SSV: Becoming An Age Friendly Community

From left to right: Peter Thompson, Kim Volker, George Worthington, Jeff Gould and Sue Friedman

Peter Thompson, Executive Director of The Center and a founding leader of the The Charlottesville Area Alliance (CAA), George Worthington the dementia services coordinator for Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services, and Kim Volker manager of Virginia Care is There, a geriatric care management company, spoke at the December 2021 meeting of the Senior Statesmen of Virginia.

Peter presented an overview of CAA whose mission is to lead the advancement of an age friendly community which is good for everyone. CAA has been accepted as a partner in the WHO/AARP age-friendly network, which gives the group access to a global network of advisors and groups working toward similar goals. There are eight standards for successful communities including outdoor space, transportation, housing, social inclusion and health services.

George Worthington spoke on age and dementia friendly perspective working together and including a dementia friendly aspect to its plans such as dementia friends’ initiative to keep individuals involved in the community. He also presented information of the CAA’s social participation action plan to increase participation and education to foster the understanding of aging and dementia and CAA’s housing efforts.

Kim Volker provided information on CAA’s new alliance: citizen advocates to increase the engagement of citizens in legislative priorities identified by CAA. The final topic was the CAA goals for transportation such as bus stop improvements.

The three spoke at the Wednesday December 8, 2021 meeting of the Senior Statesmen of Virginia. The meeting was held at The Center in Charlottesville and simulcast on Zoom. Following the presentation, questions were taken from the audience. The program was introduced by SSV President Jeff Gould and moderated by Vice President Sue Friedman.

SSV: The Center at Belvedere

Peter Thompson speaking at The Center in Charlottesville.

The Center at Belvedere, opening April 18, 2020, will offer all the key ingredients for aging well including programs to promote social, physical and intellectual wellness. In this podcast, The Center Executive Director Peter Thompson shares his plans for the new facility.

Peter Thompson joined The Center in 1999. A resident of Charlottesville for more than 40 years, he received his undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia and his MPA with a concentration in nonprofit management from VCU. While serving from 2006-2012 on the National Institute of Senior Centers (NISC) Delegate Council, a part of the National Council on Aging (NCOA), Peter chaired a national task force on New Models of Senior Centers; the resulting report was published in the Journal for Applied Gerontology. He serves as a NISC accreditation reviewer and standards trainer. Recently, he worked with a small group of his peers to found the Virginia Association of Senior Centers within the Virginia Recreation and Parks Society. This association gives senior centers a greater voice in helping Virginia and its localities prepare for the age wave. He has also served on the Board of Directors of the Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UVA, and Madison House. He was a founding director for the Virginia Network of Nonprofit Organizations (VANNO), serving two years as chair, and for the Center for Nonprofit Excellence (CNE) in Charlottesville. In 2010, the United Way Thomas Jefferson Area selected Peter for the Excellence in Nonprofit Leadership award.

Mr. Thompson spoke at the Wednesday March, 11 2020 meeting of the Senior Statesmen of Virginia. The meeting was held at The Center in Charlottesville. Following the presentation, questions were taken from the audience. The program was moderated by SSV President Jeff Gould. A copy of Mr. Thompson’s slides can be found here.

Becoming an Age-Friendly Community

Representatives of the Charlottesville Area Alliance discuss the mission and vision of the Alliance, to be the most age-friendly community in the country.

The panel speaking at the Senior Center in Charlottesville.

Representing the Alliance are:

Marta Keane has been the CEO of JABA since April 2013. JABA works to help people age in community, by providing a Continuum of Caring for the Continuum of Living. Her entire career has been on helping seniors achieve the highest quality of life, in the place of their choice. She believes in creating a community that honors and respects the gifts that seniors have to offer.
Brad Sheffield serves as the executive at JAUNT Inc. He has been working in the transit industry for 16 years, in both public and private transit planning roles. From January 2014 to December 2017, Brad served on the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors representing the Rio Magisterial District. He is passionate about helping communities foster the traditional characteristics that make places great to work, raise a family, and retire.
Sunshine Mathon is the executive director of Piedmont Housing Alliance. Sunshine has lead the development of over 1,200 healthy, efficient homes in Texas and Virginia, including some of the highest ever LEED for Homes communities. He is a nationally-recognized leader in the deep green affordable housing sector. Sunshine holds a Masters in Architecture from the University of Texas
Rebecca Schmidt is the population health manager for the Thomas Jefferson Health District serving the City of Charlottesville and the five surrounding counties. Over the past 15 years, she has worked in health policy, program development, implementation and evaluation for nongovernmental agencies and for local, state, federal and international government. She holds a B.A. from Boston University and an M.P.A. in Public Administration from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Peter Thompson has served as executive director of the Senior Center Inc. since 1999. The Senior Center positively impacts the community by creating opportunities for healthy aging through over 100 programs and scores of partnerships. Peter received his B.A. from UVa and his MPA from Virginia Commonwealth University. Recent community service includes serving on the Board of Directors of the OLLI at UVa, Chamber of Commerce, and the Center for Nonprofit Excellence.


The event took place at the Wednesday February 14, 2018 meeting of the Senior Statesmen of Virginia. The meeting was held at the Senior Center in Charlottesville. Following the presentation, questions were taken from the audience. SSV President Rich DeMong moderated.