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Shenna Bellows sworn-in as first woman Secretary of State in Maine’s history

Bellows was chosen to succeed Matthew Dunlap by the legislature in December.
Bellows in the House Chamber of Maine State House
Bellows in the House Chamber of Maine State House(WABI)
Published: Jan. 4, 2021 at 5:32 PM EST
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AUGUSTA, Maine (WABI) - A historic swearing in at the State House Monday.

Shenna Bellows is now Maine’s first female Secretary of State.

After serving two terms in the Maine Senate from 2016 to 2020, Shenna Bellows is Maine’s newly elected Secretary of State.

“I think one of the most remarkable aspects to the role of Secretary of State is being the keeper of the official records of the state of Maine, to really, through the Maine state archives keep our history alive and think about how our history is ever moving forward and ever progressing, to be more equal and just for all,” Bellows said.

Bellows was chosen to succeed Matthew Dunlap by the legislature in December.

While working as a state senator, she was also Executive Director of the Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine.

Experience she told me will set her up for success in her new role.

“In some ways, being Secretary of State is more like being a nonprofit CEO than a state senator, because my job will be as steward, to ensure efficiency and good service for the people of Maine,” she added.

The swearing in that took place in the House Chamber of the Maine State House was also historic.

“It is incredibly meaningful for me to be the first female Secretary of State, and to be sworn in by Maine’s first female governor. I hope that someday we’ll see the last of the firsts, I hope that my being sworn in today sends a message to our daughters and granddaughters everywhere that the sky is the limit, you can be whatever you want to be in this world, and every door is open,” said Bellows.

Bellows is excited and eager to serve Mainers in a new capacity.

Something she dreamed of growing up in Hancock.

“When I was a kid I had a copy of The Bill of Rights on my bedroom wall, and much of my career has been dedicated to advancing the Constitution and The Bill of Rights, and when you think about how our fundamental free and fair elections are to a democracy, and the importance of the Bureau of Motor Vehicles and the Bureau of Corporations to our economy, and the importance of the archives to our sense of history, this job really is a dream job for me,” Bellows said.

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