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Thursday September 18, 2014


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    Sarah Holmes, 39
    Assistant Director of Student Life & Diversity
    University of Southern Maine


    Sarah Holmes, 39, has polysyllabic job titles at the University of Southern Maine – not only Assistant Director of Student Life and Diversity, but also Coordinator of the Center for Sexualities and Gender Diversity.

    But Holmes’s work extends well beyond her alma mater, as her MaineToday Media Forty Under 40 Award nominators make clear: “Sarah Holmes is a statewide and regional leader in her field of higher education administration in student life and diversity. She is passionately devoted to the safety, education and well-being of young people.

    “A consummate collaborator, Sarah has one of the most extensive professional and personal networks in Maine’s LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) community and beyond. ...

    “Sarah has become an important resource and leader not only in the LGBT community of the University of Southern Maine, but in the greater Portland area as well,” say Betsy Parsons, Lisa Bunker, Branden Parker, Mike Blanchard, Dal Maxwell and Alex Roan, writing jointly.

    Recently, Holmes has conducted Safe Zones and Diversity education seminars across the state. “Sarah is a chapter leader and treasurer of GLSEN-Southern Maine (Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network), a nonprofit whose mission is safe and affirming K-12 schools for all,” her nominators continue. “Through GLSEN, Sarah is instrumental in supporting the health and strength of Gay-Straight- Trans Alliances in 60 Maine high schools, in 15 of 16 counties.”

    Holmes’s contributions and accomplishments include being an active member of the Rainbow Business and Professional Association. She has volunteered extensively with Equality Maine.

    Holmes, who lives in Portland, has a lifelong interest in history and art history (her undergraduate disciplines), and has served as a docent at the Victoria Mansion on Danforth Street. Her master’s degree is in adult education and student affairs in higher education.

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