Schenectady ARC executive director resigns after 25 years

Linda Lahaie credited with developing relationships with business community

After leading the Schenectady ARC for over 25 years, Linda Lahaie announced she is resigning her post at the end of the year.

I have enjoyed this great opportunity to lead such an exceptional organization, said Lahaie in statement. "I remember how different it was when I came to Schenectady ARC ... I sometimes can't believe how far we have come in such a short time."

In 1984, Lahaie was selected to be executive director of the not-for-profit organization committed to helping people with developmental disabilities experience quality lives. When she first joined in 1983, she was the director of day treatment. The reason she gave for resigning is to explore other endeavors, but exact details are currently unknown.

"She hasn't laid out what her plans are she hasn't told anybody about any specifics on what she does plan to do," said Marc DeNofio, spokesman for Schenectady ARC. "As time goes on those plans might come more to the forefront."

When Lahaie took leadership of the organization there were 75 employees and 4 residences and about 200 individuals were served, but now ARC is serving over 1000 people and has over 550 employees.

"She leaves Schenectady ARC a stronger and more financially secure agency," said Mary Otter, chair of the board of directors.

There are also 21 houses, a vocational center and various programs and services offered by the group. Becoming certified as an Article 28 clinic also expanded clinical services, which now holds an operating budget of $28 million.

"Linda's contribution to the human services field in the Capital Region cannot be overstated," Otter said. "Linda has established Schenectady ARC as the leading agency for providing services to individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities in Schenectady County. Her ability to reach across the table and develop partnerships has strengthened the mission and vision of Schenectady ARC."

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