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    Annie Tselikis, 29
    Education Coordinator
    Maine Lobstermen’s Association

    Growing up in Cape Elizabeth, Annie Tselikis was naturally drawn to the ocean. That love of the Maine coast, and of the people who live there and make a hard-won living from it, was reinforced when she worked as a deck hand at Casco Bay Lines on the Portland waterfront.

    Today, the MaineToday Media Forty Under 40 award winner is the Education Coordinator for the Maine Lobstermen’s Association (MLA). Tselikis is an impassioned advocate for the MLA, most of whose 1,200 members are lobstermen, and whose mission is “to maintain a sustainable lobster resource and an economically viable fishery.”

    She “has served Maine’s commercial fishing industry since 2007 as a trusted liaison between fishermen and regulatory agencies and coastal community organizations,” says one of her award nominators, Jonathan LaBonté of the Androscoggin Land Trust.

    Maine coastal towns have suffered from drops in lobster prices, LaBonté notes, adding: “Within the last year, Annie has administered over 50 workshops designed to increase the profitability of the Maine lobster industry - a program designed to leverage existing businesses, guide people looking to invest in new businesses and mitigate future economic disaster.”

    Tselikis graduated from Connecticut College in 2004. She served as an Island Institute Fellow; lived in Stonington, where she worked at the Stonington Opera House; and has volunteered at SPACE Gallery and at the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies (she is an alum). She is a member of the Maine Fishermen’s Forum Board of Directors, the only public member of the Maine State Scallop Advisory Council, and served on Eliot Cutler’s 2010 gubernatorial campaign.

    “I could envision Annie as a Commissioner of Marine Resources, not purely for her political acumen, which is there, but for her personal connections to those making their livelihoods on the water and a deep understanding of policy affecting their success,” says LaBonté.

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