An attorney has been named president-elect of the board of AARP, the national nonprofit that advocates for people 50 and older.
The law firm Varnum said last month that Eric Schneidewind will serve as president-elect until 2016, when he will assume the role of president.
Schneidewind previously served as president of AARP Michigan from 2006 to 2012. He began serving on the national board of AARP in 2012.
He plans to remain active in his energy practice and continue to work out of Varnum's Lansing office, although he expects to devote significant time to AARP matters.
Schneidewind has been a member of Varnum’s energy law practice for nearly 30 years. He also serves as counsel to Energy Michigan, the trade group of Michigan businesses and end users advocating competition in the electric sector.
Schneidewind said he will be chairing the AARP national policy council, which will involve meetings around the country and travel to Europe and Asia.
He also expects to serve as a spokesperson for the organization whenever the president is unavailable.
Twenty-one volunteer members make up the AARP board of directors.
Some of the major responsibilities of AARP board members are to approve the budget and monitor AARP finances, determine the association's state and national legislative policy agenda and set policy that guides the association's strategic plans and activities.
The AARP works to understand and address issues facing older adults globally and is particularly concerned with the baby boomer generation, which will move into retirement in significant numbers in the coming years.
"All the nations on earth are facing this big demographic challenge: how to deal with aging populations and treat them as a valuable resource,” Schneidewind said. "This will sweep across the world, and it will never be the same. It's a huge issue. AARP has a lot of expertise to offer."
Prior to joining Varnum in 1986, Schneidewind had an extensive career in state government, culminating with a six-year term as commissioner, then chairman, of the Michigan Public Service Commission.
In addition to his work with the AARP, he has also been a volunteer for more than 20 years at homeless shelters in the Lansing area.