By Joan F. Simoneau, Community Reporter
Marlborough – Dan Fenn, former aide to President John F. Kennedy and founding director of the JFK Library in Boston which is part of the National Archives, shared his wealth of knowledge and experience with members and guests of the Marlborough Rotary Club at the Fish Restaurant Oct. 9.
“John Kennedy was very approachable, friendly, and had a good sense of humor,” Fenn said. “He was very wise and had the human approach when he worked with his staff.”
Fenn served as a staff assistant in the Office of the President from June 1961 to October 1963 and thoroughly enjoyed the duties he performed. He has also served as commissioner and vice chair of the United States Tariff Commission and as a special assistant to Senator Benjamin A. Smith (D) of Massachusetts.
During Kennedy’s administration, he had a staff of 77 people, according to Fenn, who compared it to the current 1,200 to 1,500 people working with President Barack Obama.
“There was a big increase in the Office of the President starting with the Nixon administration,” he told Rotarians, “and it just continued to grow.”
Fenn was living in Washington having lunch with friends when Kennedy’s assassination was announced. He went directly to the White House to help with arrangements for the man he considered a friend.
His position as an adjunct lecturer at the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government brings much enjoyment to his life, said the Lexington resident. He also recently served two terms as selectman in Lexington.
“I like being active in government and delivering messages that reflect my appreciation for our great country,” he said.