de Tornyay Center opening 1Possibly nothing demonstrates healthy outcomes more than a long and productive life. Honoring Dean Emeritus Rheba de Tornyay’s lifelong interest in healthy aging, a center which bears her name opened this Fall to support research, education and practice about the challenges and rewards of advanced age. Fittingly, the public unveiling of the de Tornyay Center for Healthy Aging featured the co-authors of a best-selling book on the subject - Living to 100: Lessons in Living to Your Maximum Potential at Any Age.
Like the UW School of Nursing, whose road to preeminence in nursing education spans almost a century, individuals who live to 100 or beyond are the essence of good health. Not fighting the advances of time but rather embracing them, they are invigorated by change and unruffled by the challenges of stressful events.
The book’s authors, Drs. Margery Hutter Silver, a neuropsychologist, and Thomas Perls, an assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, described the New England Centenarian Study which first sparked their research interest. Designed to detect the prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease in people over 100, it instead revealed that cognitive decline in this age group was not inevitable. Moreover, 90% of the centenarians were completely healthy at 92. The authors wondered what such individuals could teach us about growing older, no matter what our age. They also wondered what factors were most responsible for their long and healthy lives.
Among those joining Dean Emeritus Rheba de Tornyay, center, at the grand opening of the de Tornyay Center on Healthy Aging wereThese are the kinds of questions that the de Tornyay Center on Healthy Agingwill also be answering as faculty at the School continue to work on aging research. Serving as a catalyst to expand the knowledge and science of healthy aging within the larger community - both academic and public - the de Tornyay Center will focus on sharing research and on increasing opportunities for more study by both undergraduate and graduate students at the School.
CREDITS: Thomas T. Perls, M.D., left, and Margery Hutter Silver, Ed.D., co-authors of Living to 100: Lessons in Living to Your Maximum Potential at Any Age, answer questions from the audience following their presentations.
Among those joining Dean Emeritus Rheba de Tornyay, center, at the grand opening of the de Tornyay Center on Healthy Aging were University of Washington President Richard McCormick, left, and Dean Nancy Woods, right.