadership Council was a great way for us to expand the number of people actively involved with the advancement of the organization.”

The council will consist of community and business leaders, alumnae and former trustees.

“Council members serve as ambassadors to the community, spreading the word and raising the profile of Opportunity Farm for Boys and Girls,” said Council Co-chairman Howsie Stewart of Yarmouth.

The council will meet twice a year for informal gatherings when they will be updated on activities and programs. Members will also be invited to community dinners and other functions.

Area founding members are Elizabeth “Cotheal” Linnell of New Gloucester; John Staples of Topsham, retired businessman; and Michael Welch of Auburn, attorney at Hardy, Wolfe and Downing.

Opportunity Farm is a residential group-home campus that provides safe, supportive, family-style homes for at-risk youth. If interested in learning more about the farm, call 926-4532 or visit the Web at

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