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Re-Imagining Our Third Age

The Third Age Initiative™ at Leadership Greater Hartford

For more than two decades, Doe Hentschel has guided the Third Age Initiative™ at Leadership Greater Hartford, which enables older/retirement-aged people to channel their wisdom and experience in ways that give back to the community. Since the program began, more than 425 diverse older adults have brought their unique perspectives to address community issues. More than four dozen initiatives, developed and implemented by Third Age Initiative™ teams, have also served as launching pads for their future engagement. More than 75% of the graduates of the Third Age Initiative™ are engaged in the community in new ways years after their graduation.


Doe Hentschel inspires hope and possibility in everyone she’s met and in everything she does. A prolific storyteller, she inspires by action, modeling the way for others and turning challenges into opportunities. Doe is not blindly optimistic – she doesn’t engage in wishful thinking. Her brand of optimism comes first from accepting the hard realities of any given situation. Then she summons the creativity and courage to address the daunting challenges before her. Rather than focus on what she cannot do, she focuses on what she can do, asking for help when necessary, and elevating those around her.”

– Ted Carroll, President and CEO, Retired, Leadership Greater Hartford


“Being part of Leadership Greater Hartford’s Third Age Initiative™ has been a magical awakening for me. As a social worker for several decades, I never considered myself a leader, but this program has helped me validate that I am! Participants in our group come from all walks of life; Doe’s intellect, passion and maternal instinct inspire us to work together and create a plan that addresses a challenge in our community. I’m gaining new skills, feeding my creative energies, and helping others. Doe has made this experience happen in a way I never experienced before.”

– Iris Rivera-Acosta

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