January 2, 2013

Mitchell named secretary of Area Five board

Additional position will help Mitchell with Emmaus and Area Five while benefiting the community

by Amie Sites

— Jason Mitchell, executive director of Emmaus Mission Center, was named secretary to the Agency Five Agency on Aging and Community Services 2013 board of director officers in December.

Mitchell has had experience working with Area Five. Last year he was the liaison between the board of director officers and the Head Start council.

As secretary, Mitchell said he will be taking minutes from the meeting, submit them to the board of directors and attend executive meetings.

“Working with the agency gives me a more in-depth look at Area Five and that can only benefit our community,” Mitchell said. “They do so much, it’s hard to know what all they are doing.”

Mitchell said it gives him an idea of what Area Five is doing and it allows him to give his clients the benefits of Emmaus, Area Five and well-rounded care.

Mike Meagher, executive director of Area Five, said the board members will set policy for the board and agency, direct staff in the direction they think the agency should be headed and they will set priorities on what goals should be targeted, whether that is through changes or board reviews.

Meagher said the officers provide leadership for the board. The board members are comprised of elected officials or representatives, low income representatives and people from community can be recommended to the board.

Meagher said the head start policy council is required to have a representative on the board and they elected Mitchell to take the responsibility.

Mitchell was nominated for the secretary position by the Head Start council. Mitchell said he had been with Head Start for a few years and was honored they would consider him for the position.

“It’s critical the board have leadership and guidance,” Meagher said. “We’re very appreciative for those folks who took those positions and are willing to serve.”

Meagher said it adds two or three meetings a month which requires additional work.

Officers are up for election every year, but they can old the position for three years, Meagher said. The board has 15 members.

The secretary position will be in addition to the work Mitchell does at Emmaus. As executive director of Emmaus, Mitchell is responsible for the oversight of making sure the board’s vision of Emmaus is in the right direction, externally works with the Cass County Resource Network and makes sure people are getting enough food.

Mitchell has been working at Emmaus for about nine years.

“It’s kind of nerve racking because it’s another level of responsibility,” Mitchell said. “I like the professionalism and the dedication of the board. They really do take an active part.”

Mitchell said he is looking forward to sinking his teeth into a new territory.

Amie Sites is a reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. She can be reached at 574-732-5150 or

2013 Board of Director Officers

President: Chad Higgins

Vice President: Jim Bibby

Secretary: Jason Mitchell

Treasurer: Sandy Markert