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Bill Needelman deals with rising water in Portland

Dec 17, 2017

Needelman was with the city’s planning office for 14 years before becoming the city’s first waterfront coordinator in 2013. Then-City Manager Mark Rees led the charge to hire someone whose principal job would be to work on the city’s waterfront economic interests. As a planner, Needelman had worked on master planning, historic preservation and waterfront developments, like the Gulf of Maine Research Institute’s laboratory and research center, which opened in 2005 (he’s proud of how that turned out). His undergraduate degree from Boston College was in geology, and he has a master’s in community development and planning from the Muskie School at the University of Southern Maine, a degree he worked toward one or two night classes at a time while working full time. The flexibility and proximity offered by USM was “an absolute godsend.”