JAY — The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife awarded Otis Ventures, a real estate development/leasing company, with the Landowner of the Year award for property with 100 acres or less Tuesday night at the Augusta Civic Center.

The company was nominated for the award, which is presented to property owners in Maine who keep their land open for public access, by the Androscoggin Land Trust.

According to the Otis Ventures website, it was established in October 2009 after purchasing the former Wausau Paper Mill in Jay and has worked hard on renovating the mill so that new business complexes can be added. Some of the tenants they plan on adding to the renovated mill include retail stores, a restaurant, office spaces and much more.

The Conservation Landowner of the Year award went to the Small Woodland Owners Association of Maine Land Trust, which was nominated for the award by the Maine Snowmobile Association.

Tom Doak, executive director of SWOAM, said, “It was a real honor to be recognized” and that they take “a lot of pride as landowners in sharing the land they own with the public.” 

Bill Williams, the deputy executive director of SWOAM, accepted the award on behalf of the association.

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