Three sitting members of Volunteer Maine, Maine’s service commission, have been reappointed to serve an additional three-year term by Maine Governor Janet Mills. Volunteer Maine is the new identity of the Maine Commission for Community Service.

F. Celeste Branham

Chairwoman F. Celeste Branham of Brunswick is the former vice president of Student Services at the University of Maine Farmington, and has been reappointed to another three-year term, and will continue to serve as chairwoman of Volunteer Maine through 2020. She began her two-year term as chairwoman in September 2019. Branham was first appointed to the commission in 2011, and continues to represent institutions of higher education and local education agencies. Branham brings her expertise in civic engagement to the work of the board.

John Portela Brittany Rae Photography

John Portela, the immediate past chairman of Brunswick will continue to serve as the representative of a local labor organization. Portela is a sandblaster at Bath Iron Works in Bath. During his time as chairman from 2016-2018, Portela led the efforts to establish Volunteer Maine’s foundation arm, the Maine Volunteer Foundation, and development of the plan for Volunteer Maine’s future direction.

Ed Barrett

Vice Chairman Ed Barrett will continue in his role of vice-chairman of Volunteer Maine. He also serves the Volunteer Maine commission as a representative of local government. While serving, Barrett helped to champion the adoption of the Commission’s new identity, Volunteer Maine. Barrett has worked with AmeriCorps programs prior to joining Volunteer Maine in his work with the City of Bangor. Barrett is City Administrator in Lewiston and has served on the grant selection committee since his appointment in 2014.

Commissioner terms of service are three years with an option for reappointment. The commissioners are a diverse, bipartisan group of citizens, engaged in community service and represent every region of the state. They elect officers from their membership and the officers serve two-year terms.

The seats on the board are designated in statute such that each person represents at least one facet of the community volunteer service sector.

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