Tuesday April 03, 2012 | 10:19 PM

Senator Susan Collins spoke about the need for cyber security legislation and the "dysfunction in Congress" during a party tonight at USM's Abromson Community Education Center in Portland. She said there's an "urgent need for leaders from the sensible center" and she urged everyone to demand higher levels of civility and bipartisanship from elected officials. She also took questions and touched on tax policy, national business trends and young college grads who move out of state.

The event marked the opening of nominations for the 2012 Entreverge awards. Given out each year by PROPEL - the Chamber of Commerce networking group for young professionals - the award recognizes entrepreneurship, innovation and contribution to community. Collins praised both the award and the organization that hands it out for fostering a culture of entrepreneurship in Greater Portland.

Collins was welcomed to the stage by PROPEL board president April Ylvisaker, board member Russell Voss and Chamber CEO Godfrey Wood. USM President Selma Botman also welcomed the Senator to the campus and the event.

PROPEL is known for hosting fun parties, so it wasn't surprising that this event featured a reception both before and after the Senator's remarks.

Be sure to pick up a copy of the April 8 edition of the Maine Sunday Telegram, where I'll have more photos from the party and additional details about what the Senator and others had to say.

Until then, I hope to see you out and about.

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Avery Yale Kamila dishes about southern Maine's hottest parties.

Avery can be contacted at 791-6297 or akamila@pressherald.com
On Twitter: @AveryYaleKamila

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