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AARP AARP States Minnesota Volunteering

Celebrating Volunteers

We ❤️ Volunteers

The heart of AARP Minnesota's work revolves around our volunteers. We are grateful to our volunteers who bring to life AARP’s purpose to empower people to choose how they live as they age. AARP volunteers are skilled, dedicated and passionate about giving back to their communities and helping the 50-plus population live their best lives.

This year, AARP Minnesota created two awards in honor an memory of two long-time, committed volunteer. In honor and memory of John Selstad, the Award for Excellence in Advocacy, and in honor and memory of Laverne Gilliam, the Award for Excellence in Community Service.

AARP Minnesota Award for Excellence in Advocacy

The 2023 AARP Minnesota Award for Excellence in Advocacy is awarded to Toni Mangskau. This award recognizes an outstanding AARP Minnesota volunteer who achieved a major advocacy accomplishment and exhibited commitment, perseverance, and collaboration in the pursuit of improving the lives of people 50 and older and their families.

23 MN Toni Advocacy Award

Toni is a tenacious advocate for family caregivers for over a decade. Her advocacy has contributed to the passage of several laws benefiting family caregivers, including the CARE Act and the historic passage of the Minnesota Paid Family and Medical Leave. Her willingness to speak from personal experience sent a powerful message to lawmakers and other family caregivers, many of whom she inspired to use their voice to advocate for better support. Her determination is evident through her work at the Minnesota State Capitol, attending hearings, speaking with lawmakers and the media, and organizing educational events for family caregivers in Rochester, all while being a caregiver herself.

AARP Minnesota Award for Excellence in Community Service

The 2023 AARP Minnesota Award for Excellence in Community Service has been awarded to Sandy Paulus and Toni Mula. This award recognizes outstanding AARP Minnesota volunteers who fostered significant community outreach and exhibited commitment, innovation, and mentorship in the pursuit of improving the lives of people 50 and older and their families.

23 MN Sandy & Toni Volunteer Award

Sandy and Toni are tireless, multi-faceted supporters of AARP initiatives. Their enthusiasm, knowledge, and commitment to supporting fellow volunteers help AARP Minnesota build a strong volunteer community, strengthening our community presence. Their positive impact on our community can be felt by all who have met them. Staff, volunteers, and peers recognize the breadth of knowledge and depth of their respective AARP experiences. They are both trusted sources for mentorship, new ideas, and representing our work.

In addition to these two awards, AARP celebrated the 2023 AARP Andrus Award for Community Service for Minnesota, awarded to Sara Barsel. This award recognizes individuals who are sharing their experience, talent and skills to enrich their communities in ways that are consistent with AARP’s purpose and vision. Their commitment to volunteer service embodies AARP's founder, Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus, belief in the power of ordinary people to do extraordinary things. Read more about the Andrus Award and Sara Barsel.

All three of these outstanding volunteers' records of achievement, service, and commitment provide an extraordinary example of the difference that volunteerism can make in the lives of individuals and in the well-being and vitality of a community.

We are looking for volunteers across Minnesota.

Contact AARP Minnesota
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