DIXON – The Lee County Council on Aging’s new executive director wants to bolster the organization’s standing as a resource to all ages.
Susan Lawler was hired to replace executive director Geoff Vanderlin, who is retiring Feb. 13 after about 7 1/2 years on the job at the Post House Community Center, 100 W. Second St.
Lawler was acting director at the Carroll County Senior Center and Carroll County Transit for about a year and served on the senior center board for more than 6 years as vice chairwoman and treasurer.
She was picked from a dozen applicants and has the experience to run operations and bring new ideas to the table to help grow the organization, LCCOA board chairman Jeff Kuhn said.
“We have a good program going, and I think it’s only going to get better from here as she takes it to the next level,” he said.
She will start on Feb. 14, though the transition process has already begun.
“We’ve had several meetings, and she has really hit the ground running,” Kuhn said. “I think from day one, she’s going to be doing a great job for us.”
Lawler was a financial aid counselor for Midwestern University and the University of St. Francis for 14 years before moving to Carroll County, and she plans to move to Dixon.
She’s also been involved with a variety of different community groups, such as the Rotary Club and Lanark Transformers Team, and she plans to join the city’s Kiwanis and Lions clubs.
“I’ve always volunteered and felt it’s my responsibility to give back to the community,” she said.
She looks forward to bringing her high energy level to the organization and keep the LCCOA tree of life growing.
“I want to build a rapport with the community and let them know that no matter what age they are, they see this as a place where they belong,” she said. “That’s what I hope for.”
The LCCOA offers a variety of social services and programs in the community.
“I think she is going to do a great job, and her experience is evident,” Vanderlin said. “My feeling is that she will be a big asset to the Lee County Council on Aging and the community.”
Call 815-288-9236, go to lccoa.com or find the Lee County Council on Aging on Facebook for more information.