About Us

Eliot-CutlerEliot Cutler is the Chief Executive Officer, in charge of planning and building a new enterprise that will expand and realign traditional programs in the University of Maine System to create a model for entrepreneurial, multi-disciplinary graduate business and legal programs and to help drive statewide economic development.

Eliot has earned a reputation as a visionary strategist and leader, a passionate and effective advocate and a collaborative and pragmatic problem-solver. As a public servant, Cutler helped craft America’s foundational environmental laws and managed the policies and budgets of federal energy, natural resources, science and environmental agencies.

He has been a successful entrepreneur, investor and business leader, and later in his career was twice an independent candidate for governor of Maine. As a lawyer and strategist for governments, business corporations and citizen groups, Eliot helped clients grapple with legal and public policy problems during a career in three law firms and two countries that spanned more than 35 years.

Eliot is a graduate of Deerfield Academy (1964), Harvard College (1968, cum laude) and the law school of Georgetown University (1974). He is 69 and has been married for 42 years to Melanie Stewart Cutler, M.D. The Cutlers live in Cape Elizabeth and have two adult children.

For his complete biography, please see Eliot Cutler.

is the Executive Assistant to Eliot Cutler. Jen is managing the administration of the Center office and serves as a liaison to other departments in the University of Maine system, the graduate and professional schools, the philanthropic community and the public.

Jen is a service oriented professional with 17 years of experience in event planning, research, community outreach and fundraising. She comes to the Center after a decade in the Advancement Office at Kents Hill School.

Jen is currently working to complete her degree at the University of Southern Maine. She lives in Old Orchard Beach, and has two adult sons.


Richard Anderson is reviewing successful experiential programs across the country, identifying components and conditions that have contributed to successful interdisciplinary, experiential learning programs.(W)_3142_RichardAnderson

Rich has spent his entire career challenging the conventional, with an emphasis on elementary and high school curricula in our nation’s public schools. As a mathematics teacher, he used new technology to conduct distance learning and built a new curriculum in a university laboratory school. For nearly three decades he created innovative curriculum materials that were marketed and distributed by the nation’s largest textbook publishers.

With his son, he founded an innovative online news organization that brought free, daily news online to communities where before only weekly news had been available. The company eventually introduced its own award-winning print publication and developed a cloud-based publishing platform licensed by newspapers around the country.

Rich is a community activist, with service on boards and as an officer in six community organizations. He was a founding member of one community organization and is currently an officer of two.



BobParisOct11aBob Martin is developing an expanded experiential learning plan for the Center built upon relationships with Maine’s business, legal, and public service communities. Included will be an incubator/accelerator, which will be integrated with the Center’s programs and curricula and will work closely with the University’s commercialization efforts.

Bob is the Managing Partner of Strategic Equity Partners LLC, a consultancy known as a strategy apothecary, providing unique solutions for firms determined to grow. A recognized thought leader in the world of innovation, Bob became widely known throughout the state as the former President of the Maine Technology Institute. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development, and he has been a member of the Advisory Boards for USM Business and Engineering programs.

Bob’s experience includes senior leadership roles at The Washington Post, The Hartford Courant, and Dai Nippon Ink & Chemicals. He completed his undergraduate studies at The George Washington University and earned his MBA at the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He and his wife Barbara live in Brunswick. In his free time, Bob is a writer, and is currently completing a novel.


2013 UMaine Homecoming _126 (2)Owen McCarthy is engaging with the business community and the business school faculties to create innovative partnerships that will serve Maine’s education and employments objectives.

Owen is the co-founder and President of MedRhythms, a neuro rehab company that helps patients more effectively recover from traumatic brain injury, stroke, or other neurological injuries or diseases. Owen also helped start, build, and fund Voxel8, a VC-backed materials company that enables the 3D printing of electronics. Between college and business school, Owen gained substantial sales and marketing experience with Ashland Inc., where as a technical sales representative he doubled the value of sales in his territory, serving customers across a range of industries.

Owen’s commitment to improving higher education began with his service as the UMaine Student Body President. In 2011, he co-founded the UMaine Business Challenge, an annual business competition whose primary goal is to give collegiate entrepreneurs the support to transform their business dreams into a reality. The competition has raised over $50K dollars to help collegiate entrepreneurs in Maine. Owen also serves as a member of the University of Maine Board of Visitors.

Owen is a graduate of Katahdin High School, the University of Maine and the Harvard Business School.  He is a native of Patten, Maine, and he and his wife, Holly, have returned to the state they love to pursue their careers.


Naill_Gino DSC_1942 (1000 x 1504)Gino Nalli is working to construct a financial framework for the Center.  He retired from the Muskie School of Public Service at the University of Southern Maine after more than ten years of applied research, academic management and teaching at the graduate level. He has also served in various interim and consulting roles within the Muskie School, USM and the University of Maine system.

Previously, Gino was employed by the Watson Wyatt Company, an international actuarial and benefits consulting firm. And he was president and chief executive officer of the MD Individual Practice Association, a federally qualified, multi-state health maintenance organization.

Gino holds a Master’s in Public Health from Yale University and a Bachelor’s degree in geophysics from Binghamton University. He resides in South Portland with his wife Carol, spends time with four adult children and six grandchildren, mentors at the Community Bicycle Center in Biddeford, fishes and is learning to play the piano.


Wendy PhotoWendy Pieh is working to identify the ways in which the Center programs can best serve the needs of Maine’s public service community.

Wendy worked in experiential education with Outward Bound Schools around the world, including service as the executive director of the Outward Bound Association of Southern Africa, based in Lesotho.  With a Master’s Degree in Organization Development, she came to Maine in 1990 and worked for several years in staff development in local school systems.

Wendy served in the Maine House of Representatives for eight years, including six years as the House Chair of the Joint Standing Committee on Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry.  She has run her own consulting company, Changes, and has worked with communities, school systems, and other organizations around the state in strategic planning, conflict management and other organizational challenges.