For Immediate Release
Contact: Media Relations, (202) 777-2509

APHA Gerontological Health Section Receives Grant to Recognize Excellence in Positive Aging Research

Washington , D.C. , February 3, 2009 – The American Public Health Association’s Gerontological Health Section recently received a $10,000 grant from the Erickson Foundation to launch the new Erickson Foundation Award for Research Excellence in Positive Aging.


The award will recognize high-caliber research that can be translated into policies and practices to help older persons achieve and maintain health, well-being and independence, particularly those of vulnerable population sub-groups. The award funds will be evenly distributed over the course of the next three years to the award recipients.


“By recognizing outstanding research in the field of gerontological health and putting that research into practice, we can help improve the health of older Americans,” said Nancy Miller, PhD, MA, chair of APHA’s Gerontological Health Section, which represents practitioners, researchers and policy-makers interested in aging. “We are grateful for this support.”


Dr. John Parrish, Executive Director of the Erickson Foundation, is very enthusiastic about meshing research with practice in the community. Dr. Parrish commented on the award, “We at the Erickson Foundation are delighted to inspire and celebrate research that shows the state of the art of active, healthy aging at both the individual and community levels. We are eager to encourage translation of research into everyday practice by the individual or community, and the visibility given to the research award is one way to do this.”


Connie Evashwick, ScD, FACHE, a Section leader, will serve as the chairperson of the committee that will solicit the submission of abstracts, which are due in February, and that will invite full-length manuscripts for consideration and possible selection. The awards will be bestowed in November at the 2009 APHA Annual Meeting in Philadelphia.


“On behalf of the American Public Health Association and our Gerontological Health Section, I thank the Erickson Foundation for its commitment to and financial support of healthy aging,” said APHA President Cheryl Easley, PhD, RN. “Critical knowledge gaps exist for responding to the health needs of older adults, and it is our hope that this newly launched award program will help to tackle some of these important issues.”


The Erickson Foundation, based in Catonsville, Md., is an operating foundation that was established by John C. Erickson, Chairman and CEO of Erickson Retirement Communities, LLC, and his family. The Erickson Foundation seeks to promote research as a way to further knowledge and recognition of the state of the art of active, healthy aging at both the individual and community levels.


For additional information, contact Connie Evashwick at

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Founded in 1872, the APHA is the oldest, largest and most diverse organization of public health professionals in the world. The association aims to protect all Americans and their communities from preventable, serious health threats and strives to assure community-based health promotion and disease prevention activities and preventive health services are universally accessible in the United States. APHA represents a broad array of health providers, educators, environmentalists, policy-makers and health officials at all levels working both within and outside governmental organizations and educational institutions. More information is available at