LEWISTON — Donald Fournier, president of Saint Dominic Academy, announced Wednesday that Marianne Pelletier, director of enrollment, has been named principal of the Lewiston campus for grades pre-kindergarten to six.

Pelletier succeeds Donald Bilodeau, who announced his retirement as a full-time administrator in February.

“Marianne has served as an educator and school administrator in locations throughout the country,” Fournier said in a news release Wednesday.

“In her short time here, she has clearly shown that she has the expertise, knowledge, and passion to work with our families and teachers and bring our strategic plan to fruition as the leader of the Lewiston campus.”

A native of Boise, Idaho, Pelletier attended Catholic schools before graduating from Bishop Kelly High School. She earned two bachelor’s degrees from the University of Idaho and two master’s degrees from West Virginia University.

She also received a fellowship at the Peabody College of Education and Human Development at Vanderbilt University in Nashville.

Pelletier learned the importance of faith and respecting diversity at a young age, Fournier said.

Both her parents were blind. Helping those most in need inspired her to pursue a career in education. She served as a special education teacher and a teacher for the blind in rural West Virginia before moving to Connecticut to become the director of a residential treatment center for emotionally-disturbed children.

She later served as a public school principal in Connecticut and Idaho.

Upon her husband’s passing, Pelletier and her son moved back to Boise where she was named principal of St. Mary’s School, which she attended as a child. She established a collaborative that included two initiatives: one with the University of Notre Dame that aimed to increase cultural diversity within Catholic schools and another with Boston College that created two-way language immersion programs.

In 2014, Pelletier received the Innovation in Catholic Schools Award, presented by Today’s Catholic Teacher magazine. She has also served on the executive board of the National Catholic Schools Association.

Last year, she moved to Maine and was named the director of enrollment at the academy prior to the 2015-16 academic year. She is a member of Prince of Peace Parish and attends Holy Family Church in Lewiston.

In May, the academy named Shelly Wheeler as principal of the Auburn campus for grades seven to 12.

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