Michael Olender is Associate State Director of AARP North Carolina, based in Charlotte.Prior to joining the North Carolina team, Michael served as Associate State Director of AARP New York for five years. In this capacity he was the AARP representative for Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island and the Lower Hudson Valley region of New York State, an area composed of more than 800,000 AARP members. Here he led AARP New York’s education and outreach efforts onhealthcare related issues including the Affordable Care Act and Medicare fraud.He has also worked to advance the association’s commitment to creating livable communities, advocacy on federal and state budget priorities as well as Medicare and Social Security.
In 2012,Michael served as Interim State Director for AARP New Hampshire. In this position he managed a state office staff and AARP’s non-partisan voter education efforts, including a series of AARP candidate debates forCongressional and gubernatorial races.
Prior to joining AARP in 2007 Michael worked as an issue organizer in NewJersey on a variety of consumer issues including affordable prescription drugs,access to health care, utilities education and other issues affecting older Americans. A graduate from Rutgers University, Michael and his family now reside permanently in Charlotte, North Carolina. His wife Lelah is a home-based small business owner specializing in hand-dyed yarn and mother to their two small children.