Iowa residents are encouraged to cast their vote for the state's Outstanding Senior Volunteer. The recognition is part of the Salute to Senior Service program, sponsored by Home Instead, Inc., the franchisor of the Home Instead Senior Care network. The program honors the contributions of adults 65 and older who give at least 15 hours a month of volunteer service to their favorite causes.
Online voting will take place from April 15 to April 30 at SalutetoSeniorService.com. From those state winners, a panel of senior care experts will pick the national Salute to Senior Service honoree.
Home Instead, Inc. will donate $500 to each of the state winners' favorite nonprofit organizations and their stories will be posted on the Salute to Senior Service Wall of Fame. In addition, $5,000 will be donated to the national winner's nonprofit charity of choice.
Last year's state winner was 91-year-old Curtis Hedrick of Des Moines. Hedrick was recognized for his work at LifeServe Blood Center of Iowa, a not-for-profit organization that provides blood products to more than 90 hospitals in Iowa and surrounding states.
The 2012 national winner is Clark Paradise, an 85-year-old volunteer from Toms River, N.J., who with his wife, Jean founded a growing mission in his community that serves more than 1,000 homeless and disadvantaged each month.
The national U.S. judging panel will include the 2012 winner Clark Paradise; Dr. Jane F. Potter, Chief of Geriatrics and Gerontology at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, representing the Home Instead Center for Successful Aging; Sandy Markwood, CEO of the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging; and Dr. Harry R. Moody, AARP Vice President and Director of Academic Affairs.
For more information about the Salute to Senior Service program, visit SalutetoSeniorService.com.