The Dexter Senior Center has been operating under a pair of interim directors since former Director Katie Stirling left her post on June 12, and now the board will consider eight candidates who have shown interest in the job.
The board ended its call for candidates last week and will consider those that stepped forward during a first round of screen on August 3 during a board business meeting.
Stirling is highly praised as having grown the senior center significantly during her tenure, which began in December of 2013. She stepped up fundraising, marketing and senior outreach during her time at the Dexter Senior Center, according to DSC Board President Jim Carson.
“Katie Stirling’s tenure with the DSC was a very successful two years for herself as well as for the Center,” Carson said. “During Katie’s tenure she developed both formal sponsorship and fundraising programs for the Center, computerized the bookkeeping system, developed a workable website for the center; and assumed the responsibility of the Dexter Senior Nutrition/Meals on Wheels program for the Dexter area.
“The Dexter Senior Center is alive and thriving with daily activity as a result of Katie’s efforts.”
Carson said that first and foremost, Stirling’s permanent successor must pursue the DSC mission of “(providing) a warm and welcoming environment to promote friendship and camraderie for the senior population, aged 55 and older, by offering services, information, program and activities,” in addition to being able to handle the day-to-day business operation of the center.
The board will hire the center’s new director during its Aug. 19 Board of Trustees meeting. The chosen candidate will start on Sept. 1.
Carson indicated that the board is eager to have a permanent director in place, as fundraising is integral to maintaining the service level enjoyed by seniors who visit the center regularly to receive service that staff project from the center to senior’s homes, such as Meals on Wheels.
“Despite the many daily events, services and activities we offer the greatest challenge we face each day is funding,” Carson explained. “Most seniors are living on fixed incomes, so it is very important for us to offer our activities at little and sometimes no cost. We are very greatful for the financial support that we receive from the City of Dexter, Dexter Township and Webster Township and Dexter Community Schools — without their base support I don’t know how we would be here.”
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