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Conference Session 1: Home Sweet Home: Meanings and Options Across the Life Course
Friday, October 06, 2023, 9:30 AM - 12:00 PM PDT
Category: Conferences

Home Sweet Home: Meanings and Options Across the Life Course  

Exploring the Experience of Home


  • Ann McQueen, PhD (OGA Board Member and Incoming President) 


This will be a brief (5-minute) guided imagery exercise to get participants to think of the sensory experiences they associate with home.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will uncover their experience of home, in order to examine the factors that have shaped what home means to them. 

Overview of Senior Housing Options


  • Jenn Buman, MBA, CPRS (Owner, Portland Senior Housing) 


This presentation will provide attendees with a broad overview of the senior housing options available to older adults in Oregon, such as retirement communities, assisted living communities, in-home care, and more. The presenter will discuss the various levels of care available to older adults and the types of situations that are best for each level of care.

Learning Objectives:

  • Attendees will have a general idea of the various kinds of senior housing options available to older adults.
  • Attendees will gain a sense of what each type of housing option provides.
  • Attendees will utilize this general overview as a framework throughout the rest of the conference, when specific housing options are discussed in more detail.

Valuing Older Adults by Creating Housing Options: Real-World Insights from Collaborative Research


  • Nancy Berlinger, PhD, MDiv (Senior Research Scholar, The Hastings Center)   


The goal of most older Americans to age in place relies on housing affordability, accessibility, and proximity to services. This presentation will share insights from grant-funded collaboration with researchers, community practitioners, and policymakers to apply a housing lens to age-focused policymaking. The presenter will discuss preliminary recommendations for policy development and political arguments that value older adults by creating better housing options and reducing barriers to housing-focused solutions.

Learning Objectives: 

  • Explain housing equity as it applies to older Americans, most of whom are not wealthy.
  • Explain major challenges in housing development and in support for housing-focused services in the U.S., with attention to factors such as NIMBY, competing regulations, and lack of integration between housing, health, and other sectors.
  • Identify promising examples of what's working and opportunities to connect with housing issues locally and regionally.

Housing and its Role in Making an Age-Friendly Community 


  • Rodney Harrell, PhD (Vice President of Family, Home and Community, AARP national)


This presentation will focus on research, policy analysis, and the creation of innovative solutions for age-friendly housing, with attention to housing-type needs, preferences, affordability, accessibility, and neighborhood choice for diverse groups of older adults. The AARP Livability Index will be highlighted as a way to explore how specific addresses and neighborhoods can be evaluated using the preferences of users. Other AARP-created resources related to housing options also will be shared.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand the various housing-related needs and preferences of diverse groups of older adults.
  • Learn how the AARP Livability Index can be used to explore housing and neighborhood options.
  • Become aware of the many housing-related resources available through AARP.

Continuing Education Credits

Each session has been approved for 2 CE credits (NASW Oregon Chapter), AFH training credits, and DHS Administrator credits - that's a total of 8 CE credits if you attend the entire series. There will be a $10 fee per session for NASW credits. Regular Certificates of Attendance can also be issued.

To receive a certificate, attendees must attend the session(s) for their entire length and complete a post-session evaluation survey.

This is the second of four sessions of OGA's 2023 virtual conference. You can register for individual sessions or, at a discount, for the entire conference series. For an overview of all sessions, please visit the conference page.

Register here!

Ann McQueen, PhD has worked in various capacities for the Office of Aging and People with Disabilities (APD) within the Oregon Department of Human Services (ODHS). She developed and taught college courses in gerontology, and worked in and as a consultant for long-term care facilities. She is especially interested in the experiences of people living with dementia and in helping to create a world that affords them the respect, dignity, safety, and companionship that all human beings deserve. Ann has presented at various conferences, both locally and nationally on topics related to aging, dementia and dementia care, and the role of humor in the lives of older people.

Jenn Buman, MBA, CPRS has been the owner of Portland Senior Housing since 2007. Jenn has offered education, guidance and support to families and seniors to find the best ‘home’ when living independently is no longer an option. Selecting the right environment is vital to optimum health and wellness. Matching the needs and interests of the senior with the appropriate services and atmosphere in a new residence is critical to a successful transition. Early years as a CNA in a skilled nursing facility and two years of nursing school helped her to understand the challenges associated with different disease processes. She is a strong advocate for support to those living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias, from personal experience with both parents, serving more than 8 years on the Board for the Alzheimer’s Association. active engagement in the Oregon Senior Referral Agency association, and as current board member for Metropolitan Senior Networking.

Nancy Berlinger, PhD, MDiv is a Senior Research Scholar at The Hastings Center, an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit research institute that focuses on ethical and societal challenges arising from developments in health, health care, biotechnology, and scientific research. Her training is in the humanities. Her current scholarship and empirical research focus on ethical, societal, and global dimensions of population aging (Bioethics for Aging Societies), with special attention to dementia care and to housing equity for older adults. Her collaborative research on aging is funded by the RRF Foundation for Aging, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Greenwall Foundation. She has a cross-cutting interest in understanding how shared ideas and values (narratives) shape human experiences of flourishing, health, risk, and care, and differing futures for people and places. Her research collaborations often aim to discover how narratives supportive of equity and flourishing for socially marginalized populations can be integrated into public conversations, policy development, and professional work under real-world, non-ideal conditions.


Rodney Harrell, PhD is Vice President of Family, Home and Community at AARP. In that role, he is the enterprise lead on housing issues, developing and leading the organization’s strategy to address them. He also leads AARP Public Policy Institute’s team of issue experts on Long-Term Services and Supports, Family Caregiving and Livable Communities. The Family, Home and Community team provides thought leadership through research, policy analysis, and creating innovative solutions to ensure that older adults and their families have access to the options and services that can help them to thrive at any age. Dr. Harrell and his team invented the award-winning AARP Livability Index, the first of its kind to measure the livability of every neighborhood and community in the US. His research on housing preferences, neighborhood choice, and community livability are integral to the Index’s design. He is also a speaker, writer and blogger on issues impacting communities and the diverse groups of people who live in them. Dr. Harrell graduated summa cum laude from the honors program at Howard University; earned dual master’s degrees in public affairs and urban planning from the School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University; and received a PhD in urban planning from the University of Maryland. He is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa and Phi Kappa Phi honor societies, was named to the initial class of Top Influencers in Aging for his work, and holds several board leadership positions. 

 Supporting Sponsors for this session: 


Session Sponsors for this session: 



The entire conference series is sponsored by: