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									HELLO AGAIN… AND GOOD AFTERNOON!! HOW IS EVERYONE DOING?

AND AGAIN, THANK YOU BARBARA. IT IS GREAT TO BE HERE AGAIN TODAY…




THERE IS CERTAINLY A LOT GOING ON AND IN OUR FIGHT AGAINST MEDICARE
FRAUD AND ABUSE, AND AS YOU ALL TAKE YOUR RIGHTFUL PLACE AS A KEY
PROGRAM IN THIS FIGHT, WE HAVE A LOT TO BE PROUD OF! AND IT IS TRULY A
PRIVELEGE TO BE HERE AS WE HONOR OUR VOLUNTEERS!!




YESTERDAY WAS A GOOD DAY, AND IT WAS FUN, INTRODUCING OUR
LEADERSHIP AND HEARING THE AFFIRMATION OF THE COMMITMENT TO THE
SMP PROGRAM….. BUT I CAN TELL YOU TRUTHFULLY… TODAY IS EVEN BETTER.
TODAY, AS IT SHOULD BE, IS ABOUT YOU…. OUR SMP DIRECTORS, STAFF, AND
OUR VOLUNTEERS -- ALL THE PEOPLE WHO MAKE IT WORK




I HEAR WE HAVE A FEW VOLUNTEERS IN THE HOUSE? ANY SMP VOLUNTEERS
HERE TODAY??? (RAISE HAND)…




I HAVE BEEN WORKING WITH VOLUNTEERS MY ENTIRE CAREER, IN MY EARLY
GOVERNMENT YEARS IN NEW MEXICO ORGANIZING COMMUNITY CLEAN UPS,
RECYCLING AND HAZARDOUS WASTE COLLECTION EVENTS, AND AS A VOLUNTEER
MYSELF,


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TWENTY FIVE YEARS LATER -- I STILL SEE THE IMPORTANCE AND THE VALUE OF
SHARING OUR TIME, OUR TALENTS, AND OUR LIVES.




YESTERDAY, AS I WAS LISTENING TO OUR DR. BUDETTI, SECRETARY SEBELIUS,
JENNIFER TRUSSEL, AND JANE STONE, BESIDES FEELING A LITTLE OUTRAGED, I
COULDN’T HELP BUT FEEL MOTIVATED AND ENCOURAGED. AND I HOPE YOU
FELT IT TOO… I HOPE YOU FELT A RENEWED SENSE OF ENTHUSIASM FOR THE
WORK YOU ARE ALL DOING. WE ARE FIGHTING CRIME, WE ARE SAVING DOLLARS,
AND WE ARE MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN COUNTLESS LIVES.




BUT YOU KNOW, YESTERDAY, AS I WAS LISTENING TO EDWIN, I FELT AN EVEN
GREATER INSPIRATION. AS EDWIN WAS TALKING ABOUT THE VALUES OF THE
OLDER AMERICANS ACT, THE VALUES EACH OF US HOLD DEAR --- REGARDLESS OF
RACE, GENDER, ETHNICITY OR AGE -- VALUES OF A QUALITY OF LIFE THAT HOLD
INDEPENDENCE AND DIGNITY AS CORNERSTONES,       I COULDN’T HELP BUT
THINK WE ARE ALL HERE FOR A COMMON GOAL.




I LOOKED AROUND THE ROOM AND SAW PEOPLE FROM EVERY STATE, I SAW
MEN, WOMEN, PEOPLE FROM DIVERSE BACKGROUNDS. I SAW, NOW I KNOW
THIS IS GONNA SOUND HOKEY, BUT I SAW AMERICA… AND NO, I AM NOT
RUNNING FOR OFFICE, NOR WILL ASK YOU ALL TO SING GOD BLESS AMERICA…




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BUT ITS TRUE, I SAW THAT WHICH MAKES AMERICA STRONG. AND MORE THAN
THAT, I SAW THAT WE KNEW IT WASN’T ABOUT US, IT WAS ABOUT WHAT WE DO
AND WHO WE REPRESENT. PEOPLE.




I KNOW PEOPLE DON’T GO INTO PUBLIC SERVICE TO BE RICH OR FAMOUS. WE
AREN’T MOTIVATED BY WEALTH OR FAME. PEOPLE DON’T VOLUNTEER THEIR
TIME BECAUSE THEY ARE LOOKING FOR RECOGNITION OR PRAISE. WE DO THIS
BECAUSE WE WANT TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE. EVEN ONE SMALL DIFFERENCE.




AS I STATED EARLIER, I STARTED MY PUBLIC SERVICE CAREER WITH A MISSION OF
PROTECTING OUR ENVIRONMENT. I EDUCATED AND INFORMED… I WAS A
COMMUNITY ORGANIZER, AN ADVOCATE, WE USED VOLUNTEERS AND
RECOGNIZED A JOB WELL DONE…




I THEN MOVED TO BEING A REGULATOR. IF GUESS I FELT IF I COULDN’T
MOTIVATE SOME PEOPLE TO PROTECT OUR ENVIRONMENT BY BEING NICE,
PERHAPS I COULD DO IT AS A REGULATOR, SOMETIMES BEING NOT SO NICE, OR
USING A HAMMER, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS A COMPLIANCE ORDER!




IN 2005, OUR GOVERNOR ASKED ME IF I WANTED TO BE THE DEPUTY SECRETARY
OF THE NEW MEXICO ENVIRONMENT DEPARTMENT. I GLADLY SAID YES, AND
THEN QUICKLY TOLD HIM, THAT WHAT I REALLY WANTED WAS TO BE A PART OF

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HIS CABINET. HE TEASED ME ABOUT BEING AMBITIOUS, AND A YEAR LATER,
ASKED ME TO BE THE SECRETARY OF THE NEW MEXICO AGING AND LONG TERM
SERVICES DEPARTMENT. AND BEING THE COMIC HE IS, HE FIRST ASKED ME IF
KNEW ANY OLD PEOPLE… THEN HE ASKED ME IF I LIKED OLD PEOPLE… BUT IN
ALL SERIOUSNESS, AND STILL SERIOUS ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENT, THE CAREER
CHANGE,    CHANGED MY LIFE.




AS I QUICKLY LEARNED ABOUT THE OLDER AMERICANS ACT, ITS PROGRAMS, ITS
VALUES, AND THE REACH OF THE AGING NETWORK, I KNEW THAT THIS
LEGISLATION WAS UNIQUE AND HAD AS ITS PRIMARY GOAL -- THAT WHAT I WAS
HOPING TO DO MY ENTIRE CAREER, -- MAKE A DIFFERENCE! MAKE A
DIFFERENCE IN THE LIVES OF ALL PEOPLE. BECAUSE AS WE SERVE OLDER
AMERICANS AND PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES, WE SERVE THEIR CAREGIVERS,
THEIR FAMILIES, AND OUR COMMUNITIES.




AND OF COURSE, IN NEW MEXICO, AS IN MOST, IF NOT ALL STATES, THE AGING
NETWORK IS TRULY DEPENDENT ON VOLUNTEERS, OUR PROGRAMS COULD NOT
OPERATE WITHOUT THEM, OR WITHOUT YOU AS YOU WORK TO TRAIN,
MOTIVATE AND INSPIRE THEM.




AS PART OF THEIR VOLUNTEER RECRUITMENT AND TRAINING THE NEW MEXICO
LONG TERM CARE OMBUDSMAN USE THE SAYING “TO THE WORLD YOU MAY BE
ONE PERSON, BUT TO ONE PERSON, YOU MAY BE THE WORLD”…. AND I BELIEVE

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THIS TO BE TRUE FOR ALL OUR VOLUNTEERS IN THE AGING NETWORK, AND AS
SMP PROGRAM MANAGERS AND VOLUNTEERS YOU ARE NOT ONLY HELPING AN
INDIVIDUAL FEEL MORE SECURE, YOU ARE EMPOWERING THEM TO TAKE
GREATER OWNERSHIP OF THEIR HEALTH AND THEIR HEALTHCARE. YOU ARE
TRULY MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN THEIR LIVES.




TODAY WE ARE HERE TO HONOR TEN OF OUR VOLUNTEERS. IT IS VERY
DIFFICULT TO PICK TEN… AS ALL OF OUR VOLUNTEERS DO GREAT WORK EACH
AND EVERY DAY, AND THIS RECOGNITION IS TRULY ABOUT ALL OF OUR
VOLUNTEERS AND ALL OF YOU.




AS I WAS READING ABOUT EACH OF OUR HONOREES, I WAS ALSO STRUCK BY
ANOTHER FACT… SOMETHING THAT KINDA JUMPED OUT AT ME, THAT THE
SECRET TO A LONG AND HAPPY MARRIAGE, WAS TO BE AN SMP VOLUNTEER…. I
WISH SOMEBODY WOULD HAVE TOLD ME THAT 24 YEARS AGO!




SO LET’S GET DOWN TO BUSINESS… WE ARE GOING TO ASK EACH OF OUR
HONOREES TO JOIN ME ON THE STAGE, ONE AT A TIME, ALONG WITH THEIR SMP
PROJECT DIRECTOR. I GET TO SHARE THE MICROPHONE, AND THEY GET TO
ANSWER A PERSONAL QUESTION.. ALTHOUGH, THEY DON’T KNOW THE
QUESTION YET…




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OUR FIRST HONOREE IS MR. RAY JONES, FROM THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA. AS
PART OF “CALIFORNIA HEALTH ADVOCATES”, MR. JONES ALWAYS GOES THE
EXTRA MILE AND OFTEN HAS MULTIPLE CASES OPERATING AT A TIME. HE USES
EVERY MEANS HE CAN TO EDUCATE AND ADVOCATE ON BEHALF OF
BENEFICIARIES, I MEAN “EDUCATE AND INFORM”, HE INSTILLS CONFIDENCE AND
BULDS TRUST. MR. JONES… TELL US.. WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN SMP
VOLUNTEER?




NEXT WE HAVE MRS. VENANCIA COLET. FROM GUAM. AS WE ALL KNOW, ONE OF
THE STRENGTHS OF THE SMP PROGRAM IS ITS PEOPLE CONNECTION. AND WHEN
WORKING WITH DIVERSE COMMUNITIES, IT IS CRITICAL TO BE ABLE TO
CONVERSE IN THEIR NATIVE LANGUAGES. MRS. COLET, IS INVALUABLE TO THE
DIVISION OF AGING SERVICES AS SHE HELPS TRANSLATE MEDICARE
INFORMATION INTO TAGALOG AND LLOCANO. AND SHE CONDUCTS NUMEROUS
GROUP AND INDIVIDUAL EVENTS IN THESE NATIVE LANGUAGES. MRS. COLET,
TELL US WHAT IS YOUR PROUDEST ACCOMPLISHMENT AS AN SMP VOLUNTEER?
OH… AND , YOU CAN ANSWER IN ENGLISH IF YOU WANT TO…




NEXT WE HAVE MR. LARRY BAUER FROM WEST CHICAGO, ILLINOIS. MR. BAUER IS
A PART OF AGE OPTIONS, A NON PROFIT ORGANIZATION AND THE LOCAL AREA
AGENCY ON AGING. LIKE MANY OF OUR HONOREES HERE TODAY, MR. BAUER
WAS A PART OF THE HHS/DOJ FRAUD SUMMITS HELD ACROSS THE COUNTRY.
LARRY USES HIS COMPUTER SKILLS, ENGAGING PERSONALITY, AND CREATIVITY
TO REACH OUT ACROSS MANY DIFFERENT AREAS, MAKING MEDICARE FUN.
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PERHAPS HE COULD GIVE A LESSON ON MEDICARE AS FUN ON CAPITOL HILL
BEFORE HE LEAVES??? OK.. MR. BAUER, PLEASE TELL US WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO
BECOME AN SMP VOLUNTEER?




NEXT IS DR. HAROLD ISHLER, FROM DENHAM SPRINGS, LOUISIANA. DR. ISHLER IS
PART OF THE FIRST MEDICARE QUALITY IMPROVEMENT ORGANIZATION TO
HOUSE THE SMP PROGRAM. DR. ISHLER HAS MANY TALENTS, AND AS A RETIRED
PHYSICIAN HE NOT ONLY KNOWS WHAT IS GOOD FOR OUR HEALTH, I
UNDERSTAND HE KNOWS HOW TO TOSS A STETHOSCOPE (MIMICK OVERHEAD
SWING)…. DR. ISHLER TELL US WHAT DO YOU FIND MOST SATISFYING ABOUT
YOUR WORK WITH THE SMP PROGRAM?




NEXT IS MR. DOUG COOPER FROM LEWISTON, MAINE. MR. COOPER WAS
UNABLE TO BE HERE TODAY AND ACCEPTING THE AWARD FOR HIM IS HIS SMP
DIRECTOR _____________________. MR. COOPER PROVIDES STATEWIDE
COVERAGE FOR SMP AND COLLABORATES WITH THE STATEWIDE SHIP PROGRAM
AS WELL AND IS NOT AFRAID TO HIT THE ROAD TO TRAVEL ACROSS MAINE WHEN
NEEDED…. AND HAVING THE OPPORTUNITY TO VISIT MAINE IN THE FALL, I CAN
SEE WHY…. I THINK I HAVE A QUESTION FOR OUR SMP DIRECTOR AS WELL… AS
A VOLUNTEER COORDINATOR, WHAT IS THE MOST REWARDING THING FOR YOU
WORKING WITH VOLUNTEERS LIKE MR. COOPER?




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NEXT IS MRS. LINDA BURNEY FROM DETROIT, MICHIGAN. MRS. BURNEY
VOLUNTEERS WITH THE MICHIGAN MEDICARE MEDICAID ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
AND IS MICHIGAN’S STATE HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM AS WELL AS THE SMP
PROVIDER. SHE IS COMPASSIONATE, KNOWLEDGEABLE, AND WAS RECOGNIZED
AS THE PAST VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR! YOU CAN FIND MRS. BURNEY IN PRIVATE
HOMES, CHURCHES, AS WELL AS SENIOR CENTERS. MRS. BURNEY ALSO
PARTICIPATED IN THE HHS/DOJ FRAUD SUMMIT WITH SECRETARY SEBELIUS AND
ATTORNEY GENERAL ERIC HOLDER IN DETROIT. MRS. BURNEY, TELL US WHAT
IMPACT YOU SEE THE SMP PROGRAM MAKING IN THE LIVES OF BENEFICIARIES..




NEXT, FROM BIGFORK, MONTANA, IS MRS. WINNIE GREENSHILEDS. I HAD THE
WONDERFUL OPPORTUNITY TO VISIT MONTANA LAST YEAR, AND HAVE NOT
ONLY WONDERFUL MEMORIES OF THE CENTENARIANS WE HONORED, BUT A
GREAT STORY OF BEING IN THE UNITED STATES…. I WILL HAVE TO TELL YOU
LATER…. NOT ONLY IS MRS. GREENSHIELDS A WONDERFUL VOLUNTEER, BUT
SHE HAS HELPED RECRUIT AND TRAIN VOLUNTEERS TO SERVE ALL OF FLATHEAD
COUNTY…. AND WITH A BACKGROUND IN INSURANCE IT IS EASY TO SEE WHAT
AN ASSET SHE IS! MRS. GREENSHIELDS, TELL US WHAT IS YOUR PROUDEST
ACCOMPLISHMENT AS AN SMP VOLUNTEER?




MOVING TO QUEENS, NEW YORK, IS MS. FELICE HANNAH. I HAD THE
OPPORTUNITY TO SHARE A STAGE WITH MS. HANNAH IN BROOKLYN AT THE NEW
YORK FRAUD SUMMIT, AND I CAN TELL YOU, AMID THE JUDGES, ATTORNEYS,
LAW ENFORCEMENT, THE SECRETARY AND THE US ATTORNEY GENERAL, MS.
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HANNAH HELD THE ATTENTION OF ALL THE ATTENDEES AS SHE SHARED HER
PERSONAL EXPERIENCES AND EXPLAINED THE VALUE OF THE SMP PROGRAM.
MS. HANNAH, LIKE MANY VOLUNTEERS, SERVES ANOTHER CAPACITY AS THE
OUTREACH COORDINATOR FOR THE COUNCIL OF ADMINISTRATORS, AND I
UNDERSTAND VOLUNTEERS FOR OTHERS… MS. HANNAH, PLEASE TELL US WHAT
INSPIRED YOU TO BECOME AN SMP VOLUNTEER?




NEXT WE HAVE MR. TOM GAUMER FROM OLMSTEAD FALLS, OHIO. AS A
FORMER REPORTER AND EDITOR, MR. GAUMER HAS HELPED WITH GROUP
EDUCATION, COMMUNITY EVENT MANAGEMENT, AND SERVES ON THE
ADVISORY COUNCIL. ONE STEP AHEAD OF HIS PROGRAM MANAGER AND HAS
BEEN INSTRUMENTAL IN TAKING THE SMP PROGRAM STATEWIDE… HE
ROUTINELY TRAVELS ACROSS THE STATE TO ATTEND ADVISORY COUNCIL
MEETINGS AND OTHER EVENTS AND IS TRULY AN ASSET TO THE OHIO PROGRAM.
MR. GAUMER, PLEASE TELL US WHAT YOU FIND MOST SATISFYING ABOUT YOUR
WORK AS AN SMP VOLUNTEER?




AND OUR FINAL VOLUNTEER AWARD GOES TO MR. RICHARD HOTINSKI, FROM
PLANO, TEXAS. MR. HOTINSKI, A NATIVE NEW YORKER, AND HONORED VETERAN,
HAD PERSONAL EXPERIENCE IN LEARNING THE HARD WAY ABOUT MEDICARE
BILLING ERRORS AND DISCREPENCIES WHILE CARING FOR HIS MOTHER. AS A
RETIRED SERVICE MAN, FROM THE U.S. AIRFORCE, MR. HOTINSKI WANTED TO
GET INTO THE TRENCHES, HE NOT ONLY MAKES PRESENTATIONS ABOUT
MEDICARE FRAUD AND ABUSE, HE VOLUNTEERS TO EXAMINE MEDICARE
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STATEMENTS OF GUARDIANSHIP CLIENTS’ TO PROTECT AGAINS FRAUD. MR.
HOTINSKI, PLEASE TELL US WHAT IS YOUR PROUDEST ACCOMPLISHMENT AS AN
SMP VOLUNTEER?




WOW! WHAT A LINE UP… AND ALL I CAN SAY IS THANK YOU. THANK YOU. THANK
YOU. AS WE HEARD EDWIN YESTERDAY TALK ABOUT CONNECTING AND MAKING
A DIFFERENCE TO REAL PEOPLE… THE WORK OF OUR HONORED VOLUNTEERS,
OUR STATEWIDE SMP DIRECTORS AND STAFF, AND THE AOA REGIONAL AND
CENTRAL OFFICE STAFF IS TRULY MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN THE FIGHT AGAINST
MEDICARE FRAUD AND ABUSE. AND WE ARE TRULY LIVING UP TO THE VISION OF
THE OLDER AMERICANS ACT AS WE WORK DILIGENTLY FOR DIGNITY AND
INDEPENDENCE FOR ALL AMERICANS.




THANK YOU ALL, AND AGAIN, CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR HONORED
VOLUNTEERS.




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