Aging Baby Boomers: Will they ever stop working?

In the what might appear to be "it’s-never-too-late" category, new legislation was just introduced into the Iowa House that if passed would create the "Baby Boomer Generation Commission."

Like many other states (and countries), Iowa’s population is aging.  About 15 percent of Iowa’s 2.9 million residents are 65 or older, according to census data. By 2030, more than 22 percent of the state’s population will be 65 or older, the Iowa Department of Elder Affairs estimates.

It wasn’t but just a few years ago that enticing aging baby boomers with early retirements was the rage.  But lo and behold organizations found themselves unprepared to welcome a younger workforce and capture the knowledge and experiences of an entire generation. 

As a result, courting baby boomers has become a hot new recruitment strategy and the Iowa House of Representatives feels it might be a way to solve their state’s projected skilled worker crunch.

The first Boomers – born between 1946 and 1964 – are eligible for Social Security this year, what has been traditionally the incentive to kick the job habit.  But many boomers remain physically active and are among the most educated and skilled workers in the United States.

So why not lure them from other states to extend their career or begin a second one?  Iowa is not alone in thinking about retaining baby boomers in the workforce and how to recruit replacements.  Just a few weeks ago, I testified in front of the PA House Committee on Aging and Older Adult Services along with Sen. Harris Wofford, spokesperson for  To download copies of my presentation, go to Impact of Aging Baby Boomers Testimony


Ira S Wolfe