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December 1, 2010 Jay Finegan, 287-1445
Last GOP House Speaker on Hand for Election of New Speaker, 36 Years Later

Speaker Robert Nutting & former Speaker David HewesAUGUSTA – The last Republican Speaker of the Maine House was on hand today for the swearing-in of the new Legislature and the election of Republican Rep. Bob Nutting as the new Speaker of the House.

The Honorable Richard David Hewes, of Cape Elizabeth, served as Speaker from 1973 to 1974, the last time Republicans held the House majority. Mr. Hewes was seated at a place of honor in the front of the House chamber for the proceedings and was recognized by Speaker Nutting for his service to Maine in the State House and Senate and his service to the nation during World War II, including taking part in the occupation of Japan when the war ended.

During his term as Speaker, he was renowned for his fairness, his compassion and his respect for all legislators, regardless of party. He often said that while Speaker he was “the listener of the House.”

Mr. Hewes, known to everyone as Dick, was escorted to the House chamber by his two daughters, Dr. Anne Hewes, of Cape Elizabeth, and Nancy Hewes Barry, of Walpole, Mass.

Born in Saco in 1926, Dick is the son of Clyfton Hewes, a former attorney and judge, and of Frances Libbey Hewes, a retired educator and the first woman to vote in Saco. He was an honor student at Thornton Academy, where he played football and basketball and captained the baseball team. At 18, in the middle of his senior year, he was drafted into the military and trained as a sharpshooter. He remained in the Army Reserve for a short time after the war, attaining the rank of captain.

After the war, Dick went on to the University of Maine at Orono, his father’s alma mater, where he played varsity football and earned a business degree. After law school at Boston University, he worked at his father’s law practice and eventually founded his own law firm in Portland – Hewes, Culley, Feehan & Beals – where he was a trial lawyer. In his political career, he served on the Cape Elizabeth School Board and the Cape Town Council and also served as Cumberland County Commissioner.

Dick served on numerous boards, including the Cumberland County Bar Association, the Greater Portland YMCA, the Portland Club and the Odd Fellows. He remains a member of the Portland Country Club.