Isaiah Woods: Western Clothes, Dance Classes and Helping Seniors


Produced by Sylvia Springer / SpringCross Media

“I love the mix in the neighborhood. I love the diversity in the neighborhood, to say nothing of the amenities. I think Lincoln Square is the coolest area that you can possibly find in a neighborhood, bar none,” says Isaiah Woods, the subject of our third neighbor profile.

Isaiah, 68, works at CJE SeniorLife as a resource associate, where he helps seniors sort through Medicaid, Medicare and other social service programs — a research process he learned all too well when he turned 65 and had to make healthcare choices.

“I was inundated with information from private health providers,” he said, adding that his background in labor relations made the research somewhat easier. He then decided that if he could help other seniors make such important decisions, he would.

He now describes his work at CJE SeniorLife as “the most rewarding work I have ever done in all of my life.

A self-professed cowboy, Isaiah loves Western clothes (he owns 13 pairs of boots plus numerous hats) and the history of black Western culture. He also takes dance classes — and doesn’t worry about how he looks on the dance floor.

“Do something that excites you,” said Isaiah. “Do something that’s fun.”

Learn more about Isaiah’s memories of growing up on the south side of Chicago and his perspective on becoming the best person he can possibly be.

View more Forward Chicago Profiles >


Thanks to our community members for sharing their stories! Want to be interviewed, or know someone who would? Contact us.



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