OGA's 2020 Virtual Annual Conference

"Older Adults and Emergencies: Lessons Learned and Looking Forward"

Pandemics, natural disasters such as earthquakes, fires, floods, extreme heat events, and other emergencies are difficult for everyone involved. Many older adults face additional challenges at these times due to, for example, physical limitations, chronic health conditions, limited financial means, isolation, cognitive impairment, or a lifetime of racial injustice. Conversely, many older adults play a large part in overcoming the obstacles associated with emergencies through financial or in-kind donations, caring for family members, and supporting recovery efforts. In fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) points out that, “Including older persons in planning for and responding in emergencies thus benefits the whole community.” (WHO, 2008: Older persons in emergencies: An active ageing perspective. Download the PDF at bit.ly/Aging-Emergencies.)

This year, as we encountering several of these disasters - the COVID-19 pandemic, unprecedented wildfires and toxic smoke - the Oregon Gerontological Association (OGA) is offering a series of webinars to replace our in-person 2020 annual conference. Our theme is “Older Adults and Emergencies: Lessons Learned and Looking Forward.” The series will focus on pandemics, natural disasters and other emergencies, and how we can best plan for, support and engage older adults when catastrophe hits. Foregrounding the sessions will be issues related to diversity and equity. Join us for a wide variety of thought-provoking and interactive sessions designed for aging services providers, long-term care facility staff, policymakers, advocates, first responders, caregivers, businesses focused on older adults, researchers and educators.

Five professionally produced virtual sessions will be held on Friday mornings in October from 9:30 am-12:00 pm. Each session will feature several speakers and include two hours of content plus extra time for a 15-minute break, introductions, and sponsor acknowledgements/presentations.

Program (for session details, please click on the dates)

October 2:
Disasters, Older Adults, and Health Disparities

Session Facilitators: Sara Kofman & Walt Dawson

Part 1: Keynote - A Health Policy Hurricane: Promoting Healthy Aging in a Changing Climate

  • Sue Anne Bell, Assistant Professor, Department of Systems, Populations and Leadership, University of Michigan School of Nursing

Part 2: Panel - Perspectives from Oregon

  • Lori Stanton, Regional Manager, Alzheimer's Association Oregon Chapter
  • Alexis Alberti, Division Director, Department of County Human Services, Multnomah County, Oregon 
  • Ruby Haughton-Pitts, State Director, AARP Oregon

October 9:
Using the Age-Friendly Framework for Improving Emergency Preparedness and Response

Session Facilitator: Margaret Neal


  • Bandana Shrestha, Engagement Director, AARP Oregon
  • Alan DeLaTorre, Age-Friendly Program Manager, Bureau of Planning and Sustainability, City of Portland, Oregon
  • Marilyn Daily, Director, Center 50+, Salem, Oregon
  • Chuck Bennett, Mayor of Salem, Oregon

October 16:
Lessons from the Field: Natural Disasters and Older Adults

Session Facilitator: Joyce De Monnin

Part 1: Panel - The Impact of Fires, Earthquakes, and Tsunamis on Older Adults, and the Role of Media Coverage in Disasters

  • Jennifer Masotja, Emergency Manager, Multnomah County, Oregon 
  • Bob Wise, Vice President/General Manager, KOBI TV, Medford, Oregon
  • Patricia Johnson, Emergency Volunteer Corps of Nehalem Bay, Oregon

Part 2: A Diamond in the Rough: A Mapping Tool to Leverage Data for Equitable Emergency Response

  • Jennifer Masotja, Emergency Manager, Multnomah County, Oregon

October 23:
Oregon’s Response to COVID-19 and Older Adults in Licensed Settings

Session Facilitator: Ann McQueen


  • Jack Honey, Manager, Safety, Oversight & Quality, Aging and People with Disabilities (APD), Oregon Department of Human Services
  • Kimberly Fuson, Chief Executive Officer, Cedar Sinai Park, Portland, Oregon
  • Fred Steele, Director, Office of the Long-Term Care Ombudsman

October 30:
Loss and Grief in Times of Disasters – Existential and Emotional Aspects of Being Mortal

Session Facilitator: Jennifer Sasser


  • Elizabeth Johnson, Executive Director, The Peaceful Presence Project, Bend, Oregon
  • Kera Magarill, Older Adult Behavioral Health Specialist, Washington County, Oregon
  • Deborah Threadgill, Threadgill’s Memorial Services, Beaverton, Oregon

Continuing Education Credit

This event has been approved for continuing education credit:

  • 10 CME credits (AMA PRE Category 1) total, 2 per session*
  • 10 AFH training credits per session, 2 per session

*Accreditation Statement: This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and Policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of St. Charles Health System and Oregon Gerontological Association (OGA). St. Charles Health System is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians. St. Charles Health System designates this live activity for a maximum of 2 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.



  • $25 per session
  • $100 for all 5 sessions

OGA Members (Professional/ Organizational):

  • $15 per session
  • $60 for all 5 sessions, including a recording of all sessions

OGA Members (Student/ Senior) & Registrants with Limited Financial Means:

  • $10 per session
  • $40 for all 5 sessions, including a recording of all sessions (members only)

Becoming a member will pay off immediately - please visit our membership page for current member rates and do the math!

If you cannot afford attending at all, please email us to learn about scholarship opportunities.


Please register through our online form. If you are registering more than one person, please contact us at [email protected]


If you are interested in becoming a sponsor for this conference, please visit the 2020 sponsorship information page!


2020 Conference Series Sponsors:


2020 Conference Session Sponsors:



2020 Supporting Sponsors:

  • Bridge Meadows
  • Center for Age Friendly Excellence (CAFE)
  • Earthtones Northwest
  • Governor's Commission on Senior Living
  • Multnomah County Aging, Disability and Veterans Services
  • New York Life of Greater Oregon
  • Oregon Care Partners
  • Oregon Health Care Association
  • Portland Community College: Gerontology Program
  • Portland State University: Institute on Aging
  • Raejean Sly, Coldwell Banker-Bain
  • Terwilliger Plaza
  • Washington State University, Vancouver: Granger Cobb Institute for Senior Living