During a 10:00 AM vote of the Maine State Senate on Thursday, March 30th, Robert G. Hasson, Jr., Ed.D. was confirmed as Maine Commissioner of Education. The vote was the final step in Hasson’s confirmation following his nomination by Governor Paul R. LePage, an interview by the State Board of Education, and a vote of the Joint Standing Committee on Education and Cultural Affairs.
A long-time resident of South Portland, Dr. Hasson has spent the majority of his career working in education. He is a former principal, special ed. director and elementary school teacher, in addition to his 20 plus years of experience as a superintendent at MSAD 51, Cumberland/N. Yarmouth.
In a letter to Department staff shortly after confirmation, he wrote, “I intend to use my time as Commissioner to improve the experience of students, bridge the gap between teachers and administration, and provide support in as many ways possible to schools and districts throughout the state.”
Hasson has been Acting Commissioner for the Department since November of 2016 following his role as Director of Certification within the Department. Prior to that, he served in leadership roles at both the Maine School Management Association and the Maine School Superintendents Association.
In presenting Dr. Hasson for confirmation before the Education and Cultural Affairs Committee, Senior Policy Advisor to Governor LePage, Aaron Chadbourne said, “Bob Hasson is fervent about acting in the best interest of Maine students, which is the charge that Governor LePage believes is appropriate for all of us engaged in public education. Governor LePage has given Bob license not only to think outside the box but to disregard the box entirely in pursuit of supporting Maine students and teachers, serving their best interests.”
During the hearing, shortly before the committee voted to confirm Hasson in a 12-0 vote he said, “I am truly honored and humbled to have been given this opportunity.”