Jake Jacobson, Colby Jones, Sloane Simmons and Casey Simmons mingle at the Philanthropy Awards Luncheon.

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Arts & AGEing KC Proudly Announces New Leadership

After founding and directing Arts & AGEing KC since 2014, Deb Campbell is stepping away from the position of Executive Director in order to devote more time and energy to her family and pursue her passion for creative aging as a presenter, playwright and educator. We're thrilled to announce that Kelly Jander is our new Executive Director.
 
“It's been exciting to be part of the creative aging movement over the past ten years. Launching and building Arts & AGEing KC has been a wonderful journey! I'm grateful to so many people who have helped grow this organization. This is the perfect time for new leadership, and we're fortunate to have someone with Kelly's unique blend of both arts and aging nonprofit experience to lead this time of growth.” 
 
Deb will continue in a support role as consultant and trainer.

Kelly Jander's nonprofit leadership experience includes work in both the arts and aging fields. Most recently Jander was with Shepherd's Center of Kansas City Central, where she led SCC's lifelong learning and volunteer programs before moving into development and marketing roles. While at Shepherd's Center, Jander founded Kansas City's 70 Over 70 Awards, an annual event that celebrates the contributions of individuals over the age of 70 throughout the nine-county metropolitan area.
 
Jander is passionate about helping Kansas City become a healthier and more connected community for all ages. She has served on Kansas City's Age Positive Conference Planning Committee, volunteers with the Kansas City Chapter of Aging2.0, and chaired the 2018 Health and Aging Task Force for the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce Centurions Leadership Program.
 
Before transitioning into the aging field, Jander was the director of Hello Art, a local nonprofit that she and and several volunteers founded in 2009 to help connect people to the arts. Hello Art was a collaborative effort involving hundreds of artists and arts organizations, as well as more than 300 members, volunteers and sponsors annually.
Melissa Delaney
Creative Programs Director
 
Since June, Melissa Delaney has been working closely with AAKC's Teaching Artists to develop all new Life Enrichment programming at Brush Creek Community Center.
 
Melissa has a life-long love of art and its ability to heal and expand our understanding of ourselves and others. She is particularly interested in the vital role creativity can play in each stage of life, particularly the “second half” of the journey.
 
Most recently, Melissa served as the Program Manager for Shepherd’s Center Central’s 50 FORWARD CLUB, a program connecting adults in the greater Kansas City metro to lifelong learning and community engagement opportunities. In addition to that role, she served as the Director of the Johnson County, Kansas Retired & Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP), a federally funded program connecting older adults with volunteer opportunities in their community. Melissa is a published poet and plays guitar for fun and peace of mind. She and her husband, Jack, have four kids and a dog named Bruno.
 
Melissa can be reached at md@artsandageingkc.org.