Lives and legacies of Harold Alfond and David Flanagan celebrated at Maine State Chamber’s Annual Dinner
Event featured keynote remarks by Greg Powell of the Alfond Foundation, video tributes to Alfond and Flanagan, the latest edition of OneVoice Maine magazine, and more
In brief remarks at a pre-dinner reception, Governor Mills first thanked the Maine State Chamber and its members for working with her “every step of the way …to save the lives and livelihoods of Maine people” during the pandemic. Gov. Mills reflected on Harold Alfond and David Flanagan, sharing that they were “a vital part of the community of the State of Maine,” adding the hope that their legacies “inspire thousands more to live those values.”
After opening remarks at the dinner by Maine State Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Dana Connors, Maine State Chamber Board Chair Clif Greim of Frosty Hill Consulting made welcoming remarks, saying of Alfond and Flanagan, “Their leadership and vision have left their mark across Maine in countless ways, both big and small, through countless demonstrations of generosity and philanthropy.”
Greim then introduced the evening’s keynote speaker, Gregory W. Powell. Powell is chair of the Harold Alfond Foundation Board of Trustees and president and CEO of Dexter Enterprises, Inc., which he co-founded with Harold Alfond in 1996. Powell also was a longtime colleague and friend of David Flanagan’s, who served on the Harold Alfond Foundation Board of Trustees.
In his remarks, Powell also reflected on Alfond and Flanagan, saying “As seemingly different as these two men were, they shared two fundamental passions: they loved to give, and they loved to get things done. They both shared a life-long commitment to giving, be it commerce, public service, or philanthropy. They gave for the good of their neighbors, their towns, their state, and especially for those least advantaged - the little guy, they would say. And getting things done was their forte.”
Powell added that we are at a “transformative moment in our state’s history,” saying, “If Harold Alfond and David Flanagan were with us this evening, they would be looking at this moment in time, and they would see opportunity - opportunity to give and to get things done. They would call us to action.”
The chamber also presented the third edition of its twice-yearly magazine, OneVoice Maine, at Thursday’s event. The edition, along with a video tribute, centers on Harold Alfond’s leadership and philanthropic contributions to Maine. It includes a message from U.S. Senator Susan Collins; stories of appreciation from many recipients of Alfond’s generosity; and the transformative effect his philanthropic investments in health care, education, Maine youth, and Maine communities have had throughout Maine.
A second video presented at the dinner paid tribute to David Flanagan, who lost his battle with cancer on October 13. In the video, Maine State Chamber President Dana Connors shares recent interviews with several prominent Maine leaders including U.S. Senators Collins and Angus King, Governor Mills, former Governors Joseph Brennan and John Baldacci, and others, about Flanagan’s impact on them professionally and personally and his lasting impact on Maine. Connors also met with David Flanagan and his wife, Kaye, at their Manchester home in early September. Excerpts from their conversation are included in the video.
Kaye Flanagan, who made brief remarks at the event, and Susan Alfond, daughter of Harold Alfond, each accepted the Maine State Chamber’s highest recognition, the Dirigo Award, on behalf of David Flanagan and Harold Alfond. Since 2016, the chamber has presented the award to individuals or organizations whose leadership and commitment to economic growth in Maine is exceptional. The award is named after Maine’s motto, “Dirigo,” Latin for “I Lead.”
“It has been a great privilege for the Maine State Chamber of Commerce to honor and celebrate the lives and legacies of Harold Alfond and David Flanagan,” said Maine State Chamber President Dana Connors. “Both were generous, humble, and accomplished business and civic leaders. While they are greatly missed, their indelible impact through their contributions and commitment to Maine and Maine people endures. They continue to be an inspiration to us all.”
A video recording of the evening’s program and both video tributes are available at www.mainechamber.org/am2021.html. Please visit www.mainechamber.org/onevoice to read the current and archived editions of the Maine State Chamber’s magazine, OneVoice Maine.