DUNEDIN – For Kelli Edwards serving on the city of Dunedin’s Committee on Aging has been a labor of love.
The City Commission recognized Edwards Aug. 23 for her service. She has been on the committee for 12 years, six as committee chair.
One of the most active city committees, it supports initiatives for the citizens of Dunedin, with a focus on seniors, city officials said.
Edwards is a professional geriatric care manager at Chart Your Own Course, Ltd. Co. with Care Resources.
Asked why she agreed to serve on the committee, Edwards said “being a geriatric care manager, I just wanted somewhere to serve, and I live in Dunedin, too. That was near and dear to my heart. I have always just cared a lot for senior issues, personally as well as professionally. So I thought it would be a good place to serve.”
The committee’s signature event is the celebration of the Senior Hall of Fame, which is held in May each year.
In recognition of Older Americans Month, the committee honors selected seniors “who have made significant contributions to our community and display the art of aging successfully,” Edwards said.
“It is an inspiring and heartfelt event, seeing so many of the leaders and history makers of our town together in one place” she added.
“Mease Manor has provided the lunch for five years for the Senior Hall of Fame. That’s a sold out event every year. You have to get an RSVP every year or you might not get a spot,” Edwards said.
The COA helped spearhead the initiative for Dunedin to become the first Elder Ready Community in the State. The committee also was recognized at the Florida Council on Aging Conference, as winners of the Florida Power and Light, Quality Senior Living Award for 2007 based on “service to seniors” by an organization for outstanding service to improve the quality of life for older Floridians.
Most importantly, this committee gives a voice and a place for elder issues to be discussed and promoted and is a vital resource to Dunedin, city officials said.
When there is an issue that is aging related, city officials call on the commiteee.
“Otherwise, someone in parks and rec would get it. But they might not have the time to give to it. We have taken on a lot of different things over the years, being elder ready,” Edwards said.
Edwards has been a certified care manager for the past 12-years, has a masters degree, and serves as an adviser on the board of the Florida Geriatric Care Managers Association. To contact Edwards please email her at email@example.com or call 842.3344.
The committee meets the fourth Monday of each month at 9 a.m., at the Dr. William E. Hale Senior Activity Center, 330 Douglas Ave.
Edwards appreciates the support of the community.
“I got to meet so many wonderful people in Dunedin and really got more connected to the city,” she said, including the mayor and commissioners and city officials.