Patrick Dempsey and The Jackson Laboratory Tapped for Prestigious Award from the Maine Center for Creativity

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The biennial Maine Creative Industries Award will go to innovators in the fight against cancer.

These exemplary honorees showcase Maine’s creativity in separate ways, but their common accomplishment is their imaginative approach to bringing comfort, care and the pursuit of a cure to cancer patients in Maine and beyond.

Today, the Maine Center for Creativity (MCC) announced the co-recipients of the 2014 Maine Creative Industries Award, a prestigious biennial honor that recognizes exceptional people and organizations who enrich Maine's growing reputation as a state where the arts and enterprise meet and flourish.

Actor and cancer activist Patrick Dempsey has accepted the honor alongside The Jackson Laboratory, a leading-edge genetics research laboratory, being represented by Edison T. Liu, M.D. The award will be presented on Nov. 15, 2014, at a gala celebration in Portland, Maine.

"These exemplary honorees showcase Maine’s creativity in separate ways—Mr. Dempsey as a product of our rich performing arts community which led to his success and ability to found the Dempsey Center, and The Jackson Laboratory as an example of a world-class research and development industry,” said Jean Maginnis, founder and executive director of MCC. “Their common accomplishment is their imaginative approach to bringing comfort, care and the pursuit of a cure to cancer patients in Maine and beyond.”

”This blend of artistic, scientific, and economic endeavor is exactly what the Maine Center for Creativity works to showcase and encourage,” said Maginnis.

Born in Lewiston and raised in Buckfield and Turner, Maine, Dempsey is best known for his role as Dr. Derek Shepherd on the long-running TV drama Grey's Anatomy. Dempsey founded The Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing in Lewiston, Maine, which offers a cutting- edge model of support, education and integrative medicine services to anyone impacted by cancer.

Liu is president and CEO of The Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine, an independent, nonprofit organization with a mission to discover precise genomic solutions for cancer and other genetic diseases. Employing over 1,500 people—including about 225 Ph.D.-level researchers —The Jackson Laboratory is world renowned for its genetics research, education and resources, and is a major contributor to Maine’s innovation economy.

In 2012, actress Glenn Close and her husband, David Shaw, founder of IDEXX, accepted the inaugural award at the Maine Creative Industries gala. Shaw will present the 2014 award to The Jackson Laboratory. Mary Dempsey, along with Peter Chalke, CEO of Central Maine Healthcare will present to her brother.

About the Maine Creative Industries Award
As one the first of its kind in the country, the Maine Center for Creativity’s Maine Creative Industries Award is a prestigious biennial honor celebrating excellence in art, innovation, and enterprise – and the recipients’ positive impact on the state of Maine and the world. The selection committee chooses candidates whose contributions bring together arts and industry to stimulate Maine’s economy and build its reputation for innovation and creativity. Glenn Close and David Shaw, husband and wife, received the inaugural award in 2012 in Portland, Maine.

About Maine Center for Creativity
The Maine Center for Creativity (MCC) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) led by a volunteer board of directors. Founded in May 2005, MCC is committed to nurturing innovative companies and people in Maine by developing projects and programs that support the growth of creative industries and the arts. Among its creative educational and economic development projects are the highly visible Art All Around®, the international design competition to paint the Sprague Energy tanks in South Portland, the Creative Toolbox Series, Pecha Kucha events and the Maine Network of Innovation and Creativity—an in-person and digital “network of networks” to spur collaboration; along with the new Developing Creative Intelligence business training program. For more information, please visit


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Linda Varrell