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Renda Named to Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame

Gloria J. Renda of Steubenville is among 10 remarkable older Ohioans who have been honored for a lifetime of accomplishments.

Renda was inducted into the Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame during a special ceremony at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus May 19. She joined more than 450 individuals who have been inducted since 1977.

“Because aging is everybody’s business, the Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame recognizes the many ways our elders continue to grow, thrive and contribute throughout their lives,” said Bonnie K. Burman, director of the department. “Gloria Renda and the other inductees understand that we should not be defined by our age, but inspired by it. They set a stellar example for other Ohioans to follow and are a precious resource for our state, nation and the world.”

This year’s honorees have elevated Ohio and their communities to the national and international stage, as well as created and fostered opportunities for their neighbors to live “Well Beyond 60.” The inductees were recognized by the Ohio Department of Aging, the Ohio Association of Area Agencies on Aging and members of the 131st Ohio General Assembly at the ceremony.

Renda worked for 27 years as librarian in Jefferson County Schools. Through various endeavors, she has helped bring literacy to countless neighbors. Using a grant from Vista Volunteers of America, she founded the Upper Ohio Valley Adult Literacy Council in 1990 to tutor adults in reading.

She works with young mothers in the community to emphasize the importance of literacy to give children the opportunities to succeed in life. She led efforts to restore an 1880 one-room brick school house, which is now part of a learning experience for local students. She expands her reach internationally by traveling to Italy, Spain and Mexico and teaching English to local residents and promoting literacy.

Also inducted were Al Abrams (posthumous) of Findlay; Sister Jerome Corcoran of Canfield; John Eicher of Oxford; Annie Glenn of Columbus; Michael E. Jackson of Tipp City; Yung-Chen Lu of Columbus; Caroline N. Luhta of Concord Township; Sandra L. Ogle of Rockbridge and E.J. Thomas of New Albany.

The Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame honors individuals, age 60 and older, who are native-born Ohioans or who have been Ohio residents for at least 10 years. Nominations are evaluated on the impact of current contributions or a continuation of work and accomplishments begun before age 60.

This year’s nominees range in age from 64 to 100.

The Ohio Department of Aging works to ensure that elders are respected as vital members of society who continue to grow, thrive and contribute. Its programs include the PASSPORT Medicaid waiver, caregiver support, the long-term care ombudsman program and Golden Buckeye Card.

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