Gerard is a former member of the council's Board of Directors and has specialized in market research on senior housing since 1985, conducting more than 400 market studies for leading developers, lenders and municipal agencies in California and the Southwest, according to a news release.
"Having been on the board for  years, this is an opportunity to really look back and celebrate where we've come, what we've learned and what has happened to the senior housing community," Gerard said.
The SAGE Awards help promote awareness and education of the shifting needs of the elderly, which is especially important now as the Baby Boomer generation influences the senior housing demographic, Gerard said.
The Project of the Year honoree is the Santa Ana-based Council on Aging Orange County, a nonprofit that aims to promote adult empowerment, prevent abuse and advocate for the rights and dignity of those experiencing health and aging challenges.
"We're very honored to be recognized and it was through the efforts of one of the board members, Scott Hysler, that we were nominated for this award," Chief Executive Officer Cheryl Meronk said. "He really felt that the programs and services really embody our mission of enhancing the quality of life for seniors."
The steady rise in Orange County's older population has been a challenge to keep up with — and not just with the Baby Boomers themselves, but with a growing body of families that faces choices on how to care for their elderly loved ones, she said.