Ellsworth HS Hall of Fame Inductees
The 1st ever Ellsworth High School Hall of Fame Class will be inducted this Saturday, October 8th at Ellsworth High School. The inaugural class consists of Michelle Beal-Class of 1982, Vivian Beer-Class of 1996, Shenna Bellows-Class of 1993
Gary Fortier-Class of 1972, Dustin Seavey-Class of 2000, Paula Silsby-Class of 1969 and Joyce Whitmore-Class of 1960.
Dinner is from 6-7PM in the cafeteria and the awards ceremony is from 7-8 PM in the auditorium. The public is welcome, please call the main office-667-4722 to make reservations for dinner. Dinner is $12 per person. If you want to attend the awards ceremony only it is free.
Here are the biographies for the inductees as supplied by Ellsworth High School
Michelle graduated from Ellsworth High School in 1982. Her first position in the City of Ellsworth was in the Treasurer’s Office in 1995. She later became Ellsworth City Manager and is responsible for most of the overall growth of the Ellsworth community.
Michelle’s guidance and positive leadership skills lead to several very big projects the city has completed over the years including the new Ellsworth Elementary-Middle School, a new waste-water treatment plant, the Moore Community Center, the new
Knowlton Park Project, Ellsworth’s withdrawal from Regional School Unit 24, and an agreement with the Maine Department of Transportation to establish a new way to assess impact fees for development projects. She also served as president of the Maine Municipal Association’s Executive Committee.
Michelle was named 2015 Citizen of the Year by the Ellsworth Chamber of Commerce.
Michelle left the position of Ellsworth City Manager in March 2015 for a position as the chief operating officer at the Rudman and Winchell Law Firm in Bangor.
Vivian Beer is a furniture designer/maker based in Manchester, New Hampshire, where her business, Vivian Beer Studio Works, is celebrating its tenth year. Her sleek, abstracted metal and concrete furniture combines the aesthetic sensibilities of
contemporary design, craft, and sculpture to create furniture that alter expectations of and interface with domestic landscape. With a strong foundation in contemporary furniture design, her recent research into the history of American industry, architecture, and transportation supported in part by a 2014 Research Fellowship at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum-adds intellectual rigor and specificity to her work.
Her work is included in the collections of the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Brooklyn Museum of Art, The Metals Museum, The Currier Museum of Art and the Museum of Arts and Design,
NYC and public art in the cities of Portland, ME, and Cambridge, MA.
Vivian was also the winner of the Ellen Degeneres “Ellen’s Design Challenge” on HGTV. There were seven other contestants and Vivian was a Finalist and later announced as the winner of the contest. Her work can be seen in HGTV magazines.
Vivian graduated from Ellsworth High School in 1996.
Shenna Bellows is the owner of Bellows & Company, a non-profit consulting business. In that capacity, she has worked with several non-profits ranging from the Sierra Club Maine Chapter to Consumers for Affordable Healthcare to Maine Women’s lobby. She was recently the interim Executive Director of Learning Works.
Shenna was the 2014 Democratic nominee for the United States Senate in Maine. She is currently a candidate for State Senate in State Senate District 14 in southern Kennebec County.
Prior to running for the US Senate, Shenna was Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Maine. In that leadership role, she developed a track record for building unusual coalitions with Republicans and Democrats alike to pass groundbreaking privacy and civil rights laws. She was a key leader of the successful 2012 ballot campaign to pass same sex marriage in Maine. She spearheaded the creation of Republicans for the Freedom to Marry. She co-chaired a successful 2011 statewide ballot campaign for same day voter registration.
Shenna is a former volunteer with the Peace Corps and AmeriCorps VISTA. She lives
with her husband, Brandon, in Manchester where she serves on the Manchester
Shenna went to Hancock Grammar School, graduated from Ellsworth High School in 1993 and then attended Middlebury College in Vermont.
Gary graduated from Ellsworth High School in 1972. He has since held most major offices in the Ellsworth area the last forty-five years. Most notably a member of the Ellsworth City Council twenty-one of the last twenty-four years, including City Mayor for five years.
Gary served as a volunteer firefighter for thirty-five years, retiring as Captain. From 1993-2002, he was appointed by Governor King to represent all state municipalities on the State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) which deals with hazardous material transportation, emergency response to spills, and education of responders. He served as Vice Chairman the last four years.
Offices he has held the last forty-five years include: EMT and County Ambulance, Director of the Northeast Emergency Medical Service Council, Director of the Chamber of Commerce, served of the building committees for Ellsworth High School, and
Ellsworth Elementary-Middle School, Legislative Policy Committee, Executive Committee, Recreation Committee, Finance Committee, Penobscot Downeast Cable Television Committee, and the Library Expansion Committee.
Gary was honored as the Ellsworth Area Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year in 2008 and the Ellsworth Rotary Club Paul Harris Fellow honor in 2006 as a Non-Rotarian. He has done all of this while owning a very successful Electrician business.
Dustin graduated from Ellsworth High School in 2000. He attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City then hired a Manager and moved to Los Angeles to begin his acting career.
Movie and TV Series appearances include: American Dreams, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Zerophilia, House, Godstory, Jericho, The Shift, The Onion Movie, True Beauty This Night, Country Pirates, NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Vegas, Longmire, and NCIS: New Orleans.
In 2010 Dustin received the award for best actor at the Short Film Festival in Tokyo. The recognition came in honor of his role in the 10 minute romantic film “True Beauty This Night.” In the film, Dustin portrays Rhett Somers, a man who falls in love with a woman named Elise. The award was presented by French jeweler FRED. As best actor, Dustin took home the “Force 10” bracelet to indicate a “hurricane-force wind of talent.”
Dustin also manages a restaurant/lounge bar called the SURLY GOAT. He resides in Reseda, California with his wife and young child.
Paula graduated from Ellsworth High School in 1969. She obtained her B.A. from Mount Holyoke College in 1973, and her J.D. from the University of Maine School of Law in 1976.
In 1998, Paula received the Caroline Duby Glassman Award from the Maine Bar Association. This award is given annually to a woman who has done the most to advance the position of women in the legal profession. She also has received Attorney General Janet Reno’s Director’s Award for Executive Achievement. Active in the Alumni Association of the University of Maine School of Law, she has served two terms on that association’s board of directors. In 2005, she received the Deborah Morton Award from
the University of New England. The Deborah Morton Award is given to women who have achieved high distinction in their careers or in public service.
In March 2001, the senior senator for Maine, Olympia Snowe, recommended Paula for the post of United States Attorney. She took her oath on September 3, 2001. Her term as an Attorney General-interim appointee expired after 120 days, and she was re-appointed by the U.S. District Court, pending a senate approval of a presidential nominee. As of 2007, she is only one of three U.S. Attorney’s who have been appointed in this way.
Paula’s father and grandfather have been Superior Court justices.
Joyce graduated from Ellsworth High School in 1960 then attended the University of
Maine where she double majored in History and Political Science.
Her first taste of education came in 1966 when she was accepted into the Ford Foundation Team Teaching Masters Program. Joyce became an intern teacher at Houlton High School in their social studies department. She worked there for two years.
In 1969 she earned her Masters degree from the University of Maine. From 1970-71 she taught at Harwood High School in Moretown, Vermont in the social studies department.
The summer of 1971 she was accepted through George Peabody College to participate in a graduate school program to study the comparative educational systems of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden. This study was done at the University of Copenhagen, Oslo, and Stockholm.
From 1971-2005 Joyce taught social studies at Ellsworth High School. She was the department chair for many years. She taught Asian Studies, African Studies, American Indian Studies, Middle East Studies, Homegrown (Oral history class), History Seminar
team taught with Gordon Donaldson, and team taught Humanitas for Juniors which included US History, English, Art, and Music.
Joyce was the AFS (Foreign Exchange Program) Advisor, a Semifinalist for Teacher of the Year, and selected as the Close-Up Advisor of the Year for the State of Maine.