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Thursday July 31, 2014

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    Heather Parent, 37
    Policy Director
    Maine Department of Environmental Protection

    As policy director of the state
    Department of Environmental
    Protection, Heather Parent “sets
    and implements the environmental
    policies of the entire state,†writes
    her award nominator, Jennifer

    “She is using her 12 years of
    experience in environmental law,
    and her love of her native state of
    Maine, to set policies on the diverse
    areas of environmental protection
    for the state.â€Â

    Parent explains that she knew
    while in high school, at Mountain
    Valley in Rumford, that she wanted
    to be a lawyer. “And at the same
    time, I knew that the environment
    is very special, that it deserves to be
    protected, and that we also need to
    make sure that Maine people have a
    way to make a living.

    “Now, my favorite programs are
    those that help boost the economy,
    and preserve Maine’s beauty and
    natural resources, because both
    those factors are keys to improving
    the way people live.â€Â

    One program Parent particularly
    favors is Brownfields, a
    redevelopment program that cleans
    up contaminated sites for re-use.
    She offers Brewer’s former Eastern
    Fine Paper mill, now home to a
    Cianbro Corp. plant employing
    hundreds, as a good example of how
    Brownfields works.

    Parent, who has a Juris Doctor
    and master’s in environmental
    law from Vermont Law, spent her
    early childhood in Winn, north
    of Lincoln, after which the family
    moved to Peru (the Oxford County
    version). She now lives in Brewer
    and spends as much time enjoying
    Maine’s outdoors as a desk job

    Parent notes that as a member of
    Bangor Trails, she’s been hiking
    within the city and developed a
    keen appreciation of “the last parts
    of Bangor that are really untouched
    by humanity.â€Â

    For the future, she’d like “Maine to
    continue to improve the economy
    and the environment, by finding
    new ways to have them both work

    > Return to the Forty under 40 index

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