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The YWCA of Niagara will assume management responsibilities for the YWCA of the Tonawandas and Niagara Frontier.

The agreement reached by both boards earlier this weeks begins Tuesday with the retirement of Jill Townson, executive director of the YWCA of the Tonawandas. The agreement also launches “an exploratory period” on a possible merger of both YWCA organizations.

Townson called the developemnt “exciting prospects for both agencies,” which have long cooperated on programs and services, including comprehensive domestic violence services.”

Kathleen Granchelli, YWCA of Niagara CEO, noted that a task force including members of both organizations has been meeting for the past several months on the metrger.

“If the merger is adopted, the new YWCA will have a broader capacity and will be best poised to provide services and programs to the women and familie of the Niagara area,” she said in a statement.

The YWCA of Niagara is at 32 Cottage St., Lockport, and the YWCA of the Tonawandas and Niagara Frontier, 49 Tremont St., North Tonawanda.