Renovations approved for Marion Senior Center

May 21, 2019

MARION — Anyone who knows Marion Recreation Director Jody Dickerson and Marion Council on Aging (COA) Director Karen Gregory knows the two work closely together in a shared office space in the Community center. Now they are planning to put walls up between their desks — not because of animosity, but for privacy reasons. 

Dickerson, Gregory and Francis McNamee appeared before the Marion Board of Selectmen on May 21 to ask approval for the project to install permanent partitions in the office space. 

The renovations would cost $62,000, but would be entirely funded through a generous donation from the Friends of the Visiting Nurses and the Friends of the COA

Gregory said she often has to discuss private medical issues that “should remain private and [seniors] deserve to have that level of privacy. It if very hard with no walls and people walking through.” Privacy concerns aside, Gregory also finds it a difficult to concentrate sometimes.  

“We knew from the early days that it was becoming an issue. We have gone outside to speak to someone, or sat in a car just so we have the privacy,” Dickerson said. 

Construction would start in late November and would last four months. During that time, Dickerson, Gregory and their teams will rent an office trailer on site, which will be placed on the left side of the entrance, looking at the building from Route 6. 

Selectman John Waterman wanted to be sure that the Facilities Director did not feel he had too much on his hands with the Town House renovation and fire station roof renovations that were just approved at Town Meeting. He replied that he did not. 

Selectmen also asked what Gregory and Dickerson would do for furniture in the new space. Dickerson replied that there would have to be new furniture, and that the two directors would do fundraising for that.