FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | November 19, 2010
National Group Names ‘Dementia Care Professional of the Year’
Baton Rouge Program Coordinator Doubles as Professional and Family Caregiver
NEW YORK, NY— Each work day, Julie Brewer epitomizes compassionate care and competence in all facets of her job as a program coordinator at the Alzheimer’s Services of the Capital Area, Baton Rouge, LA.
And when she leaves, that compassionate care continues at home—this time, caring for her dad, who has dementia and lives with her.
In recognition of her dedication, compassion and demonstrated professional excellence, Dementia Care Professionals of America (DCPA) recently named Brewer the 2010 Dementia Care Professional of the Year. She is the third recipient of the annual award bestowed by DCPA, the professional membership and training division of the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America.
The award recognizes an individual “who demonstrates professional excellence in care, compassionate performance that exceeds expectations and a dedicated commitment to those diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia.”
“Julie Brewer’s tireless efforts and desire to make a difference for strangers and family alike reflect the best in dementia care professionals. She understands the educational and practical needs of families, and aggressively makes sure they are met fully and compassionately,” said Eric J. Hall, AFA’s president and CEO.
In nominating Brewer, Dana Territo, the director of Alzheimer’s Services of the Capital Area, said, “Julie performs her duties with a loving dedication and almost obsessive determination.”
Among her many accomplishments since she hit the ground running at the agency in 2008, Brewer oversees more than a dozen support groups and trains their facilitators, teaches “Alzheimer’s 101” classes for caregivers and individuals with the disease, assists caregivers on the agency’s helpline, maintains the resource library, organizes the agency’s annual educational conference, and fills in to lead activities at the agency’s respite center.
In addition, she led efforts, in collaboration with Louisiana State University, to create an emergency preparedness manual for dementia care, which was published and distributed to area healthcare organizations and caregivers.
Territo said she was especially motivated to nominate Brewer because after all she accomplishes at the agency during her regular day, “her day begins again at home in the caregiving capacity for her special loved one… I know being a caregiver herself has given her the empathy and concern she shows for so many others we help at Alzheimer’s Services. And, we are all the better for it.”
Dementia Care Professionals of America, a division of the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA), is a membership organization for dementia care professionals that offers practical training, continuing education and qualification as AFA Dementia Care Providers and AFA Dementia Care Specialists. Its 3,500 members include social workers, nurses, home health aides, physicians and other healthcare professionals. For more information, visit www.careprofessionals.org or call 866-232-8484.
Alzheimer’s Foundation of America
The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, based in New York, is a non-profit organization that unites more than 1,400 member organizations nationwide with the goal of providing optimal care and services to individuals confronting dementia, and to their caregivers and families. Its services include a toll-free hot line, educational materials, a free quarterly magazine for caregivers and professional training. For more information about AFA, call toll-free 866-AFA-8484 or visit www.alzfdn.org.
Contact: Carol Steinberg