Hadley lands new Senior Center director from Monson department

The Hadley Senior Center had its grand opening on June 30, 2021.

The Hadley Senior Center had its grand opening on June 30, 2021. STAFF FILE PHOTO

By SCOTT MERZBACH

Staff Writer

Published: 11-28-2023 11:24 AM

HADLEY — A Connecticut resident who has worked with senior citizens at the Monson Senior Center for the past nine years is the new director of the Hadley Senior Center and Council on Aging.

Nichelle “Niki” Liquori of Suffield, who will begin her tenure Dec. 4, was appointed to the position in a unanimous vote by the Select Board on Monday, based on a recommendation from the Council on Aging Director Search Committee.

Liquori replaces Hayley Wood, who left the position she had held since 2019 at the end of October.

An assistant executive director for five years, and outreach coordinator before that, Liquori is excited at the opportunity in Hadley.

“I grew up around older adults and saw the challenges, and that’s where my passion was driven from,” Liquori said.

She intends to focus on several areas, including transportation and nutrition, streamline processes so there is one-stop shopping for senior services, and engage with the community.

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Liquori also envisions forming a caregivers support group at some point, a memory cafe and completing work on the Age- and Dementia-Friendly Hadley project Wood spearheaded. 

“I’m really looking forward to this. I have a lot of ideas,” Liquori said.

Liquori will be paid $72,000 for 40-hour weeks.

She called the interview process long and thorough, but that it also has taught her some about Hadley.

Human Resources Director Troy Brin said many applications were received when the position posted this fall.

“We had a quite a number of qualified candidates,” Brin said.

Those who met all the criteria were forwarded to the selection committee, which narrowed the field to those who would be interviewed in person. Then, two finalists provided writing samples and completed oral presentations.

Scott Merzbach can be reached at smerzbach@gazettenet.com.