Butler resident Jean Purvis, 94, was recently honored with the 2016 AARP Pennsylvania Andrus Award for Community Service — the association’s most prestigious and visible state volunteer award for community service.
Named for AARP founder Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus, the award recognizes outstanding individuals who are making their communities better in ways that are consistent with AARP’s mission, vision and commitment to volunteer service, and who inspire others to volunteer. Jean has done just that and her contributions to the community are immense. She founded of the Community Health Clinic of Butler County, located on Bonnie Drive in Butler. The clinic provides healthcare for individuals who can’t afford insurance (and still serves as secretary of the clinic’s board of directors)—something that is more important than ever given the cost and red tape associated with healthcare coverage today. Jean also started the Visiting Nurses Association in Butler County and served for years on the Butler Area School District board.
“It’s practically impossible to count the number of people young and old who have benefited from Jean’s work in the community,” comments AARP state president Jim Palmquist. “In fact, at 94 years old, she continues to impact her community as much as she did 50 years ago. It’s obvious that in her hometown, Jean serves as a true role model and inspiration for so many in the Butler area. This award acts as a symbol to the public that we can all work together for positive social change, and Jean is a shining example of that.”
The award was formally presented to Jean on October 3 in Harrisburg, when AARP Pennsylvania hosted a volunteer recognition event to thank all Pennsylvania volunteers for their dedicated work. Andrus Award
winners are nominated by their peers and the award recipient is chosen by a special committee of AARP Pennsylvania volunteer leaders. This year, Jean was selected out of “an incredibly gifted slate of her peers,” says AARP communications director Barbara Bush.
“Jean’s an amazing lady and I’m glad she is getting this special recognition,” adds Steve Gardner of
AARP’s commitment to volunteer service can be traced back to the life and vision of founder Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus. From the beginning, her motto, “To serve, not to be served,” has shaped AARP’s community service efforts at the national, state and
Jean has made a tremendous contribution to not only her hometown but the entire Butler County. Congratulations, Jean, on receiving this award!
By Gina Mazza
For Butler County Senior News
Photo provided by Barbara Bush for Butler County Senior News