OPENING REMARKS

CYNTHIA D. BANKS, DIRECTOR – WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT, AGING AND COMMUNITY SERVICES

Cynthia D. Banks was appointed Director of Los Angeles County Workforce Development, Aging and Community Services (WDACS) in 2006. She oversees a multitude of safety‐net programs for L.A. County’s residents, including: Adult Protective Services, the local Area Agency on Aging, Human Relations programs and Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act programs. Her department provides support for the Commission for Older Adults, Workforce Development Board, Native American Indian Commission and the Human Relations Commission. In May 2016, she joined partners that included the City of L.A., USC, UCLA, AARP and the Milken Institute to launch Purposeful Aging Los Angeles, a landmark, age-friendly initiative that that seeks to improve the lives of older adults and Angelinos of all ages. Currently, Ms. Banks is active in California’s Association of Area Agencies on Aging (C4A) and has served as its president. She is a Board member of both the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (N4A) and the American Society on Aging (ASA). She also serves on the Community Action Board of the Los Angeles Community Academic Partnership for Research in Aging (L.A. CAPRA) housed at the UCLA School of Medicine’s Division of Geriatrics, and the Community Advisory Board of the USC Edward R. Roybal Institute on Aging. Ms. Banks is a founding member of the steering committee for the Los Angeles Alliance for Community Health and Aging (LAACHA), which endeavors to provide evidence-based programming to older adults in Los Angeles County. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Behavioral Science from California State University, Dominguez Hills.

LAURA TREJO, GENERAL MANAGER – LOS ANGELES DEPARTMENT OF AGING

Laura Trejo was the first Latina appointed to level of General Manager for the City of Los Angeles. She is responsible for the overall administration of the Los Angeles Department of Aging serving one of the largest concentrations of older persons in the U.S.; serves as technical and policy advisor to the Mayor and City Council; and represents the City of Los Angeles before the public, community and private groups on matters affecting senior citizen affairs. Among her other activities, Ms. Trejo also serves as Founding Co-Director/Investigator of the Los Angeles Community Academic Partnership for Research in Aging (LA CAPRA), a partnership between UCLA and the City of Los Angeles Department of Aging; Interim Director of the Los Angeles Foundation on Aging; and Executive Producer of Aging Well in L.A. an Emmy nominated magazine style public television program. In more than 30 years of service to older adults and their family caregivers, Ms. Trejo has consulted and trained extensively throughout the United States, has worked with individual countries and international organizations on the development of programs for the elderly. She serves on local, state and national boards and committees. Ms. Trejo’s work and commitment to excellence have earned recognition, including the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Community Health Leadership Award, considered the nation’s highest honor in community health; the American Society on Aging’s awards for Excellence in Training and Education and for Leadership in Mental Health; the California Council of Gerontology and Geriatrics’ Life Time Achievement Award and the Los Angeles Aging Advocacy Coalition’s Champion Award. Ms. Trejo was named by Los Angeles Magazine among the “50 Most Influential Women” and the United States Library of Congress has recognized Ms. Trejo’s accomplishments as a force for social change. Ms. Trejo is a gerontologist with a Master of Science in Gerontology, Master of Public Administration and Graduate Certificate in Long Term Care Administration all from the University of Southern California. Her work has been presented at more than 300 national and international professional/scientific meetings, published in professional journals, book chapters, and major reports.

OPENING KEYNOTE SPEAKER

JONATHAN E. FIELDING, RETIRED DIRECTOR – LOS ANGELES COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH

Jonathan E. Fielding, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A. has served over 40 years in public health leadership positions. He served for 16 years as Public Health Director and Health Officer of Los Angeles County. Formerly he was Commissioner of Public Health for Massachusetts. Since 1979 Dr. Fielding has been a UCLA professor in the Schools of Public Health and Medicine. He is a Presidential appointee to the national Prevention Advisory Committee, chaired the HHS Secretary’s expert advisory group on the 2020 Healthy People Project, and co-chairs the advisory committee for the 2030 Project, chairs the U.S. Community Preventive Services Task Force and is Editor of the Annual Review of Public Health. Current research interests are modeling the health effects and economic effects of policies and programs in other sectors, such as transportation, education and housing. He received his M.D., Masters in Public Health and Masters in History of Science from Harvard University and an MBA from Wharton School of Business. He has published over 300 original articles, commentaries, editorials and book chapters and has been honored with many national and other awards for public health achievements, including honorary doctorates and the UCLA medal, the highest award given by that University, and the Fries Prize.

GENERAL SESSION

JACKIE LACEY, DISTRICT ATTORNEY – LOS ANGELES COUNTY

District Attorney Jackie Lacey has spent most of her professional life as a prosecutor, manager and executive in the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. On December 3, 2012, she was sworn in as the county’s 42nd District Attorney, becoming the first woman and first African-American to serve as Los Angeles County District Attorney since the office was established in 1850. District Attorney Lacey was re-elected in 2016, becoming the first person in 60 years to run unopposed for the seat. Her top priority is keeping the streets of Los Angeles County safe from violent and dangerous criminals. She is committed to safeguarding our children from human sex trafficking, our seniors from financial elder abuse and our communities from environmental crimes that threaten our health and our livelihood. District Attorney Lacey leads a broad-based coalition to improve how the criminal justice system interacts with individuals experiencing mental illness. A Los Angeles native and graduate of the University of Southern California Law School, she leads a staff of approximately 1,000 lawyers, 300 investigators and 800 support staff employees.

BELLE CHEN, DEPUTY IN CHARGE – LOS ANGELES COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE

Belle Chen has been the Deputy in Charge of the Elder Abuse Section in the White Collar Crime Division of the LA County District Attorney’s office since January 2013. She has been with the office for 19-1/2 years. Ms. Chen received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin and her Juris Doctorate from Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California at Berkeley.

DAWNNESHA SMITH, CHIEF OF THE CENTER FOR FINANCIAL EMPOWERMENT – LOS ANGELES COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AND BUSINESS AFFAIRS

Dawnnesha Smith serves as the Chief of the Center for Financial Empowerment and Public Affairs at the Los Angeles County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs (DCBA). Ms. Smith oversees all of the department’s outreach efforts, website content and collateral materials to further the department’s mission of promoting consumer education and fraud prevention awareness. She also serves and has oversight for the department’s Center for Financial Empowerment where she leads initiatives to improve the financial capability of low-moderate income County residents. She is an alumni of the University of California, Los Angeles with a degree in Sociology and recently received her Master of Public Administration from the University of Southern California.

WORKSHOP PRESENTERS

JUAN CARLOS MORAN, FELLOW – BET TZEDEK

KNOW YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS: PROTECT YOURSELF FROM ELDER ABUSE AND FINANCIAL EXPLOITATION

Juan Carlos Moran is an Elder Justice AmeriCorps Fellow and member of Bet Tzedek’s Real Estate and Consumer Fraud Team, focusing on financial elder abuse. He received his Juris Doctor degree from Southwestern Law School and Business Law Certificate from USC Gould School of Law. He is a member of the California bar. During law school, Mr. Moran volunteered with Bet Tzedek’s Senior Center Outreach Team and Small Claims Clinic. Prior to joining Bet Tzedek, Mr. Moran served as a staff attorney at A New Way of Life Re-entry Project, representing clients seeking expungements and Proposition 47 reclassifications of felony convictions.

STEPHANIE KOGUCHI, FELLOW – BET TZEDEK

KNOW YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS: PROTECT YOURSELF FROM ELDER ABUSE AND FINANCIAL EXPLOITATION

Stephanie Koguchi is an Elder Justice AmeriCorps Fellow. She is a 2016 graduate of Southwestern Law School and currently works with Bet Tzedek Legal Service’s Caregiver Team. She assists older adults with elder abuse restraining orders, conservatorships, and powers of attorney. During law school, Ms. Koguchi volunteered with Bet Tzedek’s Caregiver Team and Small Claims Clinic. Prior to attending law school, she worked as a special education teacher and paralegal.

CYNTHIA EAR, HUMAN SERVICES ADMINISTRATOR – WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT, AGING AND COMMUNITY SERVICES

AGING GRACEFULLY IN LOS ANGELES

Cynthia Ear is a Human Services Administrator at the Los Angeles County Workforce Development, Aging and Community Services Area Agency on Aging. She currently works with various community-based agencies to provide crucial, life-enhancing programs and services for older adults throughout Los Angeles County. Ms. Ear’s professional and personal experiences illustrate a strong proclivity towards civic engagement and public service. Thus, she began applying her interests in public administration and policy to an older adult population, with the hopes of fostering an age-friendly focus across all sectors.

DAVID KOCHEN, HUMAN SERVICES ADMINISTRATOR – WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT, AGING AND COMMUNITY SERVICES

AGING GRACEFULLY IN LOS ANGELES

David Kochen has been employed with Los Angeles County for nearly 27 years. For the past 15 years, Mr. Kochen has worked as an Administrator with the Los Angeles County Adult Protective Services (APS) Program and Planning Division of Workforce Development, Aging and Community Services. In this capacity, Mr. Kochen has developed policies and procedures utilized by the department’s Social Workers in their interventions with seniors and dependent adults who are victimized by abuse and neglect. Mr. Kochen has made numerous presentations to delegations from other states and countries, conducted community outreach events, and has been interviewed for radio and television programs. These appearances have served the purpose of educating the public about elder and dependent adult abuse, as well as the services provided by APS. Mr. Kochen has a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Princeton University, as well as a Master’s of Science degree in Public Administration from California State University, Los Angeles.

SUSAN GALEAS, PRESIDENT AND CEO – ALZHEIMER’S GREATER LOS ANGELES

FAMILY CAREGIVER'S SPEAK UP!

Since May, 2011, Susan has worked with the organization’s Board of Directors and 55 dedicated staff to increase awareness of Alzheimer’s as an epidemic; expand service delivery across Greater Los Angeles and the Inland Empire; increase funding opportunities throughout the region – helping increase support for programs, services, advocacy, and disease research. Her professional experience includes 20+ years of nonprofit leadership along with work in the fields of marketing, public relations, and both psychiatric and medical social work. She holds a BA from Loyola University (New Orleans, LA), a Master of Social Work (MSW) from Tulane University School of Social Work, and a Master of Public Health (MPH) from Tulane University School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine (New Orleans, LA).

BRANDI ORTON, DIRECTOR OF GOVERNMENT RELATIONS & ADVOCACY – ST. BARNABAS

BECOMING AN ADVOCATE

Brandi Orton holds a Master of Science degree in Gerontology and serves as the Director of Government Relations & Advocacy for St. Barnabas Senior Services of Los Angeles. Ms. Orton provides government relations for the non-profit and manages their advocacy arm, the Los Angeles Aging Advocacy Coalition (LAAAC). She assists in establishing and maintaining a positive productive relationship with elected officials, public officials, advocacy groups and senior services organizations. She coordinates educational visits with legislative representatives, advocacy strategies, holds press conferences and media events, organizes senior advocacy campaigns, and manages a team of senior advocacy volunteers known as the AGEnts4Change. In addition, Ms. Orton sits on the Business Development and Leadership teams at St. Barnabas and brings understanding of systems, infrastructure, strategic alliances and long-term objectives to the organization. Ms. Orton brings to this position nearly 10 years of experience in the field of Aging, particularly in the nonprofit sector. She previously served as Director of Real Connections, a program of Community Senior Services in Claremont, CA. In this position, she has successfully developed and launched the REAL Connections program which is modeled after the Beacon Hill Village concept. In addition, she has significant experience working with older adults in other organizations, including St. Jude Medical Center, in Fullerton CA, as a Care Navigator and at the Alzheimer’s Association as Development Assistant and Program & Services Assistant. She is the creator, writer and director of ‘Making the Moments Count’, a 30 minute educational film on Alzheimer’s disease, which the Alzheimer’s Association, Orange County, has implemented in their core educational programming. Brandi is a leader in the field of aging and shares her knowledge through public speaking engagements, sitting on panels and committees, and mentoring incoming Gerontologists.

DENNY CHEN, STAFF ATTORNEY – JUSTICE IN AGING

BECOMING AN ADVOCATE

Denny Chen joined Justice in Aging’s Health Care team in February 2014 and is based in Los Angeles, California, where he works on issues facing dual eligible in Los Angeles and throughout California. Two major areas of focus include balance billing and health care delivery reform. He previously served as a rotating law clerk for the US District Court in Los Angeles and participated in the Fulbright English Teaching Program as a fellow in Macau, China. Mr. Chen is a member of the California bar and is a graduate of the University of California, Irvine School of Law. He received his BA from the University of Michigan.

TANYA WITT, RESIDENTIAL SERVICES MANAGER – LOS ANGELES LGBT CENTER

BECOMING AN ADVOCATE

Tanya Witt is an educational speaker and cultural competency trainer specializing in LGBT issues in older adults. She is employed at the largest low income LGBT elderly housing facility in the world – Triangle Square in the heart of Hollywood. Partnering with organizations such as CVS and The 5 Wishes; Ms. Witt creates customized programming, supportive services, and end of life planning for the residents there. Most recently she was asked to present a workshop on LGBT senior programming at the American Society on Aging Conference in Chicago, Illinois. She is a Change Agent on the National LGBTQ Task Force, a Commissioner with the Los Angeles County Commission for Older Adults, and a Los Angeles Advocacy Member; advocating for and working with homeless older adults. Tanya is studying Gerontology at the University of Southern California. She directs the One Voice Senior Chorale, works as a volunteer Emergency Response Team member in Long Beach, California, and supports several nonprofit and community-based organizations by volunteering or sitting on their Board of Directors.

LILLY ORTIZ, LA METRO COMMUNITY RELATIONS OFFICER

BECOMING AN ADVOCATE

Lilly Ortiz is a Community Relations Officer at the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. She has managed Metro’s senior travel training program, On the Move Riders Club since July 2012. Previously, Lilly worked as an Orientation & Mobility Specialist at Blindness Support Services Inc. in Riverside, CA. She graduated with a degree in Early Childhood Education and Special Education from California State University, Los Angeles.

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