Wendy L. Yallowitz, program officer, joined the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in 2001, bringing her expertise in long-term care and services for older adults to the Foundation’s work with vulnerable populations. Drawn to RWJF by “its direction, resources and the opportunity to make a difference,” her work focuses on long-term care and community-based services. She is committed to developing and nurturing programs that help improve the health of the most vulnerable people.
Yallowitz currently manages a variety of projects and programs aimed at improving health at the individual and community level. Among these is a program that helps older and disabled Medicaid consumers choose and control their personal care services, and another that encourages middle-income people to buy private long-term care insurance, which helps delay or avoid the need for Medicaid.
Yallowitz also leads an effort to help immigrant and refugee communities transition to life in the United States with the tools and supports they need to improve and maintain health. As part of her focus on improving the health of these immigrant populations, she oversees an RWJF national program aimed at providing school-connected mental health to children in low-income, immigrant and refugee families. She envisions a future “in which older adults can age gracefully in the community they choose, and in which refugees and immigrants can fully integrate into the mainstream of our society.”
She came to the Foundation from the Jewish Family and Children’s Service in Princeton, N.J., where she created programs to help older adults live independently. In addition to helping the frail elderly, she also developed a Holocaust survivor program and a Kosher Café. Previously, she worked as a family advocate for older adults, as an assisted living facility recreation director, and as a volunteer at senior centers.
Yallowitz received an MSW in administration, policy and planning from Rutgers University and a BA from West Virginia University. She serves as a member of Grantmakers in Aging, the American Society on Aging, and Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees.