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SSA Conversation Series

In lieu of our annual conference, we will be curating a series of virtual conversations on current issues in aging.

All events are free and open to the public.

We are continuously adding events to the series, so please check back for updates!


Upcoming Events in the Series

Please check this space and your inboxes for news of future events.



Past Events

The Matter is Ageism

On Wednesday, October 27, SSA hosted a conversation ageism in the global context, featuring Frances Zainoeddin, a representative to the United Nations for the International Federation on Ageing (IFA), and moderated by James O’Neal, SSA Past President and a fellow UN representative for IFA, and Colette Phipps, Director of Program Development at Westchester County Department of Senior Programs and Services.

The Matter Is Ageism conversation examined the term ageism and its impact on the quality of life for older people. Since it was first coined over 50 years ago by Robert Butler the term ageism represents deleterious consequences that many individuals face simply because they grow old. We discussed age-based stereotypes around the world that stoke prejudice and discrimination and what we can do to counter the problem.

View Recording

SSA Town Hall 2021

The State Society on Aging of New York held its virtual Town Hall meeting on Tuesday, October 19, featuring NYSOFA Acting Commissioner Greg Olsen, National Coordinator for the Elder Justice Coalition Bob Blancato, Association on Aging in New York director Becky Preve, LiveON NY director Allison Nickerson, and RAIN CEO Anderson Torres. This Town Hall conversation, moderated by SSA board member and immediate past-president christian gonzález-rivera, focused on how government addressed the needs of providers of services for older adults throughout the pandemic. The discussion lifted up the policies, administrative protocols, and standing investments that ought to be in place in order to prepare for future emergencies.

View Recording

Addressing Structural Racism in Services for Older Adults

Friday, October 16, 2020, 10:00 - 11:30am

We will discuss the intersection of institutional and structural racism and Covid-19 and the resultant impact. We will look at how institutions and services consciously/unconsciously sustain/maintain institutionalized racism. From this discussion, we will develop strategies to disrupt institutional racism to address the inequities in life opportunities, services, and care which they create.

New York State Continuing Education Units (CEU) available!
Brookdale Center for Healthy Aging at Hunter College, CUNY, is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #SW-0161. Addressing Structural Racism in Services for Older Adults counts toward 1.5 continuing education credits for Licensed Master Social Workers (LMSWs) and Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSWs) in New York State. Participants must attend the entire session to receive credits for the course.

  • Geoffrey Rogers, Director of Learning and Development, Brookdale Center for Healthy Aging, Hunter College, CUNY
  • Rev. Dr. Charles Butler, Vice President, Equitable Development Department, Harlem Congregations for Community Improvement, Inc. (HCCI)
  • Lisa Rachmuth, LMSW, Deputy Director, Multi-Disciplinary Teams, New York City Elder Abuse Center
  • Samuel Aymer, Ph.D, MSW, Associate Professor of Social Work, Silberman School of Social Work, Hunter College, CUNY
  • Marie Philip, MHS, Deputy Commissioner (Retired), Emergency & Intervention Services, NYC Human Resources Administration (HRA)

View Recording

State Society on Aging Town Hall

Monday, September 14, 2020, 9:00 – 10:30 am

Please join State Senator Liz Krueger, NYSOFA Acting Commissioner Greg Olsen, National Coordinator for the Elder Justice Coalition Bob Blancato for a conversation with SSA president christian gonzález-rivera about legislative and policy responses to the COVID-19 crisis. Come prepared with your questions for our policymakers!

View Recording Here


Vulnerable Older Adults and Long Term Care in COVID-19

Thursday, September 17, 2020, 3:00 – 4:30pm

This colloquium will examine heightened risks to older adults in COVID-19, including risks of abuse and neglect, and palliative care as an effective public health policy.

  • Mary Beth Morrissey, Chair, New York State Bar Association Health Law Section’s COVID-19 Task Force
  • Melissa Lang, President and CEO, Agency on Aging of South Central Connecticut
  • Tom Caprio, Director of Geriatric Training Programs, University of Rochester; Director, UR Medicine Geriatric Assessment Clinic; Chief Medical Officer, UR Medicine Home Care
  • Katherine Pettus, Advocacy Officer for Palliative Care, International Association for Hospice & Palliative Care
  • Ann Marie Cook, MPA President/CEO, Lifespan of Greater Rochester
  • Karla Usher, Community Member/Law Student

Sponsored by the Collaborative for Palliative Care and the Finger Lakes Geriatric Education Center at the University of Rochester Medical Center

View Recording Here


Virtual Discussion of Racial Justice and Aging

Wednesday, July 1, 2020, 9:00 to 10:30am

In July, in response to the murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers and the subsequent popular uprisings around the world in support of Black lives, SSA hosted an open discussion on race and the field of aging. The conversation, which was hosted by SSA virtually over Zoom, attracted more than 60 professionals in aging from across the state, including academics, social workers, direct service professionals, policy professionals, and older New Yorkers.

Read a summary here.