The Hancock County Trustees of Public Reservations, governing board of Woodlawn Museum, Gardens & Park held its annual meeting and dinner on January 28, 2016 at the Black House in Ellsworth.
The Trustees welcomed three new members to the board. Emeritus Trustees, Ruth Brenninkmeyer and Stephen Shea were welcomed back as active members and Marilyn Smith, was seated as Woodlawn’s newest Trustee. Commenting on the selection of Smith, executive director, Joshua Torrance said, “Marilyn’s interest in Woodlawn was sparked this past year when she volunteered at the Ellsworth Antiques Show, participated in the Christmas at Woodlawn program and attended weekly Rotary meetings held at Woodlawn in the summer. As a CPA, Marilyn’s understanding of nonprofit organizations from a financial perspective will be a great addition to our board.” Marilyn is co-owner of BHA, LLC, and is an active member of the Ellsworth Noontime Rotary club. She is currently working to establish a new Rotary club in Blue Hill.
According to Torrance, “We are delighted to have both Ruth and Stephen return to active status on our board. They both have been true ambassadors for Woodlawn and enthusiastic long-term supporters of the organization.” Stephen brings a depth of historical knowledge of the property having served Woodlawn over the years in many different roles. During her tenure as a Trustee, Ruth was in the founding group that established Woodlawn’s croquet court and a stalwart member on the Ellsworth Antique Show Preview Party Committee, which she will continue to serve on.
This year marked the 115th annual meeting of the Trustees. The Hancock County Trustees of Public Reservations was formed in 1901 by concerned citizens in response to extensive lumbering and the increase in private land ownership in Hancock County. They were very successful in preserving thousands of acres on Mount Desert Island, and then donated their holdings to the Federal government 1916 which formed the core of Acadia National Park. In 1929 they accepted Woodlawn from the bequest of George Nixon Black, Jr. and have continued to maintain and govern it for public use ever since. To learn more visit woodlawnmuseum.org.
Woodlawn is an educational, cultural, and recreational treasure for the people of Downeast Maine. The main house is open for tours May 1 – October 31 and December 1-23. The public park is open year round, sunrise to sunset. 19 Black House Drive (off of the Surry Road-Rt. 172), Ellsworth, ME. For more information visit www.woodlawnmuseum.org.