Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
We’re in our Spring Fundraiser and you can help! Support KSMU programming today!

Older Worker Award

Oler workers (those 55 and up) contribute a lot to workplaces across the country. That's why one older worker from each state is honored each year with an award from the Department of health and Senior Services. KSMU's Michele Skalicky has more.

Fran Trentham is known as 'the little red tornado" because she can get by on only 4 hours of sleep per night and is known to walk faster than she drives. The assistant to the dean of students at Crowder College in Neosho will earn her General Studies degree from Crowder this year and works more than 40 hours per week at her job. All that wouldn't be as impressive if not for Trentham's age—she'll turn 70 this spring.

Trentham was honored last year with the best older worker in Missouri award from the Department of Health and Senior Services.

Nominations are now being accepted for this year's award. Nominees must be Missouri residents 55 and older who are working a minimum of 20 hours per week for pay at a Missouri job site.

Trentham did secretarial work in Pennsylvania, where she was originally from. After raising her 3 sons, she re-entered the workforce at Crowder College in 1993 at the age of 55.

She wants to show people that age is not an obstacle in the workforce. She says the winners from other states who she met on her trip to the Nationals, are also examples of that

Trentham points out that several well-known figures show that age isn't a barrier to accomplishing great things

Fran Trentham says the Best Older Worker award goes a long way in helping people realize the value of older people in the workforce.

Nominations for this year's award must be submitted by March 14th. For more information, go to


  • Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services