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Profile stories for AARP's 60th Anniversary

AARP Turns 60!

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AARP volunteers at a food packing event

What We Do

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an AARP van drives past the U.S. Capitol building

What We Fight For

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Walter Moody

What We Care About

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A A R P Founder Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus

Our Story

  • AARP Turns 60!

    Members and volunteers share how AARP has helped them improve their lives.

    Members and volunteers share how AARP has helped them improve their lives.

  • AARP's 60th Anniversary

    What We Do

    From our publications to our YouTube channel to our member events, AARP shares the info that makes life after 50 richer. What does that look like?

    Find Out Here

    From our publications to our YouTube channel to our member events, AARP shares the info that makes life after 50 richer. What does that look like?

    Find Out Here
  • AARP's 60th Anniversary

    What We Fight For

    On Capitol Hill, in every state capital and in courts throughout the land, we fight for the laws and protections that older Americans want and need.

    Meet Those We Protect
    Photo By T.J. Kirkpatrick

    On Capitol Hill, in every state capital and in courts throughout the land, we fight for the laws and protections that older Americans want and need.

    Meet Those We Protect
  • AARP's 60th Anniversary

    What We Care About

    Our founder Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus’ motto was “To serve, not to be served.” We know that people over 50 want to lend a hand.

    See Those We Serve
    Photo By Andrea Morales

    Our founder Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus’ motto was “To serve, not to be served.” We know that people over 50 want to lend a hand.

    See Those We Serve
  • AARP's 60th Anniversary

    Our Story

    Many of our most popular and enduring programs and activities can be traced directly back to the experiences of our founder, Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus.

    Follow Our Journey
    Photo By AARP

    Many of our most popular and enduring programs and activities can be traced directly back to the experiences of our founder, Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus.

    Follow Our Journey

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En español | YOU MAY THINK you know AARP for discounts or our publications or the relationships we’ve forged with great companies and insurers to make sure you have the coverage you need at fair rates. But that barely scratches the surface of everything this organization does. As AARP approached its 60th birthday, we asked members — and nonmembers in a few cases — to tell us how AARP has touched their lives. Navigate through the photo slides above and witness firsthand the breadth of work that AARP and its affiliates do every day, in Washington, D.C., and in every state capital, in neighborhoods and communities, fighting to help older Americans with their health, housing, work, safety and generally to live their best lives. 

Debby Colangelo, a single mom in her mid-50s with three boys and two jobs (teacher and waitress), heard about the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program, in which IRS-certified volunteers offer free help to low- and moderate-income taxpayers. You don’t have to be an AARP member to benefit. You don’t even have to be 50 — lucky for Colangelo, who was in her 40s at the time. Ten years later, she still sees her Tax-Aide friends yearly. “It doesn’t matter what income bracket I’m in, I’m treated with care and respect,” she says. “I get a truly valuable service and, more importantly, peace of mind. For that I am truly grateful.” Colangelo is one of the 50 million Americans who have benefited from Tax-Aide, the largest free, volunteer-run tax prep and assistance service in the nation, with 5,000 locations. 

We offer services like this in communities nationwide: Driver Safety programs that may lower your insurance rates, fraud-prevention seminars, document shredding, movie screenings, health walks, block parties, concerts and more (contact your state office for details). 

For the record, we are and always have been a nonprofit, nonpartisan association with a mission — to enhance the quality of life for all as we age. We have a 60-year record of speaking up for the vulnerable and underrepresented in society. Our attorneys and advocates work tirelessly for the benefits and policies Americans now (happily) take for granted: the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, protecting workers age 40 and older; the Family and Medical Leave Act, which provides for unpaid leave to care for a family member or to take care of your own health without fear of losing your job. We have taken on nursing facilities that were drugging their residents. We have expanded the rights of family caregivers and the disabled. We have fought for fair utility rates and medical records privacy. Just this year, lawyers working on behalf of AARP won a reversal of a federal policy that let employers charge higher insurance rates to workers who declined to disclose health information. 

As the 21st century unfolds, the AARP Public Policy Institute is learning ever more about the future of aging. Through it all, we remain devoted to you, our 38 million members, through world-class customer operations and an underlying passion for service, instilled by our founder, Ethel Percy Andrus, and embodied by our inspirational CEO, Jo Ann Jenkins.

— Robert Love, editor in chief

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