The Longevity Revolution: Are You Ready for the Future?
Alzheimer's Advocate Meryl Comer Speaks Out

Northwestern Mutual hosted Meryl Comer, broadcast journalist and Alzheimer’s advocate, as she brought her wake up call to our area recently.

Americans are living longer than ever before.  Longer lifespans involve risks as well as benefits and financial security plans must address both.  Not only do we need to cover the costs of 20-30 years in retirement, but also be prepared for what most of us would rather not think about.

In addition to sharing her experience caring for her husband who was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s at the age of 57, other insights of Meryl’s presentation included:

  • According to AARP, two-thirds of people 65 and older will eventually need long-term care, and one in eight of those will be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.   Comer relates. “You need to ask yourself, ‘Can I remain financially stable if a loved one or I develop a debilitating illness?’ and if the answer is no, look into your options.”
  • Having a solution for possible long-term care needs is especially critical for women, who account for 75 percent of caregivers, are more often charged with caring for elderly parents or spouses, and typically outlive men.
  • Costs are significant and rising–According to the National Clearinghouse for Long-Care Information 2010 you would have paid more than $19,000 on average for a home health aide’s assistance three times a week.
  • Care giving can impact careers and incomes - Many people must juggle care giving with their regular work responsibilities.  When the demands are too great they may leave their jobs, like Comer did, losing income and retirement savings opportunities as they incur additional costs for care.
  • Medicare doesn’t pay for long-term care ­– Similar to conventional health insurance; Medicare generally covers short-term, acute medical conditions and limited related rehabilitation, not chronic care at home or in an inpatient facility.  Medicaid may cover long-term care but individuals must have very limited assets and meet strict financial requirements.

Steve Forbes and John Schlifske on
"Econo-ME: Ensuring Your Financial Security in the New Normal”

Northwestern Mutual hosted a speaker series with Steve Forbes, chairman and editor in chief of Forbes Media and John Schlifske, Northwestern Mutual chairman and CEO. The three day tour saw over 4,000 attendees in total and included panel discussions in Miami and Palm Beach, FL; Washington, DC; Hartford, CT; Raleigh and Charlotte, NC; and Milwaukee, WI. In Hartford, where there were over 600 in attendance, Steve and John discussed their thoughts on the economy, the markets, and how individuals and business owners can ensure financial security in the new normal. Key insights presented at the events were:
  • Managing risk is the cornerstone of financial security for individuals and families in today’s economy. According to Schlifske, a foundation of risk management is the key to protecting yourself and those you care about against the financial challenges that occur when people live too long, die too soon or become sick or injured. 
  • Unforeseen threats will continue to affect our national economy. Natural disasters such as the earthquake in Japan or unrest in the Middle East impact today’s consumers. However, Schlifske and Forbes agree that our nation’s economy will continue to overcome these obstacles in the long-term based on our markets and infrastructure. 
  • The fundamentals of financial security to build wealth include long-term savings. Forbes recommends that consumers stick with the basics such as putting money away week after week and working with a trusted advisor on a holistic plan. 
For more thoughts on these and other business topics, visit the Northwestern Mutual Special Features page of
To view photos from this event, click here.

Bob’s Community Involvement

Bob recently participated in Geno Auriemma's 8th Annual Fore The Kids Charity Golf Tournament at The Hartford Golf Club.  The event which benefits the Connecticut Children's Medical Center and the Department of Orthopaedics was a great success with over 200 golfers joining together for a great cause.

On July 21st 2010 Bob took part in a Northwestern Mutual sponsored event  - Junior Achievement's 12th Annual Golf Tournament at The Ranch.  Junior Achievement of Western Massachusetts is a dedicated organization which provides economic education and fantastic financial literacy programs to the youth of western Massachusetts.  To learn more about how you can get involved with Junior Achievement of Western Massachusetts, Inc check out the volunteer section on their website at

Last July, Bob participated in The Muscular Dystrophy Association's Annual MDA Lock-UP.  This event was a huge success in raising money to help thousands of individuals affected by neuromuscular disease.  The money raised provides for clinical services, support groups, research grants, and the summer camp program.    

Besides being a long time acting board member of the Mandell JCC.  Bob is currently on the health and fitness committee in West Hartford, CT and chairs the teen committee.  In addition, Bob is a proud member of the West Hartford Chamber of Commerce.  Check out the West Hartford Chamber.

Robert A Roth, CLU®, ChFC®, AEP®
Wealth Management Advisor

The Roth Financial Group


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