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The late Marti Stevens

Marti Stevens

Marti Stevens' legacy to Maine of education, inspiration and theater reflects her belief that education and knowledge will provide power and a better world. How can one measure the impact of a whirlwind or a rainbow? Marti Stevens was a whirlwind of energy and enthusiasm and a rainbow of warmth, giving, and talent. Her impact on the lives of Maine women is immeasurable, continuing even after her untimely death.

Earning her Bachelor's Degree in journalism at the University of Missouri and Masters in Education at City College of New York City, Marti also studied acting and directing as well as teaching in ghetto schools.

Her commitment to education via non-traditional programs was the catalyst for her grant-writing and for her founding of Cornville Academy, Cross Roads, Teens 'n Theater, Maine Literacy Theater, and Education Skills, Inc., helping people who are disabled, at-risk, incarcerated, teen-agers, and other adults.

Marti was Director of Somerset County Basic Skills from the late 70s until her death in 1993. She authored training modules for the Literacy Advocacy Program, used throughout Maine. Cross Roads won national recognition and developed into a coeducational alternative education program, recently renamed the Marti Stevens Learning Center, one of the oldest and largest in Maine, under her directorship.

TRAINING FOR TOMORROW, the successful program she developed with the Maine Centers for Women, Work and Community (formerly Displaced Homemakers) and ASPIRE, has been replicated by the State of Maine and continues to be used statewide.

She presented the improvisational theater concept throughout the country and at international educational conferences. She taught composition at the University of Maine at Farmington for twelve years, ending with her death. Her love of theater was the impetus to co-founding the Cornville Players which evolved into Curtain Up Enterprises and the resurrection of Lakewood Theatre, the oldest summer theater in Maine.

Marti's energetic life included her farm, where she raised flowers, vegetables, cows, sheep, chickens, and even peacocks, as well as serving terms as the plumbing inspector. Her love of life, talents, energy and enthusiasm were boundless, and the people of Maine are the beneficiaries.

The late Marti Stevens, our whirlwind -rainbow, gave lasting value to Maine women in many ways, through education, entertainment, and inspiration, reflecting her beliefs, her commitment, and her work.

1987 Photograph
(Photo by: Vernon Homer)

Inducted March, 1996