Columbus, Ohio – A group of 15 extraordinary older Ohioans who have dedicated their lives to helping others and improving their communities were honored today in a special ceremony in the Statehouse Atrium, where they became the newest inductees to the Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame.
This year’s inductees hail from cities and towns across the state. They range in age from 66 to 101 and possess a variety of backgrounds. Among them are doctors, nurses, scientists, teachers, veterans, public servants, philanthropists, historians, preservationists, musicians, actors, advocates, and more.
“Today, we celebrate 15 amazing individuals whose passion and willingness to help people, quite frankly, stand out,” said Gov. Mike DeWine. “One thing they have in common: they represent the best kind of Ohioan – one who serves others, changes lives, and makes us all stronger. On behalf of all Ohioans, thank you to our 15 newest Hall of Fame inductees.”
The induction ceremony was hosted by Ohio Department of Aging (ODA) Director Ursel J. McElroy and co-hosted by John Corlett, Chairperson of the Ohio Advisory Council for Aging.
“These amazing individuals challenge our society’s notion of what it means to age. Far too many people misguidedly think of our Senior Citizens as mere consumers, whose days of bringing value to the table are behind them. Not in Ohio,” Director McElroy said. “In Ohio, we understand that our Seniors are contributors. By utilizing their decades of experience and continuing to work as fierce advocates for their loved ones and their hometowns, the value they bring to us all is immeasurable.”
“Our seniors have given and continue to give so much to our communities,” Corlett said. “We know that, by giving our seniors the opportunity to truly live, they will make the very most of it, as evidenced by the 15 outstanding new members of the Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame that we’re all here to celebrate today.”
These newest inductees bring total membership in the Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame to 501.
The Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame was established in 1977 to honor Ohioans age 60 and older for achievements and contributions to others, the roles they play in their communities, state and nation, and for what they do to promote productive and enjoyable lives. Their stories are compelling and represent lifetimes of dedication, ingenuity, perseverance, kindness, and compassion.
In addition to inductees’ family and friends, several other dignitaries were on hand for the ceremony, including members of Gov. DeWine’s Cabinet, leaders and members of the Ohio General Assembly, and leaders with the Ohio Advisory Council for Aging and the state’s 12 Area Agencies on Aging, as well as partner organizations and associations within the state’s aging network.
The honorees were each invited on stage and presented with an award as the event hosts read short biographies of their accomplishments to the assembled crowd.
Three of the honorees were inducted posthumously, with family members accepting their awards on their behalf.
A recording of the full event will be posted to the Ohio Channel website as soon as it becomes available.
Detailed biographies of each of the honorees and their accomplishments are available on the 2022 Senior Citizens Hall of Fame Inductees page on ODA's website.
2022 Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame inductees:
- Rashid A. Abdu, M.D., F.A.C.S., Canfield
- John A. Anderson, Cincinnati
- Martha H. Boice, Centerville
- Ken Culver, Lancaster
- Debbie Cannon Freece, Columbus
- Patricia Furterer, Loveland
- Greer Glazer, RN, PhD, FAAN, Solon
- Robert E. Grim, Sabina
- Jim Kerr, Lisbon
- Dr. John S. Mattox, Flushing
- Edward A. McKinney, PhD, Cleveland Heights
- Ruby T. Miller, Cincinnati
- Jerry Rampelt, Columbus
- Betty J. Wiechert, Zanesville
- Vaughn Wiester, Columbus
About ODA – The Ohio Department of Aging serves and advocates for the needs of Ohioans age 60 and older, as well as their families, caregivers and communities. Programs include home and community based long‐term supports and services, as well as initiatives to promote health and wellness throughout the lifespan. Visit www.aging.ohio.gov.