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A grassroots initiative for sensible growth
Board Members

 Board Agenda

Friends of Midcoast Maine is comprised of local officials, planning board staffs and members, comprehensive planning committee members, local organization, and private citizens that have a unique ability to develop interest and formulate groups into local and regional coalitions. Our Board members represent a wide variety of interests, organizations and skills and live in communities up and down the coastal region.  The Executive Board and the full board alternate monthly meetings and meet more frequently when needed.  The Board Members include the following:


Stephen Ryan, FMM Chair, Belfast. Steve is President/CEO of Maine Network for Health, a provider-owned organization specializing in healthcare business support services including payment contracts, business office functions and quality improvement assistance.  He holds a M.S. degree in Health Care Administration from Simmons College in Boston.  Steve is active with various statewide healthcare-related boards and committees, and volunteers in his hometown of Belfast by serving on the city’s Planning Board and assisting with the annual Maine Celtic Celebration which is coming up this year on July 18-20th.  He lives in Belfast with his wife, Carla, and two of their three children.

Christopher Glass, FMM Vice Chair, Camden.  Christopher moved to Maine to practice architecture in 1970. After living in the Rangeley area for a number of years he and his wife Rosalee moved to Camden, where he opened his practice in 1974. He has designed numerous houses and additions and has been active in historic preservation. For nine years he was author and illustrator of the Newsletter for Maine Citizens for Historic Preservation, and he is currently vice president of Maine Preservation.  For twelve years he was a member of the Maine Historic Preservation Commission. He received the State of Maine Historic Preservation Award in 1991 and the Maine Preservation Statewide Historic Preservation Honor Award in 2000. 

Christopher taught architectural design at Bowdoin for twenty years, and  has published articles in Nexus Network Journal (Florence, Italy),Yankee Magazine, and the Island Journal, among others. He has a BA degree in philosophy from Haverford College, and a Master of Architecture degree from Yale University, where he studied under Charles Moore, Vincent Scully, and Paul Rudolph.   In his spare time, Christopher developed and is marketing an educational toy, “Leonardo Sticks”, based on da Vinci's system for making domes from wooden beams. He is a member of the choir of Saint Thomas' Episcopal Church in Camden, Maine, and has served on the Diocesan Council of the Episcopal Diocese of Maine.

Jennifer Merritt, FMM Treasurer, Waldoboro.  Jennifer grew up in southern Maine, went to Massachusetts for education and work, and returned home to Maine about 3 years ago. She owns Enterprises of Merritt and has been self-employed since 1993. Since her return to Maine, Jennifer has accepted and is serving in leadership roles in her community. She is serving her second year as President of the Waldoboro Business Association and her second year as the Gateway One steering committee alternate for Waldoboro. She has strong interests in economic development, land use, affordable housing and transportation.

Betsy Clemens Saltonstall, Rockport. Betsy has served the Midcoast Maine community in a variety of capacities throughout the years as a Rockport School Board representative, Comprehensive Planning Committee member, Pen Bay YMCA’s Sailfish swim team parent group president,  Center for Women’s Policy  and current board member of Emerge Maine, all contribute towards her knowledge and enthusiasm for the Midcoast Maine area, where she is currently organizing Pen Bay Healthcare’s community capital campaign to build a Birth Center and Hospice House.

She’s called the Pen Bay community her home since 1972, watching and participating in many changes that have occurred in the area throughout those years. She obtained her Masters in Educational Media from Boston University and completed undergraduate work at Drew University, she is presently studying for advanced degree in non-profit management at the Muskie Center for Public Policy 

Misty Gorski Parker, Dresden.  Misty Parker holds a B.S. in Environmental Studies from UMaine Machias and a Masters in Resource Management and Conservation from Antioch University New England. Through her education and work, Parker has focused on building a more sustainable relationship between the built and natural environment throughout New England.

Currently, Parker serves as the Town Planner for Wiscasset where she focuses on community development, site review and economic development. With the cancellation of the bypass project in Wiscasset, Parker is working with ME DOT on a collaborative master planning process for the Route 1 commercial corridor to facilitate sustainable development that promotes economic development opportunities as well as efficient traffic movement.

Previously as Planning and Development Director for the town of Waldoboro, Parker focused on promoting economic growth and development within the town that is complimentary to the quality of life and needs of the community. As part of her time in Waldoboro, Parker worked with the Economic Development Committee to develop a revitalization plan for downtown Waldoboro that met the needs and financial constraints of the rural community. This master plan, developed in partnership with the consultant team of Rodney Lynch, Denis Lachman, and Regina Leonard, received the Maine Association of Planner’s Plan of the Year Award in 2012.

Prior to moving to Maine, Parker played an active role in New Hampshire’s Community Technical Assistance Program (CTAP) helping communities within the I-93 corridor meet the wide range of challenges facing the region, including increasing transportation needs, economic development, infrastructure improvements, environmental pressures and preserving quality of life, by providing technical assistance and access to tools for innovative land-use planning. Parker lives in Dresden with her husband and two dogs. She enjoys backpacking, fly fishing, paddling, gardening and exploring the forest behind her home.   

Robin Mayer, Damariscotta. Roberta (Robin) Mayer is currently Principal at Mayer & Associates, a strategic communications consulting firm that focuses primarily on traffic safety.  She has participated in a number of assessments of State occupant protection and impaired driving programs, and has assisted in the development and updating traffic safety curricula, websites, and guildebooks on a variety of topics.  She also provides services as a copywriter, technical editor, and social media trainer, and is a contributing writer for several newspapers.  She currently serves as the communications and public relations manager for the Damariscotta Pumpkinfest & Regatta.

Mayer was elected to a three-year term of the Damariscotta, Maine, Board of Selectmen in 2012.  In addition to her regular duties, she represents the Town of Damariscotta on the Lincoln County Route 1 Corridor Management Committee.  She also is a member of the Friends of Midcoast Maine Ambassador program.  Prior to her election to the Board of Selectman, Mayer was the chairman of the Damariscotta Planning Advisory Committee.

Rodney Melanson, Newcastle. For the past six years Rod Melanson has served as the Natural Resource/ Assistant Planner for the Town of Topsham.  His work in Topsham has spanned the planning spectrum from directing Topsham's Historic Preservation Commission to developing  the Town's Natural Areas Plan.  Rod is an executive board member of the Maine Association of Planners.  He graduated from the Muskie School of Public Service in 2004, and "cut his teeth" in the planning profession with the Friends of Midcoast Maine in helping to coordinate the Lincoln County Initiative (Smart Growth Endorsement Program). Prior to exploring the planning profession, Rod was an educator and trip leader at the Chewonki Foundation where he lead sea kayaking trips which began in Wiscasset, and ended in Northeast Harbor....affording a unique perspective of the Midcoast area. Rod lives with his wife Danielle and son Eli in Newcastle.

JoAnn Myers, Waldoboro.  JoAnn is a current Secretary of  MOFGA board, past Chair and Vice Chair of the Waldoboro Planning Board, past board member of the Medomak Valley Land Trust and a farmer. She has been involved in rural health care development with her husband, for most of their adult lives and is an anthropologist.  The farm is certified organic and they raise heritage breeds of fiber animals and are involved in the fiber industry in Maine.  JoAnn has also been involved with and participates in Maine Fiber Arts. 

Wayne & Jo Ann Myers’ Beau Chemin Preservation Farm, begun in 1998, is in Waldoboro. The farm itself is very old. All things that grow from the soil for livestock or human consumption are certified organic as are the laying hens. They operate a small visitor farm and we pick/you-pick farmstand with an emphasis on heirloom vegetables and flowers, endangered heritage breeds of livestock and wool from their heritage breeds of sheep. They find that one way to raise awareness about organic practices and biodiversity in vegetables and livestock is by opening the farm to visitors and talking with people. Pre-farm, Jo & Wayne worked on developing & sustaining rural health care. Wayne continues this as a volunteer and consultant with a broader view to general rural policy here and overseas. Jo is on the local planning board, and the Medomak Valley Land Trust Board. They believe that maintaining a sustainable (not there yet) farm operation is one way to contribute to rural community viability.

Michael Tomko, Boothbay Harbor: Michael Tomko is a recent addition to the Maine community, but has not wasted any time immersing in community development & local improvement initiatives. Since arriving in the Fall of 2007, he’s pursued his passion for civic participation by joining numerous volunteer organizations & been appointed to a variety of local & regional committees.  For the last 6 years, Michael has served on the Boothbay Harbor Planning Board and been its Chair for the past 4. He prides himself on being able to guide his neighbors & local businesses through the application process with fair and helpful reviews, while working to keep his town viable and help preserve its heritage.

In the Fall, 2012 with the help of the Friends of Midcoast Maine, Mike worked to launch a Walkability Workshop to grow the local economy, and enhance the community. To further those efforts, he applied for and was awarded a $2K grant, along with monies pledged by the Towns of Boothbay and Boothbay Harbor to launch a Regional Branding Initiative for the Boothbay Peninsula.  

Michael currently serves on the Exec Board of the Lincoln County Regional Planning Commission, the BBH Comprehensive Planning Committee and numerous other sub-committees, including the BBH Bicycle Pedestrian Plan, Route 27 Corridor Committee, & Lincoln County Sea Level Rise Committee. You will also see him attending many of his Town's Selectmen meetings.

Advisory Board

Jan Anderson, Belfast: A lifelong resident of Belfast, Jan has had many local roles including farmer, city councilor and business developer.  With her business partners Tony Kelley and Wayne Snyder, Jan started Coastal Farms Food Processing, a $2 million food processing, storage and distribution center located in Belfast in the past production facility of Moss Fabrics on Route 1.  Coastal Farms & Foods is available for farmers and growers from within a 100-mile radius of Belfast to take advantage of the opportunity to use Coastal Farms’ tunnel freezers, kitchens and processing space to add value to their products. "We will create and provide the infrastructure for farmers to store their vegetable products here, and for food entrepreneurs to take the vegetables and do a value-added food product," according to Ms. Anderson.

Stephen A Cole, Damariscotta.  Steve is the Community Development Director, Coastal Enterprises, Inc., B.A. Brown University, Masters in Regional Planning, University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Has an extensive background in land use, environmental planning and community-based development. He manages CEI’s Sustainable Economic Development Initiative, a place-based project to promote and implement sustainable economic development in Lincoln County. Steve lives in Damariscotta with his wife and two children.

Evan Richert, Bangor. Evan Richert is associate research professor in the Muskie School of Public Service, University of Southern Maine. In this capacity he directs the Gulf of Maine Program of the Census of Marine Life, teaches graduate courses in land use planning, and is a consultant to state and local governments.  From 1995 to 2002, Evan served as Director of the Maine State Planning Office under Governor Angus S. King. Evan also chaired the cabinet-level Land and Water Resources Council, the Land for Maine's Future Board, and represented Maine on the international Gulf of Maine Council on the Marine Environment, which he chaired for two years. Prior to his appointment to the State Planning Office, Evan was co-owner and president of Market Decisions, Inc., a planning consulting firm, and was Planning Director for the City of South Portland, Maine. He is the founding president of the Gulf of Maine Ocean Observing System and is on the boards of directors of Maine Coast Heritage Trust, the New England Forestry Foundation, and Grow Smart Maine. Evan has a Master of Regional Planning degree from Syracuse University and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners. 

Rep. John F. Piotti, Unity. Maine House of Representatives, Director of the Maine Farms Project, which provides support services to small-scale farmers, retailers and processors through a variety of programs. Previously, John was an independent consultant and Associate Director of the Maine Science & Technology Commission. John has degrees in engineering, public policy and management from MIT.  John is an active resident of Unity, Maine and is active in Unity BarnRaisers.

Mary Kate Reny, Bremen.  Mary Kate received a B.A. in Geography and Environmental Studies from U.C. Santa Barbara, and a Community Planning and Development Masters Degree from the Muskie School in Portland, Maine. Mary Kate is an Advisory Board member of the Maine Downtown Center, is a Board member of the Damariscotta Region Chamber of Commerce and is active in the Damariscotta Region Business Alliance.  Mary Kate is employed at the Renys Headquarters in Newcastle, and lives in Bremen, Maine with her husband Bob.

Staff includes a full-time Executive Director and 3 part time staff support staff (planner, web master and bookkeeping.)

Jane Bechtel Lafleur, FMM Executive Director, Camden. Jane grew up in Lewiston, Maine and has been a city and regional planner since 1981. She served as Town Planner in Conway, New Hampshire and as City Planner in South Burlington Vermont as well as a private planning consultant. She graduated from the University of Maine at Orono and received her master's degree in City and Regional Planning from Harvard University.  Jane lives in Camden.