Hacker to lead Senior Services

ST. CLAIRSVILLE – During their Monday meeting, Belmont County Commissioners named the program coordinator for the newly established Department of Senior Services. David Hacker will officially step into the leadership role on Oct. 1.

Hacker currently serves as the Director of Programs and Services for Easter Seals of West Virginia and Southeastern Ohio. In this role he has been responsible for the oversight of services delivered to families in the Ohio Valley, including those in Belmont County. Additionally, his areas of responsibility have included human resources, strategic and budget planning, technology, and compliance.

He previously served as the director of human resources and personnel for Russell Nesbitt Services, Inc., and as a data analyst for United States Department of Justice, Office of the United States Attorney for the Northern District of West Virginia.

His wife, Allison, is an intervention specialist, working with the Martins Ferry City Schools District. They reside in Martins Ferry with their two year old daughter, Ashlyn.

Hacker said he is excited to be a part of developing a distinct department established within the county.

“There have been a lot of changes over the course of many years for seniors in our county,” Hacker said. “I look forward to working with current and new staff to provide a foundation that meets the needs of our seniors.”

He added that the department will continue to address the current needs of seniors in the county, including transportation, food service, established senior centers, and provided in home services. In addition, the department will continually evaluate the need for additional or modified service lines.

Hacker indicated that he has been working very closely with the commissioners through the transition process, and will begin working with current staff to ensure seniors notice no interruption to their current services.

“I’ve had opportunities to speak with the commissioners and current staff about the planned transition process,” Hacker said, adding that he expected the open dialogue to continue as the newly established department develops. He added that he will also continue to acquaint himself with the staff and current practices so that he can enhance the programs and initiatives in place.

“I’m very confident in the abilities of the staff currently providing services, and look forward to developing additional initiatives with their assistance and input,” he said.

During prior meetings, guests have inquired about the need for a routine status reports and updates in regards to the state of services and future plans for the county.

“My first goal is to get to know the individuals who receive the services, our seniors. It is most important that I understand their needs and concerns. I think that by establishing senior services as a standalone department, status reports and updates will become a common element. Transparency is important, and we want people to feel that they have confidence in our department, and that we continue to provide assistance to those who need it.

“Staff members view the individuals they serve as extended family, and treat everyone with courtesy and respect,” he said. “This will remain the basis for how our department will operate, and I believe that moving forward, this department is something the citizens of Belmont County will be very proud of.”

DeFarnk may be erached at rdefrank@timesleaderonline.com