Harold Alfond Foundation Invests $500 M in Maine Education


The Harold Alfond Foundation today announced more than $500. million of new grant investments in Maine people and institutions to help grow the state’s workforce and economy and support quality health care.  These new investments build on the Foundation’s long-standing commitment to provide opportunities for the people of Maine to thrive from birth through career.

Receiving commitments ranging between $5 million and $240 million each, the grant recipients are innovators in education, skill-building, research and job creation.  Supporting the goals of Maine’s 10-year Economic Development Strategy, the selected institutions will help enhance the skills of the state’s workforce, promote innovation and entrepreneurial solutions, and strengthen the state’s infrastructure.

The grant receipients are the University of Maine System, the Roux Institute at Northeastern University, the University of New England, Thomas College, Focus Maine, Colby College, Waterville Creates !, and The Jackson Laboratory.

The key to Maine’s future is a high-quality education system.  Much of the funding announced today is focused on higher education and with institutions creating and delivering innovative academic programs to meet the state’s pressing workforce needs and opportunities.

“Our state faces unprecedented challenges,” said Greg Powell, Chairman of the Harold Alfond Foundation. “In the face of these challenges, we still see a bright, prosperous future for the people of Maine.  Today’s grants are to vital, high-performing Maine institutions who will help build that future.”

Governor Janet T. Mills praised the investment:  “I am grateful to the Harold Alfond Foundation for their partnership in making our long term goal of welcoming all innovators home to Maine a realty.  By bringing together higher education institutions, research institutions, community organizations and business leaders, this initiative will fuel new opportunities for Maine people and diversity and expand our economy at a critical moment in our state’s history.”

Since its founding in 1950, the Harold Alfond Foundation has furthered the philanthropic legacy of Harold Alfond, the founder of Dexter Shoe Co. and a long time supporter of Maine’s communities and people.  That legacy includes an emphasis on three broad giving areas still the focus today:  education, health care and youth and community development.