Selected Works

Article - Politico, January 2017
A Pennsylvania Green House model is hopeful look at the nursing home of the future
Changing Aging Blog, January 2016
How a Houston agency transformed its ageist approach
Next Avenue Blog, July 7, 2015
Blog for PBS Next Avenue, August 14, 2014
Biography (young readers)
"Breaking down obstacles for women, this born adventurer spends her life exploring and studying marine habitats."
--School Library Journal, April 2002

My So-Called Book Tour

When Your Community is an Island

September 26, 2014

Tags: Vashon Island, Wendy Lustbader, Vashon Community Care Center, Wendy Noble

Vashon Island was as lovely as we'd ever imagined.
Ross and I had always wanted to take the ferry from Seattle to Vashon Island and finally got our chance. Charlene asked culture change leader, author and professor Wendy Lustbader, who lives on Vashon, to lead an event for me there.

By a happy confluence of circumstances, my old friend Wendy Noble, whom I met a million years ago when we worked together on the kidney transplant unit at Ohio State University Hospital, had moved to Vashon a week earlier. Wendy L. gave Wendy N. and us a lovely tour of the island and her husband Barry joined us for lunch at The Hardware Store, a cool repurposed restaurant.

Some 60 islanders and residents of the Vashon Community Care Center turned out for my talk. Wendy L. led a discussion about how Vashon Island could become more age-friendly. Among the challenges: transportation, connecting people whose homes are often secluded in the woods, and recruiting more volunteers to support elders (including of course elders themselves who want to contribute to others).


  1. September 26, 2014 11:00 AM EDT
    Love the photo of you and Ross - and please, tell me they are saving the sign on the old grain elevator. That's beautiful.
    - Michele
  2. September 26, 2014 11:34 AM EDT
    Yes, I think the sign will be there!
    - Beth Baker


Bittersweet last stop of the road trip, we were with my sis and bro-in-law.

Bonnie Kantor-Burman, director of the Ohio Dept. of Aging, was on air with me.

The show on WOSU was live-streamed--Ross took this image on the screen in the studio lobby.

Illinois landscape, on the way to Columbus

Subtext Books--Bruce and Michael in background, with some of Bruce's family

Reading from my book at Subtext Books in St. Paul

Barbara Goldner of Mill City Commons, a Minneapolis Village model

Riding the ferry to Vashon.

Ross enjoyed a night out with Steve Smith--sampling Pacific oysters and wild salmon. Yum.

Wendy Lustbader and I leaving Vashon for Seattle.

Charlene Boyd of Providence Mount St. Vincent and I aboard the ferry to Vashon Island.

Seattle street scene

Derenda Schubert, director of Bridge Meadows

A home in Bridge Meadows.

Sign on old grain elevator in Carlton that will soon be repurposed.

The lovely Ula and Ingrid Lustig

Wonderful to see old Maryland friends Paul and Merry Treanor in Santa Cruz. And notice the line of book buyers! An author's dream.

No surprise: Santa Cruz folks were open to alternative ways to grow old.

Best part of L.A. visit: spending time with our great-nephew Callan and his parents, Christiana and Matt.

Cynthia Friedlob interviewing me for pre-recorded radio show.

Ivy was somewhat mystified by Patrick and Eileen's French bull dogs. Here's Juno.

Former neighbors Patrick and Eileen offered warm hospitality in Phoenix.

Ruins of an Anasazi community in Canyon de Chelly

Bruce Spruce Ranch, home sweet home for a couple of nights

The Pecos River adjoining our campsite

Ivy pretending to be a water dog in the Pecos River

The view from Bonnie's threshold

Birds of a Feather founder Bonnie McGowan

Grabbed a cafe con leche after the radio interview in Albuquerque.

Chiropractic sign off Route 66 in Albuquerque

Ivy won over Molly, who a few minutes earlier was terrified of dogs.

Bunny and Peggy with granddaughter Violet hamming it up.

My old friend Peggy Diehl

One of the most unusual ways to age in community.

Dale Smith, co-host of the Timberlake Event, whose reflections on aging in place are in my book.

Marcia introducing me at the Timberlake Country Club event.

Ivy ready to co-pilot the great adventure

Ivy says no way we're leaving her behind.