AUGUSTA — The Kennebec County Republican Committee is sponsoring a debate Thursday for the announced GOP candidates for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by U.S. Sen. Olympia Snowe.

The debate will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Augusta City Center auditorium at 16 Cony St., according to a press release from the committee.

All six announced candidates have been invited, the release said.

As of Tuesday, three — Bruce Poliquin, state treasurer; William Schneider, state attorney general; and Scott D’Amboise, former Lisbon Falls selectman — had confirmed they would attend, according to committee official Gayle Finkbeiner.

Debra Plowman, state senator of Hampden, and Richard Bennett, former president of the Maine State Senate, said they would try to attend, Finkbeiner said, while Maine Secretary of State Charles Summers hadn’t yet responded.

All Republicans of greater Kennebec County were invited to the debate on the issues and meet the candidates.

Chamber leadership

graduation is May 16

AUGUSTA — The Kennebec Valley Chamber of Commerce’s leadership training program will graduate 17 people on Wednesday, May 16.

The Kennebec Leadership Institute will hold its graduation ceremony at the chamber’s Business Insider Breakfast at the Senator Inn & Spa at 7:30 a.m., according to a press release. Steve Pecukonis, facilitator of the training program, will lead the graduation. Reservations are required by calling the chamber at 623-4559.

The graduating class is: Kirk Andert, Delta Ambulance; Elizabeth Barron, Children’s Center; Kenneth Bickford, J.S. McCarthy Printers; Joseph Bourque, Kennebec Technologies Inc.; Matthew Cary, MaineGeneral Medical Center; Matthew Cote, Kaplan University; Stephen J. Flowers, KeyBank, N.A.; Jennifer Fortin, Kennebec Valley YMCA; and Debra A. Getchell, Kennebec Savings Bank; Deborah Klajbor, Century 21 Venture Ltd.; Vanessa Matthews, PFG NorthCenter; Sherry McCollett, University of Maine Augusta; Michael McKenney, Gibson Leclair, LLC; Danielle Moszczenski, Kennebec Savings Bank; Laura Qualey, MaineGeneral Medical Center; Christian Savage, Mid-Maine Chamber; and Matthew Tardiff, J.S. McCarthy Printers.

The leadership training program, which started in 1987 and is the oldest of its kind in Maine, is operated by the chamber in conjunction with the University of Maine at Augusta.

The program of classes and interactive sessions is designed to strengthen leadership skills and qualities, and gives a broad understanding of the issues important to the Kennebec Valley area, according to the release.

Compiled from staff reports

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