United We Age is a 501(C)(3) non-profit organization based in Vero Beach, Florida; and we have affiliates in North Carolina. Our mission is to promote and support the social, mental, and physical wellbeing of the Senior Citizen population. We strive to create a social support network, especially for those living alone, and to provide a platform for seniors to engage with the online world.
At United We Age, we are committed to raising awareness and improving the image of senior citizens everywhere. Our goal is to make sure that age is not a barrier for seniors to participate in the online world. We provide resources and support to help seniors stay connected with the world.
"Together We Grow, Together We Age...United We Age."
There is an alone crisis among the senior citizen population in the United States today. Quality of life and even life expectancy suffers tremendously for older people and people stricken with life-threatening disease living alone and lacking social support (i.e., a spouse, family member or caring friend). In the case of a life-threatening disease like cancer, social support (e.g., spouse) matters more than chemotherapy, studies suggest. Access to a social support network improves quality of life and life expectancy.
Almost 30 percent (12.5 million) of noninstitutionalized older people (65+) live alone in the U.S. today. Almost half of older women (46%) age 75+ live alone. Many of these seniors reported income at or near poverty levels.
At United We Age, we are dedicated to helping seniors stay connected to their communities and navigate the challenges of aging with dignity. Our goal is to provide a social support network for seniors, especially those living alone, and to ensure that they experience quality of life in their later years. We also strive to raise awareness and build a positive image for seniors in the digital world. We are committed to making sure that age is never a barrier to seniors participating in the online world.
Board of Directors
David Lereah, PhD
David Lereah, founder and Executive Director of United We Age, is dedicated to supporting senior citizens in need. He gained valuable experience during his three-year volunteer work for the Meals on Wheels program of the Senior Resource Association in Vero Beach, Florida.
Dr. Lereah is a renowned economic expert in the financial services and real estate sectors. He served as the Chief Economist for both the National Association of Realtors and the Mortgage Bankers Association. He has made appearances on major national media outlets such as CNN, CNBC, The Today Show, NPR, NY Times, Washington Post, and Wall St Journal. Dr. Lereah has also delivered speeches on financial and real estate markets worldwide. He started his career as a faculty member at Rutgers University and the University of Virginia. He holds a BA in Economics from American University and a PhD in Economics from the University of Virginia.
Robert Paxton is a highly respected leader in the real estate industry, boasting 20 years of experience. Previously, he held an executive position at Intel Corporation, where he successfully navigated the intricacies of Congress. In addition to his professional achievements, Paxton has actively volunteered and served on the boards of various nonprofits, including Culmore Clinic, Safe Haven, Volunteers of America, and The City of Alexandria. He obtained his BA from George Mason University and MA from George Washington University.
Michele Ellis is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker specializing in Gerontology. She holds a Master's degree in Social Work from the Silberman School of Social Work and a Master's degree in Psychology from New York University. Michele's passion for older adults emerged from her counseling work with the Upper Manhattan Geriatric Program, addressing depression in seniors. She later gained experience in Geriatric Psychiatry at Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center. Currently, Michele works as a Case Manager, providing resources to adults with chronic conditions and offering psychotherapy for seniors adjusting to life transitions, retirement, bereavement, and changes in health. Her expertise and dedication make a profound impact on the well-being of older adults.
Melanie Chen is a health and human services professional whose interests lie in the social determinants of health, poverty alleviation and homelessness. Melanie has worked closely with homebound seniors who were living in poverty and experiencing hunger, as well as seniors experiencing homelessness. She is a strong proponent of understanding individual and family needs to inform local and community-based public health initiatives to create sustainable change and promote racial equity. She has earned a BA in Anthropology from the University of Florida and a Master’s degree in Public Health from George Washington University.
Dr. David Gillis
Dr. Gillis is an experienced emergency medicine physician at Mission Health Hospital in Asheville, North Carolina. He is board certified by the American Osteopathic Board of Emergency Medicine and has a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from the University of Florida and a medical degree from Nova Southeastern University College of Osteopathic Medicine. He completed his residency at Mount Clemens General Hospital in Michigan. As an attending physician, he oversees the care of patients in the emergency room, assessing their conditions and developing appropriate treatment plans.
Christine Klem Palmer
Christine Klema Palmer is a Board Certified Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner by the American of Nurse Practitioners (ANCC). She currently works for Landmark Health, providing holistic care to the aging population in their own homes. Her healthcare career began at University Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio, where she cared for stroke and brain injury patients. She then spent over a decade at WakeMed Health & Hospitals, gaining experience in neuro/medical rehabilitation, surgery, geriatrics, child developmental disorders, and nursing leadership. In 2017, she became an Adult Gerontology Nurse Practitioner, specializing in aging population care. Christine holds a BA from Youngstown State University and a master's degree from South University in Savannah, Georgia. She resides in Benson, North Carolina, with her husband, three dogs, and a cat.
Dr. Markov is a neuroscientist and a longevity researcher. He earned a BS in Cell biology and Physiology and a PhD in Neuroscience from the University Claude Bernard Lyon 1 in France. The effort to understand the human brain has led Dr Markov to follow a track of research at different institutions from the French National Institute for Medical Research, through Yale University, Princeton University, Stanford University and the Buck Institute for Research on Aging which is the first research institution to be entirely dedicated to research on the increase of human health span.
Dr Markov has established the connection between the rate of brain aging and the levels of peripheral inflammation called inflamm-aging. The main objective of Dr Markov is the compression of the multi-morbidity period at the end of life. A measure of success will be to have people live in to their late 80's without the afflictions of chronic diseases and in sound mind.