Our Board

Central Maine Growth Council’s Board of Directors is made up of 20 local business and municipal leaders: 17 board members and 3 ex-officio board members, all highly involved in their communities and the central Maine region.

Board Members 2023-2024

Ryan Poulin, Chair – New Dimensions Federal Credit Union

Dave Roy, Vice Chair – Kennebec Savings Bank

Chris Gaunce, Past Chair – Central Maine Motors Auto Group

Brian Clark, Secretary – Colby College

 

Jennifer Seekins – Bar Harbor Bank and Trust

Ella Bowman – Town of Winslow

Dave Roy – Kennebec Savings Bank

Elizabeth Fortin – Kennebec Valley Community College

Paul Stein – MaineGeneral Health

Bryan Kaenrath – City of Waterville

Kelly Pinney-Michaud – Town of Oakland

Michelle Flewelling – Town of Fairfield

Michael Runser – Valley Beverage

Donald Plourde – Coldwell Banker Plourde Real Estate

Liz Menard – Bill and Joan Alfond Foundation

Tricia Costigan – Northern Light Inland Hospital/Lakewood Continuing Care

Ex-Officio Board Members:

James Dinkle – KRDA/FirstPark

Joel Greenwood – Kennebec Valley Council of Governments

Christian Savage – Somerset Economic Development Corp.

Our Team

Susan Ruhlin

Susan Ruhlin

Managing Director
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Susan Ruhlin is the Managing Director of Dirigo Labs. As the operational lead for the accelerator she works with entrepreneurs, mentors, and stakeholders to ensure the successful execution of the program. Additionally, she provides preliminary startup consultation and facilitates connections between founders and resources such as economic development and investment opportunities. Most recently, Susan was the VP of Operations for Dynamic Grid a software company in Portland, Maine. Previously, she spent eight years working as the Program Manager of Top Gun, Maine’s first startup accelerator at the Maine Center for Entrepreneurs. Under Ruhlin’s management, Top Gun expanded to five locations across the state and has served more than 150 companies. Notable startups included VETRO Fiber Map, CourseStorm, Pika Energy, Bixby, R.E.D.D., and many more.
Emalee Hall

Emalee Hall

Program Manager
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Emalee Hall is the Program Manager of Dirigo Labs. Emalee is responsible for developing and managing relationships between statewide startup accelerators, incubators, and startup companies to ensure successful use of the DL platforms and suite of services. Emalee previously served as an Associate Licensing Officer in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Technology Licensing Office, where she assisted stakeholders such as entrepreneurs and venture capitalists in executing on intellectual property agreements that sustained and bolstered business ventures.
Mufaddal Ali

Mufaddal Ali

Project Management Specialist
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Mufaddal is the Project Management Specialist for Dirigo Labs. Mufaddal is responsible for tracking outcome and impact metrics for Dirigo Labs cohort companies, monitoring and assessing the impact of entrepreneurial activities, and employing effective strategies to track and measure key outcome metrics. Identifying growth opportunities and challenges for the accelerator program, Mufaddal provides valuable input to steer startups towards success while facilitating optimal mentor-entrepreneur pairings for mutually beneficial outcomes. A 2021 graduate of Colby College, Mufaddal serves as a liaison with Colby College and the Halloran Lab for Entrepreneurship, fostering collaborative programming and projects. This partnership strengthens our ties with educational institutions and enriches the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Sabrina Jandreau

Sabrina Jandreau

Development Coordinator, Central Maine Growth Council
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Sabrina is the Development Coordinator for Central Maine Growth Council. Sabrina is responsible for implementing the Growth Council and Dirigo Lab’s communications and media strategies, assisting in the creation of workforce development initiatives, and providing outreach to local and regional businesses. Highlighting tech and innovation throughout a range of industries, Sabrina is responsible for organizing Dirigo Labs’ Speaker Series. Hosted the second Thursday of the month from 5-6 pm, DL Speaker Series is a monthly event series designed to convene Maine’s technologists and entrepreneurs to highlight the innovation and technology behind their startups.
Garvan Donegan

Garvan Donegan

Director of Planning, Innovation, and Economic Development, Central Maine Growth Council
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Garvan Donegan is the Director of Planning, Innovation, and Economic Development for Central Maine Growth Council. Garvan provides consultations to entrepreneurs on business planning, site selection, and funding, and recruits tech-based firms to the region. Along with advising entrepreneurs, Garvan administers the growth and development of the City of Waterville’s federal U.S. Foreign Trade Zone program (FTZ 186), a regional effort to cultivate global trade and outreach in the State of Maine.
Gabe Gauvin

Gabe Gauvin

Assistant Director of Economic Development & Strategic Projects
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Gabe is responsible for supporting, planning and advancing a program of economic development for CMGC and the City of Waterville. His work directly supports businesses, employment, and growing the tax base throughout the area while facilitating the implementation of both public and private investment. Gabe brings previous experience from his work as an Environmental Planner at the Kennebec Valley Council of Governments, where he served over 60 Maine communities providing technical assistance on environmental management and development programs. Gabe holds a dual bachelor’s degree from the University of Maine at Farmington in Outdoor Recreation & Business Administration as well as a Minor in Geography. His academic background is focused on sustainable development and the intersection of tourism, recreation, and environmental impacts in New England.
Jonathan Godbout

Jonathan Godbout

Entrepreneur-in-Residence
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Jonathan is the Entrepreneur-in-Residence for Dirigo Labs. He is the CTO and COO of Prospector, a company Jonathan cofounded in 2020, that utilizes human-centered artificial intelligence data analytics to allow investors to better understand the environmental, social, and governance (ESG) impact of the mining industry. Prior to Prospector, Jonathan was involved in IBM’s Global Business Services consulting division where he served customers in both the private and public sectors. In 2015, Jonathan co-founded iBUILD, a startup focused on building technology solutions for the construction industry. Under his leadership, iBUILD attracted high-profile clients and investors, such as Habitat for Humanity.

Our Advisory Committee

The Dirigo Labs Advisory Committee (DLAC) counsels the Dirigo Labs (DL) team on operations, production, and programs of the DL Accelerator. Meeting quarterly, DLAC provides leadership and assistance related to performance, mentor network building, ecosystem growth, venture funding, accelerator science and technology development, and plans for future DL initiatives.

Supported by DL’s professional staff, DLAC is composed of the following members:

Ryan Poulin – CMGC board chair; President of New Dimensions Federal Credit Union
Chris Gaunce – CMGC past board chair; Owner, Central Maine Motor Auto Group
RJ Anzelc – Founder & Co-owner of Bricks Coworking & Innovation Space
Brian Clark – CMGC board member; Vice President of Planning, Colby College
Jeremy Barron – Director, Halloran Labs, Colby College
Jonathan Godbout, Dirigo Labs Entrepreneur in Residence; Co-Founder, Prospector
Shane Beckim – Senior Investment Officer, Maine Technology Institute
Andy Couture – Owner, Sparetime Recreation
Mike Duguay – Executive Director of the Harold Alfond Institute for Business Innovation (HAIBI) at Thomas College
Rob Hover – Attorney, Verrill
Liz Menard – Bill and Joan Alfond Foundation
Kimberly Lindlof – President/CEO, Mid-Maine Chamber Of Commerce

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