Vi at Highlands Ranch Couple Make Significant Impact with Denver-Based Charity

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Residents help to support local Alzheimer's organization.

Without the Whitneys' heart-felt support at that pivotal moment, Jiminy Wicket would not be here today.

As residents at Vi at Highlands Ranch, Roy and Fay Whitney are relatively new to Denver, but they have already made a difference through support of a local organization that helps people with Alzheimer's disease. It's not a surprise that the Whitneys agreed to support Jiminy Wicket, as their philanthropic endeavors are deep and longstanding.

Jiminy Wicket uses croquet to bring people living with Alzheimer's back into the game of life. According to its founder, James Creasey, playing croquet improves the lives of seniors and their caregivers mentally, physically and socially.

"Without the Whitneys' heart-felt support at that pivotal moment, Jiminy Wicket would not be here today. We would not be about to expand into 100 schools coast-to-coast. And we would not be launching that expansion with a croquet game at Rockefeller Center's iconic ice rink on World Alzheimer's Day Sept 20, 2013," said Creasey.

The Whitneys are accomplished professionals; Roy is chairman emeritus of Hammond, Kennedy, Whitney & Company, a prominent private equity firm, and Fay is a nurse practitioner, Emeritus Professor of Nursing and has worked professionally with older adults.

Throughout the years, The Whitneys have supported several key charitable organizations that are associated with their professions and education. For example, in 2007 Roy established the R. Roy Whitney Jr. Business Scholarship Fund at the Simon School, University of Rochester. And that same year, he established the Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing at the University of Wyoming.

Moving West

Raised and educated on the East Coast, the Whitneys headed west in 1993 to live their dream on a Wyoming cattle ranch. They are parents of three children and grandparents of 10. With two of their children in the Denver area they were frequent visitors and in 2011 decided to become residents at Vi at Highlands Ranch, a continuing care retirement community.

The Whitneys spend winters at Vi and summer months at the ranch. "One of the things about a ranch is privacy," Roy explained. "But family was distant, medical resources are limited and the opportunities to socialize have become more difficult as we age. It was time to look at quality of life."

Fay added that "Vi has a good attitude about aging. The community is a good place to be well cared for and we are comfortable with the resources here."

Making A Difference With Jiminy Wicket

When the Whitneys moved to Vi at Highlands Ranch they were reacquainted with James Creasey, a Denver resident, former business associate and founder and president of Jiminy Wicket, a croquet program that helps bring people living with Alzheimer's back into the game of life.

According to Creasey: "When I reached out to Roy and Fay 15 months ago, I already had invested my personal funds into four years of research and development to bring the joy of croquet to people with Alzheimer's disease. I had run out of money to take the program any further. I simply asked if they knew anybody who could help bring this program into high schools, pairing youth with seniors struggling with dementia. They generously said: We will do it."

Vi at Highlands Ranch brings together interesting people like the Whitneys who share their skills and experiences. The community provides an environment that encourages friendship, connection, and health, with an approach grounded in whole-person wellness.

For background and information about Jiminy Wicket visit http://www.jiminywicket.org.

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