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Message from State President John Barnett

A message from John Barnett of Kirkland, AARP Washington State President.

With over 935,000 members here in Washington and nearly 40 million members nationwide, AARP is sure to ring a bell with most Washington adults. However, with an organization of this size, AARP means many different things to many different people. As the volunteer president of AARP, I'd like to take this opportunity to tell you a little bit more about our organization and to provide you with some helpful contacts.

People have different notions about who or what AARP is—and just about everyone is right. AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan membership organization for people 50 and older. We are involved with many different activities, but we have a single mission: enhancing the quality of life for all as we age.

If you think we work hard for things like affordable health care and the protection of Social Security, you're right.  Whether ensuring the long-term solvency of Social Security and protecting pensions, or working to make sure all Americans have access to quality health care, AARP has a strong presence in the nation's capital, in state houses across the country, and in the courts advocating on behalf of AARP members and their families.

With the collective strength of our membership, AARP is uniquely positioned to have a significant impact on the important issues facing older adults and their families. If you want to see what AARP is doing nationally, visit

If you are interested in issues and advocacy in Washington State, find out more on our state website at

But maybe you would tell people we're a service organization, helping vulnerable populations and families in your community. You'd be right. AARP volunteers across the state are busy giving a helping hand, and we’re passionate about the value of volunteering. In fact, AARP was founded by Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus in 1958 under the motto, "To serve, not to be served."

And if you think AARP is about hotel and travel discounts, auto and health insurance, savings on prescription drugs and other products, you guessed right again. AARP offers many products and services especially for our members. Find out more online or call our toll-free membership line at 1-800-424-3410.

Some know us by our magazine, “AARP The Magazine.” In addition to the magazine, members receive the monthly “AARP Bulletin.” AARP offers a wide range of publications, often free of charge, on everything from caregiving and grandparenting, to resume writing and fitness tips. You’ll find more information at or by calling 1-800-424-3410.

Or maybe you're one of the thousands of people in our state who are learning how to stay safer on the road through the AARP Driver Safety Program, or maybe you’ve taken advantage of free tax preparation assistance through AARP Tax-Aide. For more information on these programs, visit or call 1-888-AARP-NOW.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. AARP has plenty more to offer, and I urge you to take the time to learn how you and your family can benefit from AARP membership. Thank you for your time and your support.

John Barnett
AARP Washington State President

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