Several appointments were made to various town committees and commissions by the Bourne Board of Selectmen. The board made appointments to the Council on Aging, the Recycling Committee, the Cultural Council and the Commission on Disabilities during the board’s remote meeting Wednesday of last week, November 4.
The board appointed Jean F. Hills of Pocasset to the Bourne Council on Aging Advisory Board for a term to end on June 30, 2022.
Ms. Hills told the selectmen she was associated with the council on aging for 20 years before her retirement in 2017. She said she recently expressed an interest in joining the advisory board, and board members had also reached out to her about becoming a member.
“I have a lot of knowledge of the elder population in Bourne, a lot of interest, a lot of caring for our elderly and our fragile seniors,” she said.
Selectman Peter J. Meier said he had personal experience as a town official and as someone with elderly parents, with Ms. Hill’s work with the council on aging. Mr. Meier described her work with the council as “exceptional, excellent.”
“This is someone that’s very energetic, very knowledgeable and will be a great addition to the COA committee,” he said.
The committee also appointed Patricia Duffy of Cataumet to the Bourne Commission on Disabilities. Ms. Duffy told the board she has a 30-year-old daughter who has faced intellectual disabilities since she was a child. Both she and her daughter have been associated with the town’s Special Works Opportunity Program, a special workshop group for individuals who are intellectually disabled. Her daughter joined the program in the 3rd grade, she said.
Ms. Duffy said her daughter is now physically and intellectually disabled due to an acquired brain injury. The large number of issues her daughter now confronts, Ms. Duffy said, “kind of opened my eyes more to the different challenges of disabilities.”
“People with disabilities,” she said, “it’s a very underserved community, and the fact of the matter is every one of us are just a heartbeat away from joining that community. It needs more attention.”
Board chairwoman Judith M. Froman said Ms. Duffy’s firsthand experience will be extremely helpful, as it will shed light on “so many things that people don’t necessarily think about.”
Selectman James L. Potter also noted Ms. Duffy’s considerable experience. Hearing her story, Mr. Potter said, made Ms. Duffy “an outstanding example of why it’s great to interview our candidates for our boards and committees.”
“It shows who we have in the community, their talents and how much they care about our community by stepping forward,” he said. “Hats off to another person stepping forward and looking out for the community.”
The selectmen also appointed Maria Winter Mitchell of Sagamore Beach to the cultural council and the recycling committee. Ms. Froman noted that there are still four vacancies to be filled on the cultural council. Mr. Potter added that, with Ms. Mitchell’s appointment, there is still an open seat on the recycling committee.
All three woman were appointed unanimously by the board of selectmen.