Gregory Dufour is proud to be counted among the Mainers who have left the state in search of economic opportunity — and then returned because it’s home.
“It was growing up in a small community that influenced me more than anything else,” Dufour, 48, said Monday in a telephone interview.
The Old Town native and University of Maine graduate came back home in 2001 after 20 years away to become a senior vice president of Camden National Corp. In 2004 he became president of the bank.
On Jan. 1, he was promoted again — this time to be the president and chief executive officer of Camden National Corp. and Camden National Bank.
Camden National Corp., which has its headquarters in Camden, employs 440 people. It’s a publicly traded company that ranked No. 20 in the trade publication U.S. Banker’s 2008 list of “top-performing mid-tier banks.”
Dufour, who lives in Rockport with his wife, Doreen, and three children, succeeds Robert Daigle in the position. The two have been working since April to make the transition.
Under Dufour’s leadership, the bank expanded westward and eastward with its mergers with United Kingfield Bank and Union Trust Co.
Before joining the bank, Dufour was the managing director of finance for IBEX Capital Markets in Boston. Before that, he was in management with the Fleet Financial Group.
“My wife and I were living in the [Boston] suburbs. We said, ‘Gee, we want to finish raising our kids in Maine. We made that big quality of life decision,” Dufour said.
And even though it is a turbulent time globally for finance, Dufour said he is looking forward to his newly expanded role.
“There is an economic recession that’s going on, and it is troubling to see businesses and friends and customers go through tough economic times,” he said. “Businesspeople should be involved with economic development, improving our business climate and really making the state a better place to live and work in. You can have an impact.”