Our Power is a group of Maine ratepayers, business leaders, energy experts, conservationists, and others committed to putting the Pine Tree State’s energy future in the hands of Mainers.
Citizen Initiative LEADERS
Six Maine citizens applied to the Secretary of State to circulate a petition for a Citizen Initiative asking voters whether to replace Maine’s two investor-owned corporate utilities, Central Maine Power and Versant, with a new nonprofit consumer-owned utility called the Pine Tree Power Company.
Wayne Jortner, Freeport
Wayne Jortner is a former attorney with Maine’s Office of the Public Advocate. As Senior Counsel, he spent 23 years representing utility consumers in the State of Maine before the Maine Public Utilities Commission, the Maine Supreme Court and the Federal Communications Commission.
Sen. Rick Bennett, Oxford
Senator Rick Bennett of Oxford was the lead Senate sponsor of LD 1708. He has served in the Maine Legislature for 13 years in both the Senate and House, including as Senate President. Sen. Bennett currently serves on the Environment and Natural Resources Committee and the Government Oversight Committee. He is currently President and CEO of ValueEdge Advisors and has served on the boards of Maine Conservation Voters, Maine Heritage Policy Center, and Hebron Academy. As a business leader, he has directed or helped the turnarounds of several Maine enterprises including GWI and Quoddy. He received his B.A. with honors from Harvard University in 1986 and his M.B.A. from the University of Southern Maine in 2000.
John Clark, Linneus
John Clark is the former General Manager of Houlton Water Company, a capacity he served in for 33 years. He is a recipient of Maine Water Utilities Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award, and past President of the Northern Maine Independent System Administrator, past President of the Dirigo Electric Cooperative, and past President of the Northeast Public Power Association. He studied engineering at Maine Maritime Academy and business and engineering at Northeastern University, a background that complemented his career in utility operations.
Bill Dunn, Yarmouth
Bill Dunn is a consultant based in Yarmouth with over 50 years of experience in the electricity industry and has advised clients of all utility ownership types (i.e., public, private, local and federal) worldwide (25+ countries) and throughout the US. He specializes in electricity market design and implementation, ancillary services, utility and power pool/market operations, inter-utility coordination, contractual power supply arrangements, and transmission access and pricing.
Rep. Nicole Grohoski, Ellsworth
Representative Nicole Grohoski of Ellsworth is serving her second term in the Maine House and is a member of the Legislature’s Energy, Utilities and Technology Committee as well as cosponsor of LD 1708. She is a GIS specialist and cartographer and holds a degree in environmental studies and chemistry from Middlebury College. Rep. Grohoski sponsored a first-in-the-nation law to shift the burden of managing packaging waste from taxpayers to packaging producers. She is also a newly appointed member of the Science and Technical Subcommittee of the Maine Climate Council and the first graduate of the Maine School of Science and Mathematics to serve in the Maine Legislature.
Ania Wright, Bar Harbor
Ania Wright is a leading figure in youth climate activism in Maine. She serves as the Youth Representative to the Maine Climate Council, works as the Grassroots Climate Organizer for the Sierra Club Chapter of Maine, is a founding member of the youth-led coalition, Maine Youth for Climate Justice, and is a sitting board member of Maine Climate Action Now!. She recently graduated from College of the Atlantic with a B.A. in Human Ecology.
Below are some of the many individuals who’ve contributed their expertise to the policy Our Power will bring to Maine voters. These utility experts, policymakers, economists, legal experts, advocates, and business representatives are Maine people committed to a utility power delivery system that meets Maine’s needs.