Henry Bourgeois

KENNEBUNK – Henry Bourgeois, 78, passed away peacefully on April 22, 2022 at the Gosnell House with his wife by his side.

Henry was born on July 22, 1943 in Marlborough, Mass., son of Henry and Deena (Lepore) Bourgeois. He earned an undergraduate degree from Saint Anselm’s College and a graduate degree from the University of New Hampshire.

For more than 40 years Henry was a champion for education and economic development in Maine. He started his career as a librarian at the Nashua Public Library where his passion for education and public policy began.

As Executive Director of the Maine Development Foundation (MDF) for 21 years, he created a number of programs which brought together Maine’s business, government, education and community leaders to address the state’s economic development and education issues. Programs included the Maine Aspirations Foundation, Leadership Maine, and the Coalition for Excellence in Education. Henry went on to co-found and direct the Maine Compact for Higher Education whose mission was to increase higher education attainment of Maine’s working-age population.

Henry’s last position was the CEO of the Alfond Scholarship Foundation which provided every child born in Maine with a $500 gift to create a college savings account. Henry served on the board of directors for the Nellie Mae Education Foundation, and the board of the Maine Coalition for Excellence in Education.

Henry made a difference for the state of Maine, with his colleagues remembering him for his humility, his integrity, and most of all for his endless enthusiasm and optimism for Maine’s future.

Henry resided in Kennebunk for over 35 years with his wife, Sharon Landry. Following his retirement in 2013 he returned to his library roots by becoming a trustee for the Kennebunk Free Library. He was an avid reader and lover of mystery books, and regularly went to the library to search for new reads. He found serving on their board a great opportunity to give back to a place and community that he loved so much.

Henry was a sweet, kind, soft spoken man who was devoted to his family and was immensely proud of his children and grandchildren. He enjoyed travelling, especially going abroad to England, Italy, Spain and France, exploring the less developed islands of the Caribbean, and spending the month of March in Vero Beach, Fla. When not travelling or visiting family, you could often find him at home reading a mystery novel, sampling a Maine craft dark beer, in the yard finding projects only he thought needed attention or taking long walks with his wife.

Henry met every challenge from Parkinson’s Disease with rare grace, fortitude and courage, always believing he had been blessed with a full life and wonderful family. His enduring gentle strength will be remembered by all who knew him.

The family is eternally grateful to the staff at the Gosnell House for their wonderful care and compassion.

Henry is survived by his wife of 34 years, Sharon Landry; his children John Bourgeois and wife Rebecca Morrison, Tina Bourgeois and partner Edward Zink, Marc and wife Sandra Bourgeois, and Julie Bourgeois and husband Elek Pew; his grandchildren Erika, Emma, Knowles, Kendall and Skye; his brother and sister-in-law, Charlie and Darlene Bourgeois; and many nieces and nephews.

A memorial service celebrating Henry will be held at Bibber Memorial Chapel, 67 Summer St., Kennebunk, ME 04043 on Wednesday April 27 at 2 p.m. The family will welcome friends and family before the service beginning at 1 p.m.

To share a memory or leave a message of condolences, please visit Henry’s Book of Memories Page at http://www.bibberfuneral.com.

Arrangements are in care of Bibber Memorial Chapel, 67 Summer St., Kennebunk, ME 04043.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made in Henry’s name to the

Kennebunk Free Library,

112 Main St.,

Kennebunk, ME 04043

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