Show your appreciation of a great volunteer by nominating him or her for the 2018 AARP Oregon Andrus Award for Community Service. AARP’s most prestigious Oregon volunteer award recognizes individuals who are sharing their experience, talent and skills in ways that significantly enrich the lives of others.

The Andrus Award is AARP’s highest honor, given to an individual who embodies the principles of AARP’s founder, Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus.  While her name does not carry the instant recognition that the organization she founded does, Dr. Andrus believed in the power of ordinary people to do extraordinary things.

When Ethel died in 1967, President Johnson said, “The life of each citizen who seeks relentlessly to serve the national good is a most precious asset to this land. And the loss of such a citizen is a loss shared by every American.  In Ethel Percy Andrus, humanity had a trusting and untiring friend. She has left us all poorer by her death.  But by her enduring accomplishments, she has enriched not only us, but all succeeding generations of Americans.”

AARP’s founder pioneered affordable group health insurance for older persons a full seven years before Medicare was enacted.  She recognized that simple modifications to homes could make them safer and more comfortable for people as they aged.  She helped to change the very image of aging, focusing on zestfulness, lifelong learning, purpose and service to others.

Dr. Andrus demonstrated that one person can make a significant difference in the lives of others.  She also demonstrated that, together, an “army of useful citizens” can do what no one person can do alone.  Today, in significant part because of the work of Dr. Andrus, Americans are living longer, richer lives.

From the beginning, Dr. Andrus’ motto, “to serve, not to be served” has shaped AARP’s community service efforts in the state.  Each year, AARP Oregon honors the legacy of Dr. Andrus by awarding individuals who share Dr. Andrus’s foresight, sense of justice, individual empowerment and dedication to serving others. You can read more about her legacy in a column written by AARP CEO Jo Ann Jenkins.

Daryl Swan with her award and nominator Betty Coe DeBroekert

The purpose of the award is to recognize outstanding individuals who are making a powerful difference in their communities in ways that advance AARP’s mission, vision, and commitment to volunteer service and that inspire others to volunteer. The Oregon winner in 2017 was Daryl Swan, recognized for numerous volunteer activities over two decades.

Following are the eligibility requirements:

• Nominee must be 50 years or older.
• The achievements, accomplishments, or service on which the nomination is based must have been performed on a volunteer basis, without pay.
• The achievements, accomplishments, or service on which the nomination is based must reflect AARP’s vision and mission.
• Couples or partners who perform service together are also eligible; however, teams are not eligible.
• This is not a posthumous award and nominees need not be a member of AARP.

If you nominate the winning volunteer, AARP will make a $500 donation on your behalf to a 501(c)(3) organization of your choice (subject to approval by AARP in its sole discretion).

Nominate someone today!