MARQUETTE - Two local residents have been named to special posts by the Alzheimer's Association's Greater Michigan Chapter.
Regional Director Ruth Almen said Marquette residents Shelby Bischoff and Melissa Luttrell have been selected as ambassadors by the association.
"It's a program that has been established through the national association and each chapter is responsible for having one person who works closely with each federal official," Almen said.
Bischoff has been assigned to work with U.S. Rep. Dan Benishek, D-Crystal Falls, while Luttrell is assigned to work with U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow.
"These two Upper Peninsula folks will represent the whole chapter, which includes 60 counties in Michigan," Almen said. "They will keep our lawmakers up to date and provide informaiton for us. They will be the first people contacting (the legislators) about topics that are important to us, especially regarding funding, which is so very crucial.
For Bischoff, the post was something she's proud to take on.
"It is an honor and a privilege to be an ambassador for the Alzheimer's Association and to represent the U.P.," Bischoff said. "After attending the Alzheimer's Advocacy Forum in (Washington) D.C. this past May and hearing the stories from the caregivers and their families I am simply compelled to help move the support forward in D.C. and here in the U.P.
"I have been involved with the Greater Michigan Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association for the past five years on behalf of mBank. I lost a very dear friend in June, Mrs. Abbey Johnson due to Alzheimer's. Iironically this was shortly after my last trip to D.C. when this tragic event occurred. I find that I am more passionate than ever to find a cure for Alzheimer's. "The caregivers suffer both mentally and financially. We can make a difference through speaking to our government representatives and advocacy," she said. "I would also like to recognize my employer, mBank for their continued support of my role with the Alzheimer's association and mBank's affiliation with the Alzheimer's Association in the U.P. and below the bridge."
For more information on the Greater Michigan Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association, visit www.alz.org/gmc.