Melodía Gutiérrez is an associate state director of outreach & advocacy for AARP Texas

— AARP Texas is proud to announce and welcome Melodía Gutiérrez to the Association’s Dallas-Fort Worth team. Gutiérrez, an AARP associate state director of outreach and advocacy, is leading AARP’s work in Fort Worth and surrounding areas. Gutiérrez joined the staff of AARP Texas in late May from the American Association of University Women, an advocacy group that promotes equity and education for women and girls. A recognized team player and consensus builder, Gutiérrez will work closely with AARP volunteers in …

Home healthcare nurse checks patient's blood pressure

— By Mark Hollis Fifty-one years ago, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Older American Act (OAA) into law to help seniors age with dignity and independence in their homes and communities. AARP founder Ethel Percy Andrus was instrumental in helping make the law a reality. Today, it remains a pillar of America’s support system for older people. The OAA benefits millions of Texans and other at-risk older Americans through programs like Meals-on-Wheels, health and transportation services, family caregiver assistance, elder abuse …

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— By Claudia Aguilar Things are heating up in Texas. By the looks of it, this is just the beginning of a long, hot summer. Heat indexes and temperatures have already hit triple digits in many places across the state. For Texas natives and Texas transplants alike, it’s a great time to review ways to stay safe in our extreme environment. Be careful when heading outside for afternoon activities. Adults age 65 and older are particularly susceptible to heat stress, often …

Teacher Link Ermis, a retired Marine in Huntsville, worries about reduced benefits. Photo by Eric Kayne.

— By Tracy Sutton Schorn Cynthia Stubblefield, 60, of Mansfield, worked at J.C. Penney for 27 years, paying into Social Security. A recent statement from the agency said she stood to receive about $1,200 a month if she retired in two years. But when she called Social Security and said she had been a teacher’s aide in Arlington for the last 13 years, they recalculated her benefit to be hundreds of dollars less a month. “I was so upset and crying,” …

— Some 12 to 13 million Texans should pay particular attention now that all major presidential candidates have come forward with their plans to keep Social Security strong and solvent for current and future generations. That’s approximately the number of Texans who are now paying Social Security taxes — both salary and wage earners as well as the self-employed. The July issue of AARP Bulletin will feature the candidates’ responses. But laying out a plan and making sure it works as …

Carmel Perez Snyder

— For her exceptional accomplishments in Fort Worth, AARP’s Carmel Perez Snyder has been named the 2016 recipient of the Association’s Maureen McKoy Award for Excellence in Service. The prestigious award is given annually to an AARP employee who has displayed tremendous leadership by fostering volunteer engagement and community outreach. Carmel led the Association’s work in Fort Worth since 2010, until moving to Oregon last month to be closer to family. Now she holds a similar position for AARP in that …

Tim Morstad

— Today, Tim Morstad, who leads AARP’s advocacy work in Texas on several consumer issues, explained how to bring retirement security to more Texans at the RAISE Texas Summit at the Federal Reserve Board in Dallas. “This issue is important because it’s so widespread,” says Morstad, who serves as the RAISE Texas board president. “One in four Texans between the ages of 40 and 64 has less than $5,000 in retirement savings.” “People are exponentially more likely to save through their …

AARP volunteers and staff from California, Florida, New York, Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas gather in San Antonio.

— AARP leaders from the nation’s most populous states gathered in San Antonio this week for talks about the Association’s work in communities, which aims to fully engage members and non-members alike. For nearly three days, AARP Texas volunteers and staff hosted peers from California, Florida, New York, Illinois, Pennsylvania and Ohio. Combined, the population of the seven states comprise more than 142 million Americans. The AARP leaders held a broad range of discussions, including conversations about how to strengthen AARP’s …

Julie Krawczyk, director of the Elder Financial Safety Center, works to prevent and prosecute scams. Photo by Brandon Thibodeaux

— By Thomas Korosec Julie Krawczyk, director of the Elder Financial Safety Center, has seen a flood of cases like this: Four years ago, an 89-year-old Dallas woman, widowed with no family, moved to a care facility after she fell and broke her hip. She granted a friend from her church control of her finances and authority to act in her place. The so-called friend abused that trust by liquidating $145,000 in stocks, selling the woman’s home and spending the proceeds …