Skip to content

  

 

Disruptors

A spotlight for extraordinary people who are tearing down outdated beliefs about aging.

Have you ever been told 'you're too old for that'? Buy your copy of Disrupt Aging today, and let’s start changing the conversation about aging.

Are you an age disruptor? AARP Disrupt Aging

Ashton Applewhite: The Ageism Activist Recalls Her Best Year

"I’ve never felt so deeply energized and so excited by the possibility of radical change!" Learn about Ashton and 10 other disruptors' most memorable years

Disruptor Filmmaker Joan Kron: “I Never Lie About My Age — or My Face-Lifts”

First-time filmmaker talks about producing her first movie at 89, plastic surgery and breaking barriers in the media field

Faith Ringgold

Faith Ringgold: Artist, Author… Game Inventor?
Meet the only 86-year-old artist with an app on iTunes

Disrupt aging au naturale Toni

I Look My Age? Why, Thank You!
These natural beauties pose for the camera sans “procedures,” owning every lovely wrinkle

Venus Williams

Five Mind-Boggling Numbers You Need to Know About Venus Williams
And they don’t include her age. The superstar has far more important numerical tidbits to share, from endorsement deals to her successful pursuit of equal prize money for women.

Karen Walrond, Writer & Photographer

Karen Walrond, 48: Embracing What It Means to Be 'a Woman of a Certain Age'
A former engineer and corporate attorney, Karen Walrond, transitioned away from the corporate world to launch a fresh career as a writer, photographer and public speaker.

Yvonne Watson

Yvonne Watson: Defining the Future of Fashion
Learn how she's leading and cultivating the next generation of disruptors within the fashion industry at Parsons School of Design

Dr. Bill Thomas In Front Of 'As I Age' Chalkboard, Disrupt Aging

Dr. Bill Thomas: Spreading the Disrupt Aging Message
Author, entrepreneur, musician, teacher, farmer, geriatrician Bill Thomas is one of the most creative thinkers in medicine today.

Burning Man

Welcome, Age Disruptors, to — Burning Man?
It’s not the first place you would imagine an 87-year-old. But during the festival last August, the vast, hot playa was invaded by individuals that have been little seen at Burning Man since it started 30 years ago: elders

Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga

Generations Generating: 10 Mash-Ups and Match-Ups
See stars like Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett, Jay Z and his mother, Gloria and more, team up for great causes.

Everyday Disruptors Spotlight

Man Running

—Courtesy of Tony Reed

Tony Reed

When I was 8, I was diagnosed as prediabetic and told that I would need insulin for the rest of my life. I wanted to change that even then. In college, I set a lifetime goal of running three miles per day and, so far, have achieved that.

Running has come easily to me at every age, but I realize that’s not the case for everyone. In 2004, I cofounded the National Black Marathoners Association with Charlotte Simmons. Our goal was to bring together black runners of all ages and skill levels across the country and to raise money to send black students to college.

We hope to inspire others to run by leading free workshops in churches and schools about how to start running clubs in ethnic minority communities. In Dallas, one club will be running its first marathon this month!

Disrupt  everyday

—Courtesy of Janet Mitchell

Janet Mitchell

Playing women’s softball with the Maryland Roadrunners is social, active and fun — all rolled into one. All of the players are at least 60 years old. We’ve played together for over 16 years and have traveled all around the United States and Canada, competing against other teams in our age group.

We are committed to practicing faithfully, playing to win (but not at all costs), ensuring every player has the opportunity to contribute, and only allowing positive and constructive attitudes on the field. We’ve won numerous championships, including the National Senior Games and Huntsman World Senior Games, and are proud to be known for our sportsmanship as well as our success.

Our team has a never-say-die attitude and great chemistry. We do our best, and we appreciate the efforts of our teammates. We have become so much more than a softball team.

Karen Putz

I decided to be the best deaf person I could be after losing my hearing in a water-skiing accident. I reached out to Judy Myers, now 71, the world’s oldest female barefoot water-skiing competitor. Now I’m 51 and we barefoot together every year.

Sally Hille

“At 96 years old, I am the oldest DJ in the world. I had retired, but when I hit 90 I decided there was not much radio out there for seniors. I now do a show for WMOA in Marietta, Ohio.”

Lynn Asbury

“Last month I completed the Spartan Sprint in Breckenridge, Colorado. Five miles, 9,600 feet, 18 obstacles. The average participant is 21 to 35 years old. I am 66. One of the best days of my life!”

Joyce Kitson

“Granny basketball was started for ladies over 50 years of age. We follow the rules from 1923, dress accordingly and promote a spirit of camaraderie.”

Michael French

I recently completed my third Super Spartan Race Obstacle Course, with 8 miles and 25 obstacles. I finished seventh in my age group (60-64). People like to ask: “Aren’t you too old? Aren’t you afraid you’ll get hurt?” No, and no!

Del Lonnquist

“Lois, my wife and love of 60 years, had passed away in March of 2014. The kids asked, ‘What will you do now, Dad?’ I said, ‘I am going to go for a little ride.’ 69,000 miles in two and a half years.”

Maureen Knudson

“When my husband and I were 74 and 71, we paddled and portaged across 140 miles between Canada and Minnesota. Since then, we’ve hiked a few places in Europe, about 85 miles!”

Ed Harris

“At age 43 I was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disease. With no background in medicine, I developed a treatment that reversed the disease. I have had to learn all of this on my own.”