Outstanding Gerontologist Award

Dutch Kastenbaum Outstanding Gerontologist Award
The Minnesota Gerontological Society established the Outstanding Gerontologist Award in 1984 to recognize individuals who have contributed to lives of older persons throughout Minnesota. Contributions can be made to the field of aging through practice, research, or academics. In 1998 the award was renamed the Dutch Kastenbaum Award to honor Abraham “Dutch” Kastenbaum.  Kastenbaum was trained as a social worker, and was a champion in beginning service programs for older people. He later became a celebrity with his weekly television show, Senior Citizen’s Forum, which ran for almost 25 years. To honor his memory, the Minnesota Gerontological Society receives nominations each year to recognize outstanding gerontologists.

Announcing the 2017 Gerontologist of the Year!

Helen Q. Kivnick, PhD, UMN School of Social Work

Dr. Helen Q. Kivnick is a developmental psychologist who joined the University of Minnesota’s School of Social Work in 1990. In the ensuing, almost three decades, she contributed extensively to improving the lives of older Minnesotans. Her work, which emphasizes assessing and working with older persons’ strengths rather than concentrating solely on their dependencies, has changed thinking about long-term services and supports (LTSS) in Minnesota and nationally. She is an original and insightful scholar and researcher; she envisaged, develops, tests, and trains others in an emerging practice that she calls Vital Involvement Practice (VIP); she is a passionate educator who has lasting influence on her students; she collaborates with an extraordinary range of colleagues (from “hard sciences” to the arts and humanities); locally and nationally, she has been engaged in inter-organizational collaboration to help create systems—in long-term care, assisted living, case management, and housing, to enhance psychosocial well-being for all seniors. As a musician, talented writer, and story teller, she has [purposefully utilized music, the arts, and story-telling to aid in human development and psychosocial wellbeing across the lifespan.

Past Award Winners

  • 2016 Olivia Mastry
  • 2015: Jean K. Wood and Jim Tift
  • 2014: Elaine Carlson
  • 2013: Dawn Simonson
  • 2012: Edward Ratner
  • 2011: Phyllis Greenberg
  • 2010: Hal Freshley
  • 2009: Gayle Kvenvold
  • 2008: Janet Hively
  • 2007: Maddy Forsberg
  • 2006: Jeanette Metz
  • 2005: Marion Goepner
  • 2004: Maria R. Gomez
  • 2003: Robert and Rosalie Kane
  • 2002: John Selstad
  • 2001: Warren Wolfe
  • 2000: Larhae Knatterud
  • 1999: Pamela Parker
  • 1998: Ken Hepburn
  • 1997: Janet Woodhull and Iris Freeman
  • 1996: Gerald Bloedow
  • 1995: Abraham Kastenbaum
  • 1994: Muriel Ryden
  • 1993: Donna Walberg and Steven Miles
  • 1992: Donald McTavish and David Knopmaan
  • 1991: Doug Hanneman
  • 1990: Nancy N. Eustis
  • 1989: Elva Walker
  • 1988: Raye Kreevoy and Cynthia Polich
  • 1985: Grace Warfield and Norm Bourestom
  • 1984: Etta Saloshin