Longtime New Eagle administrator retiring
It's been four decades since Linda Hall moved to New Eagle in the spring of 1974.
“My town at the time was about the same size, so it was like coming home,” Hall said.
After more than 33 years of service to her adopted home, Hall will be retiring as New Eagle's secretary/treasurer/administrator at the end of the year.
She fields residents' complaints, does payroll, pays the bills, prepares all financial reports and prepares the budget.
“Over the years, the responsibilities of this job have grown,” Hall said. “It's not just a typewriter and answering phones. I was told by one former council president with my raises came more responsibilities.”
Hall first started working for New Eagle Borough on April 1, 1980.
“My daughter was in first grade and was going to be there all day,” Hall said. “I was looking for a part-time job and didn't drive so I wanted something close. I heard about this job.”
Hall had lived in New Eagle for just six years when she took the position with the borough.
“I got an opportunity to meet all of the people of New Eagle,” Hall said. “Most of the people were nice about things.”
The job was a perfect fit for Hall, who had secretarial/bookkeeping experience.
She grew up in Montoursville, graduating from Montoursville High School in 1968 and Williamsport School of Commerce's executive secretarial program in January 1970.
She then worked for Etna Life and Casuality before deciding to go back to school, attending Fort Lauderdale University to earn a bachelor of science degree in business administration.
In the fall of 1972 she met her late husband, Larry, in Florida, where he was general manager of an air-conditioning company. His family was from New Eagle, although his parents used to winter in Florida.
Married April 7, 1973, the couple lived in Florida for a year before moving to New Eagle.
“Our apartment complex got sold and our rent quadrupled, so we decided to move back here,” Hall said.
In New Eagle, Larry Hall worked for his father's construction company doing masonry work. The couple had been married 17 years when he passed away Dec. 10, 1990.
Her daughter, Kim Hall, 40, lives in Carroll Township. Hall has a 17-year-old granddaughter, Marissa.
Hall has enjoyed the job, which plays to her strengths.
“I like working with numbers and the budget and running the borough in the most efficient way, providing services but running the borough frugally,” Hall said.
Hall said the most frustrating part of her job has been dealing with impatient people.
“I would do my best to help them, but sometimes they have to talk to their elected officials,” Hall said.
Sitting at her desk, working at the computer to conduct borough business, Hall recalled when she had to write all borough records by hand.
Hall preferred to stay behind the scenes, never entertaining a thought about running for office.
She said in retirement she will miss the people she has worked with for so long.
“The officials I'm working for now, they're a real good group of people. And my co-workers Vicky Shurgott, who I'm training to take over the position, along with Donna Bove at the sewage authority, and tax collector Cathy Pro.
“(Council President) Jack Fine and I have a very good working relationship.”
Fine's son, Chaz, will become mayor in January.
“It's nice to see a younger person taking an interest in municipal government,” Hall said.
Linda has seen New Eagle's 75th and 100th anniversaries. Her husband led a committee that planned the diamond anniversary. Linda Hall led up the 100th anniversary event.
Hall is at peace with her decision to retire.
“I just felt it was time for someone else to take over this job,” Hall said.
She's looking forward to a slower pace, setting aside time to enjoy her enjoy her pastimes of knitting and reading. She plans to also travel more often to central Pennsylvania to check up on her mother, Ellen, who is 90 and living in an assisted living residence.
She also plans to find some part-time work to keep herself busy.
During a recent borough council meeting, Hall was surprised with some farewell gifts: a citation from state Rep. Rick Saccone and plaques from the Washington County Commissioners and borough council.
Chris Buckley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2642 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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