The Washington County Commission is made up of three commissioners which represent Washington County. Each commissioner is elected to a four year term and serves constituents from one of three districts.

2017 Meeting Schedule: Meetings are 2nd Thursdays at 4PM unless otherwise stated.

January 12  |  February 9 |  March 9  |  April 13  |  May 11  |  June 8  |  July 13  |  August 10  |  September 14  |  October 12 |  November 9 |  December 14


Commissioner Chris GardnerChris Gardner was born and raised in Washington County. He graduated from Shead High School in 1992 and still resides in his home town of Edmunds with his wife Amanda and their three children Madelyn, Emmitt and Reagan. Chris earned a BA in Business Administration from the University of Maine at Machias with concentrations in Marketing and Finance and was a valedictorian graduate of the Maine Criminal Justice Academy.

After college Chris served for over a decade as a law enforcement officer throughout Washington County as a member of the Washington County Sheriffs Department particularly in the communities of Lubec, Machias and Calais; today he still serves as a reserve officer in Eastport. In 2004 Chris was first elected as a County Commissioner and won re-election in 2008 and 2012. Since 2007 he has had the privilege of being elected to serve as the Chairman of the Board of Commissioners.
In 2007 Chris was hired as the Executive Director of the Eastport Port Authority. Since taking over, Chris has championed the potential of the Port and which has seen record growth in both its net worth and business volume.

In 2010 Chris oversaw the Port’s expansion into the live dairy cow export market and was instrumental in the almost 10 million dollar bulk materials handling system investment at the Port.

In 2013 Chris was selected by Maine Magazine as one of Maine’s 50 people who have made a difference in Maine. The Port of Eastport was selected by the Maine Development Foundation as their “Champion of Innovation and Entrepreneurial Capacity” award winner in the same year. In his off time, Chris has spent over a decade coaching high school sports in communities such as Lubec and Eastport; he currently coaches at Washington Academy and Edmunds Community School and remains active in various community activities.
Commissioner John CrowleyCommissioner John Crowley has a long and distinguished career of public service, both as a non-commissioned officer in the USAF where he received the Silver Star for Heroism, as a county law enforcement official, and as a member of the Maine State Guard.

After his military service, Commissioner Crowley received 2,000 hours of training in the VA Law Enforcement Training Course and then worked his way up through the Washington County Sheriff’s Department to serve as Sheriff from 1991-1998.

Commissioner Crowley continues to be active in his community and is a strong supporter of any activities that focus on increased economic activity in Washington County.
Commissioner Vinton CassidyVinton was born in Eastport and raised in Calais. He graduated from Calais Memorial High School, Northern Maine Vocational Technical Institute, and the University of Southern Maine with a BS in Vocational Education. He and his wife, Anne, live in Calais. They have four children and seven grandchildren.

Vinton has spent many years as a public servant. He was first elected to the Calais City Council in 1971 and went on to serve a total of sixteen years including several terms as Mayor. Vinton also served in the Maine State Senate for six years. Governor Baldacci later appointed him to the Commission on Government, Ethics, and Election Practices on which he served two years.

Vinton recently retired from Washington County Community College after 33 years, and served in many leadership positions during his tenure there. Elected as a Washington County Commissioner in 2012, Vinton began his term in 2013.
Betsy Fitzgerald returned to Washington County following a teaching career in central Maine. As Machias Town Manager, she worked to increase awareness of the historical importance of the Machias area and bring economic development to the downtown area.
County Manager Betsy Fitzgerald
Since 2010, Fitzgerald has served as the County Manager; she has worked to increase economic development activities in the County. The County combined its efforts with the City of Eastport to focus an EDA grant of $1.4 million on building renovations in Eastport resulting in the move of a Canadian boat builder to the area. The use of TIF funds for economic development in the Unorganized Territories has spurred a number of new enterprises ranging from guiding services to trucking. The establishment of the Washington County Historical and Genealogical Society will provide an entity to care for the extensive newspaper collection and the genealogical resources soon to become available to the public. With the opening of the Washington County Heritage Center, residents and visitors will be able to view items found in the attic of the Court House and contributions from people county-wide.

Fitzgerald graduated from Washington Academy and the University of Maine, Machias. She holds a MA in Comprehensive Planning from the Edmund S. Muskie School of Public Policy at USM. She serves as chair for a number of local organizations, including the Boards of the Washington County Development Authority, the Washington Hancock Community Agency and the Harrington Family Health Center. Fitzgerald also represents Washington County on the Land Use Planning Commission as a Commissioner.


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Official documents can be obtained by contacting the appropriate county office.