MS ARIZONA SENIOR AMERICA 2015,
CONGRATULATIONS to JESSICA KLEBANOW, Ms Arizona Senior America 2015! As Jessica tells it:
I was born in the Caribbean in 1946. My mother tongue is French but I learned English as a second language. As a child, my father worked for UNESCO (United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization) as a professor.
We lived overseas for more than ten years, during which time I lived in Liberia, England and France. While in England, I spent close to five years attending boarding school. In 1960, we moved back to the United States.
We have two grown children, Diana and Michael, and five grandchildren. While bringing up our two, I attained a BS in Gerontology. Then, I specialized in telephone sales for various companies. In 2001, my husband and I co-founded a marketing company that still specializes in setting appointments for our clients with their better prospects.
During our 48 years of marriage, my husband and I lived in Lakewood, New Jersey (while he served in the military); Chappaqua, New York; South Florida and now Sun Lakes, AZ, where we have resided for over three years. At the insistence of our daughter, Diana, we moved to Arizona and are only a 10 minute drive to her and her family.
Sun Lakes is a 55 and over community with a vast range of activities, amenities and club memberships. Among them, I belong to the Sun Lakes Women's Association, an all-volunteer group in Sun Lakes. We receive a multitude of household donations from residents who have moved, sold or pass. Once year, we have a big sale to sell what we've accumulated. Most of the proceeds go to several local non-profit organizations such as the Sun Lakes Fire Department and Neighbors Who Care. The balance of the proceeds goes back to one or more of our four Sun Lakes' communities. I also volunteer with the Cameo Foundation, a 501c3 charity to benefit "Victims of Domestic Violence" (women and children of abuse).
Recently, I joined another organization in Sun Lakes called MAP (Member Assistance Program). We have a network of volunteers who seek out those in the community who need various types of help. Then, they are referred to the proper organization(s) or agencies).
My hobbies are jewelry-making and singing hits from the 30's and 40's. Singing has always been a passion of mine and after 35 years not performing I decided that it's not too late. It's only in the past year and a half that I have been performing in front of an audience and have discovered that they really like what they hear.