Coordinated Care is pleased to introduce its 1999 Prime Time
These awards were created to honor Western New York citizens who exemplify successful aging.
The Prime Time Awards luncheon honoring this years awardees will be held on Tuesday, September 28, 1999 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel from 11:45a.m.-1:30 p.m. For more information please call 858-2307.
In the early 1960s, Gloria PARKS led a group of housewives who had
concerns and plans for the revitalization of their neighborhood in the University Heights
district. The project expanded into the development of the University Heights community
Gloria, now 69 years old, is again in the forefront creating programs to assist
seniors, children and families. Through her example she fosters unity and caring among the
Gloria is truly one woman who has made her mark yet remains humble and admirable as she continues to prove that age is just a number.
Caroline SOSINSKI's story is more than one of hope, courage and
survival; its also about making negative life experiences have a positive impact on
Caroline, kind and pleasant, worked as a senior aide 14 years ago. No one suspected that she had been living in an abusive home environment. When her well being and the well-being of children were in jeopardy, Caroline found the inner strength to make major changes in their lives.
When she returned to Western New York Caroline worked with the senior aide program at
the Chautauqua County Office for the Aging (CCOFA). Her talents lead Caroline to becoming
the editor of the CCOFA newsletter Senior Advocate, a publication with a
circulation of 17,000 copies that she oversees today at the age of 70.
Caroline also actively participates in an over-50s group and ladies bible study. This loving mother of four and grandmother of three lifts the spirits of all those around her.
Edna GAULT, along with her husband of 49 years, John has raised and
nurtured five biological children, one adopted child and 33 foster children.
Edna attended Villa Maria College for two years, majoring in Early Childhood
Development. She took those skills and applied what she learned to helping foster
A teaching assistant with Buffalos Head Start Program for 10 years, Edna also
served as the first minority president of the PTA at School 78 and was president of her
neighborhood block club. Edna has been an active member of her church, currently
participating in a group that visits the homebound and hospital patients in addition to
the underprivileged with providing food baskets.
Edna still finds time to bake wedding, shower and birthday cakes. Her boundless energy and dedication to family and the community exemplifies successful aging.
Marie DIGESARE - For years, Marie has been known to cheer up the sad
and the sick by giving home baked treats and smiles of encouragement.
Marie cared for her parents during their many years of illness and continues with an
Aunt who currently resides in Brothers of Mercy Nursing Home, where she volunteers
regularly. Often Marie will take the elderly for car rides and do their shopping.
A Eucharistic minister, Marie belongs to a variety of church groups. She also serves on
volunteer committees that mend clothes for seniors and cook meals for the neighborhood.
Marie provides inspiration to her five children and 11 grandchildren.
90-year-old Vern WEBER volunteers as a cook and driver for Meals on
Wheels up to three times a week. Vern also remains active at the South Buffalo Community
Table where he cooks for underprivileged children and families. Not only is Vern a
creative chef but he always adds a touch of humor to each meal.
As an officer of the Mens Retirement Club, he plans special picnics and dinners.
Vern also serves as the trip coordinator for St. Ambrose Seniors. Former destinations
include Germany, Ireland and Greece. In addition, Vern writes for the St. Ambrose monthly
Vern, a former Boy Scout master, doesnt blink an eye at a challenge. He is a true example of successful aging.
Dr. Elizabeth PIERCE
Ralph LOEW Humanitarian Award
Dr. Elizabeth PIERCE Olmsted has held many honorable
titles throughout her lifetime: opthalmologist, researcher, inventor, civic leader, pilot
and philanthropist. What makes these designations even more remarkable is that Dr. Olmsted
achieved them during an era when they were usually reserved for men.
A lifelong resident of Buffalos West Side, Elizabeth graduated from
the University of Buffalo School of Medicine in 1939 and became Western New Yorks
first female opthalmologist. Today, at age 84, she continues her practice on Lafayette
Avenue in Buffalo.
Dr. Olmsted initiated one of Buffalos first programs for the
visually impaired and continued to contribute to the community through organizing a
pre-school vision testing campaign and making large print books available in the public
library. She also worked as a military consultant to research the effects of radar
exposure on cataracts. Accordingly, Dr. Olmsted held the highest positions of Chairman of
the New York State Medicine Society, Director of Buffalo Eye Bank and Research Society and
the President of the Buffalo Opthalmologic Society.
In addition to being a pioneer for women in the field of medicine, Dr.
Olmsted was one of the areas first female pilots. She even served as a lieutenant in
the civil air patrol in the early 1940s.
Dr. Olmsted continues to defy the barriers of her gender and age with unbounded energy.
Burt FLICKINGER Caregiver Award
Phyliss ARGENNIA's dedication to her work with developmentally disabled adults spans a 12-year time period during which she called in sick only oncewhen she suffered a brain aneurysm. Although facing major surgery, Phyliss showed her loyalty and responsibility to those she cared for by reassuring them she was fine.
After a 12-hour operation Phylis expressed great determination to return to full
strength and her normal routine. She went back to the full-time work that she loved just
three months later.
Today, in addition to her work at the group home, Phyliss also serves as an advocate
and caregiver to two disabled individuals who have limited family contact. She celebrates
their birthdays and other important holidays or events in their lives, providing stability
and a positive role model.
Phyliss also volunteers with People & Places, an organization that arranges
vacations for the developmentally disabled. Over nine years, Phyliss has accompanied the
disabled on approximately 15 trips.
A leader by example, Phyliss inspires others by her actions. Her calm manner and sense of humor keep everyone around her upbeat.
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