By Patrick Cronin
Hampton Union, Friday, September 23, 2005
[The following article is courtesy of the Hampton Union and Seacoast Online.]
place award for the 2002 Town Report.
[Photo courtesy 2003 Town Report]
HAMPTON -- Karen Anderson, who has been administrative assistant to the town for the last 14 years, is leaving her post to become the new town administrator of Greenland.
"It's time," said Anderson. "I've been here a while and this is going to be a step up. I wasn't even sure that I was going to get the position. But, I obviously did and I'm excited about it."
Anderson applied for the position in early July. She found out that she got the job on Monday. The news came as a shock to several town officials, including Town Manager James Barrington.
"When she handed me her letter and told me what was happening, I told her that I was really happy for her but I'm really sad for me," said Barrington.
Barrington said that Anderson is the type of employee one wishes everyone was like.
"She has given this town so much more than can be reasonably be expected in an employee. She's here constantly and is dedicated to her work. Over the years, from time to time, people have criticized her for not being a resident of Hampton. But I tell you what, she has given more to this town than many of the residents have."
Barrington said Anderson will be a great town administrator. Her last day with the town is Oct. 4.
Anderson began working for the town in December 1991.
While her title of administrative assistant has stayed the same, her duties have expanded over the years. When she was first hired, her jobs included correspondence and minutes.
Now, her duties include human resources, selectmen minutes, correspondence, town reports, welfare, Channel 22, and whatever the town manager needs.
"The duties have continued to expand beyond anything that I would have thought of," said Anderson. "I think as my skills became evident to the various town managers, they gave me more responsibility, which I welcomed."Anderson has worked under four town managers, including Tom Gillick.
"Every manager has a different style and it takes some time to get used to," said Anderson. "I haven't had a problem with any of them. I enjoyed all the town managers I worked for."
However, she said, "The Board of Selectmen personality changes every single year. It takes more adjustment than a manager transition."
Anderson said the one thing she won't miss is the late nights of the selectmen meetings.
"When it goes beyond midnight, it's just horrible," said Anderson. "Some boards were much more prone to late nights. I had one board that three out of the four meetings would go beyond midnight."
Selectmen Chairman Jim Workman said Anderson is going to be hard to replace.
"I think she will be incredibly missed because she does many different things - all of them very well," said Workman. "I wish her the best of luck."
Anderson said she is going to miss working for the town and is nervous about starting her new position.
"I'm nervous about everything," said Anderson. "I've spent 14 years in the same place. I'm excited about it and confident that I can do it but I don't know where all the streets are in Greenland. There are so many different issues that it's going to take me some time to get caught up to speed."