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5th Annual AARP Livable Communities National Conference

Dallas, Texas: November 2017

The 2017 AARP Livable Communities National Conference was an opportunity for elected officials, planning professionals, local leaders and community advocates from throughout the nation to share ideas, best practices and solutions for making towns, cities and communities more livable for people of all ages.

General Session keynote speeches and plenary panels can be viewed via the links below. The breakout sessions were not videotaped. 

WATCH DAY 1 OF THE CONFERENCE: November 15, 2017

WATCH DAY 2 OF THE CONFERENCE: November 16, 2017

To learn about the featured speakers, click here. The schedule of events is listed below.


Attendees at the 2017 AARP Livable Communities pose with a mariachi band in the Trinity Groves area of Dallas, Texas

Photo by Tina Tran, AARP Texas

The conference's Greater Dallas field trip destinations included a visit to the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge and Trinity Groves area, where attendees encountered a youth mariachi band.


Schedule: Day 1

7:30-8:30 am: Early Bird Conversations

  • Livable Communities 101
  • AARP Volunteer Meet-Up      

8:30-9:00 am: Welcome!

  • Nancy LeaMond, Executive Vice President, Chief Advocacy and Engagement Officer, AARP
  • Joe Chow, Mayor, City of Addison, Texas

9:00-9:45 am: Plenary Panel: Leading the Way Forward in Transportation
Moderated by Nancy LeaMond

  • Roger Millar, Secretary, Washington State Department of Transportation
  • Seleta Reynolds, General Manager, Los Angeles Department of Transportation   

10:00-10:45 am: Plenary Panel: Building Momentum for Livable Communities Change in Texas
Introduced by Bob Jackson, State Director, AARP Texas
Panel moderated by Janee Briesemeister, Chair, Austin Commission on Seniors

  • Betsy Price, Mayor, City of Fort Worth
  • Nick Mitchell-Bennett, Executive Director, Community Development Corporation of Brownsville
  • Janice Sparks, Senior Staff Analyst, Houston Department of Health and Human Services

11 am-Noon: Breakout Sessions

  • Creating Healthy Places for Healthy People: Stories from the Road                                            
  • Age- and Dementia-Friendly Together on the Massachusetts Coast                                          
  • How We Roll: Bikeable Community Workshops in Minnesota                                      
  • Building a Livable Indianapolis Through Transit                        
  • Complete Streets and Vision Zero: Complementary Approaches to Making Roadways Safe
  • Meeting the Demand for Homes That Make Life Easier          
  • How to Transform Your City to Be Age-Friendly Within Days, Not Years                   

Noon-1 pm: Plenary Panel: A Conversation About Housing, Placemaking, Livability and More
Moderated by Nancy LeaMond

  • Julián Castro, former Secretary, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, former Mayor, City of San Antonio, Texas 

1:15-2:15 pm: Breakout Sessions

  • Meaningful Participation for Under-Represented Older Adults in Age-Friendly Communities
  • It Takes a Village: Building Collective Strategies to Support Multi-Sector Collaboration     
  • Sustaining Livable Communities Across Changing Local Administrations                                  
  • Evaluating and Approaching Local Livable Community Advocacy 
  • Strengthening Citizen Engagement at the Municipal Level       
  • Safer Communities in an Autonomous Vehicle World                   
  • The AARP Livability Index 2.0: Creating Communities for People of All Ages 

2:30-3:30 pm: Breakout Sessions

  • Complete Streets Implementation: Engaging Influencers and Residents 
  • Role of Statewide Partnerships in Livable Communities          
  • Missing Middle Housing: Successes in Advancing the Livable Communities Discussion
  • Building a Trained Advocacy Corps: Lessons from Urban Social Movements
  • Financing Strategies for Livable Communities                              
  • Tiny Homes for Seniors                                      
  • Building a Public Realm That Creates Real Value     

 3:45 pm: Depart for Field Trips and Activities


Schedule: Day 2                                                                  

7:30-8:30 am: Early Bird Office Hours

8:30-8:45 am: Welcome!

  • Eric Schneidewind, President AARP Board of Directors                                                                    
  • Jean Setzfand, Senior Vice President, AARP Programs

8:45-9:30 am: Keynote Address: Seizing Opportunities at a Moment of Change

  • Robin Chase, Transportation Entrepreneur          

9:30-10:15 am: Plenary Panel: International Age-Friendly Communities 

  • Kathleen Brasher, Principal Lead, Age-Friendly Rural Communities Program, Northeast Health Wangaratta, Australia
  • Stephanie Firestone, Senior Strategic Policy Advisor, AARP International
  • Natalie Turner, Senior Programme Manager/Localities, Centre for Ageing Better, United Kingdom

10:30-11:15 am: Keynote Address: Toward a Walkable City

  • Jeff Speck, City Planner and Urban Designer

11:30-12:30 pm: Breakout Sessions

  • Transportation Equity
  • NeighborWalks
  • Engaging Residents for Business District Improvements
  • Hear, See, Feel: How to Influence Cross-Sector Leaders      
  • Moving L.A. Into an Age-Friendly Future    
  • Future of Housing: Designing and Creating an Ageless Home        
  • The Age-Friendly Journey: From Assessment to Implementation 

12:45-1:45 pm: Plenary Panel: Community Resilience in the Face of Disaster  

  • Graciana Garces, Director of Community Engagement, BakerRipley
  • Harrison Rue, Community Building and Transit-Oriented Development Administrator, City and County of Honolulu, Hawaii 

1:45-2:30 pm: Closing Session: Conference Highlights and Looking Ahead to 2018


Scenes from in and around Dallas, Texas

Photo by Melissa Stanton

Click on the image to learn about these and other field trip destinations.