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Keynote Address Sessions

“Diagnosing Alzheimer’s Disease in 2019” -  Ronald C. Petersen, PhD., M.D.
Dr. Petersen’s dynamic and engaging presentation will guide participants through understanding the new Alzheimer’s Disease Research Framework. This information will lead us to appreciate the path to evaluating that Framework and its value to better assist in more accurate diagnosis--differentiating between Mild Cognitive Impairment, Early Onset Alzheimer’s and the various other types of dementia. He will also explain the implications as it relates to clinical trials.
Ronald Petersen, PhD., M.D-- Professor and Director of the Mayo Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at Mayo Clinic and the Mayo Clinic Study of Aging. Author of five books and over 800 peer-reviewed articles on Alzheimer’s disease, mild cognitive impairment and aging. 

"Navigating Behavioral Challenges in Dementia" - Kyle Page, PhD., ABPP
Dr. Page will discuss clinical reasons for personality changes that may occur in persons diagnosed with dementia, along with other factors that may also contribute to these changes.  Additionally he will review the importance or communication and foundational skills for optimal behavior management by sharing analogies and compelling, relatable stores that will help participants interpret and appreciate their own situations.  Dr. Page's creative delivery will leave participants at ease to more confidently enjoy the many positive aspects of change as well.


Kyle Page, PhD, ABPP - Board certified geriatric psychologist who enjoys helping health care professionals and families learn skills for understanding and responding to the many challenges that arise in dementia.  Has authored and co-authored several professional publications related to geriatric mental health care.  Currently employed by the VA Central Iowa Healthcare System.

"Sex, Dementia and Humor" - Elaine Sanchez
Seldom do we see those three words used together in any format, for any reason.  Sensitivity and social norms often contribute to our reluctance to discuss or even think about the reality of sex and intimacy and dementia.  Elaine Sanchez arfully weaves these topics together by tastefully using a dash of her own brand of humor to discuss both the concerns and joys of this delicate topic.

Elaine Sanchez - Author, speaker and co-founder of Caregiver.com, an online caregiver support program.  Based on her experience of caring for family elders, Elaine developed a passion for helping others find hope, humor, and heart in care giving.  Author of the unflinching, honest and surpisingly funny book, Letters from Madelyn, Chronicles of a Caregiver.

12:30 p.m. Breakout Sessions

#1 "Research Update" - Rebecca Edelmayer, Ph.D.
Dr. Edelmayer will share the research community's ongoing progress and attempts being made to unravel and reveal new discoveries into the causes, prevention and treatment of Alzheimer's and other dementias.  She will define her crucial role to continue advocacy and tireless work to advance research for the improvement of the lives of individuals living with dementia and their care partners.

Rebecca M. Edelmayer, Ph.D - Director of Scientific Engagment for the Alzheimer's Association.  Over 17 years of experience as a practicing scientist and educator.  Has lectured, published and led collaborations in areas of neurophysiology, inflammatory skin pathology and pain neurobiology.


#2 "Do's and Don'ts When Serving Under Power of Attorney" - Cynthia Etsch, Esq.
Is a 'power of attorney' document really all that important and necessary you ask?  Dr. Cynthia Letsch will discuss the differences and importance of various types of authority.  She will offer practical advice about what an individual should and should not do when serving as an agent under a power of attorney.  Additionally she will define the legal and ethical responsibilities that one accepts in doing so.

Cynthia Letsch, Esq. - Attorney, Doctor of Jurisprudence.  Legal career includes private practice, teaching, public speaking and serving as corporate counsel.  Current business practice started in 2013, limited to Elder Law, Estate Planning and Probate/Trust Administration.

#3 "Ask the Doc (Medical)" - Dr. Ronald Petersen and Dr. Yogesh Shah


Have you ever left your doctor's appointment not having asked everything you'd intended to ask?  Or perhaps discussions took place that left you with additional questions?  This is clearly a great opportunity to hear accurate medical facts and information, provided by two highly qualified professionals, as well as an excellent opportunity to ask questions.

Ronald Peterson, PhD., M.D. - Professor and Director of the Mayo Alzheimer's Research Center at Mayo Clinic and the Mayo Clinic Study of Aging.  Author of five books and over 800 peer-reviewed articles on Alzheimer's disease, mild cognitive impairment and aging.

Yogesh Shah, M.P.H., M.D., FAAFP - Experienced geriatrician and Found Director of Palliative Care at Broadlawns Medical Center.  Expertise in Mild Cognitive Impairment and hospice medicine.  He is triple-board certified in Family Medicine, Geriatrics, Hospice and Palliative Care.

#4 "Changing Perspectives" - Elaine Eshbaugh, PhD.
Dementia changes most everything for diagnosed individuals, to include those brought on by changes involving the senses of hearing, sight, taste, smell and touch.  Dr. Eshbaugh will provide participants with insight into the changing brain, along with ways to better understand, react and respond to those changes.  In addition she will provide information on how we can change interaction patterns to better accommodate changing sensation and perception.

Elaine Eshbaugh, PhD. - Associate professor of Gerontology and Family Studies at UNI, coordinating that program since 2007.  Currently on the executive board of the Northeast Iowa Agency on Aging and has written more than 25 research publications.

#5 "Coping with Caregiver Anger and Guilt" - Elaine Sanchez
Are there days when you feel guilty about your patience running thin?  Dementia is complex as we know, affecting not only memory and other issues for the diagnosed, but there are often concerns for caregivers that we don't necessarily anticipate or understand.  Elaine Sanchez will discuss caregiver anger and guilt, along with strategies to help manage and ease the stress of caring for someone whose situation will never improve.  The importance of self-care for caregivers will also be emphasized.

Elaine Sanchez - Author, speaker and co-founder of Caregiver.com, an online caregiver support program.  Based on her experience of caring for family elders, Elaine developed a passion for helping others find hope, humor, and heart in care giving.  Author of the unflinching, honest and surpisingly funny book, Letters from Madelyn, Chronicles of a Caregiver.

1:50 p.m. Breakout Sessions

#1 "Debunking Treatment Myths" - Rebecca Edelmayer, PhD.
Have you ever been frustrated by hearing or reading conflicting information regarding various forms of dementia?  There are some complete falsehoods that muddy the waters about the roots of symptoms, outcomes and how to treat and prevent dementia.  Dr. Edelmayer will help participants better know and understand factual information.

Rebecca M. Edelmayer, Ph.D - Director of Scientific Engagment for the Alzheimer's Association.  Over 17 years of experience as a practicing scientist and educator.  Has lectured, published and led collaborations in areas of neurophysiology, inflammatory skin pathology and pain neurobiology.

#2 "Do's and Don'ts When Serving Under Power of Attorney" - Cynthia Etsch, Esq.
Is a 'power of attorney' document really all that important and necessary you ask?  Dr. Cynthia Letsch will discuss the differences and importance of various types of authority.  She will offer practical advice about what an individual should and should not do when serving as an agent under a power of attorney.  Additionally she will define the legal and ethical responsibilities that one accepts in doing so.

Cynthia Letsch, Esq. - Attorney, Doctor of Jurisprudence.  Legal career includes private practice, teaching, public speaking and serving as corporate counsel.  Current business practice started in 2013, limited to Elder Law, Estate Planning and Probate/Trust Administration.

#3 - "Ask the Doc - Behavioral" - Kyle Page, PhD., ABPP
The changing brain of someone diagnosed with dementia may cause the individual to exhibit challenging personality changes that can adversely affect families, caregivers and their social interaction.  Dr. Page will help participants recognize and understand why these changes occur.  He will identify ways to not only manage these changes, but also ways to embrace and encourage the many positive aspects of change, thereby improving quality of life for both the individual and their care partners.

Kyle Page, PhD. ABPP - Board certified geriatric psychologist who enjoys helping health care professionals and families learn skills for understanding and responding to the many challenges that arise in dementia.  Has authored and co-authored several professional publications related to geriatric mental health care.  Currently employed by the VA Central Iowa Healthcare System.

#4 "A Meaningful Life with Dementia" - Elaine Eshbaugh, PhD.
Providing meaning and purpose in the changing world of an individual with a dementia diagnosis contributes greatly to their dignity, respect and overall well-being.  Dr. Eshbaught will provide participants with an understanding of the importance of meaningful activities that engage a person's attention and connect with their interests - from physical activity to social interaction, hobbies and more.  Finding moemtns of joy and enjoyment are essential to their quality of life.

Elaine Eshbaugh, PhD. - Associate professor of Gerontology and Family Studies at UNI, coordinating that program since 2007.  Currently on the executive board of the Northeast Iowa Agency on Aging and has written more than 25 research publications.

#5 "Dealing with Depression and Grief" - Elaine Sanchez
Depression and grief are frequently the result of coping with various kinds of loss.  Not only for the individual with dementia, ie memory, movement, decision-making and independence, etc.  But also for caregivers who may experience such losses as personal relationships, social engagement, autonomy, familiar routines, and possibly even employment etc.  Elaine will help participants identify aspects of depression and various forms and causes of grief in this process, emphasizing coping skills, self-help suggestions, reliable support systems and connections to resources.

Elaine Sanchez - Author, speaker and co-founder of Caregiver.com, an online caregiver support program.  Based on her experience of caring for family elders, Elaine developed a passion for helping others find hope, humor, and heart in care giving.  Author of the unflinching, honest and surpisingly funny book, Letters from Madelyn, Chronicles of a Caregiver.