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April 28, 2006
Contact: Doug Dunbar

Statement on the Passing of Former Secretary of State
and Judge Paul MacDonald

Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap noted with sadness Friday the passing of former District Court Judge and former Secretary of State Paul MacDonald at the age of 94.

Paul MacDonald’s lengthy record of public service included lengthy stints as Clerk to the Legal Affairs Committee of the Legislature and as a Deputy Secretary of State. In his work at the Department of the Secretary of State, he conducted license hearings, conducted driver exams, helped run elections, and developed expertise in virtually every aspect of the Department. This culminated in his service, from 1960-64, as Maine’s 40th Secretary of State. Subsequent to his leaving the Department, Paul MacDonald had a distinguished career as a District Court judge spanning three decades.

“He was an extraordinary man,” said State Senator Bill Diamond of Windham, who served as Maine’s 45th Secretary of State. “Paul was one of those practical people who really understood how to make government and the law work in common sense ways for every Maine citizen.”

Rod Quinn of Gorham, who served as the 44th Secretary of State from 1979-1988, echoed Diamond’s sentiments. “He was a fine public servant widely respected by his peers who served two forms of public service; one as a long time Secretary of State and the other as a Judge. I was fortunate and proud to occupy his chair and felt his shoes were indeed very large to fill.”

Dan A. Gwadosky, 46th Secretary of State and a former President of the National Association of Secretaries of State said “He demonstrated how someone from a small Maine town and common surroundings could make an uncommon contribution and difference through selfless dedication and service to his state.”

Current Secretary of State Dunlap noted MacDonald’s rural heritage. “Like Paul, I was raised on a farm and have a love of the outdoors. His time of public service was informed by his hands-on experience solving real problems with only the resources immediately available to assist him. No life lesson was lost on him.”

Born in Jefferson, Secretary MacDonald lived a full life in rural Maine. He served his state his entire life and was witness to many momentous events in American history.