2022.03.10 | Panelists Bios

Ellen Bemis serves as AMHC’s Chief Executive Officer. As Chief Executive Officer, Ms. Bemis ensures the achievement of the agency’s service mission in conformance with AMHC’s philosophy of service, organizational values, strategic vision, and the policies established by the Board of Directors. She serves on the board of directors for the Mental Health Risk Retention Group, Maine Municipal Employees Health Trust, University of Maine at Presque Isle Board of Visitors, and The County Federal Credit Union. Prior to joining AMHC, Ms. Bemis served for 20 years as the Chief Financial Officer of the Aroostook County Action Program and as a member and past president of AMHC’s Board of Directors since 2011. She began her career as a Certified Public Accountant with Newman, Noyes & Associates in Portland and David N. Felch, CPAs in Caribou. Ms. Bemis holds a Public Accounting degree from Husson College. She is a native of Maine and resides in Presque Isle with her husband Frank and their three children.


Oliver Bradeen is a mental health clinician, educator, and the Executive Director of Milestone Recovery. Oliver joined Milestone as Executive Director in October 2020. Prior to joining Milestone, Oliver served as Substance Use Liaison for the City of Portland, a civilian position responsible for co-responding to emergency calls involving substance use and misuse, training officers in effective response practices, connecting individuals with treatment and harm reduction resources, and advocating for effective substance use response policies. Oliver has been working in the substance use disorder field since 2014 and has a broad experience that covers public health, public policy, advocacy, consulting and direct client work.

Oliver has also taught in the Clinical Mental Health Program at the University of Southern Maine. Oliver holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Northeastern University and a Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from the University of Southern Maine.

Jennifer Cunningham Jennifer is the assistant director of ESM, Incorporated

Kara Hay is President and CEO of Penquis, a non‐profit organization dedicated to assisting individuals and families to be safe, healthy, connected, and financially secure. The largest community action agency in Maine and a licensed mental health agency, Penquis touches the lives of more than 5,000 people each day. Kara also serves as president of Penquis subsidiaries Rape Response Services, MaineStream Finance, Penquis Development, Inc., and Penquis Housing, Inc. Deeply committed to Maine and its communities, Kara is co-chair of the Bangor-area Community Health Leadership Board, chair of Northern Light Acadia Hospital Board of Trustees, a member of Community Housing Capital Board of Directors, a member of the Schmidt Institute advisory board, a member of the Community Initiative Advisory Council of NeighborWorks America, and a member of the Alliance for Addiction and Mental Health Services. Kara is a nationally recognized leader in comprehensive community development, having received two awards from NeighborWorks America, and is a strong advocate for Maine’s low-income population.


Misty Marston has been with Spurwink nearly eight years, holding a number of clinical and administrative positions. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and has been in the non-profit sector in Maine for 16 years. When asked what inspires her to work with Spurwink, Marston said “Our mission, the families, and the children we serve…and our amazing staff and colleagues.” Misty Marston enjoys fitness and staying active with her family and pets in beautiful Windham, Maine.