This year I’m pleased to award four area high school students with a total of $2,000 in college scholarships. Each student was recognized with one of our Leadership Scholarships from the Chenette Scholarship Fund, a nonprofit I founded to empower the next generation of community leaders.
I am constantly in awe and so very proud of our scholars. This group isn’t waiting around to make their mark. These young leaders have demonstrated a clear commitment to giving back and will continue inspiring others as they chart new ways of taking up the mantle of leadership.
This year’s recipients are Elise MacNair, Cole Cochrane, Ben Moore, and Luke Plummer.
Elise MacNair is our Chenette Leadership Scholarship recipient at Old Orchard Beach High School. Elise is someone who sets the bar high not only for herself, but also inspires those around her. She has been class president all 4 years of high school, which speaks to the respect her peers have for her. She was also an active Interact Club Member all 4 years, volunteering at various community causes. Elise founded The Flock and served as a Yellow Tulip Project Ambassador, which both seek to smash the stigma around mental health. On the court, Elise was a Class C State Champion for Girls Basketball. She will be attending Bowdoin College this Fall.
Cole Cochrane is one of two Chenette Leadership Scholarship recipients at Thornton Academy. I’ve known Cole since he was in middle school when he volunteered with me in the community and attended political functions. It’s great seeing someone at such a young age having a strong passion for and interest in advocacy and policy. Cole co-founded Maine Youth Action, which has played important roles in setting climate and environmental priorities with various groups across the state. Cole frequently testifies in the Legislature and even contributes ideas for bills for our local legislative delegation to introduce and help pass. This is in addition to his on-campus activities of Debate Team and Model UN. You might have seen him at his family’s business Elevate Café in OOB or his own entrepreneurial venture called Lemon Rush. He will be attending Harvard College this Fall with concentrations in government and economics.
Ben Moore is our other Chenette Leadership Scholarship recipient this year at Thornton Academy. Ben has been heavily involved in the scouting program, eventually earning the rank of Eagle Scout. He loves volunteering at various environmental causes and organizations. He supports efforts at Maine Youth Action and helps advocate for policies at the state level. Ben also interned with me in the community. You may recognize him as someone who frequently dishes up some delicious ice cream at the Saco Scoop. Ben will be attending the University of Southern Maine and is planning to double major in Environmental Science & Public Policy and GIS.
Luke Plummer is our Chenette Leadership Scholarship recipient at Bonny Eagle High School. Luke has been active in scouting and volunteering in the community since 1st grade and earned the rank of Eagle Scout. For his Eagle Scout project he helped restore the old Eliza Libby School playground. He was in the National Honor Society, student council, and continues to serve on the Town of Buxton Budget Committee. Luke plans to attend the University of Southern Maine majoring in Economics. Interest in entrepreneurship runs deep for Luke as his family has run generations of businesses in the area including Plummer’s Hardware and Plummer’s Shop’n Save.
Since 2015, we’ve provided $10,000 worth of college scholarships. It’s thanks in part to small fundraisers like the Hannaford Helps Bag and Shaws Give Back Where It Counts Bag programs, Ottos Pizza Nights, staffing Ironman Triathlons, organizing benefit concerts and local bottle drives, as well as donations from individuals like yourself who support this mission.
In order to keep these scholarships going each year, I really need your help. If you’d like to support the Chenette Scholarship Fund, please send tax deductible donations to P.O. 315, Saco, ME or visit ChenetteScholarships.org to contribute online. Your support means the world to me and to our scholars who directly benefit. They truly represent our future.