Five people 50 and older who have dedicated their lives to building a better future for the world around them are the winners of the 2022 AARP Purpose Prize. The annual prizes are awarded to people who have used their knowledge and life experience to solve challenging social problems. “AARP is honored to celebrate these extraordinary older adults who have dedicated their lives to serving others in creative and innovative ways,” said AARP CEO Jo Ann Jenkins. “During these trying times in our country, and globally, we are inspired to see people use their life experiences to build a better future for us all.”
Each winner receives a $50,000 award for their organization. AARP also announced nine Purpose Prize fellows, who each will receive $10,000 to further the missions of their organizations.In addition, AARP is presenting actor and activist Michael J. Fox with an honorary Purpose Prize award for his work in advocating for Parkinson's disease research. The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research is the world's largest nonprofit funder of Parkinson's drug development, and it has given more than $1 billion to global research programs.
The 2022 AARP Purpose Prize winners are:
William Bracken, of Fountain Valley, California. Bracken is the founder and culinary director of Bracken's Kitchen, which produces meals to contribute to solving the growing issues of food waste and food insecurity. The kitchen repurposes donated and recovered food that would have otherwise gone to landfills.
Raymond Jetson, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Jetson is the founder and chief executive catalyst of MetroMorphosis, which seeks to develop and mobilize a critical mass of engaged citizens to design and implement sustainable solutions to persistent community challenges.•
Alan Miller, of Bethesda, Maryland. Miller is the founder and CEO of the News Literacy Project, which teaches people of all ages and backgrounds how to identify credible news and other information, empowering them to have an equal opportunity to participate in the civic life of their communities and the country.
Ify Nwabukwu, of Lanham, Maryland. Nwabukwu is the founder and executive director of the African Women’s Cancer Awareness Association. The group seeks to reduce the burden of cancer on African immigrant women and their families by providing equal access to screening and care.
Rita Zimmer, of New York City. Zimmer is the founder and executive director of HousingPlus, which provides community-based housing and comprehensive services to women to support them in overcoming poverty, homelessness, addiction, trauma and the effects of incarceration.
The Purpose Prize fellows are:
- Larry Berger, of Pittsburgh, the executive director of SLB Radio Productions.
- Rebecca Bonner, of Philadelphia, the executive director of the Bridge Way School.
- Terri Chandler, of Las Vegas, the founder and executive director of Future Smiles.
- Dexter Frederick, M.D., of Tampa, Florida, the executive director of Brain Expansions Scholastic Training.
- Sheila Jaffe, of New York City, the cofounder of the Felix Organization.
- Ilima Ho-Lastimosa, of Waimanalo, Hawaii, the founder of Ke Kula Nui O Waimanalo.
- Shellie Layne of Birmingham, Alabama, the founder and CEO of the At Home Foundation.
- Terri Winston, of San Francisco, the founder and executive director of Women’s Audio Mission.
- Ana Yelen, of Boulder, Colorado, the executive director and cofounder of the Healing Warriors Program.
AARP also is announcing a new award category, the AARP Inspire Award. Members of the public can vote at aarp.org/InspireAward for the Purpose Prize winner they would like to see win the award, using the criteria of impact, personal story and innovation. The recipient's organization will receive an additional $10,000, and the winner will be announced at a virtual event in December.