Beth Witrogen McLeod
BETH WITROGEN McLEOD is a journalist, author, speaker, and consultant on spirituality and aging, caregiving and self-renewal/healing. Her expertise grew out of personal experience caring for her parents who were simultaneously terminally ill 1,200 miles away. With a father dying of a rare form of cancer and a mother with Lou Gehrigs disease and dementia, McLeod learned firsthand about the traumas and blessings of this mid-life rite of passage.
She turned her experiences into a passion for public service, first writing and producing an award-winning newspaper series, "The Caregivers," for The San Francisco Examiner in 1995. It was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.Honors for the series included National Hospice Organization, Pew Charitable Trusts, American Legion Auxiliary, Society of Professional Journalists, and many regional and local social service organizations. She developed two weekly columns for The Examiner that were picked up by many national papers.
After 20 years in newspapers, McLeod left in 1997 to write her book, "Caregiving: The Spiritual Journey of Love, Loss, and Renewal" (John Wiley & Sons, May 1999). It was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in general nonfiction. It became an e-book (RocketBooks), in addition to moving into paperback in September 2000. Her articles on elder care and health have been published in Good Housekeeping, Health, SELF, Family Circle, Cooking Light, Caring, the Wall Street Journal, Aging Today, and the Noetic Sciences Review.
After leading an on-line caregiving support chat for five years, she now lectures nationwide to raise awareness of aging issues from political to spiritual. She has written for Web sites including ThirdAge.com, Carethere.com, MyLifePath.com and WebMD, and is a contributing writer for Aging Today. She has worked with the American Society on Aging/National Alliance for Caregiving to build an on-line caregiving materials resource center, and has been featured in interviews with the Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, Christian Science Monitor, Prevention, Money and Walking, among others.
McLeod also teaches a course on caring for aging parents through the University of California Extension system.
In August 1999, she was interviewed by Katie Couric for the "Today" shows "Forever Young" segment. In the fall/winter of 2000 she was featured in two PBS series on caregiving and is consulting on a third.
McLeod is now focusing on the broader spiritual issues of living fully in the second half of life, including optimal health, inner healing, and self-renewal.
interview with Beth...