A commitment from University of Maine alumnus Karen Boudreau and her husband, Thomas Jensen, MD, will rename North Stevens Hall on campus in honor of the former Brewer, Maine resident and now a lawyer based in San Diego.
Karen L. Boudreau, Esq. The hall will be inaugurated on July 14. UMaine President Joan Ferrini-Mundy is expected to attend the ceremony; Susan Pinette, professor and director of Franco-American programs at UMaine; and Gigi Georges, author of the 2021 book “Downeast: Five Maine Girls and the Unseen Story of Rural America.”
Boudreau and Jensen say they hope naming this building after a French-Canadian woman will give women and those of French-Canadian descent the confidence to pursue their dreams.
“As a first-generation college student and French-American woman, my path has not been easy, especially when I was living in Maine,” says Boudreau, “I want those who follow me to understand that no matter the obstacles put in front of you, success is very much achievable if you set clear goals, work hard, and seek out good mentors.
The two-story Boudreau Hall, one of the oldest buildings on campus, is part of the Stevens Hall complex. It houses the Cohen Institute for Leadership and Public Service, the Department of Political Science and the School of Politics and International Affairs, as well as the Offices of Equal Opportunity and International Affairs.
“Karen’s academic excellence at the state’s flagship university and her distinguished career in law are inspiring,” said Joan Ferrini-Mundy, president of the University of Maine. “For Karen, recognizing her alma mater with such a gift also honors her Franco-American heritage and the value of public higher education in Maine. We appreciate the opportunity for generations of UMaine students to learn about her story.
The donation will support a much-needed renovation of this existing campus space, said Jeffery Mills, president of the UMaine Foundation which facilitated the pledge. “We are very grateful to have donors like Karen and Tom who recognize the importance of our historic buildings.”
Boudreau graduated from John Bapst Memorial High School in Bangor, Maine. At UMaine, she worked to support herself and paid for all of her expenses while pursuing a double major in political science and broadcasting. She graduated with great honors and the highest honor in three years in 1980. She was admitted to the Phi Beta Kappa Society. After receiving her JD with honors from George Washington University, Boudreau served as a law clerk at the Supreme Judicial Court of Maine.
During her 35-year legal career, Boudreau has represented many major international corporations, including IBM, Gap, Marshalls, UNUM, Sony and Accenture, both as in-house counsel and in her own practice, focusing on technology and employment issues. She is called to the bar in six states, including Maine, New York and California, as well as admission to practice before the United States Supreme Court. Boudreau was named Lawyer Emeritus and one of America’s Most Honored Lawyers.
Boudreau and Jensen live in San Diego and summer at Hopkins Pond in Mariaville, Maine. Boudreau is involved in a variety of community activities, including serving on the boards of John Bapst, the Angels Foster Family Network, and the San Diego chapters of the Lincoln Club, the Association of Corporate Counsel, and the Federalist Society .
Contact: Margaret Nagle, [email protected]