SEATTLE, WA--(Marketwire - Jan 28, 2013) - In announcing its Second Annual Heroes Awards, Concierge Care Advisors expands its mission and position as an expert and leader in senior living and care by "exposing heroes" that reflect the Agency's mission of "the safety and security of seniors above all else."
Criteria for the recipients required exceptional personal commitment and results. "These heroes inspire through their personal stories and dedication to motivate change, demonstrate courage, innovate, and encourage provocative approaches to problem solving," said Mary Cordova, Executive Vice President and Co-Founder of Concierge Care Advisors.
Concierge Care Advisors will present the awards individually with the family, friends, colleagues and supporters of each recipient. Locations, times and dates will be shared with media. Each recipient will be featured in Concierge Care Advisors' Senior Spotlight radio segments on KOMO and KVI.
Exposed Hero: Elected Official - former Attorney General Rob McKenna
Rob McKenna recognized his passion in protecting seniors after abuse and financial exploitation occurred within his own family. Mr. McKenna's elderly aunt, residing in another state, was being abused and exploited by her son. Mr. McKenna intervened, setting up guardianship and seeing his aunt securely through her remaining years. When his favorite high school teacher was being taken advantage of by her daughter, Mr. McKenna involved the King County Prosecutor's Office, leading to the protection of his teacher's life and her assets. When another aunt and uncle were nearly victimized by a scam artist, Mr. McKenna realized the increasing frequency and scale of crimes targeting seniors required greater attention.
During his eight years as Washington State Attorney General, Mr. McKenna dramatically improved protections for elders. In 2005 and 2008, he used money from settlements with Western Union and MoneyGram -- both accused of making it too easy for scammers to trick seniors into making non-refundable transfers -- to fund AARP's "Fraud Fighter Call Center." The center provides seniors with tips, resources and information to protect themselves from fraud and abuse. He also authored a new law, SB 6202, expanding protections for vulnerable adults. It allows financial institutions to freeze a transaction for up to three business days if financial exploitation is suspected. It also requires health care providers, social workers and members of law enforcement to notify a medical examiner or coroner when they suspect that a death was caused by abuse, neglect or abandonment.
"Rob McKenna was witness to extreme and repeated elder abuse within his family. What we appreciate is that he leveraged his own experience to make significant and lasting changes at the state's top law enforcement division to protect seniors," said Marc Lilly, CEO and Co-Founder of Concierge Care Advisors. "This one is personal. Like Rob, I intervened after learning my grandmother was being abused. Finding my grandmother physically abused by a care giver, I removed her and involved law enforcement and the court system. My experience, like Rob's, shapes your view of vulnerable seniors and the role we all play in protecting them."
Exposed Hero: The Investigator - Page Ulrey, King County Senior Deputy Prosecuting Attorney
In response to the rapidly increasing elderly population in King County, and increases in crimes against vulnerable adults, former King County Prosecutor Norm Maleng created the Elder Abuse Program to address the special circumstances inherent in these cases. Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Page Ulrey was hired in 2001 and currently works in the Economic Crimes Unit, where she prosecutes financial exploitation, neglect and sexual assault. Due to her work, Ms. Ulrey has ensured these violations are now viewed as criminal actions rather than civil matters.
Wanting to change the ratio of unreported elder abuse (for every reported case of abuse, 23 more will not see the light of day), Ms. Ulrey trains on abuse investigations and prosecution across the country for the Office on Violence Against Women and the National District Attorneys Association. When Washington State's Department of Social and Health Services has failed to protect vulnerable adults, Ms. Ulrey has demanded local investigations, repeatedly putting victimizers behind bars. Her record of success has inspired other jurisdictions to create their own elder abuse divisions, leading to greater safety and security of all seniors.
"It is difficult to overstate the importance of Page Ulrey's work. She is a nationally known expert on Elder Abuse with a never-ending quest to expand knowledge and prosecution of those who victimize seniors," said Kecia Lilly, Concierge Care Senior Vice President. "I've worked in the financial investment field for nearly 25 years, and am grateful that Page is leading changes in perception, policy and prosecution of financial exploitation."
Exposed Hero: The Advocate - Joe Ingram, Homeless Veterans Activist
In the 1990s, Joe Ingram was on the street, addicted to the crack cocaine that dulled the memories of his service as a Vietnam Veteran. Through emergency services and homeless shelters, he was finally able to overcome his addiction and move into an apartment at the former Sand Point Naval Station. Learning of Mr. Ingram's veteran status, Veterans' Affairs case manager Alan Castle worked diligently to convince Joe to get VA services. As Mr. Ingram's physical and mental health improved, Mr. Castle and other veterans' advocates recognized his tremendous abilities. "A storyteller, Joe had the natural ability to gain the trust of other homeless veterans," said Mr. Castle, now retired. "Because he had lived their life, other lost souls found solace in Joe. And it was from that skill set that Vet's Edge was created."
Mr. Ingram's mission is rescuing the homeless and connecting them with shelter, health and community services, as he was rescued. Thirty percent of those he works with are seniors and 40% are veterans. Recognized for his insight, perseverance and success working with this vulnerable population, Mr. Ingram has received funding from King County and the City of Redmond so he can continue his work. He operates out of a donated 1990 Toyota Camry and connects hundreds of people with the services they need to put their lives in order. Putting service above self, Mr. Ingram embodies Concierge Care Advisors' mission of safety and security of seniors and veterans.
"My cousin, Richard, was also a veteran, shackled by PTSD and addled by drugs and alcohol. Richard died homeless on the streets of San Jose in 1995," said Cindi Laws, Vice President at Concierge Care. "Meeting Joe was a deeply personal and emotional experience. Joe inspires me and others because of his humanity and his quest to see that our most vulnerable are connected and protected."
About Concierge Care Advisors
Concierge Care Advisors introduces seniors, veterans and their families to the finest in-home care or senior housing options, at no cost. Working with HIPAA and CCA certified experts, seniors and their families receive exceptional guidance through options in senior care, senior housing, retirement communities, assisted living, dementia care, nursing homes, veterans benefits and more.
To learn more about Concierge Care Advisors' services, and how the company is helping improve the safety and security of seniors at every level, up, visit www.conciergecareadvisors.com.