PERSONAL: Female; married; children: three. Education: Earned Master's degree.
ADDRESSES: Home—Cincinnati, OH. Agent—c/o Author Mail, Rodale Press, 733 3rd Ave., 15th Floor, New York, NY 10017-3204.
CAREER: Teacher, businessperson, and author. Has taught extensively at the college and high-school levels. Retirement Living from A to Z, Cincinnati, OH, co-owner.
(With Cathy Fitzgerald) The New Retirement: TheUltimate Guide to the Rest of Your Life, Rodale (Emmaus, PA), 2004.
SIDELIGHTS: Jan Cullinane is a partner with Cathy Fitzgerald in the company Retirement Living from A to Z. The two conduct retirements seminars throughout the country and have used their experience as retirement consultants to write The New Retirement: The Ultimate Guide to the Rest of Your Life. In the book, the authors ask and answer many questions on the minds of people nearing retirement age. In the process, they discuss everything from concrete issues, such as when is the right time to retire, to more philosophical or psychological issues, such as what makes a retirement "successful."
Other crucial topics discussed in the book include the best places for retirement, including report cards on locations both within and outside the United States; reprogramming the retiree's time, including leisure and volunteer activities; and working after retirement, including tax issues. The authors also provide real-life case studies that reveal the stories of people who have retired or are approaching retirement with an emphasis on the choices they have made and why. The stories include a look at people who have started businesses, moved to new areas, or traveled to other countries. The book's appendices help the reader begin some hands-on planning for retirement through a variety of checklists, questionnaires, interactive surveys, and worksheets. For example, some help the reader make directives for such things as a living will, organ donation, and health care. A list of recommended books is also included. The authors also provide interesting tidbits of information on aging, including the first person ever to receive Social Security benefits and the oldest employee on record in the United States, who was 103 at the time and still overseeing zipper production in a factory.
Throughout the book Cullinane and Fitzgerald keep in mind that each retiree is different. For example, in their chapter focusing on how much money the retiree will need, the authors note, "The real answer to 'How much do you need?' is that you can't rely on anyone's rule of thumb—you need to make your own judgments after considering your own retirement plans." This chapter also includes discussions of the need to reexamine 401(k) plans, reapportion expenses and expenditures, examine the need or ability to keep owning a home, reassess discretionary expenses, plan for inflation, anticipate health insurance costs, and consider long-term care insurance.
A Publishers Weekly contributor called the book "a comprehensive guide to navigating this complex maze" of choices a retiree must make. "Cullinane and Fitzgerald have done an exceptional job of organizing researches material into a [leisurely paced] read," commented J. A. Kaszuba Locke on the Bookloons Web site. Writing in the Library Journal, Carol J. Elsen complimented the authors for their ability to "neatly lay out key issues to consider" and thought that the "strength of the guide lies in its helpful ratings of the best places to retire." In a review for Booklist, Brad Hooper noted, "This handy resource fairly brims with plain good sense about the hugely important decisions to be made on retirement, a prospect many baby boomers are now facing."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Cullinane, Jan, and Cathy Fitzgerald, The New Retirement: The Ultimate Guide to the Rest of Your Life, Rodale (Emmaus, PA), 2004.
Booklist, July, 2004, Stephanie Zvirin, review of TheNew Retirement: The Ultimate Guide to the Rest of Your Life, p. 1806; October 15, 2004, Brad Hooper, review of The New Retirement, p. 387.
Library Journal, August, 2004, Carol J. Elsen, review of The New Retirement, p. 91.
Publishers Weekly, May 17, 2004, review of The NewRetirement, p. 45.
Bookloons.com,http://www.bookloons.com/ (November 4, 2004), J. A. Kaszuba Locke, review of The New Retirement.
MyShelf.com,http://www.myshelf.com/ (November 4, 2004), review of The New Retirement.*