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  2013 Press Releases  

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December 13, 2013 

IL Dept on Aging honors advocates of older adults

Awards ceremony is the last event of the annual Governor’s Conference on Aging

CHICAGO - December 13, 2013.The Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) today presented awards to individuals and organizations that assist older adults.  The awards ceremony marks the end of the 2013 Governor’s Conference on Aging, the annual conference where advocates and experts from across the state gather to focus on issues that affect the aging population.  This was the 32nd consecutive year of the conference.  (A copy of the awards program, with bios and photos, accompanies this release).

“This three day conference is the largest statewide meeting of professionals who work in the aging network. 
It serves as the perfect opportunity to share ideas on ways to serve the needs of our aging population.  Today’s awards ceremony highlights advocacy efforts by those who serve this special population,” said IDoA Director
John K. Holton, Ph.D.

Director Holton presented the following awards to:

Jean Blaser, Ph.D., received the Charles D. Johnson Leader of Excellence Award for her leadership in developing the Community Care Program in Illinois. 

Linda Cousin-Stearman, of European Service at Home, Inc., received the Outstanding Caregiver Award for Older American Act Services. 

Maxine Cunningham, of the Central Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Chicago, received the Outstanding Caregiver Award for a nursing facility.

J. Kay Landers, of Glenhaven Gardens in Alton, received the Outstanding Caregiver Award for a housing facility.

Marta Licht, of Henry County Home Health Department, received the Outstanding Caregiver Award for Home Care and Hospice.

The following awards were presented by professional associations to individuals and organizations that provide “best services” to assist older adults.

Darlene Clutter, with Addus Healthcare Inc., in Springfield, is the D. Jeanne Tippett Scholarship winner, named by the Illinois Association of Community Care Program Homecare Providers.

Betty Erickson, Adult Day Service director of Fox Valley Older Adult Services in Sandwich, received the Sunlight Award from the Illinois Adult Day Service Association.

The Honorable State Representative Sara Feigenholtz, of Chicago, was recognized by AARP as the 2013 Legislator of the Year.  

Martha Litas, founder of Starlight Adult Day Care Services/Forever Young of Lincolnwood and Wheeling, received the Pillar of Service Award from the Coalition of Limited English Speaking Elderly (CLESE). 

Walter S. Meyers, of the Northeastern Illinois Area Agency on Aging, received the Sid Granet Aging Network Achievement Award from the Illinois Association of Area Agencies on Aging.

The Senior World Men’s Group of Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (IPMR), of Peoria, was recognized by the Illinois Adult Day Services Association for the Everything Under the Sun Award.   

Jane Stansell, director of the Alzheimer’s Family Care Center in Chicago, received the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Illinois Adult Day Services Association.

Tami Wacker, regional ombudsman, was named Ombudsman of the Year by the Illinois Association of Long-Term Care Ombudsman.

Barbra Wylie, director of the Peace Meal Senior Nutrition Program in Mattoon, received the Joyce Still Memorial Award from the Illinois Association of Nutrition Providers.

The Association of Illinois Senior Centers presented the Mind, Body and Spirit Award to two agencies:

  • Mascoutah Senior Services Program
  • Millstadt (Township) Senior Center

The Illinois Council of Case Coordination Units named two individuals as Care Coordinator of the Year:

  • Kristen Lair, with Alternatives for the Older Adult, and
  • Kristen Ritchie, with DuPage County Community Services

The Illinois Association of Community Care Program Homecare Providers named two individuals Supervisor of the Year:

  • Aurelia Salazar, with Addus HealthCare, Inc., in Hillside, and
  • Debra Smith, with ASI Services in Chicago


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Program (PDF)


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