Alert
Close

Take AARP’s Smart Driver course and you could save money on your car insurance. Learn more

Highlights

Open
AARP Real Possibilities

 

FREE FUN!

AARP Games - Play Now!

Contests and
Sweeps

Safe Driving in 2014 Sweepstakes

Learn how AARP Driver Safety can help you stay safe—and enter for a chance to win $1,000. See official rules. 

AARP Auto Buying Program

MOST POPULAR

Viewed

Inspire Awards 2007 Honorees

Cordelia Taylor, Founder of Family House

Cordelia Taylor, a registered nurse and administrator at a large nursing home in Milwaukee, didn’t like the way her patients lived: residents were roused before dawn and sometimes left in restraints for hours. When her boss balked at her suggested improvements, she decided to open her own facility. That meant quitting her job, selling her house in the suburbs, and renovating a house in a decaying neighborhood on Milwaukee’s north side to accommodate eight elderly residents.

She had moments of doubt: “I didn’t want my husband to know I was afraid I’d made a mistake,” she says. “At night I’d go into the bathroom and cry and pray.” But she didn’t give up. After opening her first home, she and several members of her family bought a few vacant houses nearby, transforming a troubled block into an innovative long-term care complex called Family House.

Now, the block functions as a powerful force for community revitalization, providing disabled and elderly people with a place to live, employing local residents, and even offering afterschool programs for neighborhood kids. Via a partnership with the Medical College of Wisconsin, Family House now operates a medical clinic; up next is a community center to be built a few blocks away.

For Taylor, 72, the project has more than lived up to its name: six of her eight children have worked alongside her at various times, and granddaughter Joi Jackson is being groomed to take over Taylor’s role—someday. “Until I feel things are the way I want them to be, I’ll be here,” Taylor says. “A lot of people who do this see it as a business. What we do is a mission.”

 

* The name of this award was originally the Impact Award. In 2008, the awards were renamed as the Inspire Awards.

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts

Processing

Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Downloadable mobile app from AARP® Roadside Assistance from Allstate.

AARP Credit card from Chase

Members can earn 3% cash back on purchases with the AARP® Credit Card from Chase.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.