AARP, Inc. (American Association of Retired Persons) is a United States-based interest group that focuses on the elderly, especially on how they can continue to live well after retirement. In 2016, it had a membership of over 37 million people.
AARP was founded in 1958 by Ethel Percy Andrus (a retired educator from California) and Leonard Davis (later the founder of the Colonial Penn Group of insurance companies). It is a 501c4 non-profit organization which aims to “enhance the quality of life for all as they age,” according to its website. It also has members who are less than 50 years of age. The association advocates for social change and provides information, advocacy, and service to its members. It is an important lobbying group in the United States. It updates special money related information and a “fraudwatch” on its website, to warn people of scams. Its fraudwatch includes write ups by Frank Abagnale from the FBI.
AARP addresses issues affecting older Americans through lobbying efforts at the state and national governmental level, an activity permitted by its 501(c)(4) status. The organization says that it is non-partisan and does not support, oppose or give money to any candidates or political parties. The total revenue for 2006 was approximately $1 billion and it spent $23 million on lobbying. Middle-class security has been a major focus for the organization in recent years. AARP also provides extensive consumer information, volunteer opportunities, and events including the annual National Event & Expo (2013 in Las Vegas from May 30–June 1 and in Atlanta from October 3–5).
AARP launched Life Reimagined in May 2013, calling it a “first-of-its-kind series of online and offline experiences that guide people through life transitions by helping them discover new possibilities and connect with a community of people pursuing similar passions and goals” USA Today called the iniative “the latest step for the AARP … as it continues to rebrand itself and become the go-to address for feeling good about aging
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