Maine State Senator Peter Mills





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Peter Mills was born in Farmington in 1943 and grew up in Maine. After graduating from Harvard College in 1965, he served five years on Navy destroyers with several duty tours to the Vietnam gun line for which he was awarded the Navy Achievement Medal. He later conducted intelligence missions against the Soviets for which he was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal.

Since graduating with honors from Maine Law School in 1973, he has devoted 32 years to resolving legal problems for Maine people. For 23 years, he has owned Wright & Mills in Skowhegan. He is a founding member of the Somerset Economic Development Corporation and a founding member of FirstPark, a successful business enterprise that is bringing over 700 jobs to central Maine.

During 16 years in the Legislature, he has served as a Republican lead on Tax, Labor, Judiciary and Appropriations Committees. He is outspoken in advocating for sensible change in tax and school funding systems. He has worked with both parties to pass significant reforms in health care and education. Republicans and Democrats know him as a coalition builder with practical and independent views and a business-like approach to state finances. 

He has three adult children and two grandchildren. When not in the legislature, he practices law and manages woodlots in Cornville where he lives with his wife and two dogs.


Peter Mills

Education/Background:

Born in Farmington, ME 1943

Gorham High School, Gorham, ME Graduated 1961

Harvard College BA. Graduated cum laude in English 1965

U.S. Navy 1965-70

Univ of Maine School of Law; Law Review. In 1973 graduated #2 in the class

Attorney in Portland 1973-82; owner of the Wright & Mills lawfirm in Skowhegan since 1982

Married to Nancy Mills, Superior Court Justice

State Senate 1994-2002; Maine House of Representatives 2002-2004; State Senate from 2004

Military Experience (1965-70):

Five years as a destroyer line officer with sea duty billets in communications, operations and intelligence. Deployed to Vietnam, the Central Pacific and the Mediterranean. Was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal for gunline duty in Vietnam and the Navy Achievement Medal for intelligence work against the Soviets.

Public Service:

In the 117th Legislature, chaired Judiciary Committee and served as a member on Labor Committee (1995-96)

Chaired the Property Rights Task Force in 1995

In the summer of 1996, chaired the Critical Review Committee to rewrite Learning Results for Dept of Education.

In 1996 and 1997, served on the Assessment Design Team to implement Learning Results.

In 1997, served on the Childrens' Health Task Force and on a committee to reform pensions for teachers and public employees.

In the 118th and 119th Legislatures, served as a member on the Labor and Taxation Committees (1997-2000).

In 1998 served on:

The Learning Results Steering Committee to oversee implementation of Learning Results and

The Task Force to Increase Primary and Secondary Forest Product Manufacturing.

In 1999 served on:
The Committee on Sawmill Biomass and
The Economic Development Incentives Commission.

In the 120th Legislature, served as Senate Republican representative to the Appropriations Committee (2001-02)

In 2001, served on the Education Funding Reform Task Force.

In 2002-04, was Senate chair and then a House member of the Community Preservation Advisory Commission.

In the 121st Legislature (2003-04), was a House member of Appropriations; also served on the Task Force on Retirement Benefits for Law Enforcement Officers & Firefighters. Became a member of the Health Insurance Public Purchasers' Steering Group.

In the 122nd Legislature (2005-06), served on the Select Committee on Tax Reform and the Insurance & Financial Services Committee.

In the spring of 2005, initiated and led the "Don't Mortgage ME" petition drive that stopped the state from borrowing $447 million dollars without voter approval.

From August 2005 to June of 2006, conducted an unsuccesful statewide campaign for governor in the GOP primary; spoke to over 200 gatherings about the state's current challenges.

In the 123rd Legislature (2007-08), served as Republican Senator on the Education Committee.

In the 124th Legislature (2009-10), is serving on the Health & Human Services Committee, the Labor Committee and the Maine Childrens' Growth Council

Civic Groups:

Past president of the Maine Trial Lawyers Association (1992-94). Inducted into the American College of Trial Lawyers in 1991.

On the Board of Pine Tree Legal Assistance Corporation 1994-1999

On the Board of HealthReach Community Health Centers 1997-2003

On the Board of HealthReach Network, a major provider of home care and other health services in central Maine 2000-2006

On the board of the Maine Math & Science Alliance 1998-2005

Organized transportation summits for Somerset County in 2000 and 2004

Currently serving on the following boards:

The Coalition for Excellence in Education

The Somerset County Economic Development Corporation (Clerk & founding member)

The Kennebec Regional Development Corporation -- FirstPark (Secretary & founding member)

The Steering Committee of the Reforming States Group (since 1996) (A group of state policymakers sponsored by the Milbank Foundation to develop health policy initiatives)

The Maine Childrens' Growth Council (since 2008)

Publications are at petermills.info

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