Augusta law firm Lipman & Katz welcome two new attorneys

Attorneys John “Jack” E. Baldacci Jr. and Leah M. Baldacci have joined the law firm, Lipman & Katz in Augusta. In addition to being attorneys, they are also husband and wife.

John “Jack” Baldacci Jr. Photo courtesy of Julie Frances Photography

“The team at Lipman & Katz is excited to welcome Jack and Leah to our team of attorneys,” said Karen Boston, president and attorney at Lipman & Katz, according to a news release from the law firm. “Jack is passionate about diving into challenging legal issues to develop winning strategies for his clients. Leah is talented and detail-oriented. She is also an excellent communicator. With her friendly nature, she is able to work with her clients to understand their goals and then help them to achieve them. We are pleased to have Leah and Jack on board here at the firm. They are go-getters and have already set out to become involved in the community.”

Leah Baldacci Photo courtesy of Julie Frances Photography

Jack, son of former Gov. John E. Baldacci, previously served as a law clerk for the Maine Superior Court in Bangor, where he gained exposure to all aspects of criminal and civil litigation. Prior to joining Lipman & Katz, Jack worked at a prominent regional foreclosure law firm in Portland,where his clients included the largest banks and corporations in the world.

Leah focuses her time on civil litigation, including family law and personal injury. Leah also plays an integral role with cases on appeal and has drafted numerous appellate briefs before the Appellate Division of the Workers’ Compensation Board and the Maine Supreme Judicial Court. In fact, Leah conducted her first oral argument in front of the Maine Supreme Judicial Court before completing her first year of practice.

“Lipman & Katz is one of the top law firms in the state of Maine,” said Leah, according to the release. “We are excited to work in Augusta and to be part of the team at Lipman & Katz, which has a proven track record of success in the courtroom, as well as in giving back to the community, something that is very important to us.”

The Baldaccis live in Sidney.


Last month for 2019 New England Innovation Awards online submissions

The New England Business Association’s online application submission system for the 2019 New England Innovation Awards will remain open until Monday, April 1, 11:59 p.m. In its 34th year, the NEIAs have helped catapult winners (like Ben & Jerry’s, Keurig, Genzyme, Vistaprint, Staples, iRobot, and so many more) from small start-ups to national (and international) industry leaders, according to a news release from the association.

The submission process is simple and online, through the upload of a two-minute elevator pitch (or even a Power Point Presentation) describing the innovative product or process and the breakthrough it brings to the marketplace. For more details, you can go to:

The Awards recognize outstanding Innovation in six impact areas:
1. Environmental impact and sustainability
2. Wellness
3. Technology
4. Life sciences
5. Manufacturing & robotics
6. Nonprofit

Video entries will be judged by New England Innovation Society Members (in their vast majority past award winners), and each Innovation Awards Impact Area is assigned to a different panel of judges. The 2019 List of Nominees will be announced in mid-May. For the three ensuing months (mid-May to mid-September) nominees are paired up with mentors (at no cost to the former) who help them fine-tune their presentations, elevator pitch, value propositions in preparation for the New England Innovation Showcase on Sept. 19, where they will present in-person to the innovation society members, industry leaders and investors.

The program ends with an awards ceremony in late October, during which six winning companies take home top prizes.


Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation giving $1,250 to Augusta charities

Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation in Portland has announced that two Augusta nonprofit organizations were awarded a total of $1,250 from the foundation’s Community Spirit 9/11 Mini-Grant program. The organizations receiving funds are Kennebec Valley Humane Society, Augusta ($1,000); and Positively Social of New England, Augusta ($250), according to a news release from the foundation.

To commemorate those Harvard Pilgrim members who lost their lives on Sept. 11, 2001, Harvard Pilgrim and the Foundation created the Community Spirit 9/11 Mini-Grant program. This program allows each Harvard Pilgrim and NTT Data employee to award a $250 to $500 grant, completely funded by the foundation, to the local charity of his or her choice each calendar year. Since this community grants program began in 2002, Harvard Pilgrim employees have directed more than $6.3 million to thousands of organizations throughout Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts and New Hampshire, according to the release.

“We are so fortunate to have generous and dedicated employees who enrich our company and the communities in which we all live and work,” said Karen Voci, president of the Harvard Pilgrim Foundation, according to the release. “The Mini-Grant program is a wonderful way to support our employees as philanthropists and to help them make an impact in their own cities and towns.”

In 2018, 96 percent of Harvard Pilgrim employees participated in at least one form of service or giving through volunteering, the Mini-Grants program, or Harvard Pilgrim’s annual Employee Fundraising Campaign.


Camden National Bank gives donations to six high schools, including Winthrop

This past weekend, Camden National Bank provided donations to six Maine high schools, located in the communities where it has banking centers, that competed in the 2019 Boys and Girls Basketball State Championships. The support made it possible for nearly 1,000 students to attend this year’s games in Portland, Bangor and Augusta and cheer on their friends and classmates. Camden National Bank has now carried on this community tradition for 10 years, donating approximately $50,000 total to Maine high schools and enabling over 10,000 students to attend more than 70 championship games for free, according to a news release from the bank.

This unique sponsorship originally started when a Camden National Bank employee recalled that many of her fellow high school students didn’t have the funds to buy tickets and see their team play in the championships. Those students not only missed out on seeing the game but, more importantly, they felt left out of the high school community. The employee brought her concern and idea to the attention of the Bank, and they committed to supporting the students with tickets, free of charge.

“This has become one of our favorite annual sponsorships,” said Greg Dufour, president & CEO of Camden National Bank, according to the release. “It started with an empowered employee leading a grassroots community effort, and it has resulted in hundreds of Camden National Bank employees getting involved and thousands of students directly benefitting.”

Towns supported by Camden National Bank in the 2019 State Championship games were Bangor, Winthrop, Hampden, Mt. Desert Island, Boothbay Harbor and Greenville.


One River CPAs welcomes new audit manager

Michael McKenney Photo courtesy of One River CPAs

One River CPAs, formerly PFBF CPAs located in Bath and Oakland, recently hired Michael McKenney as an audit manager to help further develop firm growth, according to a news release from One River CPAs.

McKenney earned a bachelor’s degree from Saint Michael’s College in May 2009. Before joining the team at One River CPAs, he worked in public accounting for more than 10 years.

With exceptional customer service skills, McKenney will be a key team member in the continuation of the firm’s success. As a valued member of the audit department, he’ll work closely with nonprofit organizations and businesses on audits, compilations and reviews.

McKenney resides in Augusta with his wife Audrey.


Lewiston-based Food City Holdings Inc. becomes 100 percent employee-owned

Food City Holdings Inc., Food City and Save-A-Lot Food Stores, based in Lewiston, has completed a transaction to become 100 percent employee owned through its employee stock ownership plan. The company was founded in 1985 in Lewiston,  and today it operates nine retail grocery stores in Maine, Massachusetts and Vermont — seven branded as Food City, and two branded as Save-A-Lot. The company has been owned and managed by Stanley and Zak Sclar who have 50 years of combined real estate and grocery management expertise, according to a news release from Food City Holdings Inc.

Food City Holdings Inc. has five Maine Food City locations in Bridgton, Lisbon, Livermore Falls, Turner and Wilton, and two  Save-A-Lot Food stores in Lewiston and Waterville.

After more than 33 years of significant expansion and growth, Food City Holdings Inc.’s board of directors, its shareholders and the company’s management team transitioned 100 percent of their ownership to the employees through a qualified retirement plan known as an Employee Stock Ownership Plan. All eligible employees will be granted shares of company stock each year, at no cost to themselves, allowing them to earn ownership over time and accumulate tax-deferred retirement wealth.

According to Zak Sclar, who will stay on as CEO, said “Each employee is a trusted team member. Over 300 employees will now be owners, which will foster tremendous pride resulting in a positive stake in the Company. These team members have been so loyal and this is a natural evolution in this company. Together we will strive to be more innovative and responsive to our customers’ needs,” according to the release.

Food City Holdings Inc. was advised by AmbroseAdvisors, a national investment banking firm specialized in employee-ownership transitions. Marcus Piquet, senior managing director, stated “Zak and Stanley’s goal was to secure a sustainable future for the company in a way that would be highly beneficial to their 300+ employees, customers, vendors, and the community in addition to themselves. Employee ownership, done right, benefits all stakeholders and should be celebrated. We heartily congratulate the Food City Holdings team and thank them for trusting AmbroseAdvisors to manage this transition process,” according to the release.


Compiled from contributed releases

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