Management Spotlight: Jane Mead ‘Comes Home’ to Clients She’s Known for Decades
Jane Mead is the new site manager for our Hallowell Road residence in Durham, and she says coming back to Independence Association “felt like coming home.”
Neither the clients nor the Hallowell Road location are new to Jane. Jane knew some of the residents when they lived and she worked at Pineland Hospital in New Gloucester more than two decades ago, and she opened Hallowell Road as a new home for them in 2006.
Jane worked with these clients after they transitioned from Pineland to the state-run Freeport Town Square residence and continued to work with them as we helped them move to Hallowell Road and three other residences.
Transitions are tough for everyone, and often especially hard for people with intellectual disabilities. When the State of Maine opened Freeport Town Square, it had promised client families that “we would never have to move our people again,” Jane recalls. So when DHHS planned to close that home barely 10 years later, the transition to four Independence Association residences was “under a big microscope,” she says.
To settle the 12 Freeport Town Square clients, Jane opened four new residences for Independence Association: Mae Lane in Topsham, Pleasant Hill Road and Church Road in Brunswick, and Hallowell Road in Durham.
“I didn’t realize how much pressure it was until I was done,” she admits.
Only Pleasant Hill Road was new construction; all the other facilities are located in former private residences that she identified as appropriate for the specific individuals who needed new homes.
Today, Jane has stepped out of not-quite-retirement to once again help manage a home for three adults, most of whom she has known and cared about for decades.
“This is what I’m called to do,” she says. “I make a place for and give voice to people whose voices are often not heard.”