Alzheimer's Advocacy in

The Alzheimer's Association, Western Carolina Chapter is the largest group in advocating on behalf of those living with Alzheimer's disease.

Take Action! Become an Advocate

Conquering Alzheimer’s is as much a matter of public policy as scientific discovery, and we need your help to change the future of this devastating disease.

As an advocate, you will be invited to engage public officials and policymakers in a variety of ways, urging their support for critical Alzheimer's legislation and policy changes. Whether you prefer sending emails to legislators, posting updates to Facebook, or hosting events or even meeting in-person with your elected officials, there are many ways you can make a difference as an Alzheimer's Association Advocate.

Become a part of our advocate community today.

Current Action Alerts


Federal Policy

Alzheimer's is a devastating disease that cannot be ignored by federal policymakers. Our goal is to see that the federal government takes bold action now to confront this growing crisis. Urge your elected officials to enact public policies that provide better health and long-term coverage to ensure high-quality, cost-effective care for the millions of people who face this disease every day. Learn more


Find Your Representative

Advocate Spotlight

Shirley Koehler.jpg

Shirley Koehler, Ph.D., ABPP
Advocacy Ambassador

“I became convinced that we must find a cure for this terrible disease and that is the goal that keeps me dedicated to the advocacy role.“            

One of the main reasons Shirley became an advocate for the Alzheimer’s Association was her 23-year career as a clinical neuropsychologist. As  early as the 1980’s, she was involved in researching this devastating disease and presenting at conferences on dementia.  Beginning in 1994, the majority of her  career was spent at Brooks Rehabilitation Hospital in Jacksonville, Florida, working with patients including those with traumatic brain injuries, strokes, and different types of dementia.

As with most people advocating for Alzheimer’s, Shirley has personal experience with the disease. Two aunts and two uncles have passed from Alzheimer’s.

Ambassadors are grassroots volunteers who serve as the main point of in-district contact for a targeted member of Congress to help the Alzheimer’s Association achieve its federal policy priorities.  They develop and cultivate trusted relationships with their assigned congressional office through ongoing, personal contacts, drawing upon proven techniques and the support of Association National and Chapter staff.  Alzheimer’s Association Ambassadors commit to serve for a renewable one year term which requires training, mostly done online and at least 4-6 hours a month commitment.  Ambassadors attend the annual Public Policy Forum in Washington, DC as well as schedule other in-district visits to legislators. 

When Shirley learned that Alzheimer’s Ambassadors educate Congress about the HOPE for Alzheimer’s Act in which documenting the diagnosis in the medical  record is emphasized, she was hooked! As a health care provider, she realized that care planning offers newly-diagnosed patients and their caregivers information about treatments, ongoing clinical research, and support services available in their communities.

 Congressional Team Member position description

                        Learn more about  joining the team!

Upcoming Events


March 22, 2018

Alzheimer's Association Advocacy Day will bring Advocates together at the state Capitol to bring awareness about Alzheimer's.

  • Learn about the legislative process
  • Tell your personal story to key decision makers affecting policies for individuals living with Alzheimer's disease and their families
  • Bring awareness to the importance of the Alzheimer's Association public policy priorities
  • Meet face-to-face to "make your pitch" to elected officials


Refreshments will be provided.

Advocate! Participate!

Congressional Team Members are Ambassador-led teams who work directly with Association staff to implement federal advocacy activities directed toward members of Congress.  They complement the strengths of the Ambassador while sharing the workload. They also, develop and cultivate trusted relationships with their assigned congressional office through ongoing, personal contacts.  At the state level, Team Members participate in in-district visits and drop-by visits where they provide information about ongoing state issues and information and education about Alzheimer’s disease as well as the Association. These visits complement the ongoing federal advocacy work.

Receive more information about becoming a Congressional Team Member

Chapter Contact(s)

Chapter Headquarters
Western Carolina
4600 Park Road, Suite 250,
Charlotte, NC 28209
Phone 980.498.7760