|Lupe Salas , Pima Council on Aging|
|Visit Pima Council on Aging's website|
Pima Council on Aging
A former real estate loan officer, Lupe found her calling providing support and education to older adults on matters ranging from housing to Social Security.
Getting ready to move to a different state, Lupe Salas kept it simple.
She gave away her furniture and anything else she didn’t need. She had made a nice living for more than two decades as a real estate agent and broker in California but realized her life could be more fulfilling without much material wealth.
The Mexico native decided to move back to her adopted home state of Arizona in 1998.
“You have to be a little fearless,” Salas says. “I was a loan officer, and I was making pretty good money. My family thought I was a little crazy that I wanted to come back to Arizona not knowing what I wanted to do.”
Salas, who had been a teacher before entering real estate, hoped to get back to education or perform some kind of social work. She spent several years trying to figure out her path, along the way working for programs helping women, children and families in need.
In 2007 she attended a job fair organized by the Tucson-based Mature Worker Connection, a free job placement service for people 50 and older. She landed a position with the outfit and later joined the staff of its sponsor, the Pima Council on Aging.
Salas, now in her mid-60s, works 25 hours a week as an elder outreach advocate, providing support and education to older adults on anything from housing to legal issues to Social Security benefits.
Salas’ clients depend on her, and that gives her the type of satisfaction she always longed for in her work.
“When I have clients with so many needs, I find it’s not all about me,” she says. “Sometimes I think they give me more than I give them.”
Visit the Mature Worker Connection website