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Community center names new director

By Rick Catlin, Islander Reporter

Dawn Stiles of Portland, Maine

The Anna Maria Island Community Center board of directors has named Dawn Stiles of Portland, Maine, as the center’s new executive director.

Stiles officially joins the staff Nov. 12, but will be spending time between work here and in Maine, completing her employment obligation with Spurlink Services, a company providing behavioral health services to more than 5,500 people in Maine.

Center president Greg Ross said it was a long and difficult task to select a replacement for Pierrette Kelly, who served 22 years through the end of October as executive director.

“We are pleased to have Dawn join the leadership team at the community center. I’m excited,” Ross said. He added that Stiles will begin working with interim director Scott Dell, Kelly and center staff for a week, beginning Nov. 12. He expects her to officially start full-time “no later than April 1, 2013.”

Stiles already has a foot in the door on Anna Maria Island. Board member David Teitelbaum said she owns a condo in Bradenton Beach. “She missed the first round of applicants,” he said, which had failed to find a replacement. But she shared with him early on in their talks that she had been traveling from Tampa to Maine and reading The Islander on the airplane when she saw the center was looking for a new director — and quickly applied.

“She really stood out,” Teitelbaum said. “We are lucky to get her.”

Stiles will attend weekly staff meetings by teleconference call or in person until she has completed her obligations in Maine.

“The passion of my core is for the community,” Stiles said. “I am very anxious and excited to assume the role of executive director of the community center and to get to know my neighbors and members of the Anna Maria Island community,” she said.

Stiles has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Maine, as well as a master’s degree from UM in social work, and also holds a clinical social workers license.

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