Meet the candidates running for AAGE Executive Committee positions, then cast your vote (once only!) before Friday, November 3, 2023! To cast your vote, use the link that has been sent through the AAGE listserv.
Candidates for President-Elect
My name is Felicity Aulino and I am a Five-College Associate Professor based in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. I am a medical anthropologist, trained also in public health education and ethnographic filmmaking, with primary area specialization in Thailand and an overall research focus on care. In my book Rituals of Care: Karmic Politics in an Aging Thailand (2019, Cornell University Press), I explore habituated practices of providing for others, along with the philosophical roots and transformative potential of such ordinary acts of care. My work engages a range of aging issues, and I feel a kindred professional home in AAGE. It would be a great privilege and a delight to serve the organization in this leadership role.
Candidates for Treasurer
I am a medical anthropologist and health services researcher with the Geriatric Research Education and Clinical Center at the Veterans Health Administration and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geriatrics and Palliative Care at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. My research sits at the intersection of two areas: 1) exploring the healthcare experiences of individuals aging with complex health needs such as those living with HIV and other serious and chronic illnesses; and 2) understanding how healthcare organizations work and may better support delivering patient-centered healthcare. I arrived at this focus after conducting global and US-based research into the healthcare experiences of persons living with HIV and other chronic conditions. My research demonstrates how interactions in the healthcare environment affect patient experiences, processes and outcomes of care. I am particularly interested in continuing to develop studies that focus on how healthcare systems longitudinally exert a potent and dynamic influence on the health and quality of life of vulnerable populations, often in highly consequential and deleterious ways, and how we may better document, recognize, and attempt to alleviate these challenges. I welcome the opportunity to contribute to AAGE as a space for fertile conversations on how anthropology – its theories and methods – adds to our understandings and interventions around issues related to aging, gerontology, and the life course. I will bring to the role of treasurer the skills of project management I have developed over the years, including ensuring an accurate budget which is managed and appropriately reported to support the goals and activities of the organization.
I am honored to be able to run for Treasurer of the Association for Anthropology, Aging and the Life Course. I currently serve as the Chair of the AAGE Awards Committee and on the editorial board of Anthropology & Aging. I am a previous Editor-in-Chief of the journal. I am Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at George Mason University and the Director of the Global Affairs Program, an interdisciplinary unit in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences that also offers a degree program at Mason Korea. As the Director, I oversee every aspect of the program’s finances. This includes meticulously tracking the funds spent over the course of the year, budgeting for future expenditures, participating in fundraising initiatives, reporting to the Dean’s Office, becoming well-versed in the online budgetary systems that the university uses, and making decisions about our spending priorities. This aspect of my administrative role at George Mason can translate well to the treasurer position in AAGE. I am a firm believer in collaboration and transparency especially when making decisions about finances for a larger group. If elected, I will draw on fellow AAGE Officers, Board of Directors, and the membership to make financial decisions. I will keep accurate records and make regular reports so the Executive Committee and AAGE members can make the best choices about the organization’s current activities and future.
Candidates for Secretary
Based in Alberta, Canada, I am an Assistant Professor in the Women’s & Gender Studies program at Mount Royal University. My training is in sociocultural and medical anthropology, and my research, education, and community work concentrates on aging, disability, and care access and equity, with a significant focus on 2SLGBTQIA+ issues. Prior to joining MRU, I worked for three years as a community-based researcher at Egale Canada, a national organization focused on 2SLGBTQIA+ issues. In this role I led several qualitative & arts-based action research projects by, for, and with community, including Action through Connection: Promoting Lesbian, Bi+, and Queer Health in Canada and Fostering Dialogues: An Arts-Based Action Research Project Imagining Futures of Community-based Care with Homecare Personal Support Workers and LGBTQ Older Adults. My current major research project funded by the Alzheimer Society Research Program is focused on issues of consent, capacity, and substitute decision-making for people facing dementia alone.
I’ve been involved with the AAGE since 2019, when I served as the Student Liaison. Since then, I’ve been involved in co-organizing our biannual meetings, including the “Creativity and Aging” slow-motion virtual conference and this year’s meetings & mentorship event in Santa Fe. I also currently serve on the award committee for the Margaret Clark Student Paper Prize. I think the AAGE is an amazing organization that does really valuable work in uplifting students and creating space for us interested in the aging, ethnography, and social justice issues around the world to come together. I’m running for election as Secretary in order to be part of the leadership team that facilitates this all happening.
Candidates for Student Liaison
My name is Rachel Seymour, and I am a third-year social-cultural Anthropology PhD student at Indiana University, Bloomington. I am interested in the AAGE student liaison position because I want to build and promote the student community within the Association for Anthropology, Gerontology, and End of Life Course (AAGE).
My current research interests concern aging and care in the American Midwest. I am interested in who has access to equitable care, who is responsible for providing care, and how care labor is performed in low-income retirement communities.
In my free time, I volunteer for my local Area Agency on Aging. I am a caring companion, where I regularly visit homebound seniors for both socialization and light housekeeping. I also aid in their nutrition program as a Meals on Wheels driver, delivering meals weekly to seniors experiencing isolation. Last spring, I was able to collaborate with them to create a Community Engaged Ethnographic Film surrounding their nutrition program. From the film, I was also able to create promotional materials for their social media and website, which will aid them in getting future clients and volunteers for the program.
If I were given the opportunity to serve as AAGE student liaison, I will work to incorporate student involvement throughout the year. I currently serve on my Anthropology Graduate Student Association where I run the social media and inform graduate students of various events within and affiliated with the department. I would perform similar functions in the role as student liaison being sure to promote the AAGE and its events to students. Thank you for your time and consideration.