Chafee Nominates E.P. Attorney for New RI Board of Education
William C. Maaia of William C. Maaia and Associates of East Providence is one of 10 nominees to the redesigned state education board.
A well-known East Providence attorney and former school committee chairman is one of Gov. Chafee’s 10 nominees for the new Rhode Island Board of Education.
William C. Maaia, who founded the law firm William C. Maaia and Associates at 349 Warren Ave., was named as a nominee by Gov. Chafee on Tuesday, Jan. 8. He was a member of the former Board of Governors for Higher Education in Rhode Island.
“These individuals represent a wide spectrum of backgrounds and a diversity of perspectives, opinions, and talents,” Gov. Chafee said. “But what they share is a commitment to education in the State of Rhode Island, and all of them are determined, as I am, to see our schools become national models of success.”
“In my decades of public service, I have always made high-quality public education a priority,” Gov. Chafee said. “Most recently, that has been evident through increases in the budget for elementary, secondary, and higher education. With this in mind, it is my hope that the redesigned board will have enhanced ability for greater planning, coordination, and resource allocation from kindergarten to higher education. This will produce benefits for our students, our economy, and all Rhode Islanders.”
The governor’s nominee for board chair is Eva-Marie Mancuso, a managing partner with the law firm Hamel, Waxler, Allen & Collins. The other nominees are Joan C. Abrams; Antonio Barajas, MD; Michael H. Bernstein; Colleen A. Callahan; Karin L. Forbes; Patrick A. Guida; Lawrence Purtill; and Mathies J. Santos.
Maaia earned a BA from Providence College and his JD from Suffolk University School of Law, in addition to Collective Bargaining certification from Rutgers University and negotiations training from Harvard Law School, according to the governor’s office.
Maaia’s first employment after law school was with the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE). During his time with RIDE, Maaia served as a labor relations officer, which included work with the Board of Regents, and was project manager for a collaborative of six states that developed comprehensive manuals on fact-finding, mediation, and arbitration in public education.
Maaia also served for 12 years on the East Providence School Committee, four as chairman, during which time he organized the “Blue Print Task Force,” which produced a report – at no cost to the city – identifying significant educational issues.
Maaia has also served as Special Legal Counsel to the Rhode Island Ethics Commission; Legal Counsel to the Municipal Water Supply Board; Legal Counsel to Full Channel TV, Inc.; Special Assistant Attorney General for Rhode Island; Special Contracted Legal Counsel to three Rhode Island Attorneys General; Special Lecturer, Community College of Rhode Island; Special Instructor, Providence College, and Instructor of English, Bristol Community College.
Maaia is a member of the Rhode Island Bar Association, the U.S. District Court, the Rhode Island Trial Lawyers’ Association, the American Arbitration Association, and the Art Clubs of Westport, Mass., and Providence, respectively.