stephanie lane

Stephanie Lane, executive director of Shires Housing since 2015, has resigned.

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BENNINGTON — Stephanie Lane has resigned from her position as executive director of the Shires Housing after leading the nonprofit housing development and management organization since 2015.

“It is with both sadness and gratitude that we announce that Stephanie Lane has resigned as the executive director of Shires Housing,” said a statement released Wednesday by the board of directors. “We are grateful for Stephanie’s many significant contributions to Shires and our community. The board wishes her the very best in her future endeavors.”

The board statement said consultant Connie Snow “will assist the board and staff during this period of transition.”

In addition, Shires development assistant and communications specialist Madison Kremer has been appointed interim associate director.

The board said Shires has begun a search for an interim executive director.

“Connie was the founding executive director of the Windham & Windsor Housing Trust and served for 30 years until retiring in 2017,” the statement said of Snow. “She has been working as an organizational consultant in the nonprofit affordable housing arena since retiring from WWHT.”

MULTIPLE PROJECTS

The board statement noted that Lane had “helped grow the organization and strengthen important strategic partnerships. Under her leadership, Shires completed a number of impactful development projects, including Monument View and Lake Paran Village.”

However, in recent months after Lane took a leave of absence, Shires stepped back from some development projects, including its planned participation with the town in redevelopment of the former Bennington High School building on Main Street.

The project, in which the town now hopes to partner with Hale Resources to provide housing units, would include municipal recreation and senior center programming.

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Kremer confirmed the withdrawal in August, saying, “While Shires is unable to commit the resources needed to this project at this time, we look forward to working with Bennington on future opportunities.”

The nonprofit organization had notified supporters and development partners of Shires earlier this summer that Lane had taken a leave of absence from her job.

Shires board President Kathryn Leech said in part, “While the Shires board and staff are working to ensure that our properties and programs continue to be managed effectively and that planned developments continue to move forward, we recognize that there will be some disruptions during this period.”

The board statement issued Wednesday followed discussion of Lane’s status with Shires and its impact on possible housing development projects.

Consultant Joseph White, of White and Burke of Burlington, said during a meeting in Manchester that Shires was interested in a project on town-owned property but indicated that it could not be a development partner in the short term because “with the executive director resigning, all new development projects are on hold.”

HIRED IN 2015

Lane was hired by Shires in 2015.

She previously worked with Housing Resources of Columbia County in New York for seven years and served as executive director for five of those years.

Lane replaced John Broderick, who was hired as executive director in 2009 and left in May 2015.

Jim Therrien writes for Vermont News and Media, including the Bennington Banner, Manchester Journal and Brattleboro Reformer. Email jtherrien@benningtonbanner.com

Reporter/editor

Jim Therrien reports for the three Vermont News and Media newspapers in Southern Vermont. He previously worked as a reporter and editor at the Berkshire Eagle, the Bennington Banner, the Springfield Republican, and the former North Adams Transcript.


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