Incoming members bring unique skills and experience as Educate Maine thanks two retiring board members for their service

PORTLAND – Educate Maine has announced that three education leaders have joined its board of directors. They are Hancock County Technical Center Director Amy Boles, Bowdoin College Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer Michael Cato and Ellen Halliday, superintendent of RSU 29 (Hammond, Houlton, Littleton and Monticello). The new board members’ backgrounds and experience in education align with current education and workforce preparedness priorities in Maine and Educate Maine’s mission to ensure all Maine people are college and career ready. The announcement coincides with the departure of two long-serving board members, business consultant Ron Bancroft and business and public affairs executive Chris Hall.

“As we celebrate the leadership of Ron Bancroft and Chris Hall and thank them for their last nine years of guidance as board members, we are excited to welcome three education leaders to Educate Maine’s board of directors,” said Jason Judd, executive director of Educate Maine. “Together, the new board members bring diverse education backgrounds and experiences that, along with our current board members, will enhance Educate Maine’s leadership in efforts to ensure college and career readiness for all Maine people. Their expertise also aligns with workforce development priorities in Maine that we are certain will positively impact the ability of Maine people, employers, and the state’s economy to succeed.”

Boles is the current director of Hancock County Technical Center (HCTC) which serves high school students from six different schools in the Ellsworth area. Boles came to HCTC in 2009 after serving as assistant principal of Ellsworth High School for five years. A former social studies teacher at Massabesic High School, Boles has been working in Maine schools for more than 20 years. She has a bachelor’s degree from Colby College as well as a master’s degree and a Certificate of Advanced Study from the University of Maine. She is passionate about career and technical education (CTE), serves on the CTE Committee of the Maine State Board of Education, and is active within the Maine Administrators of Career and Technical Education (MACTE). Boles currently serves on the board of the Ellsworth Area Chamber of Commerce and the local YMCA Youth Sports Soccer Board. She also is a volunteer youth travel soccer and basketball coach in Hancock, where she resides with her family.

Cato, senior vice president and chief information officer at Bowdoin College, leads Information Technology (IT) strategy and operations at Bowdoin College. Cato came to Bowdoin in early 2018 with 17 years of experience in Higher Education IT. His extensive background includes having served in IT leadership roles at Vassar College in New York, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Cato holds numerous board positions, is actively engaged in the Higher Education IT community, considers himself a student of leadership, and is active in efforts addressing issues of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. He holds a B.S. in Zoology from Andrews University and a M.B.A. from Wake Forest University. He and his family reside in Brunswick.

Halliday is currently the superintendent of Schools RSU 29 — Hammond, Houlton, Littleton, Monticello. She started her career as an educator in Presque Isle and worked in various roles within the SAD 1 school system for 26 years before taking her first superintendent position in

Wells-Ogunquit. Her 21 years of experience as a district level administrator include seven in the role of superintendent. Halliday currently serves as president-elect of the Maine School Superintendent Association and was a founding board member of the Maine Curriculum Leaders Association. She is a member of the Rotary International-Houlton Club and a past member of Rotary International-Wells & Presque Isle Clubs. Halliday holds a master of science in Educational Leadership from the University of Southern Maine and a bachelor of science in elementary education and special education from the University of Maine Farmington. She and her husband reside in Island Falls.

Departing board member Ron Bancroft founded Bancroft & Company to provide strategic consulting to small to medium-sized growth companies. Now retired, he has long been involved in education reform. He is a founder and former Chairman of both the Maine Coalition for Excellence in Education and Educate Maine. Chris Hall, who also is retiring from the board, is General Counsel and Director of Regional Initiatives for the Greater Portland Council of Governments (GPCOG). He was previously CEO of the Portland Regional Chamber of Commerce, and senior vice president and general counsel for the Maine State Chamber of Commerce. He joined Educate Maine’s board of directors in 2011.

About Educate Maine — Educate Maine champions career readiness by increasing the educational attainment of Maine people, enabling all students to succeed in postsecondary education and in the workplace. Landmark programs include the Maine Teacher of the Year program, Education Leaders Experience, Project>Login, and FocusMaine Intern Experience. More information is available at