NCOA Celebrates 65 Years of Service to Older Adults—and Plans for the Future of Aging Services

ARLINGTON, Va.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–For more than 65 years, the National Council on Aging (NCOA) has made
improving the lives of older adults its mission and its passion. This
spring, NCOA is celebrating its history—while also looking ahead to plan
for the new realities and challenges of aging in America.

Originally formed in response to concerns about rising health costs and
mandatory retirement, NCOA continues to create innovative programs and
advocate for critical issues that make life better for all older adults,
especially those who are struggling.

Drawing from its history, there are many examples of NCOA’s
successes: NCOA successfully advocated for the 1965 passage of Medicare,
Medicaid, and the Older Americans Act; played an instrumental role in
eliminating mandatory retirement; developed innovative programs such as
Meals on Wheels, Foster Grandparents, and BenefitsCheckUp®;
collaborated with more than 100 organizations to help older adults
enroll in Medicare Part D; represents thousands of senior centers and
community-based organizations as they serve today’s older adults with
innovative programming; and today serves as the nation’s first National
Falls Prevention Resource Center. Timelines highlighting NCOA’s 65 years
of accomplishments are available online.

“Aging has changed significantly through the decades,” said James
Firman, NCOA President and CEO. “When NCOA was chartered, lives were
shorter and retirement was required. Today, Americans at age 65 have an
average of 20 more years ahead of them. Both then and now, NCOA
continues to help them live those years with health, security, and

As part of its 65th anniversary celebration, NCOA is
convening members of the nation’s aging network to create a collective
vision for the future of aging services. Through in-person meetings and
an online
, NCOA is asking five important questions about trends,
challenges, opportunities, and transformations needed to serve seniors
today and tomorrow. The responses will be translated into a white paper
and shared broadly this summer.

“Like the millions of Americans turning 65, we’re proud of what we’ve
accomplished, but we’re also far from ready to stop working,” said
Firman. “We are committed to reaching our social impact goal of
improving the health and economic security of 10 million older adults by

For more information, visit


Vanessa Sink
Public Affairs Manager