Alzheimer’s Family Organization Executive Director Kathleen Winters has announced the creation of the Dominick DePetrillo Volunteer of the Year Award, in Memory of Rose DePetrillo. The first bestowal of the award was to AFO founder Dominick DePetrillo in a ceremony April 25 in Trinity, Florida.
The Alzheimer’s Family Organization, which provides support and services to families and caregivers of individuals living with Alzheimer’s, was founded by DePetrillo and others in 1999. He explains, “I and my wife Judy were caring for my mother, Rose, who had Alzheimer’s. We met others who were living through the same experience, and many of us felt we needed an organization focused more on caregiver assistance rather than the medical research that was the mission of existing organizations at the time. We wanted to focus on and help the families who needed help.”
When the AFO was incorporated, DePetrillo was asked to become its Executive Director, a position in which he served until his retirement in December 2015. During that period, the AFO grew to serve the caregivers of eight west-central Florida counties, including Citrus, Hernando, Hillsborough, Lake, Pasco, Pinellas, Sumter, and Marion counties.
About the award, DePetrillo says, “I am so pleased that this award has been created in my mother’s memory, but I am even more excited that its purpose is to recognize our volunteers. An organization like the AFO survives and succeeds solely on the strength and service of its volunteers, and I feel good knowing that their work will be recognized in future years through this award.”
To learn more about the Alzheimer’s Family Organization, call 352-616-0170 or e-mail [email protected].