Janice is Corporate Vice President of Human Resources of Diversified Communications, a global media solutions company headquartered in Portland. Janice is responsible for establishing the strategic direction and growth of the global Human Resources operation. Under Janice’s direction, Diversified has developed a unique employee-centric culture that fosters a challenging, rewarding work environment where people succeed while having fun along the way. Prior to Diversified Communications, Janice worked as a Human Resources Manager at Maine Medical Center, and as a Human Resources generalist at MiTech, an engineering firm in Washington, DC. A 1989 graduate of the College of the Holy Cross, Janice earned her B.A. in French Language and Literature, and has pursued advanced studies in Human Resources Strategy and Leadership. She is certified by the Human Resources Certification Institute as a Global Professional in Human Resources.
Board and Committees
Maine Women's Fund Board of Directors
Board and committee members of the Maine Women’s Fund donate invaluable time, expertise and financial resources to our mission and represent communities throughout Maine.
Gabrielle is the Director of Mission Impact at Spurwink, where she develops, funds, and raises visibility for behavioral health programs. She has provided strategic program and fund development for nonprofits for more than 20 years, raising nearly $35M for health, women and girls, economic development, racial justice, and youth. While at the YWCA USA, Gabrielle co-created YWCA TechGYRLS, a STEM program for girls in over 65 locations, and co-convened the First National Girls Conference at the UN. A graduate of Oberlin College, she is committed to social change efforts that address gender equity, racial justice, and the arts. She is currently on the board of Engine, an arts and creative economy organization in Biddeford, and served as Board Chair of Platform Shoes Forum, a nonprofit that developed online learning platforms and communities for girls. When she moved to Maine 15 years ago she found a community of women that inspired her in the New Girls Network at the Maine Women’s Fund. She lives in Saco with her husband and son.
Melissa is a managing partner and director at Hightower Advisors. Prior to joining HighTower, Melissa was the Founder and Managing Partner at Duffy Anderson Investment Management, LLC, a $300 million asset management firm in Cumberland, Maine. Over the past 20 years Melissa has worked in many areas of financial services at Fidelity Investments, Charles Schwab, and State Street. Melissa currently serves on the Board of Directors for The Wayfinder Schools, and has served on the board of ChoralART and The Junior League of Portland. Melissa lives in Cumberland, Maine and enjoys skiing, hiking and camping with her two daughters.
Candace Walworth, MD
Candace is a retired nephrologist. She received her AB summa cum laude from Smith College and her medical degree from Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons. She is past president of the Maine Nephrology Society, and former board member of the Renal Physicians Association. She served as Chief of Medicine at Central Maine Medical Center from 1992-1996. This spring, Candace was blessed with her first 2 grandchildren (Mainers-girl and boy). This is her best job ever.
Aga is a senior counsel at FordMurray, a Portland-based law firm specializing exclusively in immigration law. She joined the firm in the spring of 2018, after owning a private immigration law practice. Aga’s work resonates deeply with her personal experience of going through the immigration process herself, when she first moved to the United States from her home country, Poland, more than 10 years ago. Aga earned her J.D. from the University of Maine School of Law. She holds a Master of Arts in Law from Poland and was awarded an Associate of Science in Legal Studies from Quincy College, Massachusetts.
Aga has served as Community Grant Reviewer for the Fund’s Swift Social Justice Grants committee since March 2017. She is past board member of Women United Around the World. Aga lives in Portland and enjoys traveling, skiing, cooking, and spending time with her dogs.
When I was a child, I started spending time in the Blue Hill area, and permanently moving to Maine quickly became my dream. I deeply love this state and feel fortunate to now call it my home. While I live in Maine, I work remotely for MIT, where I co-founded and lead the Inclusive Innovation Challenge (IIC), the flagship program at the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy. The IIC is a global award program for entrepreneurial organizations that use technology to increase economic opportunity for workers around the world and reinvent the future of work. My job enables me to positively impact mission-driven organizations around the world and to ensure that fewer people are left behind economically as digital technology races ahead.
I feel particularly strongly about the Maine Women’s Fund’s mission to transform the lives of women and girls. My feminist parents brought my two sisters and me up to be resilient and independent. While I was taught that I could do “anything a boy can do”, we still have a long way to go before all girls know this to be true and before it is indeed possible.
Deqa Dhalac is a passionate advocate for the immigrant community with extensive experience in social services, public health. She currently works for The Center for Grieving Children as the Intercultural Program Manager. She previously worked for The Opportunity Alliance as a community builder and the City of Portland Social Services Division as a Human Service Counselor where she worked closely with refugees, immigrants and asylum seekers and survivor of torture clients. Deqa is the board president for the Maine Immigrants’ Rights Coalition and serves numerous other boards and advisory boards in Maine.
Deqa has a Master’s Degree in Development Policy and Practice from University of New Hampshire and MSW from University of New England. She is a certified language tester and cultural skill trainer and has been providing broad mediation for patients/clients in different settings with service providers to ensure they get their needs met. Deqa is also an elected official City Councilor for the City of South Portland.
Mary holds a BA from Smith College and MA from the University of Southern Maine in Public Policy and Management. She has served as the Representative to the Maine Legislature for District 112, which includes Falmouth. She is past president of the board of Portland Symphony Orchestra, Choral Arts Society, Osher Library, Friends of the USM School of Music and Maine College of Art, and has served on the board of the Maine Municipal Association and is a corporator of Maine Medical Center.
Noreen Alvarado Patient, Esq.
Noreen holds a B.A. from Haverford College and a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. She is currently General Counsel at Darling’s Auto Group. Prior to joining Darling’s, Noreen was a partner at a large Maine law firm. Noreen has been a member of the Maine Women’s Fund Board since 2014, and is also a member of the Fund’s Governance and Grants Committees. She resides in Durham with her husband and two young daughters.
Lanette Pottle, founder of Positivity Lady Enterprises, is a life and business strategist who specializes in helping entrepreneurial women increase their impact and grow their bottom line without sacrificing their personal well-being in the process. A writer with a global appeal, Lanette has two published books. She is a co-author of the Amazon #1 International best-seller, Success University for Women in Leadership and author of, Small Steps Big Impact: A Year of Simple Actions to Transform Your Life. Lanette is a graduate of Washington County Leadership Institute and a past advisor with Olympia Snowe Women’s Leadership Institute. She and her husband live in the beautiful Washington County town of Robbinston, an eighth of a mile from her childhood home.
Megan earned an MPH from Boston University School of Public Health. She is currently the Chief of Staff in the Maine State House of Representatives for the House Majority office. She served as an elected member of the Maine Legislature during the 125th and 126th Legislatures, representing downtown Biddeford, and was appointed to the Judiciary and Appropriations and Financial Affairs committees. Before working in the legislature Megan worked as the Director of Coastal Healthy Communities Coalition at the University of New England. She lives in Biddeford with her partner Gabriel Sutton.
Dani M. Scherer
Dani M. Scherer is an educator, curriculum developer and language and literacy acquisition specialist. She is passionate about the role that education plays in creating equitable communities. She currently serves as the project coordinator and curriculum developer for the Educator Diversity Initiative in Lewiston. Previously, she co-coordinated the Institute for Social and Economic Development’s national initiative - developing specialized resources and adult education tools for educationally and linguistically diverse farmers. As an independent consultant, she develops curricula and programs with the immigrant and refugee community in Maine, and provides trainings and consultation on curriculum development with projects across the state and country. She holds a BA in English and American Studies from Bates College, and an M.Ed. in Teacher Education and Curriculum Design from the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
Ms. Smyth is the Chief Experience and Marketing Officer of Camden National Bank. She joined as Chief Marketing Officer upon completion of the merger of Camden National Corporation and SBM Financial, the parent company of The Bank of Maine, on October 16, 2015. She was promoted to Executive Vice President (“EVP”), Chief Experience and Marketing Officer in May 2017. Ms. Smyth oversees the company’s customer experience and marketing strategies while ensuring they support the overall objectives of the organization. Additionally, she is responsible for the company’s digital transformations, and the customer assistance center. Previously, Ms. Smyth served as Senior Vice President, Head of Marketing for The Bank of Maine, since 2010. Smyth has a Master of Business Administration from The University of Hartford’s Barney School of Management and a bachelor’s of science from Ithaca College. Smyth is married and has two daughters and a son.
A Chicago native born on the crossroads of working-class, Black and female, Shay Stewart-Bouley’s career since 1997 has focused on weaving these intersections into her daily life and professional work. Since the mid-1990s, Shay has worked in the non-profit sector, during the earlier years working primarily with marginalized groups in Chicago, including the homeless and women being exploited in sex work. In the early-2000s, Shay moved from her native Chicago to Maine and, as a Black woman living in one of the least diverse spaces in the United States, found herself writing regularly about race relations, social justice, and white supremacy in such publications at the Portland Phoenix (where she had a month column, “Diverse City” for more than a decade), the Portland Press Herald, the Journal Tribune, and DigPortland. It was also in Maine that her work shifted to non-profit administration, working both as an executive director at a small faith-based non-profit in Southern Maine and non-profit consultant/grant-writer to other organizations, then later becoming executive director of the oldest continuously operating anti-racism organization in the nation, Community Change Inc. (based in Boston), where she still works today, though she continues to reside in Maine.
Shay is a prolific blogger at her award-winning website/blog Black Girl in Maine Media, where race is a major theme but also other social and political issues, as well as sometimes just commentary on daily life as a Black, middle-aged woman in a world where these traits frequently are not valued. Shay’s writing also has been featured in a variety of national publications as well as several anthologies. In November 2016, she gave a TEDx talked entitled “Inequity, Injustice… Infection.”
Shay holds an undergraduate degree from DePaul University, where she self-designed a program to focus on African-American Health and Wellness and health disparities; she also holds masters of education degree in Administration and Supervision from Antioch University New England.
Katy Whitehead is a business valuation analyst for BerryDunn’s Valuation Services Group. Her practice group provides business valuation, forensic accounting, consulting, and expert witness services to clients in New England and beyond. In this capacity she has worked on valuation assignments in a variety of industries. She supports the Valuation Services Group with analysis for valuations including gifting, estate planning, litigation support, ESOP’s, and transaction support. Prior to joining BerryDunn, she was a senior tax accountant at a Portland-based CPA firm, preparing tax returns for corporations, partnerships, individuals and non-profits, and performed tax research and planning for clients. Katy has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Rhode Island and holds a Master of Business Administration from the University of San Francisco. She also holds the Certified Valuation Analyst designation by the National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts and is a candidate for the prestigious ASA designation by the American Society of Appraisers. Katy is a member of the New England Chapter of the ESOP Association, the National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts, and the American Society of Appraisers. Katy resides in Yarmouth with her two sons.