Event: Growth Basics for Business: Welcoming New Mainers to the Workplace

Growth Basics for Business: Welcoming New Mainers to the Workplace

Virtual – Register

Join the Chamber and Claudette Ndayininahaze, Mary Faulkner, and Jim Elkins from In Her Presence to learn how their programs are working to further a thriving immigrant community in Maine by lifting the language barrier and supporting the career trajectory and financial stability of immigrants and their families. This presentation will also include testimonials from program partners. 

Topics to be discussed:

  • The barriers and consequences of US employment system: the immigrant perspective
  • Tips for bridging the divide between immigrants and employers
  • How to fill critical staffing needs through decreased fear and increased confidence

Featured partners:

  • Anne Tucker, CEO, Greater Portland Health
  • Claire Kayirangwa, HR Assistant, Greater Portland Health
  • Cheryl Hinkson, Director of Operations, Hannaford


Claudette Ndayininahaze, Executive Director – In Her Presence

Claudette Ndayininahaze has extensive experience as a culture broker in intercultural communication in both for-profit and non-profit sectors. As Executive Director of In Her Presence, she sits on multiple boards in Portland and is deeply connected to community-based initiatives across the city. As a community leader who has herself gone through the immigration process, she has a unique ability to anticipate challenges New Mainers face and utilizes her professional expertise to empower people and communities. A highly proficient negotiator, both intuitive and resourceful, she collaborates with executive leadership in businesses to develop organizational capacity and culture to promote opportunities for New Mainer success

Mary Faulkner, Bridge to Career Fulfillment Director – In Her Presence

Mary Faulkner serves as Bridge to Career Fulfillment Director of In Her Presence. Her background in sales training development, combined with a B.A. in French and ELL-certified teaching experience, have prepared her well for a role that requires linguistic, education, and business acumen. Mary has lived on three continents and loves to travel but is happy to call Maine home. She lives in Cape Elizabeth with her husband and children.

Jim Elkins, Career Consultant – In Her Presence

Jim Elkins, who is a Certified Career Counselor, has operated Career Planning Services since 1985. Currently, he devotes most of his time to nonprofit service and previously held career planning, counseling, and administrative positions in higher education, government, and public schools.

Jim serves as the Career Consultant for In Her Presence to assist participants to realize their career goals. He also is a Board Member for Avesta Housing, a member of the Thrive2027 Council, a former United Way Board Member, and on the Chamber’s Advocacy Committee. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a master’s degree in Personnel Counseling from Miami University and has completed advanced graduate work in counseling at The Pennsylvania State University.