First National Bank (FNB) today announced a $300,000 commitment to the Maine Lobstermen’s Association (MLA). The donated funds will take the form of a $150,000 direct donation to the MLA’s Save Maine Lobstermen campaign. The MLA is currently appealing a court decision in its lawsuit against the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) which, if enacted, would decimate Maine’s lobster industry and negatively affect not only the economy of Maine’s coastal communities, but also the economy of the entire state. Additionally, the Bank will provide longer term support in the amount $150,000 to assist the industry in any way the Association sees fit.
“Having lived on the coast of Maine my entire life”, said First National Bank, President and CEO, Tony McKim, an Eastport native and current resident of Trenton, “I am keenly aware of the impact our fishing industry has on our livelihood as Mainers. The value created on and off shore by our fishing industry, and the quality men and women who work in it, sustains family after family and community after community up and down our coast. The care these men and women put into adhering to the rules, working toward sustainable fisheries, and protecting those species that are endangered is unparalleled. First National Bank stands behind our Lobster industry, and the families that make it go.”
“We are extremely grateful for First National Bank’s commitment to our effort to preserve Maine’s lobstering heritage,” stated Kristan Porter, a commercial fisherman from Cutler, and President of the MLA. “FNB understands the critical importance of our lobster industry not only to Maine’s economy, but also to our culture. We are honored to participate in this long-term partnership with the First.”
McKim continued, “As a Bank that includes amongst our core values, community focused support in good times and bad, we are so very pleased to provide this commitment to support this vital industry that has so long been part of Maine’s heritage. The road ahead for the industry is uncertain, but the leadership at MLA, coupled with the integrity and creativity of the men and women in our fishing industry, remains the cornerstone in which we at First National Bank believe and will carry the day. We are with you!”
The Bank is proud to support the MLA, founded in 1954, and is the oldest and largest fishing industry association on the east coast. The #SaveMaineLobstermen campaign was launched in 2021 and has a four-pronged approach to both preserve the lobstering industry and protect endangered whales. The plan includes legal and policy strategies, making sure decisions are based on sound science, implementing conservation strategies and communication. More information can be found at www.savemainelobstermen.org.
First National Bank, a subsidiary of The First Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ: FNLC) is an independent community bank with 18 offices in Lincoln, Knox, Waldo, Hancock, Washington and Penobscot Counties. For more information about First National Bank, please call 1-800-564-3195 or visit www.thefirst.com.