Reaction was swift and profound over the loss of L.L. Bean’s beloved leader Leon Gorman:

“Today, Maine lost a dear friend. Leon was a wonderful man and a gifted leader whose steady hand and pioneering vision helped transform L.L. Bean into the remarkable success it is today, and he did so while remaining true to the company’s values and firmly rooted in the traditions and spirit of his beloved state. Above all else, Leon was defined by – and will be remembered for – his unmatched generosity of heart, his unwavering commitment to the people of our state, and his deep and abiding love for all that is Maine. In every way, he was a true man of Maine.” — U.S. Sen. Angus King, I-Maine

“Over his lifetime, Leon Gorman benefited the people of our state in so many ways. Under his leadership, L.L. Bean saw incredible growth, which raised the profile of Maine internationally and created thousand of good-paying jobs. He was a truly generous member of the community as well. He not only supported many worthy causes with his philanthropy, but also frequently volunteered at places like Preble Street without thought of publicity or recognition. Down-to-earth, compassionate and an incredibly hard worker, Leon loved Maine and it showed in his generosity and commitment to our state.” — U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree, D-1st District

“I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of my wonderful friend and a giant on the landscape of Maine, Leon Gorman. Leon’s loss is as great as the legacy he leaves behind. Through his visionary leadership, Leon imbued the iconic L.L. Bean with a set of values that embodied not only the standards he established for himself, but ones that reflect the very soul of Maine: honesty, integrity, respectfulness toward others, and never taking shortcuts when it comes to quality and craftsmanship. As a result L.L. Bean today is not just a legendary corporate brand but an emblem and trademark of excellence – just like Leon. It is a worldwide model of what companies should be and what people who lead them ought to be.” — Former U.S. Sen. Olympia J. Snowe, R-Maine

“We’re incredibly grateful for Leon Gorman’s lifelong commitment to protecting the Maine that we all love. Without Leon, Maine wouldn’t be the place it is today environmentally and economically. His extremely successfully business defines Maine for people around the world. When people think of Maine, they think of L. L. Bean: a place to get your gear and get out in nature. As an avid sportsman and a hands-on leader, Leon embodied what Maine’s character is all about. His and Lisa’s philanthropy was driven by their values of conservation and community spirit, and has touched every person in Maine, no question.”

— Lisa Pohlmann, executive director, Natural Resources Council of Maine, where Gorman served on the advisory board since its inception in 1988

“Leon and his wife, Lisa, longtime vice chair of the Foundation for Maine’s Community Colleges Board of Directors, were the driving forces behind the creation of our remarkably successful foundation. Together with L.L. Bean, Leon and Lisa have been without peer in their personal and professional support and advocacy for our colleges and the good people of Maine we serve. Our system has known no greater friend than Leon Gorman, and we share deeply in the loss to the Bean family and the state of Maine.” — Maine Community College System interim President Derek Langhauser

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