An innovative program aimed at tapping into the collective brainpower of retired and semi-retired individuals in the Gainesville-Hall County-Lake Lanier area and harness their wisdom for the greater public good kicked off its opening session at Thurmond-McRae lecture hall on the Brenau campus Friday. The “Wisdom Project” is a collaborative effort of the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce and the Center for Lifetime Study/BULLI. The program is designed for community members over age 50 to help build greater understanding of Greater Hall County, enlist participants´ skills to improve the in creative ways through action and advocacy on behalf of Hall County.
“We´re excited about the potential, excited about where it is going and excited about this group,” BULLI Director Kathy Amos said at the opening session. “The idea is to light the fire and create the vision.”
The Friday session included an overview and discussion of problems and issues facing senior adults in the community and involved interaction with a panel of people representing businesses and institutions that provide services to seniors.
The participants in the opening session comprised a wide array of Hall countians – from natives to recent transplants. The group included Joel Williams, the program director at WDUN radio; Gary Lawrence, a newcomer to the area who used to work in internal and human resources consulting with Waste Management on Houston, Texas, and other large companies; Jim Whitlock, recently embarked on his “second retirement” as a Brenau University health care business professor(his first was as an administrator of large hospitals);Jolinda Martin, chief nursing officer at Northeast Georgia Health System; and Jeanne Buffington, who has extensive experience working with nonprofit organizations and community volunteers.
The Wisdom Project is an offshoot of the chamber´s Vision 2030 initiative, which outlined 15 focus areas for the strategic growth of the county – one of which was a commitment to education and lifelong learning.
Friday, August 24, 2012