Return to Donna M. Loring papers, 1956-2008

Mouse over the eagles to explore the Donna M. Loring papers.

About the collection and exhibit

The Donna M. Loring papers offer an in-depth perspective into the work of Maine's tribal representatives, and to Donna Loring's experience as the Penobscot Nation's representative to the Maine State Legislature, specifically.  In addition to documenting her service in the legislature, the papers contain drafts of Loring's autobiographical work In the Shadow of the Eagle: A Tribal Representative in Maine (2008). There are materials related to the history of Maine's tribes, the Maine Indian Land Claims settlement, and Native arts and culture.  The collection contains evidence of Loring's overseas military service during the Vietnam War and her work with Vietnam Women Veterans.  There is correspondence, documentation of Loring's community and professional activities, private writings, photographs, films, CDs, and memorabilia.

About Donna M. Loring

Donna M. Loring was born in 1948 to Julia Elizabeth Neptune and George Loring, Jr.  A member of the Penobscot Indian Nation, Donna Loring spent her childhood years on Indian Island, Maine, where she was raised by her grandmother.  Loring attended high school at Old Town High School and Glen Cove Christian Academy in Rockport, Maine.  In 1966, Loring joined the Womens Army Corps (WAC).  From November 1967-November 1968, Loring served as a Communications Specialist at Long Binh Army Base, north of Saigon.

After returning from Vietnam, Loring graduated from the University of Maine at Orono with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science.  She graduated from the Maine Criminal Justice Academy in 1978, and served as Police Chief for the Penobscot Nation from 1984-1990.  In 1992, Loring became the first woman director of security at Bowdoin College, a position she held until 1997.  Loring served as an advisor to Governor Angus King on women veterans affairs.

Donna Loring served as the Penobscot Nations Representative to the Maine State Legislature from 1998-2003, and again from 2007-2008.  During her legislative career, Loring authored and sponsored LD 291 An Act to Require Teaching Maine Native American History and Culture in Maines Schools, which was signed into law in 2001.  She also conceptualized and advocated for the first State of the Tribes Address in Maine history in 2002.

Loring later served as a select person for the Town of Richmond.  She attended the Flemming Fellows Leadership Institute and the Eleanor Roosevelt Global Leadership Institute.  Loring is currently a lecturer and consultant, and President and CEO of Seven Eagles Media Productions, a non-profit that she founded as an educational corporation to bring vision and voice to Native people.

Donna Loring's book In the Shadow of the Eagle: A Tribal Representative in Maine, which chronicles her legislative service, was published by Tilbury House in 2008.