Senior director resigns

Dennis Box

The Courier-Herald

Jo Anne Barkley, director of the Bonney Lake Senior Center, resigned June 2 after holding the position for nine years.

Barkley submitted her letter of resignation to Mayor Bob Young, who announced her departure during a City Council workshop.

"It was a very difficult decision," Barkley said. "They've been my family for almost a decade. I can never completely leave, but I saw all the staff and programs flourishing, and I knew it was time I could move on."

During the past years Barkley has seen the senior center programs expand dramatically as the city has grown.

"I had a vision that has absolutely come true," Barkley said. "I've accomplished my goals and my vision. I've had an excellent staff working with me. Terri (Waltenburg), Frank (Miller), Stacy (Guirsch) and Chester (McLean) have been amazing. I believe the center is in capable hands and ready to move on."

Beth Jensen has been hired as an interim director while the city searches for a new director.

Jensen was the senior center director for Milton before retiring. The city also hired her to review the senior center operation.

As interim director, Jensen will work 30 hours per week. On days Jensen is unavailable, Guirsch will step in as acting director.

The mayor and Don Morrison, administrative services coordinator, met with the senior center staff and seniors, assuring them the programs will go on as schedule and the search for a new director has started.

"Jo Anne has done a great job," Young said. "She has been recognized nationwide as a senior advocate. We are truly going to miss her."

Dennis Box can be reached at

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