FARMINGTON – The Western Mountains Alliance welcomed new trustees, Rebecca Bearden Welsh of Rumford, Jacquelyn Cressy of Bethel, Dr. Allen H. Berger of New Sharon and Ken Coville of Wilton, at the annual meeting.

The organization is known for its work in building the capacity of communities and individual citizens throughout Piscataquis, Franklin, Oxford, northern Androscoggin and Somerset counties.

“We are pleased to welcome four new members to the board of directors. They represent diverse backgrounds and bring the bold thinking and collaborative approach that the alliance is known for throughout the western mountains region,” said Deb Burd, executive director.

The alliance strives to improve the quality of life and to strengthen the regional identity of the western mountains region of Maine, while honoring rural values and the environment and supporting sustainable community development.

It is widely recognized as an effective incubator and home for more than a score of vital education, business, finance, environment, community development, public policy and health-related partnerships and projects that span the region.

Cressy owns the Rivendell Bed and Breakfast in Bethel. She holds degrees in secondary education, biology and environmental studies. She is a Maine master gardener with specific interest in use of native plants.

Cressy is Western Mountains Senior College board of directors chairwoman, the Bethel representative on the Tri-Town Solid Waste and Advisory Committee and serves on the Bethel Conservation Commission and as a coordinator of the Garden Committee for the Bethel Historical Society.

Welsh has extensive knowledge of the arts in Maine as co-director of Maine Arts Inc., producer of the Maine Festival and New Year’s/Portland and as community arts coordinator for the Healthy Communities Coalition.

Welsh has worked in the environmental field as a grant writer for Maine Audubon Society and the Maine Volunteer Lake Monitoring Program in Turner. She has been a member of the Rumford Rotary Club, the Rumford Historical Society and the River Valley Healthy Communities Coalition board.

Berger has been the provost and vice president for academic affairs at the University of Maine at Farmington since 2000. He previously served as vice president for academic affairs at Franklin College in Indiana.

Berger is a cultural anthropologist who has done ethnographic research in Sardinia. He serves on the Franklin Memorial Hospital board and the Franklin Community Health Network.

Coville was born in Port La Vaca, Texas. He completed undergraduate and graduate work at the University of Maine and UMF, and his first year of a JSD program at University of Saratoga Law School. Coville is principal of Carrabec High School in North Anson. He is a founding member of the Save Our Schools Coalition of rural Maine schools for equitable funding and is former president of the Western Maine Superintendents Association.

For information on the Western Mountains Alliance, see the Web site, www.westernmountainsalliance.org or call Burd at 778-7274.


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