Previous Recipients

The Gold Standard Award for Optimal Aging celebrates and honors adults aged 85 and older who embody the Trager Institute’s vision for a world where all older adults lead engaged and flourishing lives. These individuals are recognized by their community as outstanding models of optimal aging in the following areas: physical, social, spiritual, and creative. Winners are separated into individual and couples categories.

Previous Recipients: 2014  2016  2017  2018  2019  2020  2021

Recipients 2014:


 Phyllis Jenness: 2014 Winner

Phyllis Jenness, 92
Nominated by Lori White

For 60 years Phyllis Jenness has been a master teacher at the University of Kentucky and a contributing citizen of the city of Lexington.  Despite lack of mobility due to a seriously broken leg, Phyllis keeps up a rigorous program of daily therapy exercises.  Phyllis currently volunteers to teach 2 "Be a Better Singer" classes and 2 Sight Singing courses for 2 different charities. Phyllis attends workshops by such luminaries as Deepak Chopra and Wayne Dyer.  She has attended numerous workshops at the Shambala Center in Lexington.  No one is more deserving of such an award as this life teacher and Sensei.

 Louis Moseson: 2014 Winner

Louis Moseson, 90
Nominated by Carol Savkovich

At 90, Louis Moseson is a vigorous and fun-loving man who does not let his age slow him down. Widowed a year ago, Louis has been picking up cooking basics in the last year and is content remaining in his own home, where he spends his time composing music, reading novels, playing bridge, and having friends over for lunch. He continues to attend concerts of the Kling Chamber Orchestra, a group he founded and conducted for 34 years ago, stepping down as conductor last year. A piano trio (violin, cello and piano) is currently working up a program of Louis' compositions; he continues to fine-tune the compositions they'll be performing, which he composed between the 1970s and 2010.  His camera goes with him most places, and photography has been a lifelong passion. His home walls are adorned with his photographs as well as watercolors and oils he has painted. Louis continues to manage family-owned real estate, working often with tenants and contractors. While he's been training his daughter to take over the real estate management, he has no current plans to stop his own involvement in it.

 Helen Berry: 2014 Winner

Helen Berry, 91
Nominated by Jo Ross

Helen Berry is an inspiration and light of generosity for all who know her.  Early in her marriage, her husband passed away and Helen realized "I could sit at home and have a pity party, or I could get out and do something with my life".  Her countless contributions to others are a testimony of love and positive productiveness.  Helen is a very successful and beloved Mother, raising three children, who each in their own right, have become very productive and giving people.  Helen raised the CEO of Derby Festival. (Michael Berry); the VP of Beargrass Division, of Goodwill Industries, KY, (Marsha Berry), and the Chairman of the Board of Trustees at Frankfort Regional Hospital in Frankfort, KY (Marilyn Berry Duke).  Helen's warm and welcoming personality resonates in her many community activities.  She is loved and admired by many, from a wide range of socio-economic sectors.


 Stones: 2014 Winner

John and Mame Stone
Nominated by Nancy Doggett, Christian Care Communities

John Stone: John has been blessed with good health, partially because of good genes, but mainly because of his lifestyle. Through the years he has been reminded “you have but one body so take good care of it. He married an outstanding nurse, which means a lot! John will soon be celebrating, not only his 96th birthday, but will be celebrating 73 years of marriage to a wonderful person. John could never wish for more than that.  John Stone has always been active mentally, physically, and spiritually. He has much for which to be thankful.

Mame Stone: Mabel “Mame” Stone was born during a snowstorm in Madison, Indiana, the second child of five. There were four girls and her little 6’4” brother was the youngest. The date was January 18, 1920. She spent most of her childhood in Madison and a little in Vernon, Indiana. Mame and John have four grandchildren and three great-grandchildren, all from two sons. Mame graduated from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana to become a RN nurse (now called a nurse practitioner) for 35 years. One might say her life motto on living healthy is: Eat a sensible diet and keep moving!  Mame and John both enjoyed dancing together over the past years whenever they could. What has brought her to where she is today: eating right, exercising in some way or form, and good friendships. She was always told, to have a good friend you must be a good friend.


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