This award is named in honor of Katryna Gould, who served on the NADSA Board of Directors as a consumer advocate. Katryna was the voice of the family caregiver. She put a name and a face to caregiving for national regulators, legislators, funders and the general public by her testimonials and appearances. She was a determined advocate for Adult Day Services and helped NADSA forge partnerships with other providers and family caregivers. This award was created in 2006 to recognize a consumer of Adult Day Services who, through advocacy efforts, has increased the visibility and recognition of Adult Day Services as a viable community-based long-term care option.
Kenneth A. Smaltz, Jr., Kenneth A Smaltz, Sr. Foundation, Freeport, NY
Kenneth A. “Ken” Smaltz, Jr. cared for his father for over five years in his home and realized that his father, Kenneth A. Smaltz, Sr., required more care and supervision than he was able to provide while running a business at the same time. Ken enrolled his father in adult day services at Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care and Rehabilitation in New Hyde Park, NY, where he received care for over three years.
During the time that Ken’s father participated in adult day services, Ken realized what a valuable service adult day centers were for caregivers in the community who were trying to juggle their lives and also take care of loved ones at home. He also realized that not all families would be able to afford the service. So, in the midst of caring for his own father, Ken organized backyard barbecue fund raising events at his home with the proceeds going to directly help families pay for social day care. Four family caregivers were awarded over $4,000 each over the first two years of the event.
In 2012, in memory of his father, the Kenneth A. Smaltz, Sr. Foundation was founded—a 501c3, for the cure and care of Alzheimer’s disease. Its dual mission is to continue to support social adult day services for people with dementia and to provide a clinical fellowship at the Alzheimer’s Disease and Memory Disorders Clinic at Baylor College School of Medicine. Ken has become a spokesman for the Alzheimer’s Association, assisting with their national, state and local lobbying efforts, and remains a strong advocate and spokesperson for the importance of social adult day programs and their benefits participants and their caregivers. He is truly a beloved son and his foundation has eased the burden for many caregivers. The foundation continues to grow with more and more corporate sponsors.
“The Smaltz Foundation’s dedication to the Alzheimer’s community has been humbling to witness,” said Ginger Portnoy, Vice President for Development of Parker Jewish Institute Foundation. “The core of the Foundation is not in the pursuit of a cure, but rather a passionate desire to bring life and joy to those affected by Alzheimer’s. The Smaltz Foundation understands that the care required by dementia patients is more than medical.”
Family member Liz Salemo is grateful and inspired by Ken’s leadership and actions to help others. “To my overwhelming surprise, my mother became the fifth scholarship recipient. I hope to follow their lead and help other families in any way I can.” The Kenneth A. Smaltz, Sr. Foundation has become a saving grace for families looking for the best possible life for their loved ones stricken with Alzheimer’s disease.