Carol Allen, M.Div, MSW has been a Presbyterian clergywoman since 1966 and is currently in private practice as a spiritual director, with a background in social work and ministry practice in a variety of church institutions, including on the faculty of McCormick Theological Seminary.
Dorcas Austin is a Divinity doctoral student and Program Manager at Loyola University, Maryland. She has a Masters in Counseling and Psychology from Loyola University Maryland, a Masters in Religious Studies from Harvard University, and a BA from Northwestern University. She works with the Chicago Department on Aging.
Bishop James Curtis Austin, Sr. became a minister in 1966 and graduated in 1967 from the University of Illinois with a Bachelor of Science Degree. In 1978, he was appointed Pastor of the St. Luke Church of God in Christ, and was consecrated to the sacred office of Bishop in 2004. He is the author of The God-Ordained Life. He is dedicated to the senior population.
Mavis Bagby served as a kindergarten teacher for 33 years and now volunteers full-time with Fit-2-Serve. Her passions include play therapy, literacy, community gardening and intergenerational learning.
Patricia Baker has worked for 44 years in the field of aging in both the public and private sector. She has worked in two different churches in Older Adult Ministry, and has facilitated caregiver support groups in three different states since 1981. She’s currently the Director of Health and Human Services/Senior Services for Gwinnett County, the second to largest county in the state of Georgia, and was one of the founding members of POAMN.
Nancy G. Bell is Manager of the Senior Health Assistance Program/Central Illinois Agency on Aging, Inc.
Robert Best holds a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology from Carroll University and a Master's Degree in Public Service with a specialization in Gerontology from Marquette University. He is currently the Executive Director of Oak Hill Terrace in Waukesha. Robert is an adjunct professor of Social Gerontology and has published articles on aging issues and presented at conferences across the United States, including the American Society of Aging and National Council on Aging.
Richard Bimler, Ph.D is former president of Wheat Ridge Ministries and currently serves Wheat Ridge part-time as Senior Staff Associate and with Lutheran Life Communities. His previous work includes LCMS National Staff, DCE, and assistant to president of LCMS.
Alexander J. Bishop, Ph.D is interested in the theoretical conceptualization and measurement of well-being among persons who reach 100 years of age and older. In addition, he conducts research on the health and well-being of older prison inmates. He is most interested in determining how religious and spiritual resources may provide underlying therapeutic benefits relative to counteracting the negative impact of incarceration on older inmate well-being.
Daniel Bishop, Ph.D has over 33 years providing inpatient and outpatient counseling to individuals for mental health and addictions. He is tenured faculty at Concordia University, Chicago in the Department of Human Service, providing courses on counseling and addiction recovery.
Kathy Bonnar, Ed.D is an Assistant Professor at Concordia University. She especially enjoys working with the counseling education students in their practicums and internships as they complete their program and begin their careers as counselors. She also has an avid interest in older adults and the aging process. Dr. Bonnar has researched the meaning of work for older adults from their perspective and continues to work with the older population in a variety of venues.
Anita Brown is Director of Human Resources and Community Relations for the Central Illinois Agency on Aging, Inc.
Christine Bryden, MBA served as the Alzheimer's Australia Ambassador and Science Policy Adviser to Australian Prime Minister. Diagnosed with dementia in 1995, she is an advocate for people with dementia. She is the author of four books, two book chapters, book forwards, three journal articles, and a recently submitted essay for her Ph.D.
Jeffrey A. Burr, Ph.D is Professor and Chair of the Department of Gerontology at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the peer-reviewed journal, Research on Aging.
Rev. Mark Chaffin, M.Div
Rosemary Cox, 2012 recipient of the Reb Zalman Leadership Award, is Sage-ing International’s Education Coordinator. She has a master’s degree in Counseling and Human Services and has worked in the aging field for over 23 years with a specialization in the area of brain health and development. She was a social worker for Memorial BrainWorks in South Bend, Indiana and taught at Holy Cross College. Rosemary co-authored The Heart of Aging with Wisdom and Vitality facilitator manual.
Margaret Cruikshank, Ph.D taught aging courses at City College of San Francisco and the University of Maine and has presented at U.S. and international conferences. She is author of Learning to be Old: Gender, Culture, and Aging and the editor of Fierce with Reality: Literature on Aging 2017.
Stefan Deutsch is a New York State Certified Psychotherapist and lead investigator of a one year long clinical trial at Danbury Hospital, CT (scheduled to end 9/2017) focused on preventing stress and burnout epidemic among doctors and nurses. He is the organizer of the First International Symposium towards a Unified Science of Love, held in New York, June 2016.
Teri Dreher, RN was an ICU nurse for 39 years, now turned professional RN patient advocate. She is owner of North Shore Patient Advocates in Chicago, the area’s largest high-skill professional advocacy company.
William Duey, Ph.D served as university professor for 24 years and founded the not-for-profit Fit-2-Serve with the purpose of equipping people for works of service. He is currently serving as a pastor of a local congregation and engaging asset-based community development through churches, school, and senior living facilities.
Alexandria Ebert is a first-year graduate student in the Masters of Science in Psychological Research (Cognitive and Affective emphasis) program at the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh. Her research interests focus primarily on improving care and support for care-partners, aging persons, and persons having dementia. A chapter she recently wrote on spirituality and aging (co-authored with Dr. Susan McFadden) will be published in the Routledge International Handbook.
Michelle Edelmuth has an extensive background in fundraising and volunteer activities for individuals of all ages. She is currently pursuing her Masters of Arts Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Her research interests lie in the areas of working with the Aging and Religion.
Rev. James Ellor, LCSW served 35 years an ordained Presbyterian Minister and 40 years as a medical social worker, researcher and educator. He researched ministry with older adults as a Research Staff member of the University of Chicago. He is the author of 10 books, over 100 juried journal articles, and has attended more than 300 conference national and international events. He has been the editor of the Journal of Religion, Spirituality and Aging since 1999.
Wayne Ewing, Ph.D is an Episcopal Priest, Diocese of Colorado/Member, Colorado Press Association journalist, pastoral counselor, parish priest, university and seminary professor, and a social worker specializing in domestic violence intervention. He is the author of Tears in God's Bottle: Reflections on Alzheimer’s Care and a workshop presenter on spirituality and dementia care
Chad Federwitz is a Gerontologist, dementia care advocate, and currently the Director of Senior Services for Pitkin County in Aspen Colorado. He holds master’s degrees in Gerontology from the University of Northern Colorado, and a masters in Religious Studies from Naropa University in Boulder, CO. He comes from 10 years of direct care service for older adults with Alzheimer’s and Dementia.
Linda Flynn has been offering spiritual direction for 15 years. She is the Executive Director of the Charlotte Spirituality Center, a seasoned retreat leader, and supervises students in training.
Alan Forsman is a commissioned staff minister with the Evangelical Covenant Church. He has served as a pastoral counselor, regional staff, and denominational staff. In those roles he started and resourced older adult training and conferences. He has taught adult and older adult ministries at the seminary level. His doctoral dissertation was on older adult ministry in the local church. In addition he has done and is doing corporate leadership training.
Phyllis M. Gaspar, Ph.D, RN serves as the National Director for Research and Development for The Goodman Group. She has over 30 years of experience in the implementation of evidence into clinical practice in long term care communities.
Carol Goldbaum is a clinical social worker with over forty years of experience ranging from medical social work, administration and graduate level teaching to corrections and individual therapy in the community. She is also active in her synagogue and is a trained facilitator of HaDerekh, the Jewish version of the Paths to Faithful Caregiving curriculum created by AgeOptions and Madelyn Iris and Associates.
Susan Graceson has been a church (PC-USA) teacher, retreat leader, small group leader for the past 19 years. She serves as an Associate Pastor for Elder Nurture and Children's Ministry, and is also a visual artist, musician, and writer.
Eboni Green, Ph.D, RN is a registered nurse and family caregiver. She holds a Ph.D in human services, with a specialization in health care administration. She currently serves as faculty for the College of Health Sciences at Walden University, where she teaches graduate courses in the health care administration program. She is the author of three books focusing on family caregiving: At the Heart of the Matter, Caregiving in the New Millennium, and Reflections from the Soul.
Sandy Gregory, Ph.D is the founding director of North Carolina Baptist Aging Ministry (NCBAM)—established in 2009 with the mission to help aging adults maintain their independence. Under Gregory’s leadership, the unique ministry has birthed statewide programs and services targeting the key reasons aging adults lose their independence. Through its strong partnerships with Baptist churches, state government agencies, and the private sector, NCBAM has impacted the lives of tens of thousands of North Carolina's aging. In the next ten years, Gregory plans to add affordable fee-based geriatric management services that will fund the growth of its other outreaches to North Carolina’s aging adults in need.
Dennis Haines, D. Min is a retired ordained minister of PC-USA, where he served four churches: rural, small town, suburban, and inner city. In retirement, he served in four full-time interim positions as well as a Stated Supply in a small church in Kansas City, Kansas for four years. He celebrated 50 years of ministry in 2016.
Ann Harrington, RN, Ph.D is Associate Professor in the School of Nursing and Midwifery at Flinders University. She leads a team of 21 researchers comprising academics and Ph.D students. She has 34 years of experience in palliative care, spiritual care and aged care.
Carol Hassel, M.Div served 14 years in ordained ministry with focus on older adults and aging (PC-USA); five years as a practicing spiritual director; and three years as a chaplain in a continuing care retirement community. She is a seasoned retreat planner and facilitator; worked many years as presenter to small groups on spirituality and spirituality and aging, and was on the teaching faculty of the Charlotte Spirituality Center for five years, educating and training spiritual directors.
Chelsea Hawkins started at AgeOptions in 2013, as part of the Caring Together, Living Better faith-based partnership to support families caring for older adult in low-income minority communities. Now, as Caregiver program coordinator, Chelsea directs this program and the dissemination of its faith-based family caregiver training program, Paths to Faithful Caregiving.
Michele Hendrix is the President of the Presbyterian Older Adult Ministries Network (POAMN), a Caregiver Specialist, Master Trainer, and Class Leader for Powerful Tools for Caregivers. Working for over 25 Years to advocate, educate, involve, and motivate individuals in the process of aging and self-care. Michele served on staff at Grace Presbyterian, a mega church in Houston, Texas, as the Director of Older Adult Ministry and Pastoral Care Associate for Older Adults for 18 years.
Deaconess Barbara Hemme, MA, MAR received her Master of Arts in Religion from Concordia University, Chicago in 2010. She also holds a Master of Arts in Sociology degree from DePaul University. Her focus is ministering to women and those in need, including those struggling with grief and sorrow.
Janice Hicks, Ph.D is a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the National Organization of Gay and Lesbian Scientists and Technical Professionals, and an M.Div. candidate. She is a postulant in the Episcopal Diocese of Washington, a professor of chemistry at Georgetown University, and an administrator at the National Science Foundation. Funded by the Episcopal Evangelism Society to study spirituality and dementia, she produced a diocesan-wide workshop and created spiritualityanddementia.weebly.com.
Esther Hurlburt, RN has enjoyed working with old people since she was a child. Esther is a registered nurse and a certified case manager. She earns her living as a geriatric case manager. Esther is also an ordained Unitarian Universalist Community Minister with a ministry dedicated to old people, bringing worth and dignity to the word “old.” She is the founder of The Legacy Home, which is cooperative living for five aging women with low wealth. She serves on The Institute on Aging, an advisory board to Kentucky state government; serves on the board of Healing Moments Alzheimer’s Ministry; and serves on the Executive Committee for the Unitarian Universalist Society for Community Ministries.
Madelyn Iris, Ph.D received her Ph.D in Anthropology from Northwestern University. She has worked in the field of aging research and social program evaluation for over thirty-five years. Her research includes studies of caregiver needs, quality of life for residents in long term care, elder abuse, guardianship, and self-neglect as well as cultural beliefs about Alzheimer’s Disease. Dr. Iris is a consultant for AgeOptions, providing evaluation services.
Maryellen Jacimowski, RN, MSN
Anna Janhsen, MA, M.Ed finished her study of Catholic Theology, Philosophy / Applied Philosophy, British and American Studies and Pedagogy in 2013 with a Master of Education as well as Master of Arts in Medical Ethics. She works as a research associate in addition to working on her Ph.D thesis on the role and function of spirituality for well-being of the oldest old in Germany.
Dave Jimenez, Ph.D is Associate Director Community Outreach Intervention Projects at the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health.
Evelyn Johnson is an ordained minister in the Evangelical Covenant Church and has served for 42 years in local church, regional, and denominational roles. She is currently member of the denomination’s leadership team for a pilot project, CRESCENDO, focused on revisioning ministries with older adults and Boomers preparing for this next phase. Evelyn coauthored Regenerating Generations (September 2016) with her colleague, Alan Forsman.
Aoife Lee, D.Min, BCC currently works as a Director of Spiritual Care and Mission and Ethics Committee co-chair. She was an ICU chaplain for more than 15 years in Medical and Trauma Centers and community hospitals. Trained in spiritual direction, she has 20 years of experience and study in the fields of child/teenage/adult care and social work in Ireland and UK.
Dorothy Linthicum is an Instructor at Virginia Theological Seminary and teaches courses, facilitates workshops and publishes articles about older adult spirituality and ministry at the seminary, at national conferences, and for dioceses. Keynote speaker at Abundant Life Conference at Camp Allen Texas, she contributed chapters about older adults for The Seasons of Adult Formation, the Lifelong Faith Journal and the Catechetical Leader. She blogs about aging on the Key Resources and Building Faith websites.
Elizabeth MacKinlay, RN is a priest of the Anglican Church of Australia and inaugural Director of the Centre for Ageing and Pastoral Studies, St Mark's National Theological Centre and Charles Sturt University. She is a professor at Charles Sturt University, a previous Senior Lecturer in Nursing at the University of Canberra, and has held numerous positions teaching and clinical positions over more than 50 years. A researcher, teacher, speaker, consultant and author, her main interests are well-being in ageing, spirituality, dementia, frailty and palliative care.
Susan H. McFadden, Ph.D is Professor Emerita of Psychology, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, where she taught undergraduate and graduate courses, including Psychology of Religion and seminars on Dementia Studies. Susan retired from the University in June, 2012 and is now a research consultant for the Fox Valley Memory Project (www.foxvalleymemoryproject.org), which is creating a dementia-friendly community in northeast WI. She has published many papers on religion, spirituality, and aging.
Jan McGilliard, MS worked 15 years as Associate for Older Adult Ministries for the Presbyterian Synod of the Mid-Atlantic (MD, DE, DC, VA, and NC), served on the NICA board (National Interfaith Coalition on Aging) for many years, and has been involved in POAMN (Presbyterian Older Adult Ministries Network) since its inception 34 years ago, serving as Secretary, President, and Coordinator of the Older Adult Ministry Certification Program.
Lydia K. Manning, Ph.D is Associate Professor of Gerontology at Concordia University Chicago. She completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship at Duke University's Center for the Study of Aging and Human Development in 2013, and received her Ph.D in social gerontology from the Department of Sociology and Gerontology at Miami University in 2011. She is the Conference Director for the 7th International Conference for Ageing and Spirituality.
Edward Alan Miller, Ph.D, MPA is Professor and Graduate Program Director of the Gerontology Ph.D Program at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the peer-reviewed Journal of Aging and Social Policy.
Janet Miller, Ph.D received her Ph.D from Ohio State University in Industrial Engineering with the focus of Human Factors Engineering. As a Senior Human Factors Engineer for the United States Air Force, her work centered around knowledge elicitation, meaning applying methods of exploring people and tasks to understand the challenges and opportunities, to improve processes or develop new capabilities.
Rev. Andrew Moore
Dr. Charles Mueller, Sr. has worked as a Lutheran pastor, district president, consultant, and writer. Has served the church and community for over 60 years at the parish, district, and national levels.
Carla Narvaez-Rosario, MD
Holly Nelson-Becker, Ph.D, LCSW is Professor of Social Work at Loyola University Chicago. She is a Hartford Faculty Scholar in Geriatric Social Work and has published and presented extensively in the areas of aging; spirituality, religion, and aging; and end-of-life and palliative care. She is past chair of GSA's interest group on religion, spirituality, and aging. Her recent book is Spirituality, Religion, and Aging, Illuminations for Therapeutic Practice, Sage Press, February 2017.
Michelle Olson is a licensed, board certified and registered creative arts therapist, working specifically with older adults. She has worked with elders for close to 20 years and it is her life's passion to help improve the quality and vibrancy of life for our elders and give them opportunities for creative self-expression and voice. She is currently working on her Ph.D in leadership in gerontology with an strong interest in long-term care, Alzheimer's, end of life issues, spirituality and mindfulness practices.
Elizabeth Owolabi, Ph.D has more than 20 years progressive experience in higher education. She is the Director of Institutional Research and Assessment and an Associate Professor of Research and a member of Peer Corps Reviewers for the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). She is a researcher, scholar, and an educator who serves as a long distance care giver to an aging mother in sub-Sahara Africa.
Holly Oxhandler, Ph.D is an Assistant Professor at Baylor University School of Social Work. Her dissertation research was in the area of quantitative measurement for Social Work Practice.
Katherine Piderman, Ph.D has been a staff chaplain at Mayo Clinic for over 20 years. She is currently Chaplain for Mayo Clinic Hospice, Coordinator of Research for Chaplain Services and Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Mayo Clinic, and serves as the principal investigator of Hear My Voice. She is the lead author on many publications and has presented nationally and internationally on various topics related to spirituality and health.
Chris Pomfret is a recently retired aerospace engineer focusing on the latter half of a career in counseling, marketing and business development. In 2013 he created the concept of "The Third Thirty," a candid spiritual examination of the realities of the last third of our lives. He was vice-president of POAMN in 2016.
G. Kevin Randall, Ph.D is an associate professor and graduate coordinator for Family and Consumer Sciences, College of Health Sciences, at Sam Houston State University. In addition to teaching, his research interests include the influence of religiosity and forgiveness on the successful aging of older male inmates and very old adults or centenarians.
William Randolph, Ph.D served as Parish Pastor and Adjunct Hospital Chaplain in three denominations (United Methodist Church, Church of the Brethren, Disciples of Christ) focusing on Spiritual Care and Formation. He served as Retirement Community Chaplain and Hospice Chaplain for Redstone Presbyterian Senior Care, focusing upon Spirituality/ End of Life/ Direct Pastoral Care. He is currently serving as Director of the Office on Aging and Older Adult Ministry at the United Methodist Center for promotion of Older Adult Ministry.
Martha Richards, LICSW is a social worker in Port Townsend, Washington, where she currently works with communities of faith on older adult ministry and spirituality and dementia. She recently retired as affiliate assistant professor at the University of Washington School of Social Work.
Alan Rider, M.Div, MA is a Lutheran pastor, interfaith spiritual director, Certified Sage-ing Leader (CSL), and currently serves at Tech-Webinar Coordinator for Sage-ing International. Al has worked in military chaplaincy, congregational, and hospital/hospice settings, as a private-practice career-vocational counselor and counselor-trainer, and as a college instructor. He lived in Germany and coordinated the Lutheran chaplaincy program for Europe and the Mideast.
Rev. Sara Robb, M.Div has served as Associate Pastor of Ministry with Aging at Scott Boulevard Baptist Church since 2014. She holds an M.Div from McAfee School of Theology, Mercer University.
John Robinson, Ph.D, D.Min is a clinical psychologist with a second doctorate in ministry, an ordained interfaith minister, the author of eight books on the interface of psychology and spirituality (along with numerous articles, book chapters and guest blogs), and last but not least, an aging Boomer with grown children and a gaggle of grandchildren. His professional work specialized in midlife, men's issues, the integration of psychotherapy and spirituality, the nature of first-hand mystical experience, the psychology and spirituality of aging, and the archetypal revelations of myth and fairytale
Corina Ronneberg, MS is a Doctoral Candidate in Gerontology, the Managing Editor for the Journal of Aging and Social Policy, and Research Specialist in the Center for Health Behavior Research, part of the Institute for Health Research and Policy at the University of Illinois at Chicago. In the past she has worked directly with older adults in a myriad of settings including retirement communities, assisted living, and a skilled nursing facility. Her research focuses on the impact of one's faith on their health.
Kimberly Sangster, Ph.D, LCSW, M.Div is Assistant Professor of Social Work at St. Mary's College in Indiana. She has served as an executive director of hospice associations and has completed research on hospice social workers in Illinois including turnover intention and spiritual well-being. She has given many presentations on aspects of aging, spirituality, and the end of life.
Stephen Sapp, Ph.D has taught at the University of Miami since 1980. He is the author of Full of Years: Aging and the Elderly in the Bible and Today (1987), and Light on a Gray Area: American Public Policy on Aging (1992), and a widely distributed booklet, When Alzheimer's Disease Strikes. He is past chair of the Governing Council of the Forum on Religion, Spirituality, and Aging (FoRSA) of the American Society on Aging (ASA), and edited FoRSA's newsletter, Aging & Spirituality, from 1993 to 1999. His research interests include ethical issues in Alzheimer's disease, the role of religion and spirituality in aging, the impact of aging on American society, end-of-life, and issues in pediatric and geriatric populations.
Raj C. Shah, MD is Associate Professor and Family Medicine and Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center in Chicago.
Julia Penn Shaw, Ed.D
Greg Smith, M.Div is a graduate of the McAfee School of Theology of Mercer University and serves as Chaplain of King’sBridge Retirement Center and Pastor of Scott Boulevard Baptist Church. He will graduate from McAfee in May, 2017 with a Doctor of Ministry in Spirituality. His thesis is titled Memory and Hope: Enabling the Spiritual Formation of Isolated Elders through Small-group Home Worship.
Matthew S. Stanford, Ph.D is Chief Executive Officer Hope and Healing Center and Institute in Houston, Texas. Dr. Stanford was Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Baylor University for over 20 years before assuming his current position. He has written extensively in the area of religion and mental health.
Mary Ann Stripling, Ph.D has been a high school teacher, head counselor, and Assistant Professor of Counselor Education at Eastern Mennonite University. She learned the value of intergenerational activities when she took youth on three trips to Mexico. Her experience as teacher and counselor have given her the skills needed for helping people do responsible planning. She offers short presentations and workshops through her business, Ducks in a Row, LLC.
Jane L. Tavares is a Doctoral Candidate in Gerontology and the Managing Editor for the peer-reviewed journal, Research on Aging.
Joanne Thomas, LCPC has over 20 years in nonprofit and community leadership, grants administration, strategic planning and development of aging and disability services as President/CEO of Central Illinois Agency on Aging, Inc., a grantee of the Illinois Department on Aging and Federal Administration for Community Living. She served as President of the Illinois Association of Area Agencies on Aging, Inc. covering 13 planning and service areas statewide, leading transformation from aging to inter-generational services.
Hutch Walch is the Director of Spirituality for The Goodman Group (TGG). He has guided the implementation of the model at the corporate and facility level, and has more than 20 years of ministry focusing on one-on-one senior care.
Marcus Wolfe, MSW is currently pursuing his Ph.D in Gerontology at Concordia University-Chicago. He is the co-author of several publications and a member of research teams at the University of Chicago Medical Center, University of Michigan, Rush Hospital/University and The University of Connecticut - Hartford.