Recognizing the 2021 Inspire Positive Aging Award Winners

We would like to take this Black History Month to recognize previous winners of our Inspire Positive Aging Awards who represent and advocate for BIPOC individuals and families in their local communities.

Winner of the 2021 IPAA Advocacy & Activism Award was Cynthia Grayson. For years, Cynthia lived out her advocacy values as a child welfare worker and a mental health therapist. She has always fiercely fought for establishing equity in access to services for African American and Native American families and communities. A true example of a person who practices what they preach, Cynthia has worked tirelessly to network and engage with others to establish a strong and supportive system of care dedicated to the cause of human justice. Upon receiving her award at the 2021 IPAA virtual event, Cynthia goes on to recognize the value of funding and supporting kinship caregivers, older adults that might also be acting as parents or caregivers to their grandchildren.

Cynthia Grayson, 2021 IPAA winner in pink shirt with grandson in black shirt smiling together

“This was something that I was going to have to not only be a strong advocate for, but also maybe activism, just because I know sometimes….many people are not aware that some of our grandparents are parenting the second time around, and how challenging that may be. So having had that experience on a personal level, I feel really positive about being selected for this award.”

Receiving the award for Intergenerational Impact was Mary Floyd, who has worked for several years in education and in that time has also been volunteering as a foster grandparent with Homage. Her ability to pivot and adapt amidst the drastic changes in the school system brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic allowed her to continue supporting children virtually, overcoming technological barriers along the way.

IPAA winner Mary Floyd smiling, wearing glasses and sitting in front of a picture frame

“It’s a booster for me, to continue reaching out to our future generations, our children, and encouraging them. Volunteering is a powerful tool that can be used on both fronts, virtual and in person.”

The 2022 Inspire Positive Aging awards will be held in person for the first time since 2019. We look forward to seeing more amazing nominees. Visit our IPAA hub to learn more.