Oct 30, 2018
AARP Announces 2018 AARP Purpose Prize Winners; Five $60K Awards Will Be Presented at Dec. 5 Gala in D.C.

En español | WASHINGTON, DC—Today AARP announced the five winners of the 2018 AARP® Purpose Prize® award which recognizes outstanding work by people age 50 and over that is focused on advancing social good. In recognition of their outstanding work, each winner will receive a $60,000 award from AARP at the AARP Purpose Prize Award Gala, to be held in Washington, D.C. on December 5, 2018, featuring a conversation with Pulitzer Prize-winning author and historian, Doris Kearns Goodwin.  

Concurrently, 10 AARP Purpose Prize Fellows were announced, who will be also honored at the Washington, D.C. gala for the community-focused work of the organizations they each lead. Each Fellow will receive a $5,000 award to further the missions of their organizations.

“In just about every community in the country there are older adults who find unique ways to address tough social challenges and help others. We are proud to highlight some of the very best examples of this with the AARP Purpose Prize award,” said AARP CEO Jo Ann Jenkins.

The winners of the 2018 AARP Purpose Prize award are:

Sayu Bhojwani, New American Leaders, New York, New York – New American Leaders seeks to inspire immigrants (first- and second-generation Americans) to run for elected office and provides support and training to those who do.

Karen Cassidy, Hildegard House, Louisville, Kentucky – Hildegard House provides a home and caregivers for terminally ill people who are homeless or without family.

Susan Cotton, The Lily Project, Westlake Village, California – The Lily Project provides cervical cancer screening and treatment to women in Nicaragua’s rural villages.

Bettye Perkins, Today’s Students Tomorrow’s Teachers, Elmsford, New York – Today’s Students Tomorrow’s Teachers mentors high school students from culturally diverse and economically challenged backgrounds who are interested in pursuing a career in teaching, providing financial assistance to attend college and build a career in education.

Monica Kamal Spaeni, Access Ability Wisconsin, McFarland, Wisconsin – Spaeni, paralyzed after a skiing accident, leads Access Ability Wisconsin which works to make outdoor wheelchairs and sporting equipment available to people with disabilities free of charge.

The 10 2018 AARP Purpose Prize Fellows are: 

Kristy Baxter and Mark Griffin, Understood.org, New York, New York; Patrick Coggins, AskMyBuddy, Boca Raton, Florida; Nora de Hoyos Comstock, Las Comadres Para Las Americas, Austin, Texas; Donna Gambrell, Appalachian Community Capital, Christiansburg, Virginia; Lisa Gualtieri, Recycle Health, Boston, Massachusetts; Marc Sophos, Media for the Public Good/OutCasting Media, Dobbs Ferry, New York; Laura Talmus, Beyond Differences, San Rafael, California; Sheila Warnock, Share The Caregiving, New York, New York; and Karen Young, Sweet Readers, New York, New York.

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About AARP
AARP is the nation’s largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering people 50 and older to choose how they live as they age. With a nationwide presence and nearly 38 million members, AARP strengthens communities and advocates for what matters most to families: health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. AARP also produces the nation's largest circulation publications: AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. To learn more, visit www.aarp.org or follow @AARP and @AARPadvocates on social media.

For further information: AARP Media Relations, 202-434-2560, media@aarp.org, @AARPMedia