Weston eager for new challenges as Health Services Foundation exec

HOULTON, Maine — Lori Weston has never been one to shy away from a challenge in the business community.

That is one of the reasons why Weston was eager to take on a new challenge working for the Health Services Foundation.

Weston was named executive director of the Health Services Foundation on Jan. 22 and has spent the past few months attending training sessions and settling into her new position. She replaces Elizabeth Dulin who served as the executive director for many years before stepping down in December.

The HSF is composed of a volunteer board of trustees in northern Maine that raises money for much needed equipment at Houlton Regional Hospital and many other agencies in northern Maine such as Katahdin Valley Health Center, East Grand Health Center. The foundation also aids local fire and ambulance departments with equipment needs and provides scholarships for students entering the health care field.

“The successes of the Health Services Foundation speaks to the legacy of its founders who had the foresight to recognize how important good health care is,” Weston said. “The foundation was created to make sure health care remains viable and a priority in a rural setting like Houlton.”

Paramount to the group are grants, which works strongly in Weston’s favor as she has written countless of them over the years in her previous positions. Prior to coming to HSF, she served as relationship manager at Bangor Savings Bank. She also has served as the economic and community development director for the town of Houlton and was the executive director for the Greater Houlton Chamber of Commerce.

“I am excited by the challenge of trying to think outside of the box for new and creative ways to  fundraise,” Weston said. “Health care is changing every day and so is the economy. Therefore it is incumbent that I be creative when looking at fundraisers. I also want to explore even more grant options for the foundation.”

Weston is an active board member for Community Living Association, The Putnam House for senior citizens, The Maine Community Foundation, and The County Co-Op and Farm Store, and she is an advisor for the After School Program at Houlton Southside School.

Weston said the board will review all of its fundraising options for the year before deciding which projects will carry on and which may be retired.

The foundation has raised more than $2 million over the years for health care needs, including the addition of a new digital mammography center and a nuclear medicine campaign that brought imaging equipment to Houlton Regional Hospital.

“All of my predecessors did their roles so wonderfully,” Weston said. “I have big shoes to fill.”

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