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Brooksby woman named one of the North Shore's top 100 influential people

Created date

August 23rd, 2010

[caption id="attachment_13904" align="alignright" width="280" caption="Loretta Tenaglia holds up the magazine in which she appeared as one of the North Shore s 100 most influential people. (Photo by Setarreh Massihzadegan)"][/caption] She is a familiar face at Brooksby Village, but one rarely seen sitting still. Fortunately, between jetting off to meetings of the Peabody Housing Authority, leading the ushers at the latest variety show, and organizing visits from high-profile politicians, Loretta Tenaglia found time to be honored as one of the North Shore s 100 most influential people. It was a humbling experience for me because there are so many people who do so much, Tenaglia says. I see so many people giving so much time; I never expected to be chosen. I couldn t think of myself as being one of the 100. Those selected by the North Shore Chamber of Commerce and The Salem News as the North Shore 100 were featured in a special April 2010 publication and honored with a luncheon at the Danversport Yacht Club. Tenaglia was awed by her peers there, among them a youngwoman who had collected used prom dresses to distribute to those less fortunate. Tenaglia was selected for her dedication to her community. As a member of the Peabody Housing Authority and its subcommittee on affordable housing, Tenaglia advocates for lower-income people in need of assisted living. Tenaglia s leadership and volunteerism have been lauded at Brooksby as well. She is called a Brooksby pioneer because she moved in just after it opened ten years ago, but the term pioneer takes on new meaning in light of her efforts there. Brooksby s activities are driven by the people who call the community home, and Tenaglia wasted no time organizing games like bingo and Crazy Whist, now institutions on campus. Loretta has so much energy and cares very deeply for Brooksby Village as a special place to live, work, volunteer, and give of our own special gifts to help others, says Mary Landry, Brooksby s community resources coordinator who has worked with Tenaglia on a number of the activities. Always abreast of local politics, Tenaglia has chaired Brooksby s Political Outreach Group for nearly ten years, bringing congressmen, governors, and senators to speak to audiences on campus. Landry adds, Her heart is always in the right place and she greatly values fairness and educating folks on all sides of political matters. Tenaglia s list of accomplishments at Brooksby runs even longer. She helped found the Treasure Chest, Brooksby s thrift store that benefits the community s Benevolent Care Fund. The fund supports those who encounter financial hardship while living in the community. Tenaglia proudly points out that the store has made more than $250,000 to date and recently moved into a bigger location to support its growth. [caption id="attachment_13905" align="alignright" width="280" caption="Loretta Tenaglia sits on her patio at Brooksby Village, where she has been lauded for her leadership. (Photo by Setarreh Massihzadegan)"][/caption]

Giving back

As one of the North Shore s most influential people, Tenaglia was given $500 to present to the charity of her choice. It was no question for her to give that money back to Brooksby s Benevolent Care Fund. Naturally, because a lot of my family here may need that someday, she says. Tenaglia gained her new family after moving to Brooksby from Danvers, Mass., shortly after her husband died and following diligent research. Before moving to Brooksby, she says, What I saw was that people were so isolated. Isolation becomes the biggest problem, and I didn t want that to happen to me. In the past ten years, Tenaglia has not only spearheaded organizations with her peers at Brooksby, but she has also welcomed about 3,000 visitors into her apartment home for a look at life on campus. I enjoy doing everything that I ve done here, Tenaglia says. It s filled a void in my life and I really appreciate being able to be in a community like this, because my parents and my grandparents didn t have an opportunity like this. She adds, I feel blessed that I ve been able to enjoy this quality of life. Tenaglia says she has her father to thank for the belief that she is fulfilling her obligation to use her talents, one she continues to this day. I want my years to count for something; I want to do something that is beneficial, she says, adding, Whenever there s a call, if I m needed, if I m able, I ll do whatever I can. Speaking specifically of her efforts at Brooksby, she reflects: It s been a really fast ten years. I thought I would retire and life would slow down and I would travel, but [at Brooksby] I got involved in so many things.