Immigrants and Possibilities

Saturday, August 23, 2014 @ 9am

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Jim Vander Schaff
Hope Acts

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Hope Acts is a brand new 501(c)(3) non-profit located right in the middle of Portland’s Parkside neighborhood. We love it here and we’re dedicated to helping our neighbors by addressing needs for healthy living, housing security, and a hopeful economic future. Check out this video and then imagine what you can bring to Hope Acts to help build a community of hospitality, hope and healing for all people.


April Murchison,

Business in Lincoln -

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A range of new possibilities opened for Scott and April Murchison in 2012, when they signed paperwork completing the purchase of Possibilities Gifts in Lincoln. And as April moves from tending the store to owning it, she and her husband are eagerly looking forward to plugging in to the community.

“This is a great opportunity for us to be part of the Lincoln community in a big way” she said. “We’re really looking forward to plugging in and engaging with the people of the town.”

As a 12-year employee of the shop April has been engaging Possibilities’ customers for years. And the couple has been busy engaging area teens as well through their 180 Project Youth outreach in Lee. Now they hope to use their unique personalities and talents to continue to serve Possibilities’ customer base, and also to make some small changes in an effort to expand their clientele.

One area that may expand in the shop is a gourmet foods section. Scott has a background selling in the food services industry, and thinks that a selection of foods and utensils after the vein of Rooster Brothers in Ellsworth would be a welcome addition to the store. And he also envisions adding a few more selections that will appeal to men.

“We have many women who will come in and shop for long periods of time, which is great. But often their husbands will come in, look around for a minute or two, and then go wait in the truck. We’d like to add a few things that will keep men in the store.”

The Murchison’s are also looking forward to utilizing the Internet and Social Media platforms like Facebook and Pinterest to share the shop’s unique products and keep their customers engaged when they are away from the store. And they are glad that all April’s former co-workers will continue on as employees serving their patrons. And according to the store’s previous owner Brenda Smith, keeping the team together is a good idea.

Possibilities continues to operate during the same hours as before the sale, and Scott and April expressed gratitude for all the people who have stopped in or sent encouraging words of support over the past few days.

“The shop has been filled with beautiful flowers and the smiling faces of our friends, family, wonderful customers, and Lincoln’s local merchant community. We love our community and we are so very grateful for your support.”


Maine Day

Saturday, August 16, 2014 @ 9am

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Gren Blackall
Maine Day

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Gren Blackall is a former banking executive who is taking time to study the new world of Crowd Marketing. This refers to the times when the crowd decides whether to buy something based on what they like, and what others like, not on messages that advertisers push.

One of Gren’s four current projects is Maine Day – an idea that Gren is helping explain and show its value to see if individuals, businesses, nonprofits, associations, foundations, TV/print/online media outlets, and State Government like the benefit enough to make it happen. Maine Day is catching on without a single paid advertisement.

To find out more about Maine Day, please go to and become a “founder!” There’s no catch, no money required – it’s just a way for people to say they like the idea, with the benefit of being listed on the website (and your resume!) as someone who saw the value and made it happen, from their newly empowered position as a member of the crowd!

Gren lives in Woolwich Maine with his ceramicist wife Joyce. Gren has been in various leadership, marketing, and technology positions in the financial industry, most recently as the Chief Deposit Officer and Director of Marketing for Gorham Savings Bank. Today he serves on the CA$H Coalition under the United Way of Greater Portland’s direction, and is on the Board of Directors of Avesta Housing as Treasurer. He has a BS in Math from Yale and an MBA from UCLA. His passion is writing, with two fiction novels and thousands of articles for various blogs and publications. For a full resume and other information about Gren go to or see his LinkedIn profile


Lisa Martin
Lisa Martin
Manufacturers Association of Maine

50th Anniversary -

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Lisa G. Martin is executive director of the Manufacturers’ Association of Maine and has over 20 years in economic, workforce and business development. Since 1989, Lisa has had extensive experience with businesses, state and federal agencies, education institutes and Maine’s workforce.

She leads the effort to build the Manufacturers’ Association as an economically strong industry through partnerships and collaborations with other industries, with state and federal agencies and organizations and within the precision manufacturing industry.
Lisa directs the association with emphasis on economic development, membership growth and liaisons with associations, government, business leaders, legislature and state and national agencies.

Lisa chairs the Maine Technology Institute Precision Manufacturing Board and is an Alumni of the Maine Development Foundation’s Leadership Maine Mu Class.

Lisa holds a BA from University of Southern Maine, a Master of Science degree in Community Economic Development (CED) from New Hampshire College and an MBA from Southern New Hampshire University. Lisa lives in her home town of Portland.


David-Delessandri-9-8-12David Dalessandri
Concrete Prescriptions

Wet Basement Issues-

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Have you ever had moisture problems in your home?  If so, listen to David Delessandri of Concrete Prescriptions.  Residential, commercial or industrial, structural to cosmetic, Concrete Prescriptions is the service company dedicated to concrete repair and waterproofing of foundations and concrete structures. Specializing in the injection of a variety of epoxies and urethanes, Concrete Prescriptions can make any concrete structure permanently waterproof, as well as protect the structure against mold, radon gas, and pest intrusion.