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Commentary - Esterberg is sounding warning bell

By Joyce Martinson, board president, Alexandria Senior Center

This is in response to the article and the editorial concerning the Alexandria Senior Center. The one thing missing from this one-sided account is a response from the Alexandria Senior Center.

This is not a personnel issue, and Paul Anderson makes it appear as one. Ann Esterberg is sounding the warning bell because Anderson's agenda is to close down the Alexandria Senior Center in two months (one month is already gone), and the board will deal with selling the senior center later.

Ask Anderson what his plans are. Failing at that, Anderson (who is working with NSI) wants to remove the Meals on Wheels program (run by NSI) and take it to either Knute Nelson nursing home or to the senior center in Glenwood. The last option would mean all those meals currently made at the Alex Senior Center would have to be transported back to Alexandria.

Anderson had an agenda coming on the board in February 2013 and it wasn't to work for the betterment of the Alexandria Senior Center.

NSI pays the senior center a monthly utility reimbursement. However, their share comes far short of what a fair reimbursement should be.

The senior center front-desk receptionists are the volunteers who know the workings best of the senior center, as they spend the most volunteer hours with Esterberg, and they think she has been very unfairly portrayed.

The top priorities are the seniors and the senior center, and Anderson has chosen to make the senior center a second thought instead of a number-one priority.

Towne Square Apartments is locally owned and operated by another individual in town and Esterberg has lent her helping hand numerous times in the dozen years she has worked for the senior center. Why does she do it? Because she's there, the owner isn't, and it's just the right thing to do. Esterberg fields complaints for NSI and Towne Square all the time because the public thinks she runs the entire building; and she doesn't.

The public needs to know the whole story, so please take the time to find out. Don't allow Anderson to close down the senior center and move the Meals on Wheels program from the Alexandria Senior Center.