Ann and Leo Moskovitz and Brian Duke ’79, secretary of Pennsylvania Department of Aging, were the recipients of the inaugural awards recognizing individuals for lifetime achievement and contribution to successful aging presented at the Third Annual University of Scranton/TCMC 2013 Northeastern Pennsylvania Conference on Aging. The awards were given at a dinner at the University on April 11. It was also announced at the dinner that, in honor of Ann and Leo Moskovitz, and to recognize their commitment to successful aging, the annual award will be named “The Moskovitz Award” and will be given at the conference each year to recognize outstanding contributions to the field of aging.
“The Moskovitz Award has been created in honor of Ann and Leo Moskovitz to acknowledge not only their great contributions to our community, but for being models of successful living,” said Brian Conniff, Ph.D., conference co-chair and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University. “The recipients of the Moskovitz Award will represent a lifetime of successful living. They may be of any age, of any profession, any religion, any lifestyle; the one thing they will share is their ability to inspire hope for a bright future in our community. Also at the dinner, the Award for Outstanding Contribution to the field of successful aging was presented to Brian Duke, Secretary of Aging for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, in recognition of his tireless advocacy and support of our elders.”
Conference co-chair Herbert Hauser, Ph.D., research scientist at the University, added, “In 2013 we inaugurate the Moskovitz Award for Ann and Leo Moskovitz to honor their selfless commitment to our community and their successful connections to many family members, colleagues, business associates, religious leaders, neighbors and friends. Their story is our first inspiration.”
The 107-year old Leo Moskovitz began his career in banking as a cashier in 1951, earning promotions to vice-president and eventually to president of the First National Bank of Jermyn in 1961 and served as a leading voice in the banking community for more than 30 years before retiring in 1993. Ann Moskovitz, a graduate of Temple University’s School of Pharmacy, was a successful local pharmacist for 30 years. Both have remained very active by supporting local arts and charities servicing the needs of our community. They have served on numerous boards over the years ranging from The United Way of Lackawanna County to the Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce and the former Pennsylvania State Oral School for the Deaf. Additionally, they supported higher education in our community by serving on the Lackawanna College’s board of trustees and the board of regents at The University of Scranton.
A graduate of The University of Scranton, Duke was nominated by Gov. Tom Corbett to be the Secretary of Pennsylvania Department of Aging in 2011. The department oversees many services and benefits for older Pennsylvanians and advocates for their interests at all levels of government. Prior to his service as secretary, Duke was director of the Bucks County Area Agency on Aging. Before that he served as executive director of the New Jersey Foundation for Aging, a statewide public charity dedicated to improving the quality of life of older persons. During his career, he has held numerous positions in government and industry where he has worked tirelessly to help improve the lives of elders.
The annual conference provides a forum that educates practitioners, providers, academics, economists, and the community with numerous and diverse presentations. This diverse group of academics and industry professionals promotes the view that healthy aging results from an integrated approach to caring for elders. Participants learn about best practices, new research findings and how the economy affects healthy aging in NEPA. This forum provides the participants with an ability to interface academic findings with practical applications, and more importantly facilitates collaboration between practitioners, health care institutions and academic centers. The conference also provides a platform from which information is disseminated to all concerned with healthy aging.
In addition to the University and TCMC, the conference is a collaboration between Johnson College, Keystone College, Lackawanna College, Marywood University and Penn State Worthington. Sponsors are Affinity LTC, Allied Services, Blue Cross of Northeastern Pennsylvania, Lackawanna College, Marywood University, Penn State Worthington Scranton and United Way of Lackawanna and Wayne Counties.