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Octogenarian Honored with "Hadley HEROES" Award During Older Americans Month

Octogenarian Honored with "Hadley HEROES" Award During Older Americans Month

PR Newswire

WINNETKA, Ill., May 17, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- May is Older Americans Month, celebrating aging adults who play a key role in sharing the wisdom and experience that build strong, resilient communities. For more than 100 years Hadley, the nation's leading provider of distance and online learning for older adults with vision loss, has provided a wide selection of workshops, resources and support – all at no cost.

For Angie Lauderbach, of suburban Chicago, her introduction to Hadley followed her retirement from a 40-year distinguished career as a hospice care nurse, where she planned to spend her later years giving back to her community through volunteering. That all changed following a failed corneal transplant surgery that left her legally blind at the age of 78.

According to new research the number of older Americans who have visual impairments or are blind is projected to double by 2050. "I became terribly depressed, particularly after I had to stop driving my car. I lost my eyesight and freedom all at the same time," said Lauderbach. "I spent my entire career in nursing helping others through their grief and loss, and here I was with no idea what to do." Lauderbach searched out resources for talking books and a low vision support group near her. It was there she learned about Hadley.

"Angie came to us at the most opportune time," stated Julie Tye, President and CEO of Hadley. "We were embarking on the development phase of reinventing our entire digital footprint and approach to teaching,, which was built on the needs and wants of visually impaired adults." Launched in July of 2020, the new platform has more than 10,000 learners who have taken more than 50,000 workshops.

Lauderbach served as one of Hadley's first advisors, providing valuable input and perspectives on workshops and what kinds of topics would be most helpful to others like her who is new to vision loss. In recognition for her contributions, Lauderbach has been named a recipient of Hadley's inaugural HEROES Award.  

"It was an honor to be part of such an important resource for others like me," said Lauderbach. "My advice to any older person experiencing vision loss is to never forget what's truly important, and that is the contribution that the visually impaired can make on in their community and on others." 


Joan Jaeger


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