International Encyclopedia of Civil Society

2010 Edition
| Editors: Helmut K. Anheier, Stefan Toepler


  • Andrea DeJonge
Reference work entry

Address of Organization

601 E Street NW Washington, DC 20049 USA


Originally known as the American Association of Retired Persons, AARP is an enormous association dedicated to enhancing the quality of life of the aging population. The motto of its constituents is “To Serve, and Not Be Served.” Membership is restricted to persons over fifty, and at the time of this writing AARP claims to have over 40 million US members. AARP and its related organizations provide services, advocacy, and education for its members. It actively lobbies for health-related issues such as Medicare and prescription drug coverage, as well as Social Security.

Brief History

In 1947, Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus, a retired high school principle, founded the National Retired Teachers Association (NRTA) when she discovered that private health insurance was not available to retired educators. Ten years later, after success in finding health resources and programs for the NRTA, Dr. Andrus expanded...

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References/Further Readings

  1. Morris, C. R. (1996). The AARP: America's most powerful lobby and the clash of generations. New York, Time Books.Google Scholar
  2. Litwak, E., & Butler, R. N. (1985). Helping the elderly: The complementary roles of informal networks and formal systems. New York: Guilford.Google Scholar
  3. Peterson, P. G. (1996). Will America grow up before it grows old? How the coming social security crisis threatens you, your family, and your country. New York: Random House.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andrea DeJonge
    • 1
  1. 1.Business Development/Technology Transfer OfficeVan Andel InstituteGrand RapidsUSA