Keenan Overbo-Welker sits among the stacks March 2 at the Lisbon Library on Main Street. Overbo-Welker will be graduating from Lisbon High School this spring. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

LISBON — Lisbon High School senior Keenan Overbo-Welker may be “from away,” but in just two years, he’s already left his mark in Maine.

Born in West Virginia, Overbo-Welker moved to Florida when he was 11-years-old then to Lisbon at 16 in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The move was tough, he said, but people were welcoming.

“I was surprised at how small it was,” he said. “But I also really liked how community-oriented it was, too, and how everybody was quick to take you under their wing … I couldn’t have wished for a better acceptance and help from other people.”

Overbo-Welker said it took time for him to understand Lisbon’s grading system, which differed from his previous high school. Yet, the move didn’t stop him from excelling in his classes. In June, he’ll graduate at the top of his class. 

In spite of this achievement, Overbo-Welker said he wants to be recognized for the things he does — teaching Taekwondo, serving his community and mentoring youth, to name a few — not for the letters and numbers he receives in school.


Perhaps his favorite thing about living in Maine has been his summers at Medomak Family Camp and Retreat Center in Washington. Over the last two years, he’s worked as a lifeguard and a martial arts instructor at the family-focused camp. This summer, he plans to return for the third time.

Executive Director Elianna Lutz said it is rare for the camp to hire people under 18, and even rarer still for them to become a “superstar” on the team.

“Even being one of the younger members of our staff — and a lot of times not that much older than some of the campers he was working with — he was always just so confident, so easy to work with,” she said.

“He’s just one of those people that come along that’s totally like a unicorn,” she continued. “He does everything, he’s willing to learn anything, he gets along with 2-year-olds and 82-year-olds.”

Overbo-Welker plans to move up the coast this fall to Bar Harbor, where he’ll attend the College of the Atlantic. The unique college has just 350 students, all of whom design their own course of study under a single major, human ecology. 

For Overbo-Welker, the interdisciplinary nature of the college’s academic program is a great fit. Before, he thought he might like to study a social science discipline, other times law or biology. But at the College of the Atlantic, he won’t have to choose. 


“This is the only school where I can really like get the full circle of everything that I want to study in one (major),” he said.

Ultimately, Overbo-Welker said he just wants to help people and make a difference in their lives.

Lutz said she’s already trying to prepare herself for the year when Overbo-Welker moves on from Medomak. But at the same time, she’s excited for it, too.

“I just can’t wait to see what he does and where he goes,” Lutz said.

This is the sixth article in a series featuring high school seniors as graduation season nears. In the series, the Sun Journal will profile a randomly chosen top 10 student or the equivalent from 16 high schools in central and western Maine.

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