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North Adams Administrator Taking Job in Fairhaven
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
04:32AM / Tuesday, March 01, 2022
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The city's administrative officer has been offered a post in the eastern end of the state. 
The Fairhaven Select Board on Monday night voted unanimously to appoint Angeline Lopes Ellison its town administrator with a start date of March 23 and an annual salary of $163,000. 
Lopes Ellison has been with the city just over a year. She started in North Adams in mid-November of 2020, replacing Michael Canales, who became town administrator in Stockbridge.
Mayor Jennifer Macksey said she was aware that Lopes Ellison had been named the finalist in Fairhaven and had wished her luck. The mayor said Fairhaven is closer to where she now resides and that Lopes Ellison told her she had family in that area. 
Macksey said she could not start any hiring process because, as of Monday afternoon, she only knew that Lopes Ellison was in the process of negotiating a contract so nothing had been settled yet. 
"I don't have a resignation," she said, but added she had started to transition some of her responsibilities with the hiring of Katherine Eade, the city's former administrative officer, as interim airport manager. 
"There's a lot going on here," Macksey said. "So depending on what happens with the Angie, I needed to at least get that component taken care of."
The Fairhaven board voted to appoint Lopes Ellison and then voted on the contract, "subject to the final approval by labor counsel." 
Lopes Ellison previously had been town manager of Uxbridge and town administrator of Blandford. She also had been a dean of student affairs for the University of Massachusetts at Boston and assistant dean at Framingham University. 
Fairhaven offered her the job on Feb. 10 at the conclusion of her interview and after two other finalists had dropped out. There were 39 applicants for the post. 
The town of more than 16,000 on Buzzard's Bay has been seeking a new administrator for the past year. This was the third attempt after the first search ended in controversy and the second also saw two of three finalists withdraw. The board determined to grant Lopes Ellison an interview rather than start over again. 
This search apparently caused some consternation. Chair Robert J. Espindola said it had been brought to his attention that one of the finalists had withdrawn his candidacy after being told by someone at Town Hall that the "Select Board was looking for a candidate of a certain gender, not theirs."
"I know my criteria for the next town administrator was about finding the best candidate for the town without bias or discrimination of any sort," he said, a point that was echoed by fellow board members Stasia Powers and Keith Silvia.
"It's unfair to Ms. Ellison if anyone thinks that that's why she got the job, that's absolutely false. And it's not fair to her. ...
"Even when she was the last one standing, we all felt comfortable enough to make a very, very lucrative offer to her."
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