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AARP Publications Joins With WGBH Boston for Nationally Televised Programming on Public Television


Contact: AARP Media Relations, 202-434-2560,

AARP Publications, the premier publisher for the ever-growing 50+ market, today announced a new multi-year alliance with WGBH Boston, a pioneering force in public media, to develop and promote television specials relevant to the 50+ demographic. The alliance between AARP Publications and public television has the potential to reach more than 100 million people each week around critical issues relevant to this age group. The first production to be launched from this alliance is titled “Caring for Your Parents” and will air in primetime on public television stations nationwide in Spring 2008.

“Both AARP Publications and WGBH have strong, avid followings and an interest in affecting positive change through insightful, thought-provoking, and informative content,” said Cathy Ventura-Merkel, Director of AARP Publications. “By working with WGBH, we aim to provide our members with the same high standards we offer in our print publications—AARP The Magazine, AARP Segunda Juventud and AARP Bulletin—and leverage that content across print, online, and broadcast channels for people age 50+ in a way that’s never been done before.”

“We believe this promotional alliance with AARP Publications will help accomplish our shared missions: to educate and inspire,” stated Margaret Drain, Vice President of Programming for WGBH. “These shows will appeal to both AARP’s and public television’s vast audiences because they will present fresh ideas to viewers eager to improve their lives and enhance relationships with family, work, and community.”

The first primetime special is a complement to AARP’s book, Caring for Your Parents: The Complete AARP Guide by AARP Publications Editor-in Chief Hugh Delehanty and AARP’s Livable Communities Strategy Director Elinor Ginzler. Offered to 348 public television stations across the United States, the 90-minute documentary from the award-winning producer and filmmaker Michael Kirk will discuss new, creative approaches to caregiving and follow the lives of families struggling to provide compassionate care to their parents. Almost half of American adults between the ages of 45 and 55 have children under the age of 21 as well as aging parents, and 80% of the care of the elderly in the U.S. is provided by family members.

The program will also feature a 30-minute celebrity-hosted Q&A; discussion with expert panelists including: Hugh Delehanty (editor-in-chief of AARP Publications and co-author of Caring for Your Parents: The Complete AARP Guide), Jane Bryant Quinn (leading commentator on personal finance and award-winning Newsweek columnist), Gail Sheehy (best-selling author of Passages), and Dr. Bill Thomas (international authority on geriatric medicine and eldercare; president of The Center for Growing and Becoming, Inc.). The panel will be a Town Hall format with audience participation, taped on September 6, 2007, in front of AARP members at Life@50+, AARP’s National Event & Expo to be held in Boston September 6-8, 2007. The two-hour program will premiere on public television in April 2008.

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