||To become recognized across Nevada & beyond as leaders in aging-related research, education, and community outreach.
||The mission of the Sanford Center for Aging is to enhance the quality of life for older persons through innovation and leadership in interdisciplinary aging-related research, education and community outreach.
|The Sanford Center for Aging is funded in the large part through a substantial endowment made by Mrs. Jean Sanford in 1992. The express purpose of this endowment was ”…to support the activities … which are directed in whole or substantial part towards research, teaching and publicizing ways and means to improve quality of life for [older adults].”
In the mid-20th century, Carson City pioneers Graham and Jean Cameron
Sanford owned the successful Dangberg Land and Livestock Company in Minden,
Nevada, south of Carson City. Three years after Graham Sanford’s death in 1975,
the company was sold and Mrs. Sanford moved to Carson City to care for her
elderly mother. During this period, she envisioned a future for older adults
that offered vibrant health, cultural and social opportunities, and dignity of
independence. Between 1982 and Mrs. Sanford’s death in 1992, she donated
substantial sums of money to charities, including a gift of $100,000 to the
University of Nevada, Reno in 1985 to establish the Geriatric and Gerontology
Center. Mrs. Sanford later designated that 80 percent of her estate be used to
establish an endowment for a special university program. Her vision was for the
program to develop, implement, and foster academic and applied research,
scholarship and statewide collaboration to shape the future of geriatrics and
gerontology in Nevada. In honor of her benefaction, in 1993 the state Board of
Regents renamed the existing university program the Graham and Jean Sanford
Center for Aging. Today the center is supported financially by the endowment
created from Mrs. Sanford’s estate, federal and state grants, and philanthropic
The Sanford Center for Aging has a three-part mission:
Interdisciplinary courses developed by the center in gerontology (the study of aging) and geriatrics (hands-on medical care) are taught at the University of Nevada, Reno.
Scholarships and fellowships funded by the center encourage University of Nevada, Reno undergraduate and graduate students to specialize in aging-related fields.
Training and continuing-education programs presented or co-sponsored by the center enhance the knowledge and skills of health-care professionals as well as volunteer caregivers throughout the state.
The center field-tests innovative programs to deal with critical issues like medication therapy management and self-management of chronic conditions. Such programs serve the public directly while also advancing knowledge about how people age and about how to serve elder populations more effectively.
Grant support allows the center to offer free lectures and training programs throughout the year in the areas of wellness and caregiving.
The center helps sponsor volunteer programs that assist older adults in Nevada with legal, medical, mobility and other issues. Volunteers also provide extra eyes and ears to government regulators charged with monitoring services for elders.
Other efforts of the center connect active senior volunteers with programs that benefit their local communities, like the Senior Auxiliary Volunteer Effort (SAVE) with the Reno Police Department.