For Immediate Release
Contact: Todd Kluss
Whitelaw Installed as The Gerontological Society of America’s President
Nancy Whitelaw, PhD, has taken office as the newest president of The Gerontological Society of America (GSA), the nation’s largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to the field of aging. She was elected by GSA’s membership, which consists of over 5,400 researchers, educators, and practitioners.
Whitelaw assumed this year-long position at GSA’s recent Annual Scientific Meeting in Boston. She is the 68th person to hold the office since GSA was founded in 1945. As president, she will oversee matters of governance and strategic planning while managing the program for GSA’s 2012 Annual Scientific Meeting. She has chosen “Charting New Frontiers in Aging” as the theme for this conference, which will take place in San Diego from November 14 to 18.
“For more than six decades, GSA and its members have expanded the quality and quantity of gerontological research, disseminating new insights to researchers, practitioners, and opinion leaders, and advancing education in gerontology and geriatrics,” Whitelaw said. “There has never been a more critical time for us to promote the importance of science and rigorous scholarship in addressing the challenges of an aging society.”
Whitelaw currently is the senior fellow at the National Council on Aging (NCOA). She is a nationally recognized leader in the design and implementation of evidence-based health programs for seniors and in strengthening collaboration among aging services, public health, and health care. Her work emphasizes the importance of prevention, self-management, and person-centered care.
“Nancy’s leadership and expertise will be valuable assets during her presidency,” said GSA Executive Director James Appleby, RPh, MPH. “We look forward to a productive year of advancing research, education, and practice in the field of aging.”
Whitelaw has already outlined several goals for her tenure as GSA president.
“During the coming year, we will work to secure additional aging-related research and training funds, and draw greater attention to research translation and the training and workforce needs of an aging society,” she said. “We will foster more engagement from our members, finding better ways to work together to make a difference in the lives of older adults.”
Whitelaw is the recipient of numerous honors in the field, such as NCOA’s Molly Mettler Award in 2004, GSA’s Maxwell A. Pollack Award in 2007, and the Elizabeth Fries Health Education Award in 2009. She holds a PhD in health services organization and policy from the University of Michigan and BA and MS degrees in sociology from Portland State University.
The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) is the nation's oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education, and practice in the field of aging. The principal mission of the Society — and its 5,400+ members — is to advance the study of aging and disseminate information among scientists, decision makers, and the general public. GSA’s structure also includes a policy institute, the National Academy on an Aging Society, and an educational branch, the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education.
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