2019 Practitioner of the Year
Shon Earl Gress
Executive Director/CEO, Guernsey County Senior Center of Cambridge, OH
Pictured from left to right: Shon Earl Gress (Executive Director/CEO, Guernsey County Senior Center), Beverly Laubert (State Long-Term Care Ombudsman), and Daniel van Dussen (OAGE President)
Executive Director Gress is a tireless advocate for older adults in his area and all of Ohio.
His participation on boards and commissions ensure older adults are represented and have a voice in available services. He works to increase knowledge about local and state issues and has testified before Ohio legislative committees on numerous issues that are important to older adults. He has opened nutrition centers in all corners of Guernsey County to serve area elders and writes grants to expand services in his area. Executive Director Gress believes in marrying research and practice to improve evidence-based services for older adults. Guernsey County Senior Citizens Center’s Meals on Wheels program was one of two only two Meals on Wheels programs in the nation selected to participate in the second phase of a two-year research program being conducted by Meals on Wheels America, the Gary and Mary West Health Institute and a research group at the Brown University Center for Gerontology and Healthcare Research. Researchers are using the program to pilot an enhanced meal-delivery service with Guernsey County seniors that integrates standardized health and safety screenings into daily meal delivery services to help volunteers report, using technology, any change in condition they observe in senior clients and improve the general health and well being of homebound seniors. In addition, the Guernsey County Senior Citizens Center’s “Meals as you Mend” program serves residents 60 and older who are being discharged from the hospital or nursing home and may need assistance with the preparation of nutritious meals, which as been a great success in helping individuals recover quicker and remain independent.