Dr. Kristi Wick’s work to raise awareness of and better coordinate resources for aging adults continues to get noticed.
Wick, the Vicky B. Gregg Chair of Gerontology and UC Foundation assistant professor in the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga School of Nursing, was presented the Community Hero Award at a Southeast Tennessee Area Agency on Aging and Disability (SETAAAD) luncheon on Oct. 21.
In honoring Wick, SETAAAD—which serves Bledsoe, Bradley, Grundy, Hamilton, Marion, McMinn, Meigs, Polk, Rhea and Sequatchie counties—cited “her tireless work as a champion for older adults.
“Her leadership with the Older Adults Community Workgroup, engAGING Communities Initiative, vaccination efforts and appointment to the Tennessee Commission on Aging and Disability are just a few examples of her commitment to health equity advocacy in the older adult population.”
In recent months, Wick has been a driving force behind engAGING Communities Tennessee—an initiative led by the UTC School of Nursing in affiliation with other partners across the state to empower faith-based and religious congregations to provide aging community members and their caregivers with health and wellness programs and support.
engAGING Communities Tennessee is part of the Intrastate Network to Deliver Equity and Eliminate Disparities, known by the acronym INDEED, a grant-funded effort to address COVID-19 health disparities among high-risk and underserved populations. Wick is the primary investigator on the INDEED grant.
“We are fortunate to have Dr. Wick as a part of the School of Nursing,” said Dr. Chris Smith, director of the UTC School of Nursing and the University’s Chief Health Affairs Officer. “She has led an interprofessional effort to incorporate and integrate aging into our curriculum, and the addition of the gerontology minor is a direct result of her actions.
“Dr. Wick has brought the conversation about aging to the forefront for our students and faculty, the University, the community and the state.”