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Shelley Woolery

Shelley Woolery

The David Chow Humanitarian 2015 Award

Shelley Woolery

Council on Aging – Orange County (COAOC) was fortunate enough to have Shelley Woolery come to the Council nearly three decades ago. Her kindheartedness for this frail population is resilient and her willpower to change the lives of the seniors she serves is inspiring. In 1987, Shelley answered an ad in the Penny Saver to volunteer as a Long-Term Care Ombudsman a program at the Council on Aging – Orange County (COAOC).

Shelley completed the Ombudsman Training offered at Orange Coast College in late Fall of 1987 & began as a volunteer Ombudsman. The State of CA soon appointed the Long-Term Care Ombudsmen as the mandated reporting agency to receive and investigate elder abuse occurring in Long-Term Care facilities. With Shelley’s Social Work education and training, she was hired on January 26, 1988 to fill and develop the new position of Elder Abuse Prevention Coordinator. On July 1, 1998 she promoted to Ombudsman Coordinator.

A Long-Term Care Ombudsman is an advocate for residents of nursing homes, board and care homes, and assisted living facilities. Ombudsmen provide information about how to select a facility and what to do to get quality care. They are trained to resolve problems, big and small. They also represent the perspective of residents in monitoring laws, regulation and policies.

Rochelle Woolery is an incredible women, she has been the beacon of light for some who felt in the dark. She is the voice of many elderly are searching for and has provided the guidance and support to so many Ombudsmen who take on this remarkable task alongside her. As the most seasoned Ombudsman in the program, Shelley is not famous, but everyone knows her name.

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