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Clint Eastwood, Scott Hamilton and Raquel Welch Among AARP the Magazine’s 2010 Inspire Award Honorees
Tom Joyner, Lonnie Ali, and Leeza Gibbons Also Recognized
WASHINGTON (November 30, 2009) — AARP The Magazine, the definitive voice for 50+ Americans and the world’s largest-circulation magazine with more than 35 million readers, today announced the recipients of its eighth annual Inspire Awards. The Inspire Awards salute 10 outstanding individuals who are using their energy, creativity, and passion to make the world a better place. The 2010 honorees include Lonnie Ali (Voice for Parkinson’s), Clint Eastwood (Daring Director), Aida Giachello, Ph.D. (Latino-Health Activist), Leeza Gibbons (Voice of the Caregiver), Scott Hamilton (Cancer Crusader), Tom Joyner (Education Advocate), Brenda Krause Eheart (Bridge for Generations), Lilly Ledbetter (Equal-Pay Advocate), Captain Richard Phillips (Reluctant Hero), and Raquel Welch (Advocate For Cancer Survivors).
“These ten compassionate, forward-thinking and daring individuals stand up for causes they believe in and they’ve found unique ways to inspire others to action,” said Nancy Graham, Editor of AARP The Magazine. “Through their extraordinary contributions to society, this year’s Inspire Award honorees motivate our readers to get involved, give back, and make a difference in their own communities.”
Honorees are profiled in the January/February 2010 issue of AARP The Magazine, in homes now and available online at www.aarpmagazine.org. Additionally, now through the end of February 2010, entries are being accepted for AARP The Magazine’s Inspiration Vacation contest, presented by Beaches Resorts and The Sandals Foundation. The contest calls for people to nominate those who have made significant contributions to society through service. That worthy person and a guest could win a luxurious trip to the Caribbean for a unique experience that combines a 5-star vacation with two days of service. Details are available at www.aarpmagazine.org/inspirationvacation.
THE 2010 INSPIRE AWARD WINNERS
Lonnie Ali – Voice for Parkinson’s
Yolanda “Lonnie” Ali didn’t know much about Parkinson’s when she married the most famous athlete in the world, Muhammad Ali, in 1986. Since then, she’s learned firsthand how the degenerative effects of the neurological condition have stolen the former heavyweight champion’s physical abilities and left her to take on multiple roles as partner, caregiver and public voice for research. Her advocacy efforts have led her to testify before Congress on behalf of the National Parkinson Foundation as well as to help start the Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center at Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix.
Clint Eastwood – Daring Director
At a time when most of his Hollywood peers are focused on grandchildren and rounds of golf, Clint Eastwood, who turns 80 in May, continues to take on projects that challenge audiences to think about difficult, sometimes uncomfortable issues. “I’m always trying to tackle subjects that tax me and make me think,” Eastwood revealed to AARP The Magazine. His “never-too-old-to-learn philosophy” is clearly evident in the provocative subject of his next film, Invictus, which is already an early frontrunner for an Oscar nod this year. The film is set in South Africa amid the fall of apartheid and focuses on the true story of Nelson Mandela’s release from prison and his determined plan to use World Cup rugby as a path to racial harmony. Even with critical acclaim and success, Eastwood doesn’t show signs of slowing down. “The reason I don’t retire is that I learn something new every day. It’s about expanding, constantly pushing yourself,” he says.
Aida Giachello, Ph.D. – Latino Health Activist
Aida Luz Maisonet Giachello learned early on from her impoverished childhood in Puerto Rico that health problems disproportionately affect the Latino community. Since then, she has emerged as a national advocate in academia at the Midwest Latino Health Research, Training, and Policy Center at the University of Illinois at Chicago. There, she works tirelessly to enact policies that promote good health, prevent disease and control chronic illnesses by collecting and analyzing data. While a lot has been accomplished, there’s still more to do. “The poor, racial and ethnic minorities, the elderly, and women are still not getting [adequate] access to health care,” she says.