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AARP AARP States Idaho

Barbara Blasch Named AARP Idaho State President


The state president is a volunteer who serves as spokesperson and representative for AARP across Idaho. In this role, Blasch will chair the all-volunteer Executive Council, a diverse group of professionals who provide advice and counsel to advance AARP’s social mission in Idaho.

Prior to her appointment, Blasch served on the Executive Council for six years, serving as volunteer leader for the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program and the National Retried Teacher’s Association. Overall, Blasch has volunteered with AARP for the past eleven years working primarily with the Tax-Aide program but also within the Livable Communities program, Fraud Watch Network, New Knowledge Adventures (adult continuing education program) and as a legislative advocate at the Capitol.

Blasch brings to her new role extensive experience in education and public instruction. Having earned a Bachelor of Science in Education from Northern Illinois University, Master’s Degree in Education from Western Michigan University and a Doctorate (EdD) from the University of Georgia,

Blasch spent 36 years teaching in public schools with 28 of those in junior high special education. Throughout her career, Blasch has been an innovator and leader in education serving on several boards and committees of distinction including President of the Gwinnett County Association of Educators, Georgia Association of Educators and the National Education Association.

“We are thrilled to have Barbara as our new state president,” said AARP Idaho state director Lupe Wissel. “Barbara’s contributions to the Executive Council and as an ambassador on a multitude of programs and campaigns has helped position AARP as a trusted leader in Idaho. Barbara is committed to championing the issues that matter most to Idahoans 50 and older and their families.”

As volunteer state president, Blasch will work in close partnership with the state director Lupe Wissel to co-lead the Idaho Executive Council, as well as collaborate with other volunteers and staff to advance AARP priority issues, such as promoting “age-friendly” communities, supporting family caregivers, awareness and prevention of fraud, and promoting financial resilience among the 50+ population.

AARP Idaho represents more than 184,000 members across the Gem State. Five staff and more than 400 volunteers serve AARP Idaho members through community engagements, programming, and advocacy.

Blasch succeeds Dr. Bessie Katsilometes, who served with distinction as state president for AARP Idaho since 2020.

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