First Annual Advocate of the Year Award was given to Phyllis Watkins,
Executive Director, Alzheimer’s Arkansas on Tuesday, July 9th
at the Temple B’nai Israel.
Webster’s Dictionary describes an advocate as
One that pleads the cause of another;
One that defends or maintains a cause
One that supports or promotes the
interests of another
And there would be a picture of
Phyllis as an example of an advocate!
Phyllis became the first
paid executive director of Alzheimer’s Arkansas in 1994, 19 years ago.
She started with a staff of one, herself. Over the years Phyllis grew
the tiny non-profit organization to a dedicated staff of six with
hundreds of faithful volunteers around the state. Phyllis is well
respected and admired by all who know her and has been called a “State
Treasure” for her tireless service to Arkansans affected by Alzheimer’s
and related dementias.
are just a few of Phyllis’s many accomplishments: Alzheimer’s Arkansas
Walks; Art to Remember; Family Assistance Program; family and patient
support groups; Caregiver Courier newsletter, afterhours caregiver line;
Hope for the Future; “Care Cards”; comprehensive lending library;
founding member of the Arkansas Down Syndrome Association.
Currently, Phyllis cares for her 93 year old mother, her daughter living
with Down syndrome and is the Executive Director of Alzheimer’s Arkansas
all while receiving treatment for cancer.
Proceeds from this event will help to
fund the Family Assistance Program in honor of Phyllis Watkins.
photos from the festivities
Governor Mike Beebe
– Award Presentation
Allegra Print and
– Special Music
Glazers of Arkansas
Mark Pippenger, M.D.
Reverend Vic Nixon
Temple B’nai Israel
– Table Decorations
Board of Directors