The Encore Network has huge opportunities, with our 70+ members, global reach and inspiring mission: activating older adults to improve our communities. Working together and collaborating with, the Network can support members’ programs and grow the encore movement. All we need to do is set priorities and find resources to expand our efforts.

We all know that’s no small task. Fortunately, a dedicated team* of nine national leaders are working with VP Nancy Peterson and me on Network strategy and priorities. We have more than 100 years of encore experience among us, and we’ve held many leadership roles. The team’s varied perspectives, experience and creativity are a great asset as we build the Encore Network.

*Helen Dennis (Project Renewment, LA), Doug Dickson (Encore Boston Network), Therese Ellery (Rose Community Foundation, Denver), Jeanne Foster (Oasis, St. Louis), Ward Greene (SAGE, Portland OR), Emily Merritt (Alliance for Strong Families and Communities, Milwaukee), Barbara Raynor (Double Nickel Strategies, New Jersey), Bevan Rogel (Encore Tampa Bay), Janine Vanderburg (Joining Vision and Action, Denver). Read their bios here.

In September the group gathered in Denver for two days of planning meetings, expertly facilitated by team member Janine Vanderburg and hosted at the Rose Community Foundation.

Headlines from our sessions

The Encore Network matters because we support advocates and create pathways to purpose. We’re a bridge between big ideas and local implementation, leading to opportunities for individuals and positive outcomes for our communities.

We envision a future where organizations in all sectors leverage encore talent fully, purposeful aging is the norm, funders are eager to invest in our work and a Congressional Encore Medal recognizes high-impact encore leaders. (Yes, we did think big.)

Network membership will continue to grow, with a near-term focus on existing encore programs, diverse communities and membership organizations interested in programs that resonate with older members. Longer-term membership targets include for-profit employers, public agencies, nonprofits recruiting encore talent and corporate/foundation sponsors.

We’ll increase membership value through connecting you with other leaders, delivering resources and encore content through webinars and real-time conversations, spotlighting your work and joining our voices.

Leadership opportunities abound. You can support the Network with life-enhancing activities: welcoming new members, planning webinars and other real-time conversations, and facilitating knowledge-sharing sessions. Go here for details on how we’ll get started.

If many of those ideas sound familiar, good! They are the Network’s core benefits and the reason why you joined. We’ll pursue a number of new efforts as well:

  • Peer learning and knowledge-sharing
  • Creative ideas to support a growing number of members who are launching new encore programs
  • Additional funding for the Network, including foundation support, earned income and sponsorships

We’ve accomplished a lot in our first seven months. Thanks for getting in on the ground floor. We’ll keep building the Network so it’s an invaluable resource for you – and we’re a force of our own in the encore movement.

Contact: Betsy Werley, Encore Network lead.

Published: October 24, 2017