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Multiculturalism was the primary theme of the AgeOptions’ “Diversity in Aging” fundraiser held at the Blue Cross-Blue Shield Tower on June 21. Jenner & Block Partner Carla J. Rozycki served on the organizing committee for the event, which raised nearly $50,000 in donations and auction proceeds to fund AgeOptions’ translation services program and to increase the accessibility of its service systems for the elderly.
AgeOptions (formerly the Suburban Area Agency on Aging) is a comprehensive organization serving more persons aged 60 and over than any other Illinois area agency, said Donna Moore, Chairperson of the organization’s Board, at the event.
Providing culturally informed service has become increasingly necessary, she explained, as the population of minorities aged 60 and over doubled in the past ten years. In addition, the population of older adults in the AgeOptions service area speaks over 40 different languages.
Among the event’s features was a buffet of multi-national cuisine, performances by young musicians from the Suzuki-Orff School for Young Musicians and a Brazilian music band, and a live and silent auction. The auctioned donations included a variety of items including jewelry, a custom Ghanaian dress, Chicago White Sox Tickets and gift certificates to Chicago-area restaurants and businesses.
The evening’s guest speaker was Terry Savage, a consumer affairs journalist and the best-selling author of “The Savage Number: How Much Money Do You Need to Retire?” Ms. Savage outlined for the audience strategies for planning a retirement account based on age.
Ms. Rozycki has been a member of the board of directors of AgeOptions since 2000, and has also served as President of the organization. In 2005, she received the Governor's Award for Unique Achievement from the Illinois Department of Aging, in recognition of her "dedicated community service and exceptional concern for Illinois seniors."
Jenner & Block was a sponsor of the AgeOptions’ Diversity in Aging fundraiser.