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Hugh Cowperthwaite

Senior Program Director, Fisheries and Aquaculture

About Hugh

Hugh Cowperthwaite is the Senior Program Director, Fisheries and Aquaculture at Coastal Enterprises, Inc. (CEI), a Maine-based community development financial institution with a mission to build just, vibrant and climate-resilient futures for people and communities in Maine and rural regions by integrating finance, business expertise and policy solutions in ways that make the economy work more equitably. Hugh is a member of the Maine Technology Institute’s Aquaculture and Marine Technology Board, the Maine Fishermen’s Forum Board and the Maine Sea Grant Policy Advisory Committee.

As CEI’s Senior Program Director, Fisheries and Aquaculture, Hugh is responsible coordinating lending, business counseling and technical assistance with commercial fishermen, aquaculturists and waterfront businesses that maintain commercial marine access. As a partner in the Aquaculture in Shared Waters” training program, CEI brings to the table a “Sea Farm Loan” product offering specialized financing for Maine’s marine aquaculturists. CEI offers free business counseling services and Hugh is also a good “technical assistance” resource. Since 2010 Hugh has been leading an ongoing effort to introduce commercial sea scallop farming to Maine growers based on Japanese culture methods.

Hugh is a Maine native and has a background in commercial fisheries (lobstering) that began in high school. Other work experiences prior to CEI include: sea urchin diving, tending boat moorings, raising oysters, GIS work, and several marine environmental consulting projects coastwide. Hugh also plays the bass guitar as a side hustle.


  • University of Southern Maine, Portland, Maine; Graduated May 1997 Cum Laude – B.A. in Environmental Science and Policy-Applied Ecology, Minor Concentration in Biology
  • Musicians Institute – College of Contemporary Music (MI), Hollywood, California – Certificate of completion from the Bass Institute of Technology (BIT)
  • Certificate in Advanced Project Management, Effective Project Management & Implementing Project Management, University of Southern Maine, Portland, Maine (USM)
  • Sustainable Food Systems Leadership Institute, Maine Association of Non-Profits (MANP)
Get To Know Hugh
What is unique about the town you grew up in?

I was born and raised in Falmouth, Maine. I moved away but am lucky to return and live here again in my adulthood. Falmouth has been featured in several stories and novels by famous Maine author Stephen King.

What was your first job?

Dish-dog in a seafood restaurant

What is something you dislike but you wish you liked?


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"When Jackie Lobdell’s children were young, she couldn’t find daycare fitting the hours she needed. The nearby child care was closed Fridays and…"

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Maine Ocean Farms 

"The oysters produced by Maine Ocean Farms are regarded as some of the best on the East Coast and are served across Maine…"