WBFO Older Adults News Desk

The WBFO Older Adults News Desk is funded by the Health Foundation for Western and Central New York

Savvy Over 60: Patti Jones

Mar 20, 2019

Patti Jones has considered herself a typical female since she was a very young boy named Peter. She earned her degree in Mechanical Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology, joined the family machine and tool design company, taught skiing and snowboarding, raced sailboats, was "happily married to a wonderful woman" for 24 years and had a daughter. It was at the age of 50 - in 2004 - she formally transitioned and has since been dedicated to Western New York's LGBTQ communities as an activist and mentor. Jones shared her journey with WBFO.

University at Buffalo

Over six weeks in the summer of 2009, Alice Brennan went from an 88-year-old woman planning her 70th high school reunion to being dead. Her daughter spoke Thursday to a mixed student group of medical, pharmacy, physician assistant and physical therapy students at the University at Buffalo about what happened.

Savvy Over 60: Leslie Zemsky

Mar 13, 2019

Leslie Zemsky has perhaps the best job title in Western New York. As Director of Fun (and Vice President) of her family-run Larkin Development Group, she is helping infuse "whimsy amongst the warehouses" of what was Buffalo's first business district. A lifelong philanthropist dedicated to numerous nonprofit causes and board memberships, Zemsky began a creative new adventure in 2002 when the family sold its Russer Foods and bought the Larkin Terminal Warehouse at 726 Exchange St. Since then, the area has blossomed into a vibrant community hub powered by her altruistic energy, called Larkinville.

Savvy Over 60: Peg Overdorf

Mar 13, 2019
Valley Community Association

Down in the Valley is Margaret "Peg" Overdorf. Hang your head over the Michigan Avenue Lift Bridge and you can hear her wind blow. This year, Overdorf is celebrating 40 years as Executive Director of the Valley Community Association, from which has bloomed a renewal along the Ohio Street Corridor to the Buffalo River. You may not recognize their names, but the VCA, Overdorf and her close-knit army of volunteers are leaving their mark on our region, serving families and turning former polluted dumping grounds into waterfront destinations.

Sandy White / WBFO News

At a Laughter Yoga session at the Brighton Place Library in Tonawanda, a small group of 4 laughter yoga leaders, and a couple of participants all stand in a circle, gathered in the library’s community activity room. After introductions all the smiles quickly turn into giggles, and the awkwardness turns into openness.


Michael Mroziak File Photo / WBFO News

Attorney General William Barr and U.S. Attorney James Kennedy have announced the largest coordinated sweep of elder fraud cases in history, surpassing last year's nationwide sweep.

Savvy Over 60: Paula Feroleto

Mar 6, 2019
Marian Hetherly / WBFO News

During the housing crisis a decade ago, an estimated one-third of civil filings in New York State Supreme Court were foreclosures. "It was huge numbers," remembers the Hon. Paula Feroleto, "so the court had to adapt how cases were treated." Today issues like the opioids crisis, jailing people with mental illness and Buffalo's influx of refugees are requiring new thinking. As Administrative Judge of the Eighth Judicial District, Feroleto's role is to supervise all 95 judges and 850 employees in Western New York's 22 courts while preserving justice for all.

Savvy Over 60: Sheila Kee

Mar 6, 2019
Marian Hetherly / WBFO News

Few Western New Yorkers have led a hospital and fewer have been women. Then there is Sheila Kee. She has led three local hospitals, the Community Health Association of New York State and the Western Region for the state Health Department. Since September 2008, she has served as Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center, where her imprint can be found on many transformational initiatives. However, her career sprung from one of the most important periods in American politics.

Savvy Over 60: Ellen E. Grant

Mar 1, 2019
Weiss Institute / Say Yes to Education

Ellen E. Grant is a fellow at the Weiss Institute, an initiative of Say Yes to Education that marshals best practices and the latest research to address inequities and boost economic development by supporting young people from early childhood to adult success. It is the latest of many leadership hats worn by this savvy woman over 60, who grew up in Buffalo's public housing to become a nurse, a social worker, a licensed therapist, an executive coach, a college instructor, Director of Cornerstone Manor, Vice President at BlueCross/BlueShield of Western New York, President and CEO of Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center, Erie County Commissioner of Mental Health and City of Buffalo Deputy Mayor.

Savvy Over 60: Althea Luehrsen

Mar 1, 2019
Leadership Buffalo

Althea Luehrsen has been CEO of Leadership Buffalo since January 2012 and is Co-founder and Vice Chair of Women Who Lead WNY. Through service, diversity, inclusion and openness to change, she believes giving back to her community is key to the success of the region. She does this every day, not only by freely sharing her 40 years of work experience, but through numerous board memberships and nonprofit causes. No wonder her career is full of accolades and her mantelpiece with awards.


Savvy Over 60: WNY Women of Influence

Mar 1, 2019
Eileen Elibol / WNED/WBFO

On this first day of March, WBFO is beginning a celebration of Women's History Month with a feature series  we are calling "Savvy Over 60."

Chris Caya / WBFO News

Erie County District Attorney John Flynn says a Grand Island woman who stole more than $110,000 from a town senior center will probably never pay it back.

LinkedIn

Tim Hogues is moving from Erie County Commissioner of Senior Services to County Commissioner of Personnel. County Executive Mark Poloncarz announced the appointment effective immediately, although it must be confirmed by the Legislature.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

Three Mount St. Mary Academy High School students created a special activity book for those living with Alzheimer’s disease. WBFO's senior reporter Eileen Buckley says as part of the school’s entrepreneurs program, the students published a book called Forget Me Not.  

SANDY WHITE / WBFO

Entrepreneurship among seniors is trending in the United States and research shows that people 50 and older are opting to turn a business idea into a rewarding and profit-making retirement plan. 

Senior citizens working into their twilight years

Jan 4, 2019

About 10,000 Baby Boomers turn 65 every day. Many of them decide not to retire and some continue to work well into their 80s.


Hospice gives 'Home for the Holidays' a whole new meaning

Dec 28, 2018
Hoppe & Associates

They say the holiday season can be either the best time of the year or the worst, depending on where you are in your life. WBFO's Marian Hetherly has the story of one local attorney making the best of the worst.

alz.org

How you handle your busy late-December plans can drastically change if someone you love is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or dementia. WBFO’s Nick Lippa talked with Western New York Alzheimer’s Association Care Consultation Director Katie Keith-Badeau to discuss some helpful tips on how to make the holiday season jolly for all.


Sam Scarcello / 19 Ideas

More than 3,000 holiday meals were delivered to the elderly, impoverished, and those who can’t venture out for themselves. It’s usually the kind of job done by Western New York’s Meals on Wheels volunteers. But on Christmas day, they got a break from the Buffalo City Mission.

Nardin students perform holiday concert for seniors

Dec 13, 2018
WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

An Orchard Park assisted living facility is making sure there are plenty of holiday entertainment events for residents this month. Nardin Academy elementary students performed this week before a large crowd of residents at Orchard Heights on Chestnut Ridge Road. WBFO's senior reporter Eileen Buckley says the Nardin senior choir delivered a special holiday concert.  


Michael Mroziak, WBFO

The AARP, in partnership with several agencies representing various ethnic and racial interests, has collected and relayed local feedback on concerns within their respective communities, specifically involving people ages 50 and older. The localized follow-up to the AARP's statewide study is being passed on to local elected officials with the hopes it will spark policy change.


Michael Mroziak / WBFO News

The troubled Emerald South nursing home on Delaware Avenue in Buffalo is being closed after a series of problems, including the June 4 death of a patient. The long and tangled process to move as many residents into the Emerald North facility is in the works.

Michael Mroziak, WBFO

Two significant federal grants are coming to Western New York to strengthen a local food network and foster more healthy eating by Erie County's older citizens.


Episcopal Church Home & Affiliates

After a lot of neighborhood opposition, City Hall has approved turning the old Ascension Church in Buffalo into senior housing. However, the project is now stuck in the complicated process of not-for-profit housing.

National Public Radio

A new study from the University at Buffalo shows that walking more can significantly lower the risk of heart failure in older women. UB Research Associate Professor of Epidemiology and lead author of the study Michael LaMonte said they now have scientific evidence physical activity benefits two heart failure subtypes.

Nick Lippa / WBFO

Seeing a loved one battle dementia can be a devastating experience. 92-year old veteran and former musician Richard Blas currently participates in a program called Music and Memory at the GreenFields Continuing Care Community in Buffalo. Listening to some of his musical favorites helps him connect with his family.

AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety

A new study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety shows nearly 83 percent of older drivers never speak to family or a physician about their safe driving ability.

New York State Adult Protective Services

With the 4th largest number of older adults in the country, New York State is expanding its statewide effort to stop elder abuse. The effort will be coordinated by a Rochester organization, with an additional $8.4 million in new state and federal funds.

Michael Mroziak, WBFO

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs in Buffalo is closing a suburban clinic and says it is now working with affected clients to find new arrangements.

Sandy White / WBFO

Finding love again after the death of a spouse is challenging and a reality millions of seniors face today. Data from Pew Research found that one in two divorced or widowed seniors had remarried and that trend figures to continue with longer age expectancy.

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