Secretary of State Shenna Bellows took office today, Monday, Jan. 4, 2021, becoming the first woman elected to the post by the Maine Legislature.
Governor Janet Mills conducted the formal swearing-in of all the constitutional officers, which includes Secretary Bellows, State Treasurer Henry Beck and Attorney General Aaron Frey; as well as the statutory office of State Auditor, now held by former Secretary Matthew Dunlap.
The Department of the Secretary of State includes three bureaus: The Maine State Archives, the Bureau of Motor Vehicles and the Bureau of Corporations, Elections and Commissions.
Secretary Bellows shared her vision for each bureau, such as embracing technology to improve public access, efficiency and service for motor vehicle transactions; and to share Maine history more widely by digitizing archival documents. She also spoke of her goal to advance voter participation through reforms like online voter registration and to ensure the integrity of future elections through election audits.
Secretary Bellows, now Maines 50th Secretary of State, previously served two terms in the Maine Senate from 2016-2020, and most recently worked as executive director of the Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine.