Advancing Racial Equity in Aging Summit, a two-day virtual summit with AARP of Illinois, the Illinois Department on Aging, RRF Foundation for Aging, and our community partners was held on April 26-27, 2021. This summit highlighted first-of-its-kind data about older adults of color across the state of Illinois in the areas of economic security, health care and connectivity.

In partnership with non-profit, government and academic collaborators – including Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago, the Chicago Urban League, The Resurrection Project, The Chicago Community Trust,  Equality Illinois, Health and Medicine Policy Research Group, Healthy Communities Foundation, Jane Addams Senior Caucus, Pride Action Tank/AIDS Foundation of Chicago andShriver Center on Poverty Law the interactive virtual active summit examined solutions to systemic racial inequities facing older adults of color and inspired the change that is needed.

Recordings of both days of the summit can be viewed below:

Day 1, April 26
Day 2, April 27

Thank you to our
Collaboration Partners

Thank you to our Working Group Partners in planning and enriching this Summit:

  • The Chicago Community Trust
  • Equality Illinois
  • Health and Medicine Policy Research Group
  • Healthy Communities Foundation
  • Jane Addams Senior Caucus
  • Pride Action Tank/AIDS Foundation of Chicago
  • Shriver Center on Poverty Law
Featured Speakers

Our 2021 Virtual Summit Lineup

Disrupt Disparities

Virtual Summit Schedule

Day One – April 26, 2021 Investing in Change
Day Two – April 27, 2021 Pathways to Action

Welcome: A partnership in racial equity and aging

Paula Basta, Director, Illinois Department on Aging

Panel One: Centering Racial Equity and Aging

How to understand, challenge, and change structural racism and institutional racial inequities facing older adults of color. >>> Moderator: Audra Wilson, President, Shriver Center on Poverty Law >>> Diana N. Derige, DrPH, Director, Health Equity Strategy and Development, American Medical Association

Panel Two: Storytelling for Advocacy

Older people share their experiences of racial disparities and their hopes for change. >>> Moderator: Kim Hunt, Executive Director, Pride Action Tank; Senior Director, Policy and Advocacy Operations, AIDS Foundation Chicago

Enjoy the coffee break

Panel Three: Data-Driven Policy Reform Through an Aging and Racial Equity Lens

A dynamic panel of local and national leaders review emerging data and provide practical policy and program reform to reduce racial disparities among older adults. >>> Moderator: Kim Hunt, Executive Director, Pride Action Tank; Senior Director, Policy and Advocacy Operations, AIDS Foundation Chicago >>> J Harish I. Patel, Executive Director,...

Panel Four: Call to Action – Philanthropy

Local and national leaders in philanthropy share their best practices and their call to other philanthropists to work actively to reduce institutional racial inequities within the aging population. >>> Lisa Ryerson, President, AARP Foundation >>> Anna Lee, Chicago Community Trust >>> Maria Pesqueira, President, Healthy Communities Foundation

Fireside Chat: Reflections

An exciting interview and conversation with a surprise guest. Facilitated by Brandis Friedman of WTTW

Panel One: Caregiving through a Racial Disparities and Aging Lens

A discussion on the caregiving challenges created by racial disparities and the opportunities for support and growth through racial equity models in the areas of in-home care, long-term care services, home and community-based services, and nursing homes. >>> Rita Choula, Director of Caregiving, Public Policy Institute, AARP >>> Lauren Pongan,...

Panel Two: The Promises and Pitfalls of Harnessing Digital Strategies to Address Isolation and Connectivity

Over the last year, we have learned that meaningful and close connections can be maintained or built using technology, such as smart phones and tablets. However, we have also seen the stark and growing inequity in access to devices and broadband experienced by low-income Black, Indigenous, and People of Color....

Enjoy the coffee break

Panel Three: Call to Action – State Legislation and Regulation

How Illinois state lawmakers can center racial equity and start addressing racial disparities in aging in Illinois. Hear from Illinois state legislative leaders on how they want to build a racial equity model for aging. >>> "Hon. Chris Welch, Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives • Sol Flores, Deputy...