VANTAGE Aging Will Recognize Those Supporting Positive Aging in Summit County at 2018 SOAR Awards

VANTAGE Aging (formerly Mature Services) will host the 2018 SOAR Awards (Summit Oscars for Aging Resources) on May 3, 2018. Corresponding with Older Americans Month, SOAR Awards recognize the people and organizations who improve the lives of older adults in Summit County.

“We are proud to celebrate the accomplishments of those who serve older adults,” said VANTAGE Aging President & CEO Karen Hrdlicka. “Our community has a growing need for efforts to improve the quality of life for our aging population. We invite the community to join us at the 2018 VANTAGE SOAR Awards.”

The VANTAGE SOAR Awards is in its second year. Winners are nominated, judged, and receive a custom, one-of-a-kind award created by Akron artist Jennifer Worden.

Close up of the Ed Kaufman Leadership in Aging Award from the 2017 SOAR Awards

SOAR Award created by Artist Jennifer Worden.

In 2018, the judging panel includes Joe Ruby, industry leader in aging policy and services; Dr. Harvey Sterns, Professor of Psychology at The University of Akron, Research Professor of Family and Community Medicine at Northeast Ohio Medical University, and President, Board of Governors for Accreditation for the Gerontology Education Council; and Kim Ray, Vice President, HCPF of PNC Bank. 

Seven awards are given to individuals and organizations who empower older adults in Summit County. Here are the nominees for the 2018 VANTAGE SOAR Awards.

The Joe Ruby Collaboration in Aging Services Award is given to a group of people or organizations who improved services to older adults through a collaborative effort in Summit County. The nominees are:

  • Akron Community Foundation
  • Summit County Probate Court
  • County Executive Ilene Shapiro

The Age Friendly City Award is given to a city in Summit County that works to make their city more age friendly. The nominees are:

  • City of Green
  • City of Barberton
  • City of Twinsburg

The Ed Kaufman Leadership in Aging Award is given to a leader in Summit County who has improved the lives of older adults. The nominees are:

  • Barbara Mansfield Heinzerling
  • Eileen Schwartz
  • Margaret Scott

The Aging in Place Award is given to a service provider who has helped older adults stay in their homes. The nominees are:

  • Ohio Living Rockynol
  • Rebuilding Together of Northeast Ohio
  • Holly Miller

The Aging Environment Excellence Award is given to a housing service that provides excellence in their living environments for older adults. The nominees are:

  • Sunrise of Cuyahoga Falls
  • Laurel Lake Retirement Community
  • Paul Testa
  • The Village of St. Edward

The Age Friendly Business Award is given to a business that strives to be friendly to older adults. The nominees are:

  • Metro RTA
  • Stan Hywett Hall and Gardens
  • Stellar Private Cable Systems

The Innovations in Aging Award, which given to a person or organization who has done something innovative in the last year to serve older adults, received no nominations in 2018. This could indicate that innovations for older adults in Summit County are not keeping up with its growing aging population.

The 2018 Community Partner of the Year is Akron Community Foundation for its continued support of VANTAGE Aging’s Home Wellness Solutions program and Senior Farmer’s Market Voucher program. The 2018 Donor of the Year is Action Link, whose generous in-kind donations were provided to VANTAGE when they purchased their new building from Action Link in 2017.

Judge Elinore Marsh Stormer Ed Kaufmann Leadership in Aging Award 2017

Judge Elinore Marsh Stormer accepting the Ed Kaufmann Leadership in Aging Award at the 2017 VANTAGE SOAR Awards.

Tickets and sponsorships for the 2018 VANTAGE SOAR Awards are still available. Tickets are $75 for a reserved seat at the event to be held May 3, 2018, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at The Tangier’s in Akron.

Sponsorships are available at tiered levels and provide marketing opportunities. Sponsors receive a discount for giving to more than 1 VANTAGE event. Sponsorships are tax deductible.

To order tickets for SOAR Awards, visit To review the VANTAGE Sponsorship Package, visit

For questions about the VANTAGE SOAR Awards, contact Director of Community Engagement Dawn Moeglin at 330-253-4597 x160.

About VANTAGE Aging

VANTAGE Aging (formerly Mature Services) provides high-quality programs to empower the economic, social, physical, and mental well-being of adults as they age.  Our programs include home wellness solutions, mental health services and treatment for alcohol and other drug use disorders, job training, home-delivered and congregate meals, and volunteer opportunities. Founded in 1975 as a senior citizen program, VANTAGE has since become an independent, nationally respected organization with offices throughout the state. 

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