UMaine and UMS leaders salute Gov. Mills’ nomination of Gen. Dunn to head Maine National Guard

A portrait of Diane Dunn
Diane Dunn

University of Maine and University of Maine at Machias President Joan Ferrini-Mundy and University of Maine System Chancellor Dannel Malloy applaud Gov. Janet Mills’ intention to nominate U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Diane Dunn to lead the Maine National Guard and serve as commissioner of the Maine Department of Defense, Veterans and Emergency Management (DVEM).

Dunn has served in Ferrini-Mundy’s office since January 2022, first as a senior advisor to the president and most recently as chief of staff. She has also taught as an assistant professor of military science at UMaine, where she earned her master’s degree in public administration.

“I am so pleased with Gov. Mill’s decision to nominate Gen. Dunn as the first woman to lead the Maine National Guard and to hold the post of DVEM Commissioner,” says Ferrini-Mundy. “Throughout her more than three decades of dedicated public service, Diane has demonstrated incredible integrity, inclusive leadership and loyalty. She is a thoughtful, strategic leader with terrific judgment, who has helped the university advance key initiatives in areas ranging from diversity, equity and inclusion, to research compliance, to the integration of our regional campus in Washington County. While we will certainly miss her at the University of Maine and the University of Maine at Machias, we are so pleased that her excellence and expertise has been recognized by the Gov. and that if confirmed, she will again serve our state and nation in a most critical role.”

Ferrini-Mundy noted that last month, UMaine was ranked for the first time by the Military Times on its list of Best for Vets Colleges, joining the University of Maine at Augusta as the only Maine institutions honored. The flagship currently enrolls 310 veterans, the largest in its history, while there are a total of 1,439 active military members, veterans and dependents using veterans’ education benefits across the system.

“The University of Maine System is grateful for Gen. Dunn’s outstanding leadership and service at our flagship university and its regional campus Downeast,” says Malloy. “In working directly with Diane, I have found her to be highly effective and a trusted advisor and administrator with an unmatched love for and loyalty to the state of Maine and this nation. I want to congratulate her and Gov. Mills on this history-making appointment, for which Gen. Dunn is highly deserving. If confirmed, I have no doubt she will serve with great distinction and honor, as she has done within our System and throughout her impressive career.”

Dunn’s nomination is expected to be considered by the Maine Legislature in early 2024. Until then, she will continue to serve as Ferrini-Mundy’s chief of staff.

Contact: Samantha Warren, 207.632.0389;