About Lynda Shrager
Lynda Shrager began her journey on the day she and her daughter were simultaneously diagnosed with life-threatening medical conditions more than 21 years ago. After successfully negotiating the dual crises and not cracking up along the way, she realized it was her organizing skills that she had called upon to get her through. By the time her mother was diagnosed with a very aggressive cancer, Lynda had become the expert in organizing all the tasks that needed to be done to both simultaneously manage a serious illness and keep up with life. The Organized Caregiver was born.
Lynda received her bachelor’s degree in Occupational Therapy from Boston University’s Sargent College and a master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Albany.
She has practiced in the medical field of geriatric rehabilitation for over thirty years. Occupational therapy practices the art of taking seemingly overwhelming tasks and breaking them down into smaller, more manageable bite sized pieces. Social work practices the art of empowering people to draw from their inner strengths to overcome adversity.
Lynda is a Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS). This certification focuses on evaluating and understanding the unique housing needs of people as they age, including home modifications, common remodeling projects, and solutions to common barriers. A CAPS professional is versed in the strategies and techniques for designing, renovating and building aesthetically pleasing and barrier-free living environments.
Known as “The Organized Caregiver”, Shrager is the only member of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) who specializes exclusively in the area of organizing health information.
Author * Blogger * Columnist
Organizer * Keynote Speaker * Educator
Lynda is a breast cancer survivor and the author of Otherwise Healthy® – A Planner to Focus Your Thoughts on Organizing Life after Being Diagnosed with Breast Cancer (At the Pond Publishing, 2000). The first of two editions was distributed free to the medically underserved with the assistance of a grant from the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. Otherwise Healthy® has appeared on the Komen recommended resource list and has been featured in editions of Coping and Cure magazines. She also created MedInfoToGo, a complete medical chart that fits in your wallet.
In 2009 Lynda became a featured blogger for Everyday Health (everydayhealth.com), the country’s leading online consumer health web site. Lynda’s blog, The Organized Caregiver, is available to over 28 million unique monthly visitors as well as to more than 400,727 Facebook and 221,596 Twitter subscribers who follow this site. These numbers literally expand daily.
For nine years her newspaper column, Mom’s Rx, was published in the Hearst daily Albany Times Union and appeared in countless newspapers across the country including the Miami Herald, San Diego Union-Tribune, Detroit Free Press and the Dallas Morning News. It had been said that Lynda has the innate ability to “speak” to her readers in a down to earth, me to you tone, that has endeared her to her newspaper and Internet audience. The column is transferring over to a digital only format.
Shrager orchestrates an annual Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) patient education conference bringing together area patients and national speakers on a variety of subjects. Lynda was the founder of “Breast Friends,” a self-help support group for breast cancer survivors and has mentored hundreds of patients dealing with various life threatening illnesses. She was also the creator of Organize Your Medical Information Month. A description and promo appears yearly in CHASE’S Calendar of Events.
Lynda has presented numerous lectures and workshops in the area of breast cancer treatment, survivor issues and senior health and wellness. She was the keynote speaker for the America Cancer Society Relay for Life, The New York State Nurses Association and various other community organizations and has served as a patient educator for Pfizer Pharmaceutical and the Capital District Physicians’ Health Plan Wellness Series. She combines organizing techniques and topical and timely health and wellness tips in an innovative approach to teach consumers methods to successfully negotiate the health care system.
Medical advisory board of the American Cancer Society
Daughters of Sarah Nursing Center Board of Directors
Education Chairperson – Upstate NY Division, Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America
Ask Me 3 Health Literacy Community Forum
Advisory Board of the Capital Region Patient Advocacy and Navigation Education Project
Board of Trustees of the Make-A-Wish Foundation
Board of Trustees of Congregation Beth Emeth in Albany, NY
Northeast Health Women’s Health Initiative
Vice President of Education and Support for CCFA
National Public Radio’s (NPR) Round Table
WNYT (NBC affiliate) channel 13′s Health Forum
Time Warner Cable’s YNN Health Matters with various health segments
CCTV-America, a world-wide Internet news broadcast station
Honors and Awards
2011 – 2012 – 2013 finalist for the SeniorHomes.com Best of the Web Blog
2011 recipient of the Sidney Albert Albany Jewish Community Center’s Pillars of the Community Award
2005 featured in the American Occupational Therapy Association’s OT Practice Magazine
2004 to present – National Cancer Survivors Day Speakers Bureau
2002 recipient of the Breast Cancer Awareness Award given by the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation and BMW of North America
2002 recipient of the President’s Award from the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America Upstate/Northeastern New York Chapter