My We Are All Aging talk explains the roots of ageism – in society and in our own age denial – how it divides and diminishes us, and ends with a rousing call to mobilize against it. This Chair Rocks: How Ageism Warps Our View of Long Life charts my journey from apprehensive boomer to pro-aging radical and proposes an alternative to all the hand-wringing: wake up, cheer up, and push back. Aging While Female, Reimagined describes how the double whammy of ageism and sexism makes aging different for women, and what we can do about it. I also speak about the medicalization of old age, ageism and elder abuse, and how to reframe the new longevity in order to make the most of longer lives. To book me for your event, please contact the Lavin Agency.

What People Are Saying:

I was encouraged by the statistics you quoted, forced to acknowledge my own ageist thoughts, and ultimately fired up to fight them in myself and others. You are on to something big!

Sarah Meredith, painter

Why can’t we stop ageism? Good question. For some answers, start looking in the mirror and look around you. For a good dialogue on the subject, visit Ashton Applewhite’s website, This Chair Rocks.

Harry R. Moody, Director of Academic Affairs, AARP

Consciousness-raising at its sharpest and most useful.

David Watts Barton, journalist and playwright

This Chair Rocks confirms our knowledge that emotional well being is abundant in later life, challenges us to face our own internalized ageism, and inspires us to envision a future in which our society is released from age-related prejudice and discrimination. And it’s fun, too!

Geriatric Mental Health Alliance of New York

Holistic, deep, urgent, and also fun.

Lenelle Moise, playwright and performer

All practitioners working with older adults need to be informed about the pernicious influences of ageism. Nobody does this better than Ashton Applewhite. Her thinking is deep, her passion infectious, and her cogent message is spot on: we urgently need to have a national conversation about ageism to raise awareness about it and to stop it.

Risa Breckman, LCSW, Executive Director, NYC Elder Abuse Center

You have found a fantastic mission: raising consciousness that older is far better than the stereotype that enslaves us all.

Jennifer Siebens, producer, CBS News

Ashton Applewhite’s plenary address at the 2013 New York State Adult Abuse Training Institute was compelling and original, and really resonated with our 400 participants. She is an articulate and committed voice for an important cause: challenging the demoralizing shadow that ageism casts across society.

Jean Callahan, Director, Brookdale Center for Healthy Aging

Octogenarians are the fastest-growing segment of our population, yet most Americans are scared stiff at the prospect of growing old. [Applewhite’s work] is a welcome and important tonic.

Dr. Robert Butler, founding director of the National Institute on Aging, coiner of the term “ageism”

We need an anti-ageist movement, for sure. Ashton is already in it.

Margaret Morganroth Gullette, author of Agewise and Aged by Culture

A beautifully delivered, provocative description of how ageism clouds our vision of what life holds in store.

Sabrina Hamilton, director, Ko Festival for the Arts

Ashton Applewhite is on a crusade. A journalist and author, her mission is to raise awareness of ageism in America and get people young and old to join her in speaking out against it.

Senior Planet

Thank you again for your terrific keynote yesterday. I heard from so many attendees that it affected them deeply. You are wise, funny, and provocative – a great combination!

Teresa Bonner, Program Director, Aroha Philanthropies

Upcoming Appearances

speaker, Coface Diversity & Inclusion event

Where: Virtual

When: May 18, 2022 12:00 am

More info: Details pending

Speaker, SilverSource annual luncheon

Where: Stamford, CT

When: May 18, 2022 12:00 pm

More info: Registration here

Pioneers in Aging talk

Where: virtual

When: May 23, 2022 03:00 pm

More info: Register here.

speaker, University of Northern Ireland

Where: virtual

When: May 24, 2022 09:00 am

More info: NUI Galway and Age & Opportunity webinar celebrating Bealtaine, Ireland's national festival related to art and creativity as we age. Register here.

keynote, Apartmentalize

Where: San Diego Convention Center

When: June 24, 2022 01:00 pm

More info: Annual conference of the National Apartment Association. Info here.

speaker, Tanglewood Park Bookclub

Where: virtual

When: June 28, 2022 03:00 pm

More info: Hosted by Senior Resources of West Michigan, AgeWell Services, and LifeCircles/PACE (Program of All Inclusive Care for the Elderly). Details pending.

Speaker, UK Network of Age-friendly Communities annual conference

Where: Birmingham, England

When: July 5, 2022 12:00 am

More info: Details pending.

speaker, National Congress of Geriatrics and Gerontology, Chile

Where: virtual

When: October 7, 2022 08:30 am

More info: XXVI National Congress of Geriatrics and Gerontology: Aging in Chile: Global changes and local challenges. Details pending.

Course instruction, OLLI at UVA

Where: virtual

When: October 8, 2022 01:00 pm

More info:

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at University of Virginia (UVA). Details pending.

speaker, RiverWoods Exeter

Where: virtual

When: January 24, 2023 12:00 am

More info: Details pending.


Past Appearances