Scarborough Public Works Director Mike Shaw retired this June after 25 years with the department.

Mike Shaw

“Mike has been a trusted and invaluable member of my leadership team,” said Scarborough Town Manager Tom Hall. “His level of commitment to the town and its residents was unmatched and I always appreciated his positive outlook and can-do attitude. He will be hard to replace.”

Shaw was responsible for a number of innovative initiatives during his time as director and held leadership roles outside of the organization, including most recently as president and chair of the Ecomaine Board of Directors.

“I appreciate the opportunity to serve the people of Scarborough for the last 25 years,” said Shaw. “The residents of the town as well as my coworkers are wonderful people and I can honestly say I feel very fortunate to have worked at Scarborough Public Works all these years.”

Shaw first joined Scarborough Public Works in 1997 as an equipment operator.

“I got the job planning to leave in the spring,” Shaw said. “I got extremely lucky when the previous director Bill Giguere took a chance on me. Bill saw qualities in me that I wasn’t aware I possessed. Life has plans for us that are sometimes different from the plans we have for ourselves.”

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From there, he held the roles of public service coordinator and outside foreman before becoming the public works director in 2003. Over the years, he stayed on with the notion that no two days were the same.

“One day he could be working on a multi-million dollar road project, the next he would be scooping a dead skunk out of Route 1,” joked deputy director Stephen Buckley about a typical day in the public works department.

Shaw remembers a couple of times over the years when they had to shut jobs down to do “search-and-rescue” missions. Most of the time the missing item would be a set of keys or phone that had fallen into a catch basin in a parking lot.

“We would get a panicked call from someone explaining how they dropped car keys into a catch basin,” said Shaw. “While the catch basins in a parking lot are not our responsibility, the assisting of a resident is, so we would go down and retrieve the keys.”

Shaw enjoyed the variety that a typical workday offered, saying each day felt new and different. He also acknowledges that in addition to the day-to-day variety, his role evolved over time. He found himself spending less time in the field doing hands-on work and more time behind a desk coordinating with other departments and agencies to achieve the department’s goals.  “I was very fortunate to have capable staff to pick up the outside responsibilities allowing me to transition inside,” he said.

Shaw thought fondly of those he worked with.

“Mike has always been a big personality and friendly face of public works,” Buckley reminisced of his colleague. “Thank you, Mike for your 25 years of hard work and dedication to public works and to Scarborough.”

In his retirement, Shaw will be doing more biking, camping, and watching Formula 1 racing. He looks forward to spending time with his wife Vicki and family and friends.

Allison Carrier is communications and community engagement coordinator for Scarborough. She can be reached at [email protected]

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