Real Stories

JoeAnne Peterson

I am from Kent City, Michigan and I taught for 35 years in Grand Rapids Public Schools. I was born to be a teacher. I loved what I did with my entire heart, my soul and my mind. My students always filled me with such amazement and surprise. My first day of teaching was thrilling, and my last day of teaching was every bit as thrilling. I am so proud that I was a teacher.

My pension means that I have independence; I don’t have to rely on my family or friends to be able to do the things that I can do. Because I have a pension, I have the security so that I can be involved in the world.  I can pay attention to the things that are happening around me. In my retirement I can advocate for education and retired people.

When you don’t have a pension, people my age are reduced to survival.