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Portsmouth NH 400th Program

Portsmouth400 held two public input sessions at Portsmouth Public Library in June 2018. The feedback from these sessions formed the basis for branding, organization, and programming ideas. Now, following the interruption of planning during the pandemic, “Portsmouth NH 400th” has a new organizational structure and non-profit status (pending) for tax-deductible fundraising and grant purposes.

The Executive Team is comprised of Managing Director Valerie Rochon, Community Engagement Officer Susan Labrie, City Manager Conard, Denise Wheeler, and Trevor Bartlett, with City Finance, Legal and Public Information resources in support. The Portsmouth NH 400th Board of Trustees will include representatives of the Executive Team, City Library Director Steve Butzel, and our Indigenous, African American, and student populations.  

The goal of Portsmouth NH 400th is to give the community an inclusive opportunity to tell the stories that are important to them, through programs, events, exhibits and legacy projects. A key intention is for the Portsmouth NH 400th team to celebrate the diverse and animated social, political, intellectual, cultural, economic and spiritual history of Portsmouth from before settlement in 1623 to the present. A key intention is for the Portsmouth NH 400th team to engage the next generation(s) in exploring what the City’s 2023 legacy might be and how they might steward Portsmouth and its history beyond 2023. 

The Executive Team is convening a Task Force to support the Portsmouth NH 400th organization and to guide signature events and projects, including a parade. Individuals, businesses and organizations who want to join the team who will help steer the programming for the 400th are invited to contact Valerie Rochon at hello@PortsmouthNH400.org

For more information and to complete the application to have your programs, projects and events included in the celebrations, click here.

Executive Team:

Karen Conard, Portsmouth City Manager

Susan Labrie, Community Engagement Officer

Valerie Rochon, Managing Director

Denise Wheeler, Minister of Fun

Trevor Bartlett, “Tech & Social Media Guy”

Portsmouth NH 400th, Inc. Board of Directors

  • Chair Susan Labrie, Community Engagement Officer
  • Vice Chair Ron Baisden, African Burying Ground Memorial Stewardship Committee
  • Treasurer Steve Butzel
  • Secretary Marlon Pinto, Portsmouth High School Sophomore
  • Anne Jennison, Native American storyteller, historian, educator
  • Karen Conard, Portsmouth City Manager
  • Valerie Rochon, Managing Director