History of MCOA
The spark of the Massachusetts Councils on Aging ignited in 1974 when a group of senior center staff and board members gathered in Northampton, MA. Three year later, Massachusetts general law Title VII, Chapter 40, Section 8B established Councils on Aging across the commonwealth, and two years later, the Massachusetts Association of Councils on Aging and Senior Center Directors incorporated as a 501c3 to be the trade association for the Councils on Aging.
While Councils on Aging and Senior Centers provide support services to older adults and their families and caregivers, the Massachusetts Councils on Aging provides support and training to, and advocacy for, the Councils on Aging statewide.
MCOA has had a rich history throughout the years, and has recently seen rapid growth. Advocating for Councils on Aging, MCOA has influenced increased Formula Grant local aid to the Councils on Aging, provided capacity building and technical assistance to the Councils, and holds an annual Fall Conference, which has grown to be the largest of its kind in New England.
Today, there are 350 established Councils on Aging in Massachusetts, and MCOA has rapidly grown to accommodate their needs. Staff has grown to include social workers, former COA Directors, and a Registered Dietician.
MCOA Mission Statement
Building strategic partnerships to educate, empower, and advocate for professionals who work with older adults.
Educate. Advocate. Collaborate.
MCOA Positioning Statement
MCOA will be the principal statewide organization to support municipalities, membership, and other organizations that serve older adults through advocacy, networking, professional development, consumer education, and resource opportunities.
Elected on June 23, 2022 at the Annual Meeting held at Devens Commons
|Vice Chair||Emily Shea||METRO|
|Past Chair||Becky Moriarty||WEST|
|Assistant Secretary||Janice Long||METRO/CENTRAL|
|Assistant Treasurer||Brian O’Grady||WEST|
|Conference Chair||Jodi Zepke||WEST|
|At Large||Josie Dutil||CENTRAL|
|At Large||Amy Waters||CENTRAL|
|At Large||Pam Hunt||SOUTHEAST|
|At Large||Grace O’Donnell||METRO|
|At Large||Terri Marciello||NORTHEAST|
|At Large||Stacey Minchello||NORTHEAST|
|At Large||Sharmila Biswas||SOUTHEAST|
|At Large||Nancy Hill||SOUTHEAST|
|Northeast District: McDonald, Marciello, Minchello|
|Minuteman||Acton, Arlington, Bedford, Boxborough, Burlington, Carlisle, Concord, Harvard, Lexington, Lincoln, Littleton, Maynard, Stow, Wilmington, Winchester, Woburn||Sharon Mercurio, Acton COA, (978) 929-6652|
|Kristine Shah, Arlington COA, (781) 316-3400|
|Mystic Valley||Chelsea, Everett, Malden, Medford, Melrose, North Reading, Reading, Revere, Stoneham, Wakefield, Winthrop||TBD|
|Greater Lynn Senior Services, and SeniorCare||Beverly, Essex, Gloucester, Hamilton, Ipswich, Lynn, Lynnfield, Manchester-by-the-Sea, Nahant, Rockport, Saugus, Swampscott, Topsfield, Wenham||Theresa Woodbury, Hamilton COA, (978) 468-5595|
|AgeSpan||Amesbury, Andover, Billerica, Boxford, Chelmsford, Danvers, Dracut, Dunstable, Georgetown, Groveland, Haverhill, Lawrence, Lowell, Marblehead, Merrimac, Middleton, Methuen, Newbury, Newburyport, North Andover, Peabody, Rowley, Salem, Salisbury, Tewksbury, Tyngsborough, West Newbury, Westford||Pam Blaquiere, Boxford COA, (978) 887-3591|
|Colleen Ranshaw-Fiorello, Georgetown, (978) 352-5726|
|Bethany Loveless, Dracut COA, (978) 957-2611|
|Brienne Walsh, Merrimac COA, (978) 948-7637|
|Jean Bushnell, Billerica COA, (978) 671-0916|
|Kathy Shelp, North Andover COA, (978) 688-9560|
|Southeast District: Moore, Hunt, Biswas, Hill|
|Coastline||Acushnet, Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Gosnold, Marion, Mattapoisett, New Bedford, Rochester||Jackie Coucci, Mattapoisett COA, (508) 758-4110|
|Cynthia Wallquist, New Bedford COA, (508) 991-6251|
|Amy DiPietro, Dartmouth COA, (508) 999-4717|
|South Shore||Braintree, Cohasset, Hingham, Holbrook, Hull, Milton, Norwell, Quincy, Randolph, Scituate, Weymouth||Linda Kelley, Scituate COA, (781) 545-8722|
|Susan Curtin, Norwell COA, (781) 659-7878|
|Old Colony||Abington, Avon, Bridgewater, Brockton, Carver, Duxbury, East Bridgewater, Easton, Halifax, Hanover, Hanson, Kingston, Lakeville, Marshfield, Middleborough, Pembroke, Plymouth, Plympton, Rockland, Stoughton, Wareham, West Bridgewater, Whitman||Carol C. Hamilton, Marshfield COA, (781) 834-5581|
|Michelle Bratti, Plymouth COA, (508) 830-4230|
|Gretchen Emmetts, Pembroke COA, (781) 294-8220|
|Emily Williams, Bridgewater COA, (508) 697-0929|
|Cape & Islands||Aquinnah, Barnstable, Bourne, Brewster, Buzzards Bay, Chatham, Chilmark, Dennis, Eastham, Edgartown, Falmouth, Gay Head, Harwich, Hyannis, Mashpee, Nantucket, Oak Bluffs, Orleans, Provincetown, Sandwich, Tisbury, Truro, Wellfleet, West Tisbury, Yarmouth||Judi Wilson, Orleans COA, (508) 255-6333|
|Bristol County||Attleboro, Berkley, Dighton, Fall River, Freetown, Mansfield, North Attleboro, North Westport, Norton, Raynham, Rehoboth, Seekonk, Somerset, Swansea, Taunton, Westport||Beverly Bisch, Westport COA, (508) 636-1026|
|Laurie Pimentel, Swansea COA, (508)676-1831|
|Metro District: Shea, Pacheco, Murray, O’Donnell|
|BayPath||Ashland, Dover, Framingham, Holliston, Hopkinton, Hudson, Marlborough, Natick, Northborough, Sherborn, Southborough, Sudbury, Wayland, Westborough||Trish Pope, Marlborough COA, (978) 485-6492|
|Amy Beck, Hopkinton COA, (508) 497-9730|
|Randy Aylsworth, Framingham COA, (508) 532-5980|
|Boston, Cambridge, Somerville, Chelsea, Revere, Winthrop||Boston, Cambridge, Somerville, Chelsea, Revere, Winthrop||Melissa Carlson, Boston AgeStrong Commission, (617) 635-4366|
|Springwell||Belmont, Brookline, Chestnut Hill, Needham, Newton, Waltham, Watertown, Wellesley, Weston||LaTanya Steele, Needham COA (781) 455-7555|
|HESSCO||Canton, Dedham, Foxborough, Medfield, Millis, Norfolk, Norwood, Plainville, Sharon, Walpole, Westwood, Wrentham||Lina Arena-DeRosa, Westwood COA, (781) 329-8799|
|Kathie Medieros, Sharon COA, (781) 784-8000|
|Kerri McManama, Walpole COA, (508) 668-3330|
|Central District: Waters, Long, Dutil
|Aging Services of North Central Massachusetts||Ashburnham, Ashby, Ayer, Berlin, Bolton, Clinton, Fitchburg, Gardner, Groton, Hubbardston, Lancaster, Leominster, Lunenburg, Pepperell, Princeton, Shirley, Sterling, Templeton, Townsend, Westminster, Winchendon||Debra Goodsell, Clinton COA, (978) 365-9416|
|Elder Services of Worcester Area||Auburn, Barre, Boylston, Grafton, Hardwick, Holden, Leicester, Millbury, New Braintree, Oakham, Paxton, Rutland, Shrewsbury, West Boylston, Worcester||Eileen Clarkson, Barre COA 978-355-5004|
|Tri-Valley||Bellingham, Blackstone, Brookfield, Charlton, Douglas, Dudley, East Brookfield, Franklin, Hopedale, Medway, Mendon, Milford, Millville, North Brookfield, Northbridge, Oxford, Southbridge, Spencer, Sturbridge, Sutton, Upton, Uxbridge, Warren, Webster, West Brookfield||Leslie Wong, Sturbridge COA, (508) 347-7575|
|West District: O’Grady, Moriarty, Zepke|
|Greater Springfield||Agawam, Brimfield, East Longmeadow, Hampden, Holland, Longmeadow, Monson, Palmer, Springfield, Wales,
West Springfield, Wilbraham
|Paula Dubord, Wilbraham COA, (413) 596-8379|
|Michael Squindo, Agawam COA, (413) 821-0604|
|WestMass ElderCare||Belchertown, Chicopee, Granby, Holyoke, Ludlow, South Hadley, Ware||Leslie Hennessey, South Hadley COA, (413) 538-5042|
|Sherry Manyak, Chicopee COA, (413) 534-3698|
|Highland Valley||Amherst, Blandford, Chester, Chesterfield, Cummington, Easthampton, Goshen, Granville, Hadley, Hatfield, Huntington, Middlefield, Montgomery, Northampton, Pelham, Plainfield, Russell, Southampton, Southwick, Tolland, Westfield, Westhampton, Williamsburg, Worthington||Tina Gorman, Westfield COA, (413) 562-6435|
|LifePath||Ashfield, Athol, Bernardston, Buckland, Charlemont, Colrain, Conway, Deerfield, Erving, Gill, Greenfield, Hawley, Heath, Leverett, Leyden, Monroe, Montague, New Salem, Northfield, Orange, Petersham, Phillipston, Rowe, Royalston, Shelburne, Shutesbury, Sunderland, Warwick, Wendell, Whately||Jennifer Remillard, South County Senior Center (Sunderland), (413)665-2141|
|Elder Services of Berkshire County||Adams, Alford, Becket, Cheshire, Clarksburg, Dalton, Egremont, Florida, Great Barrington, Hancock, Hinsdale, Lanesborough, Lee, Lenox, Monterey, Mount Washington, New Ashford, New Marlborough, North Adams, Otis, Peru, Pittsfield, Richmond, Sandisfield, Savoy, Sheffield, Stockbridge, Tyringham, Washington, West Stockbridge, Williamstown, Windsor||Jim Clark, Pittsfield COA, (413) 499-9346|
Betsy Connell, Executive Director
Strategic partnership building, leads and supports the agency’s goals and objectives, leadership and oversight of Elder Mental Health Outreach Teams (EMHOTs); grant administration, development implementation and management of the agency’s budget and programs.
Kathy Bowler, Director of Member Services
Provides technical assistance to local COAs and new Directors by promoting regionalization, certification, and accreditation. Coordinates all of MCOA’s training and events (conference, workgroups, membership meeting, etc.). Oversees development and updating of training materials, as well as the Cultural Competency Initiative.
Kelly Burke, Director of Member Services
Provides technical assistance to local COAs and new Directors. Coordinates transportation programs.
Susan Carp, Director of Member Services
Provides technical assistance to local COAs and new Directors. Coordinates outreach programs.
Tara Hammes, Director of Member Services – Healthy Aging & Nutrition
Provides technical assistance on healthy aging, wellness and nutrition programs.
Patty Sullivan, Program Director, Dementia Friendly Massachusetts
Oversees the Dementia Friendly Massachusetts Initiativ. Liaison with Supportive Day programs. Manages UCLA Memory Training and Age-Friendly Programs. Liaison with MA Gerontological Association
Shari Cox, Fiscal Manager
Provides management of grants, payroll, audit oversight, accounts payable and receivable.
Lynn Wolf, Communications Manager
Manages all communications and publications including Briefs and Newsletters, emails and mailings, and the MCOA website, including all contact lists. Provides support for registration and conference. Provides program management for Falls Prevention and Fitness Programs.