Author Archives: Howard Johnson

Howard Johnson

Sharon and Howard Johnson are Certified Aging-in-Place Specialists (CAPS) with the National Association of Home Builders who have launched a nonprofit organization, Age Friendly Innovators Inc. (www.agefriendlyinnovators.org) They are passionate about the importance of older adults aging in place in a home of your own and have practical and provocative ideas about how to make that happen.
Sharon is a retired Oregon State University educator who has developed dozens of award-winning programs about health and aging. She has written a weekly column for the Mail Tribune for over ten years.
Howard is semi-retired from his international work in marine conservation. In 2010 he was named a Purpose Prize Fellow by Encore.org as a “social innovator.”

Watch Your Step

I’ve blogged about falls in the past (Don’t Fall for This 1 & 2) but talked mostly about fall risk in the home.  Last weekend Sharon and I were in Decatur, Georgia for a family wedding and the issue of falls once again came up. We stayed at hotel about 5 blocks from Sharon’s sister [...]

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Helping the Helpers

I read an article from the New York Times recently discussing the legions of family caregivers looking after elders.  In this article the primary caregiver is a 78-year-old women caring from her 85-year-old husband who as vascular dementia.  I have linked the full article on our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/agefriendlyinnovation.  There are millions of these family [...]

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Home Alone

In late 2013 Sharon and I founded Age-Friendly Innovators (www.agefriendlyinnovators.org) a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a mission to help older adults safely stay in their home for as long as possible.  This is called “aging-in-place.”  Perhaps you have come across this term as it is appearing in the mainstream press (New York Times, Wall Street [...]

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Don’t Fall for This Part 2

Sharon and I have both blog about fall prevention in general but I want to get very specific….floor coverings such as mats and throw rugs are dangerous.  Two questions.  1. Are these floor coverings in good condition or noticeably worn or torn?  2. Do the floor coverings bunch up or slide when you walk on [...]

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What about Lucy?

Last month Sharon and I presented at the American Society on Aging (ASA) “Aging in America” conference in Chicago.  The program was packed with presentations on a wide variety of subjects relating to aging, but one in particular caught our attention. In recent years we have tried to plan for aging and end-of-life decisions and [...]

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Fire Safety

It takes a bit to shock me these days but when I saw a statistic recently regarding fire safety I was stunned.  According to a report by the U.S. Fire Administration, older adults (age 65 and older) are more than twice as likely to die in fires than the Nation’s population as a whole.  Individuals [...]

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The Future is Now

The front page feature in today’s Mail Tribune was an article on Medford’s plans to expand their urban growth boundary to accommodate anticipated population growth over the next 20 years.  Having spent five years on the Jacksonville Planning Commission I am familiar with the process (and have the scars to prove it).  This expansion is [...]

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And if I Die Before I Wake

I woke up this morning thinking about dying.  No, I didn’t “think” I was dying,  just thinking about the subject in general.  I’m not hung up on the subject and am in great health (thanks in no small measure to my dear and caring wife) but recently I came across three articles about dying.  Before [...]

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Five “Must Haves”

Surveys clearly indicate older adults want to stay in their current home and community as they age.  However, for a variety of reasons, many over-50 households make the decision to either build a new home or purchase another, often smaller, home.  Typically the reasons given for moving are after the children leave the home (empty [...]

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Best Cities for Aging? – Not Medford

Carrying out the mission of our nonprofit organization, Age-Friendly Innovators, includes a great deal of market research.  This means looking at the demographics of aging, future housing needs of older adults and wading through a number of research papers and reports. Recently, I came across a 61-page 2014 report titled “Best Cities for Successful Aging.”  [...]

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