Lois Magenau Retires From Town Office Position

Was Administrative Assistant for seven years

By Shelley Geoghegan, Beacon Staff
Lois Magenau was presented with a crown and a magic wand, along with other gifts, at her retirement luncheon, held at the Blackwater Junction Restaurant in December. Caption and photo: Shelley Geoghegan, Beacon Staff

Lois Magenau was usually the first person people saw when entering the Town Hall and going upstairs to take care of business. For seven years, she was employed by the Town of Andover as an Administrative Assistant to the Town Administrator and to the Select Board. She greeted everyone with a smile, and was very helpful, so when she announced her retirement this past December, effective early January, her co-workers were dismayed.

It shouldn’t have come as a surprise to anyone. After all, a big deal was made of her 80th Birthday in December. She decided it was time to free up her time to explore the world. In fact, as this paper goes to press, she is in China visiting her son (she promised to send us a picture of her holding up the Beacon). Lois isn’t one to sit still for a moment. She tried retirement for a few years before joining the Town Office.

Lois said that, prior to being hired by the Town Offices, she knew little about the town or the people in it. While she and her late husband, Roger, grew up in New Hampshire, they lived for many years in Minneapolis, Seattle, and then Southern California. The home she now lives in up on Ragged Mountain was the summer home of her late husband. In addition to her son in China, she has a son who lives in Portsmouth.

Her background includes a 29-year career as a corporate tax preparer for a large company in California. Working for a small town and learning about the workings of a municipality, turned out to be very different from the corporate world she was used to.  According to Lois, what she loved most about the position was meeting and greeting the townspeople, and “helping them out in anyway I could. That’s what I will miss most of all!” She elaborated about the range of personality types and talents found in Andover, and said she admires all of them.

As for the co-workers she is leaving behind on a daily basis, she said she “considers them good friends and very valuable to our town.” Also, she is very impressed with the number of volunteers who perform so many tasks for the town, and wants to thank them for their work. She said she “will look out for all of you around town and will be happy to see your familiar faces,” and thanks everyone for their kindness during her time as a town employee.

Her former co-workers at the Town Offices had these things to say about Lois:

“She had a young-hearted spirit, as well as lots of spunk. We will all miss her cheerful presence.” – Marj Roy, Town Administrator, and Elita Reed, Bookkeeper

“She’ll be missed terribly.” – Bonnie Wesley, Town Clerk

“We will miss her warm smile, sure to greet anyone who came into the town office. Her kindness and patience will be missed among many other things. Even when tested or put on the spot and faced with challenges, she kept her composure with style and grace.” – Stephanie Hurlbutt, Deputy Town Clerk/Tax Collector

“Lois and I became friends over the past four years of my time working for the Andover Beacon. I can attest to her kindness of spirit, generosity, and giving nature. While I’ll see her around town, I’ll miss seeing her on a daily basis when I come to work.” – Shelley Geoghegan, Publisher/Editor, Andover Beacon