SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine — Seven Maine community college students received scholarships in honor of Leon A. Gorman, longtime president and CEO of L.L. Bean, during a recent ceremony at L.L.Bean’s corporate headquarters in Freeport.
Abby Soucy of Van Buren, a student in the Early Childhood Education program at Northern Maine Community College in Presque Isle, is one of those seven to receive the award.
This is the fourth year the Leon A. Gorman Scholarship has been given and the third year it has been awarded to a student from each of the seven community colleges. Each Leon A. Gorman Scholar receives an award equal to a full year of tuition at a Maine community college.
The other 2019 Leon A. Gorman scholars are Derek Kuusela of Gorham, Central Maine Community College; Stephanie Frost of Bangor, Eastern Maine Community College; Desarey Oliver of Skowhegan, Kennebec Valley Community College; Jada Tuttle of Poland, Southern Maine Community College; Whitney Kneeland of Baileyville, Washington County Community College; and Kristina Tucker of Gorham, York County Community College.
The Leon A. Gorman Endowed Scholarship was established in 2014 by the children of Leon and Lisa Gorman in honor of Mr. Gorman’s 80th birthday. The scholarship supports Maine community college students who demonstrate strong academic achievement, financial need, and a commitment to community service, a hallmark of the scholarship’s namesake.
“My father was proud to support Maine’s community colleges and its hardworking students. He would have been honored to be associated with these outstanding recipients, their educational aspirations and their dedication to their families and communities,” said Jennifer Wilson on behalf of her family.
Leon Gorman was passionate about the state of Maine. His investments in Maine’s community colleges exemplified that passion. He understood that Maine’s community colleges not only positively impact the lives of many aspiring individuals and their families, but also have a positive economic impact.
Dave Daigler, president of the Maine Community College System, said, “I am proud to know that Mr. Gorman’s important legacy continues through these annual scholarships and these remarkable students.”
Gorman was deeply committed to the people and places of Maine and recognized the power and potential of Maine’s community colleges to transform people’s lives. He and his wife Lisa worked quietly behind the scenes supporting the colleges and the couple was central to the 2009 establishment and success of The Foundation for Maine’s Community Colleges, for which Mrs. Gorman continues to serve as vice chair.