Friday, September 30, 2005

Shappee to attend Conference on Aging


By JASON KAUFFMAN
Express Staff Writer

"These are critical times for seniors and the baby boom generation." - Brenda Shappee, Executive director Senior Connection

Brenda Shappee is a passionate voice for the elderly and the issues they face in today's world.

In her role as the executive director of the Senior Connection in Hailey, which she describes as a "clearinghouse for senior resources," Shappee advocates for the ability of Blaine County seniors to live independent, dignified lives.

This coming December, though, Shappee's concern for senior issues will reach a much larger audience at the White House Conference on Aging, which is being held in Washington, D.C.

From Dec. 10 to 15, Shappee will join three or four additional Idahoans and approximately 1,600 other delegates from throughout the nation who will gather at the conference to discuss senior issues. Idaho Sen. Larry Craig nominated Shappee to attend the event.

Shappee said the conference will be a great opportunity to serve area seniors and the community.

"I'm excited. I'm really thrilled," she said.

Conference delegates will draw on their varied experiences to help draft a resolution to help identify the needs seniors face, Shappee said. The resolution will then be forwarded on to key policy makers, she said.

"It will help us with our strategic planning process," she said.

Shappee said her experience with providing for the needs of seniors in rural areas will be valuable at the conference.

"Living in a rural area is certainly different than living in an urban area," she said.

Today, issues of primary importance to seniors include Medicare, Social Security and the new Medicare Prescription-Drug Plan, Shappee said.

"These are critical times for seniors and the baby boom generation," she said.




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