As county coordinator, Blum is contacted at least 100 times per year, and she either helps callers herself or refers them to others. The most puzzling cases are given to OSHIIP employees.
This year, a pair of the people she has helped come from her own family: Blum has three daughters, including twins who turn 65 in October. They had the same questions as everyone else, said Blum, who lives in Kettering with her husband, Stanley.
Family or not, Blum’s position requires her to explain coverage and recommendations in the simplest terms. While the volunteers don’t make coverage choices for the callers, the goal is to help them make good choices for themselves.
Debbie Marchi, a Vandalia resident who was also a SHIIP volunteer, nominated Blum as a Dayton Daily News Community Gem. Blum is not only kind and knowledgeable, but also intuitive.
“Connie knows how to look at a person, understand their situation, and realize how much information they can swallow in one sitting,” Marchi said.