News & Updates
November 2021 | Issue 11
MASWA/SPSWA Joint Public Policy Meeting
Join us for a review of the previous legislative session, insight into potential future aging-related issues and more.
Presented by: Kari Thurlow
Vice President of Advocacy
for LeadingAge Minnesota
Tuesday, November 9th
2:30pm - 4:00pm
Meeting Objectives and Login Information
Kari Thurlow is the Vice President of Advocacy for LeadingAge Minnesota. Since 2006, she has led the Association’s advocacy efforts on both state and federal issues and with external audiences.

With over a decade of experience in public affairs, Kari came to Aging Services with a strong background in law and public policy. Most recently, Kari worked for several years at Flaherty & Hood, P.A., where she had the opportunity to provide legislative representation to clients on a variety of issues including bonding, property taxes, environmental and land use.
Kari holds a J.D. from Hamline University School of Law and a B.A. in political science and communications from Concordia College.

  • Gain an understanding of the results of the previous MN legislative session as it relates to aging related issues.
  • Identify the potential major issues in aging related legislation in MN in the upcoming legislative session and beyond.
  • Identify new and relevant information on the progression of Assisted Living Licensure in MN.

Join by Phone: 571-317-3112
Access Code: 711-675-117

Questions? Contact Jarrod Peterson at:

A Few Words from Our
MASWA President
Giving Thanks

The sun comes up and we begin our day. Some may do so before the sun rises. Nevertheless, every day we go throughout our lives, sometimes repetitiously, experiencing the habits and routines we’ve established. Possibly we do them because those routines are working for us. A guessing venture would lead one to believe that most of us take these moments for granted. How many of us take the time to appreciate the warm rays of the sunshine or the engaging aroma of a well-brewed cup of coffee or the sweet and cheerful song of a nearby bird? Without our senses, we would not be able to enjoy these gifts. We have so much for which to be grateful however in trying times, we often miss the subtle cues designed to warm our hearts and to help make us grateful.

There is a story that you may have heard or read before. It is the story, by an unknown author, of a blind boy. It goes like this: “A blind boy sat on the steps of a building with a hat by his feet. He held up a sign which read, “I am blind, please help.” There were only a few coins in the hat – spare change from folks as they hurried past. A man was walking by. He took a few coins from his pocket and dropped them into the hat. He then took the sign, turned it around, and wrote some words. Then he put the sign back in the boy’s hand so that everyone who walked by would see the new words. Soon the hat began to fill up. A lot more people were giving money to the blind boy. That afternoon, the man who had changed the sign returned to see how things were. The boy recognized his footsteps and asked, “Were you the one who changed my sign this morning? What did you write?” The man said, “I only wrote the truth. I said what you said but in a different way.” I wrote, “Today is a beautiful day, but I cannot see it.”

Isn’t it interesting that both signs were correct yet the first sign simply said the boy was blind, while the second sign let each passerby know how grateful they should be because they could see. How much do we take for granted and how much do we recognize as being gifts for which we should be thankful? Things and circumstances may not always go the way we’d like for them to go. The rain replaced the sun and may have ruined plans. The day did not begin the way you wanted. The world may be going through episodes of confusion and discord. We must believe in the good. We must do all we can to maintain a positive mental attitude. When we take the time to (as many have said) “smell the roses” it’s not all that bad. “It” could be much worse. When we take the time to recognize what’s good and take the time to be thankful for what we do have, that’s when we can truly find joy. That joy takes the mundane thought we may have had to a comforting feeling within our hearts that brings peace. Peace feels much better. That’s that feeling of gratitude with a grateful heart. Let’s try to cast away the mundane and to always try to find something for which to be grateful and…give thanks, everyday! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Georgene Connelly
MASWA President