Creating Aging-Friendly Communities

Together making our communities more aging-friendly

National experts doing ground-breaking work on aging and community development share proven strategies for helping communities become more aging-friendly.

Presenters include:

Andrew Alden
Associate AIA, Architectural Designer, Engberg Anderson Inc.

Mr. Andrew Lee Alden, Associate AIA, is an Architectural Designer with Engberg Anderson, leading the firm’s design for aging focus. Mr. Alden specializes in environments for elders, including housing, assisted living, long-term care, dementia units, and hospice.

Most recently, Mr. Alden has contributed his talents to a number of successful projects, including Alexian Village in Milwaukee, WI; Luther Manor in Wauwatosa, WI; The Oneida Resident Centered Care Community in Oneida, WI; and the Sharon S. Richardson Hospice in Sheboygan, WI.

Supporting a strong belief in the beneficial connection between research and practice, he has been a research associate with the Institute on Aging and Environment at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee for the past seven years. Mr. Alden has served as a guest lecturer and studio critic at UWM’s School of Architecture and Urban Planning and at the Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE). Mr. Alden is the immediate past president and current board member of the National Federation of the Society of the Advancement of Gerontological Environments (SAGE), a grass-roots organization that advocates improving the physical environment for older adults. He frequently presents at regional and national conferences.

Lara Birnback
Senior Public Engagement Project Director, Public Agenda

Ms. Lara Birnback develops and manages numerous public engagement initiatives for Public Agenda, a non-partisan citizen engagement and opinion research organization dedicated to bridging the gap between leaders and the public. At Public Agenda, Ms. Birnback develops new initiatives and manages existing projects, designs and implements trainings and other kinds of technical assistance, and conducts fieldwork, including qualitative research and strategic planning with institutions and community partners across the United States.

Prior to coming to Public Agenda, Ms. Birnback worked on civil society development in Central Europe and the Balkans. She received a BA in International Development from the University of California, Berkeley, and a Master's degree in International Affairs from Columbia University. In 1996, Ms. Birnback was a Fulbright scholar in Budapest, Hungary, where she studied the effects of changes in post-communist social policy on women and families.

Janice Blanchard
Director, Denver Office on Aging

Ms. Janice Blanchard is a gerontologist, with a rich diversity of educational, professional and life experience. Since 1998 Ms. Blanchard has served senior Coloradans as ombudsman in Weld County; Coordinator for Adam’s County Aging Network; president and Board Member of Denver Chapter of OWL, The Voice of Midlife and Older Women; and as a monthly columnist addressing senior issues in local senior publications. From 2004-2006, Ms. Blanchard served as member and executive board member of Denver Commission on Aging.

In addition to her current post as Director of the Office on Aging, Ms. Blanchard is an active member of the Advisory Committee on Aging for Denver Regional Council of Governments; Co-Chair of the State of Colorado Delegation for the 2005 White House Conference on Aging; and member of the State of Colorado Policy Academy on Civic Engagement and Workforce Issues. Ms. Blanchard also serves on the Board of a number of local and national innovative organizations that address the challenges of aging and capitalizes on the strengths of older adults.

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Kristin Bodiford
Principal, Community Strengths

Ms. Kristin Bodiford brings 18 years of strategic marketing and communications experience to her work with communities, offering skills and expertise in working with diverse groups of people and organizations to create a positive future. In her work with Community Strengths, Ms Bodiford supports communities as they work to solve complex issues and capture emerging opportunities. She is currently researching the implications of economic inequality on policy and planning and is doing work in sustainable justice, community capacity building, violence prevention and creating aging-friendly communities. She earned her MBA from the UC Davis Graduate School of Management.

Elise Bolda, Ph.D.
Associate Research Professor, Director, NPO Institute for Health Policy, Muskie School of Public Service, University of Southern Maine

Dr. Elise Bolda is the National Program Director for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Community Partnerships for Older Adults initiative hosted by the Muskie School of Public Service at the University of Southern Maine. While at Muskie, she has conducted applied policy analyses for Maine's Bureau of Medical Assistance and Maine's Bureau of Elder and Adult Services. She has also served as a principal investigator for the Maine Rural Health Research Center rural long-term care research projects. Professor Bolda teaches Health Care Planning & Marketing and Long Term Care Policy. She has more than 30 years of experience in long-term care development and evaluation.

Professor Bolda received her BA at the University of Vermont, and MSPH and PhD at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Bolda's research interests include residential care and assisted living services, integration of acute and long-term care services, development and evaluation of community-based long-term care services

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The Honorable Josefina G. Carbonell
Former Assistant Secretary for Aging, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

The Honorable Josefina Carbonell was appointed by President George W. Bush as the Assistant Secretary for Aging at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and confirmed by the Senate in August 2001. The President's appointment of Ms. Carbonell followed 30 years of aging community service in Florida. Ms. Carbonell led one of the largest Hispanic community based long-term care organizations in the nation that provides health, nutrition, transportation, adult-day and personal care services through community partnerships, working with volunteers and intergenerational programs. At the present time, Ms. Carbonell is the longest serving Assistant Secretary for Aging.

Some of the Administration on Aging's outstanding accomplishments under Assistant Secretary Ms. Carbonell's leadership are:

  1. Successful mobilization of the Aging Network in community education events and personalized assistance to Medicare beneficiaries on the new benefits under Medicare
  2. Broad-based efforts to modernize access to long-term care through Aging and Disability Resource Centers
  3. Community-based consumer use evidence-based chronic disease and disability prevention programs
  4. Improved long-term care partnerships among many organizations both public and private
  5. And most recently, the 16th reauthorization of the Older Americans Act that incorporates the principles of integrated, modernized and consumer-directed long-term care for older adults and adults with disabilities.

Brenda Krause Eheart, Ph.D
Generations of Hope

Generations of Hope is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation and a licensed foster-adoption agency, formed in 1993 to develop and sustain the intergenerational neighborhood Hope Meadows, and to promote permanency, community, and caring relationships for adoptive families of foster children while offering safety and meaningful purpose in the daily lives of older adults.


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Elinor Ginzler
Director for Livable Communities, Office of Social Impact, AARP

Ms. Elinor Ginzler is responsible for the development of multi-year strategic plans to achieve social impact goals for AARP in the areas of Mobility and Housing, and driving the execution of annual operational plans, using matrix management cross association working groups.

Since joining AARP in 1998, Ms. Ginzler has been a key leader in AARP independent living/long-term care efforts and has been instrumental in planning, designing, coordinating and overseeing programmatic work in these areas.

With over 20 years experience in service delivery systems to the elderly, she has an extensive work history in program management and development, as well as experience in working collaboratively with public, private non-profit and community-based organizations.

Ms. Ginzler is an expert on long-term care issues, including home and community-based services, caregiving, nursing home quality and other long-term care housing issues. She has served on several boards and task forces including the Eldercare Locator Advisory Committee, the Board of Directors for the National Citizens' Coalition for Nursing Home Reform, the Continuing Care Accreditation Commission and the Board of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. In addition, she is co-author with Hugh Delehanty of Caring for Your Parents –The Complete AARP Guide, published by Sterling Publishing.

Ms. Ginzler holds a BA from the University of Pennsylvania and completed her graduate studies at the University of Maryland.

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Judy Goggin
Vice President, Civic Ventures, Boston

Ms. Judy Goggin leads the development of the Civic Ventures Next Chapter Initiative. She has worked in the field of aging and lifelong learning for more than 25 years. Prior to joining Civic Ventures in 2001 Ms. Goggin was associated with Elderhostel for 18 years where she served as Vice President for U.S. Programs and was involved in the development of Elderhostel's Service Learning programs and the Elderhostel Institute Network, a membership organization of Lifelong Learning Institutes. She began her career in the field of continuing education where she was involved in the early development of external degrees and credit for prior learning at colleges in Oregon and Colorado.

Ms. Goggin speaks, conducts workshops for national organizations, and writes for publications in the areas of aging, higher education, civic engagement, and encore careers. She serves in an advisory capacity for several national organizations and initiatives including AARP, The American Society on Aging, The National Council on the Aging, The Transition Network and The American Libraries Council.

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Jennie Chin Hansen
President-Elect, AARP

Ms. Jennie Chin Hansen, R.N., M.S., F.A.A.N., of San Francisco, CA, is AARP President-Elect for the 2006-2008 biennium and will automatically succeed to AARP President in 2008. In addition, Ms. Hansen serves on the Board Audit and Finance Committee, the Governance Review Committee, and the AARP Services, Inc. Board. She previously chaired the AARP Foundation Board and was vice chair of the Board Membership Committee.

In 2005, Ms. Hansen transitioned after nearly 25 years as executive director of On Lok, Inc., a nonprofit family of organizations providing integrated and comprehensive primary and long-term care community based services in San Francisco. On Lok is the prototype for PACE (Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly), which was signed into federal legislation in 1997 making this Medicare/Medicaid program available to all 50 states. She currently is teaching nursing at San Francisco State University and chairs a nurse leadership grant focused on acute care hospitals and safety at UCSF's Center for the Health Professions.

Ms. Hansen serves in various leadership roles that include Commissioner of the Medicare Payment Advisory Committee (MedPAC), board member of the National Academy of Social Insurance, and the Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellows Program. She also serves on boards of the Effective Healthcare Stakeholders Group of AHRQ, Lumetra (California's Quality Improvement Organization) and the California Regional Health Information Organization (CalRHIO). She is past president of the American Society on Aging. In 2006, Ms. Hansen served as a national juror for the first-ever Purpose Prize sponsored by Civic Ventures.

Among Ms. Hansen's awards are the 2005 Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator's Achievement Award; the 2002 Gerontological Society of America's Maxwell Pollack Award for Productive Aging; the Women's Healthcare Executive Woman of the Year of Northern California in 2000; and the 1997 Women Who Could Be President Honoree from the League of Women Voters of San Francisco. In 2005, Ms. Hansen was inducted as a Fellow into the American Academy of Nursing.

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Ginger Harrell
Program Officer Colorado Trust

Ms. Ginger Harrell is a program officer at The Colorado Trust. She provides leadership and management in designing and implementing initiative-based grant making efforts, including the Healthy Aging Initiative, designed to enhance the capacity of organizations to increase and improve services for seniors. Prior to joining The Trust, Ms. Harrell served as manager of the Healthy Start Project, helping to reduce infant mortality, served as executive director of MELD for Young Moms and coordinated the Sistah Girls program designed to address the medical and psycho-social needs of African-American women.

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Nancy Henkin
Executive Director, Center for Intergenerational Learning, Temple University

In an age-segregated society which views the elderly and children as groups with separate needs, Ms. Nancy Henkin is restoring the vital connections among generations, re-building human connectedness and a weakened social contract of mutual care. Ms. Henkin founded the Center for Intergenerational Learning, promoting a new Communities for All Ages (CFAA) approach to community-building that has an explicit life span perspective, targets neighborhoods or geographic areas rather than specific populations, and focuses broadly on all age groups. Her goal is to improve the quality of life for entire communities by helping diverse age groups support each other and become political allies, opening avenues for civic engagement.

Ms. Henkin works with voluntary CFAA communities to assess their needs and resources, partnering with foundations and other donors to give these communities the financial resources to carry out their intentionally intergenerational plans. Ms. Henkin's pilot programs are underway in rural and urban communities in Arizona, New York and Maine.

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John Kinyon
Trainer, Center for Nonviolent Communication
Principal, Community Strengths ,

Mr. John Kinyon is a trainer of the Center for Nonviolent Communication (CNVC), a leading member of its global network and organization, and a co-founder of the BayNVC organization.

Mr. Kinyon facilitates communication training and conflict resolution with individuals, groups, and organizations in settings ranging from workshops, presentations, and practice groups to coaching in personal and professional contexts. He also has a long study of spiritual practice and principles of nonviolence.

Mr. Kinyon received an M.S. degree in clinical psychology from Penn State University.

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John Kretzmann, Ph.D.
Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) Institute, Northwestern University

Dr. John (Jody) Kretzmann is Co-Director of the Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) Institute, a research project of the School of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern University. ABCD Institute works with community building leaders across North America as well as five other continents to conduct research, produce materials and otherwise support community-based efforts to rediscover local capacities and to mobilize citizens' resources to solve problems. The Institute continues to build on the stories and methods about successful community building reported in the popular book, Building Communities from the Inside Out: A Path Toward Finding and Mobilizing a Community's Assets (1993, with John L. McKnight.)

A much-traveled speaker and trainer, Dr. Kretzmann brings more than thirty years of community experience and study to his current position. He was a founding faculty member of the Associated Colleges of the Midwest Urban Studies Program in 1969, and served as director of that institution for six years. He has been a community organizer in Chicago's West Side, and served as a consultant to a wide range of neighborhood organizing and development groups. In addition to the ACM Program, he has taught at Northwestern University, Valparaiso University and the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago.

Dr. Kretzmann has worked to develop community-oriented public policy at the national, state and local levels. In Chicago, he served as chair of the Neighborhood Planning Committee for Mayor Harold Washington, and was an active policy consultant through Washington's four and a half years in office. He serves on a wide range of civic, community, and foundation boards.

Dr. Kretzmann's educational background includes a B.A. from Princeton University (Magna Cum Laude); a M.A. in English Literature from the University of Virginia; and a Ph.D in Sociology and Urban Affairs from Northwestern University.

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Kali Lightfoot
Executive Director, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, University of Southern Maine

Ms. Kali Lightfoot is Executive Director of the National Resource Center for Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes and Coordinator for the Maine Senior College Network. She holds a B.A. from Western Michigan University and an M.S. from the University of Washington Originally a teacher at the high school and college levels, Ms. Lightfoot left the teaching profession in 1979 to work for Elderhostel. Over the years at Elderhostel she managed the New England Region, served as Associate National Program Director, then managed international homestay, service-learning and intergenerational programs. Along the way she also worked for the Experiment in International Living, was a Wilderness Ranger for the U.S. Forest Service, delivered singing balloongrams in a chicken suit, and was self-employed for a time.

In 2000 Ms. Lightfoot moved to Maine to become Director of the Senior College at University of Southern Maine (USM), taking a position funded by the Maine legislature to support the Senior College Initiative statewide. Shortly thereafter, USM's Senior College became the first Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, and most recently USM was chosen by the Osher Foundation to create and manage the National Resource Center which draws on all of Ms. Lightfoot's previous work/learning experience, and then some!

Ms. Lightfoot is a graduate of Leadership Maine, and Co-Chair of the Lifetime Education and Renewal Network of the American Society on Aging.

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Sandy Markwood
Chief Executive Officer, National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a)

Ms. Sandy Markwood has twenty-five years experience in the development and delivery of aging, health, human services, housing and transportation programs in counties and cities across the nation. Prior to coming to n4a in January 2002, Ms. Markwood served as the Deputy Director of County Services at the National Association of Counties where she took a lead role in research, training, conference planning, program development, technical assistance and grants management.

As CEO, Ms. Markwood is responsible for n4a's overall management. She sets strategic direction for the staff, oversees the implementation of all policy, grassroots advocacy, membership and program initiatives. She also leads n4a's fund-raising efforts and engages corporate sponsors to support critical initiatives, including an aging awards/best practices program and the planned creation of a Leadership Institute for Area Agency on Aging staff. Externally, Ms. Markwood forms strategic partnerships with federal agencies and organizations in aging, human service and health care arenas to enhance the role and recognition of Area Agencies on Aging and Title VI programs.

Ms. Markwood holds Bachelors and Masters degrees from the University of Virginia.

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Robert H. McNulty
Founder and President, Partners for Livable Communities

Mr. Robert H. McNulty is known primarily for persuading local officials to view public and private partnerships as a resource for revitalizing cities in the Americas. He has a distinguished background in design and planning, having been a Loeb Fellow in 1973-74 at the Harvard Graduate School of Design; lecturer, adjunct professor, and acting Director of the Graduate Program in Historic Preservation at Columbia University's School of Architecture. He formerly sat on the Alumni Council of Harvard's Graduate School of Design.

For the past 30 years, Mr. McNulty has led Partners to become the national leader on issues of livability and better communities. A network of over 1,000 organizations ranging from the World Wildlife Fund to the Urban Land Institute, Partners embodies the diversity and consensus-building needed in the recovery of the American city

Susan McWhinney-Morse
Beacon Hill Village

Beacon Hill Village is a non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing the lives of people aged 50 and over in Beacon Hill, Back Bay, Charles River Park and adjacent neighborhoods.


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Mia Oberlink
Senior Research Associate, AdvantAge, Center for Home Care Policy and Research (CHCPR)

Ms. Oberlink is currently managing the AdvantAge Initiative, a data-driven community development project that helps communities measure their elder-friendliness and develop strategies to sustain older residents' independence and allow them to age in place. To date, 26 communities around the U.S. have participated in the AdvantAge Initiative.

Ms. Oberlink is also directing the CHCPR portion of the Health Indicators in NORC Programs Initiative, a collaborative project with the United Hospital Fund. The Initiative will help Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities Supportive Services Programs (NORC-SSPs) identify health needs in their communities, develop health interventions targeted to identified needs, measure the impact of these interventions on NORC residents over time, and generate a body of evidence regarding the efficacy of NORC-SSP services to advance health aging in place.

Previously Ms. Oberlink was the Deputy Director of the Home Care Research Initiative (HCRI), a program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), and worked on one additional Center project funded by RWJF: Information Brokering for Long-Term Care, She has also researched and written reports on livable communities for the National Council on Disability and AARP.

Prior to joining the Center, Ms. Oberlink spent 13 years writing about biomedical and social issues in aging, first at the Department of Geriatrics and Adult Development at the Mount Sinai Medical Center and, more recently, at the International Longevity Center, where she was Director of Communications.

Ms. Oberlink received both an undergraduate and graduate degree in French Literature from New York University. She also earned a Master of Arts degree in Teaching English as a Second Language from New York University.

Edward jj Olson
President of E jj Olson & Associates

Mr. Edward jj Olson has been involved in health and human service programs for more than 30 years. As the deputy director responsible for planning and research of an inter-governmental planning agency, he was instrumental in designing many of the existing social support programs for children, youth, families and adults funded by local, county, and federal government moneys.

As a hospital vice president for a large medical center, Mr. Olson developed, implemented and was the principal investigator for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Hospital Initiatives in Long Term Care Programming which was located at the Geriatrics Institute of Sinai Samaritan Medical Center and was cosponsored by the University of Wisconsin Medical School-Milwaukee Clinical Campus.

He has consulted with local, state and federal officials, been a member of numerous national policy boards, served as chairperson of the Milwaukee County Commission on Aging, administered more than $4 million dollars of foundation funds for health and social support programs, and currently serves as a board member of numerous non-profit organizations.


Dene Peterson
ElderSpirit Community

ElderSpirit Community (ESC) is essentially a community of mutual support and late-life spirituality that has come to fruition in a mixed-income, co-housing neighborhood in Abingdon Virginia. Another community is being planned in Abingdon. New elder communities are learning from each other and the ElderSpirit Community at Trailview in eleven different places through the emerging ESC Community of Communities.


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Jon Pynoos, Ph.D.
UPS Foundation Professor of Gerontology,
Policy, Planning and Development Director, Division of Policy and Services Research

Dr. Jon Pynoos is the UPS Foundation Professor of Gerontology, Policy, Planning and Development at the Andrus Gerontology Center of the University of Southern California. He is also Director of the National Resource Center on Supportive Housing and Home Modification, and Co-Director of the Fall Prevention Center of Excellence which is funded by the Archstone Foundation.

Dr. Pynoos has spent his career researching, writing, and advising the government and private sector concerning how to improve housing and long term care policies and programs for the elderly. He has conducted a large number of applied research projects based on surveys and case studies of housing, aging in place and long-term care. He has written and edited six books on housing and the elderly including Linking Housing and Services for Older Adults: Obstacles, Options, and Opportunities; Housing the Aged: Design Directives and Policy Considerations; and Housing Frail Elders: International Policies, Perspectives and Prospects.

Dr. Pynoos was a delegate to the last three White House Conferences on Aging and is currently a member of the City of Los Angeles Task Force on Aging and the California Commission on Aging. He is also on the Board of the American Society on Aging and served as Vice President of the Gerontological Society of America. He is a founding member of the National Home Modification Action Coalition.

Dr. Pynoos has been awarded both Guggenheim and Fulbright Fellowships. Before moving to USC in 1979, Dr. Pynoos was Director of an Area Agency on Aging/Home Care Corporation in Massachusetts that provided a range of services to keep older persons out of institutional settings. He holds undergraduate, Master's and Ph.D. degrees from Harvard University where he graduated Magna cum Laude.

Victor G. Rodwin, Ph.D.
Professor of Health Policy and Management, New York University; Co-Director, World Cities Project, International Longevity Center-USA

Victor G. Rodwin, Professor of Health Policy and Management, teaches courses on community health and medical care, comparative analysis of health care systems and international perspectives on health care reform. Professor Rodwin was the recipient, in 2000, of a three-year Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy Investigator Award on Megacities and Health: New York, London, Paris and Tokyo. His research on this theme led to the establishment of the World Cities Project (WCP) -- a collaborative venture among the Wagner School, NYU, the Mailman School, Columbia University, and the International Longevity Center-USA, which examines the impact of population aging and longevity on the health care systems in New York, London, Paris, and Tokyo.

Professor Rodwin is the author of numerous articles and books, including The Health Planning Predicament: France, Quebec, England, and the United States (University of California Press, 1984); The End of an Illusion: The Future of Health Policy in Western Industrialized Nations (with J. de Kervasdoué and J. Kimberly, University of California Press, 1984); Public Hospitals in New York and Paris (with C. Brecher, D. Jolly, and R. Baxter), New York University Press, 1992); Japan's Universal and Affordable Health Care: Lessons for the U.S.? (Japan Society, 1994); Growing Older in Four World Cities: New York, London, Paris and Tokyo (edited with Michael K. Gusmano), Vanderbilt University Press 2006; and Universal Health Insurance in France: How Sustainable? Essays on the French Health Care System (Washington DC, Embassy of France, 2006). Recent journal articles have appeared in Health Affairs, New England Journal of Medicine, American Journal of Public Health, Journal of Urban Health, Health Economics Policy and Law.

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Sandra Rosenbloom, Ph.D.
Professor of Planning, University of Arizona

Dr. Sandra Rosenbloom is internationally known for her scholarship on the transportation and community development implications of societal trends, particularly suburbanization, the aging of society, the increasing labor force involvement of women with children, and the growth of groups with special needs. She is also an acknowledged expert on the role of the private sector in the provision of public services. Her research has been funded by U.S., Australian, New Zealand, and European agencies and organizations.

Dr. Rosenbloom served as Director of the Roy P. Drachman Institute for Land and Regional Development Studies, a research and public service unit of the University of Arizona, from 1990 - 2004. Dr. Rosenbloom has a Masters in Public Policy and a PhD in Political Science from UCLA. She has been at the University of Arizona since 1990; prior to that she held an endowed Chair as the David Bruton Centennial Professor of Urban Design and Planning at the University of Texas, Austin.

Andrew Scharlach, Ph.D.
UC Berkeley, Center for the Advanced Study of Aging Services

Dr. Andrew E. Scharlach is a Professor of Social Welfare at the University of California at Berkeley, where he holds the Eugene and Rose Kleiner Chair in Aging and directs the Gerontology specialization in the School of Social Welfare. He also serves as Director of the Center for the Advanced Study of Aging Services, which conducts research designed to inform development of innovative and effective services for older adults. In addition, Professor Scharlach serves as a gubernatorial appointee on the California Commission on Aging.

Professor Scharlach has published extensively on the needs of older adults and their families, particularly with regard to long-term care services, work and family responsibilities, bereavement, and gerontological social work education. In addition to more than 40 articles, he is the author of Elder Care and the Work Force: Blueprint for Action (with B. Lowe and E. Schneider; Lexington Books), Controversial Issues in Aging (with L. Kaye; Allyn & Bacon), and Families and Work: New Directions in the Twenty-First Century (with K. Fredriksen-Goldsen; Oxford University Press).

Professor Scharlach's primary line of research examines the physical and social contexts that are predictive of constructive outcomes for elderly persons. Professor Scharlach is examining the characteristics of “aging-friendly” communities, criteria for determining aging-friendliness, and evidence regarding health and social outcomes that can accrue from living in such environments.

Profesor Scharlach's other recent scholarly activities have included: a multi-year project to investigate the service needs of family caregivers and examine implementation of the National Family Caregiver Support Program in California; a critical examination of case management as a mechanism for consumer protection and quality assurance in long-term care insurance and long-term care integration; an analysis of current and future needs of California's elderly population which served as the basis for California's Statewide Strategic Plan on Aging; and, development and implementation of model training programs in gerontological social work.

Robyn I. Stone, Dr.P.H.
Executive Director, Institute for the Future of Aging Services Senior Vice President of Research, American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging United States

Dr. Robyn Stone, a noted researcher and internationally recognized authority on long-term care and aging policy, is the executive director of the Institute for the Future of Aging Services (IFAS) at the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging in Washington, DC. Since she started IFAS six years ago, she has developed and directed a number of national programs including the Center for Medicare Education, the Better Jobs Better Care National Program (funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Atlantic Philanthropies), and the National Initiative to Link Affordable Senior Housing with Health and Supportive Services (funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the McGregor Foundation).

Dr. Stone has held senior research and policy positions in both the U.S. government and the private sector. She was a political appointee in the Clinton Administration, serving in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Disability, Aging and Long-term Care Policy from 1993 through 1996 and as Assistant Secretary for Aging in 1997. She has been a senior researcher at the National Center for Health Services Research (currently the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality), Project Hope's Center for Health Affairs, and Georgetown University. Dr. Stone has been on the staff of two important national task forces, the 1989 Bipartisan Commission on Comprehensive Health Care (the Pepper Commission) and the 1993 Clinton Administration Task Force on Health Care Reform.

Dr. Stone is a distinguished speaker and has been published widely in the areas of long-term care policy and quality, chronic care for the disabled, workforce development and family caregiving. She serves on numerous provider and non-profit boards that focus on aging issues. Her doctorate in public health is from the University of California, Berkeley.

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Bill Thomas, M.D.
Professor, Erickson School, University of Maryland
Founder, Eden Alternative and Green House Project

Dr. Bill Thomas is an international authority on geriatric medicine and eldercare. He is a professor at the Erickson School and has been heavily involved in the culture change movement to promote elderhood as an honorable and valuable position in our society. He is the founder of the Eden Alternative, a philosophy and program that de-institutionalized nursing homes world-wide over the past 20 years. Most recently he developed the Green House, a radically new approach to long term care where nursing homes are torn down and replaced with small, home-like environments where people can live a full and interactive life. In 2005, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation announced a five-year ten million dollar grant to support the launch of Green House projects in all fifty states.

Dr. Thomas graduated from Harvard Medical School in 1986, and was selected by the Mead Johnson Foundation as one of the top Family Medicine residents in the country during his three-year residency at the University of Rochester . He earned board certification in Family Medicine in 1992 and added a certificate in Geriatrics in 1994. Dr. Thomas also maintains a part-time appointment as Assistant Clinical Professor in Family Medicine for Upstate Medical Center .

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Fernando Torres-Gil, Ph.D.
Acting Dean, UCLA School of Public Affairs

Professor Torres-Gil is an expert in the fields of health and long-term care, the politics of aging, social policy, ethnicity and disability. He is the author of six books and more than 80 articles and book chapters, including The New Aging: Politics and Change in America (1992), and Lessons From Three Nations, Volumes I and II (2007). In recognition of his many academic accomplishments, he was elected a Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America in 1985 and the National Academy of Public Administration in 1995. He also served as President of the American Society on Aging from 1989 to 1992 and is a member of the National Academy of Social Insurance.

His academic accomplishments parallel his extensive government and public policy experience, including being appointed by President Clinton as the first Assistant Secretary for Aging in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). As the Administration's chief advocate on aging, Torres-Gil played a key role in promoting the importance of the issues of aging, long-term care, and disability, in consolidating federal programs for the elderly and in helping baby boomers redefine retirement in a post-pension era. He also worked with HHS Secretary Donna Shalala in overseeing aging policy throughout the federal government, managing the Administration on Aging and organizing the 1995 White House Conference on Aging; in addition to serving as a member of the President's Welfare Reform Working Group.

He has also served as Staff Director of the House of Representatives Select Committee on Aging (1985-1987) – where he administered the legislative and oversight activities of the largest committee in the U.S. Congress; Special Assistant to Secretary of Health and Human Services Patricia Roberts Harris (1979-1980); and White House Fellow and Special Assistant to Joseph Califano, Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare (1978-1979). In 1978, President Carter appointed him to the Federal Council on Aging.

Dr. Torres-Gil was born and raised in Salinas, California, the son of migrant farm workers. He earned his A.A. in Political Science at Hartnell Community College (1968), a B.A. with honors in Political Science from San Jose State University (1970), and an M.S.W. (1972) and Ph.D. (1976) in Social Policy, Planning and Research from the Heller Graduate School in Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University.

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Paul Zykofsky
Director, Land Use and Transportation Programs, Local Government Commission

Mr. Paul Zykofsky manages the Local Government Commission's land use and transportation programs and has been Director of the Commission's Center for Livable Communities since 1995. He is co-author of documents on transit-oriented development and on street design and has edited documents on infill development, traffic calming, smart growth zoning codes, compact development, revitalizing older suburbs and smart economic development.

During the past seven years, Mr. Zykofsky has directed a first-of-its-kind project - in collaboration with the California Department of Health Services - to promote physical activity by improving the design of the pedestrian environment. He currently directs the LGC's Leadership for Healthy Communities project, part of a national initiative supported by The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Mr. Zykofsky is a frequent presenter at local, regional and national conferences on a wide range of topics related to land use, transportation and community design. He conducts workshops and trainings on walkable communities, safe routes to school and pedestrian safety. Mr. Zykofsky was born and raised in Mexico City and is fluent in Spanish.