AARP stands for American Association of Retired Persons. The organization was founded in 1957 and actually evolved from the National Retired Teachers Association (NRTA), which was established in 1947 by Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus.
The NRTA, which would later become AARP, began as a means for retired school teachers to obtain health insurance. It would later provide benefits to all older Americans and retirees, branching out to provide many other benefits, including a mail-order pharmacy program that offered discount medications. As of May 2014, AARP offers its services to any American over the age of 50, with benefits ranging from dental insurance to Medicare supplement plans.