A Message to the Community of Pioneers

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Penny Cook, President & CEO, Pioneer Network

It’s hard to believe that it’s been seven months since I began my role with Pioneer Network. August seemed such a long way off and now here we are, less than a week away from the 2018 Pioneering a New Culture of Aging Conference. For those of you attending the conference, there will be a blend of old and new. There are traditional events like the Roll Call of States, Provinces and Nations, and a wonderful variety of general, concurrent and intensive sessions.  And there are new happenings in store- the first annual Community Commitment Award presented by Rockport Healthcare Services and Pioneer Network, a keynote presentation by Leeza Gibbons, a fashion show highlighting the importance of feeling good, and an interactive Tech Experience showcasing the latest technology in the world of aging. Of course, it wouldn’t be a Pioneer Network experience without a party, so everyone’s invited to help celebrate our Coming of Age. We’re turning 21 this year and thanks to It’s Never 2 Late, we’ll be celebrating in 90’s style at Coyote Ugly on Monday night.

I know that many of you will not be joining us, but you are still part of this group of Pioneers.  We are a community of people from across the country and around the world that have found each other because we all believe in transforming the culture of care and pioneering a new culture of aging.  This is bigger than one group, one organization and one conference.  This is about a collective influence that we can all have every day.

If you’re not coming to Denver, please visit our website after the conference to view the words of wisdom of one of our Founders and Conference Convener, Carter Catlett Williams. You can also watch the sessions we’re recording including: The Person-Centered Approach to Rehab and Recovery, Dining at Home- My Way, Your Way, Our Way, and Start with Yes and We Will Figure it Out From There.

The educational opportunities don’t stop there.  Our webinars continue through the rest of the year and we have an exciting line-up to choose from:

  • Addressing the Staffing Crisis
  • Change: Managing It to Drive Success
  • Dining Practices: Balancing Food Choice and Food Safety
  • Building on the Successes of Phase 2 and Your Facility Assessment
  • The Process Behind the Passion: How Your Care Community Can Support Person-Directed Care

And our new Pioneer Network app is not just for the Conference.  It’s another way to Connect with the Network throughout the year to learn the latest about what’s happening and how you can be a part of it.  Download Attendify from favorite app provider and choose Pioneer Network.

Lastly, I have a special ask of all of you.  In a few months the Board of Directors and staff of Pioneer Network will gather to discuss and develop a strategic plan to outline where we are going and how to get there over the next three years.  I’d like you to be a part of it.  After the post-Conference exhilaration wears off, we’ll be sending out a survey to get your thoughts and opinions.  There’s a few things we know already.  We need engagement from all levels of an organization to continue our work.  We need to be inclusive of all settings where people live and work.  We need to involve people of all ages.  We need to break down the barriers between groups and find the commonalities we share so we can have greater impact.   Pioneer Network is a gathering place for all those who are dedicated to the vision of, A Culture of Aging that is Life-Affirming, Satisfying, Humane and Meaningful.  We can make this happen!

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