Northern California (NorCal) Chapter
Geography Covered/Area We Serve:
Sacramento to South San Francisco Bay
In Northern California, we are building a strong network that includes holistic-minded practitioners across life areas.
Our small but growing group has been meeting since January 2009 as an "informal" LPN group with a goal of:
- sharing and learning from like-minded professionals
- building business development support and referrals
- fostering collaboration
- identifying best practices and innovative models
Current Northern California group members are located from Sacramento south through Silicon Valley.
We represent a broad range of professionals who specialize in working with people 50+.
Due to the distances that we span, our NorCal group currently meets monthly via teleconference calls and in person 2 - 3 times per year.
Although we come from a variety of disciplines, we each see that we have a role in helping our clients understand, plan for,
and meet the challenges of living during this stage of life.
Current membership includes financial planners, life coaches, therapists, physical health experts (ergonomics, occupational therapy),
gerontologists, educators, mature work force experts, philanthropy professionals, organizational development,
home remodel/aging in place contractors, spiritual/personal historian/ethical will/legacy planning practitioners, and eldercare specialists.
NorCal Chapter Leadership Team 2017
Sharon Ascencio, Finance Chair
Sara Zeff Geber, Program Chair
David Gill, Communications Chair
Donna Schafer, Membership Chair
Mary Radu, Chapter Founder and Past Chapter Leader
Kathy Bakhshandeh and Larry Jacobson, Leadership Team Members
Monthly teleconferences normally on the third Friday of every month from 8:30 - 9:30 PST
plus three in-person/live meetings per year, normally for 3 hours on Saturday mornings January, May, and September.
In-person meetings are held in Oakland.
Saturday, January 28, 2017 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
Topic: New Year. New ____
We used our time to get to know one another (and our businesses) better, set some personal business goals for the coming year, and do a little brainstorming on what we would like to learn from experts in 2017.
The main focus for the meeting was goal setting, and we came away energized and excited about the year ahead.
Saturday, October 22, 2016 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
Topic: Blogging and Beyond
Nancy Friedman, whose focus is on the written word, discussed the whys and hows of blogging (and promoting your blog): pointers and insights to help create messages,
attract and maintain an audience, and spread the word. She also discussed reasons for blogging, tools for publishing and promotion, tips for scheduling posts,
and ways to generate ideas – even when you think you can’t.
Nancy has been a professional name developer – a creator of names for companies, products, and organizations – for more than 25 years. Before that she was a corporate copywriter, and before that she was a magazine journalist and newspaper copyeditor. She started her blog, Fritinancy, in 2006, and since then has published more than 2,700 posts. She’s also a regular contributor to Strong Language, a sweary blog about swearing. She loves Twitter, doesn’t love Facebook, and views LinkedIn as a necessary evil.
Saturday, June 18, 2016 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
Topic: Conversations at the Death Cafe
Our June meeting focused on death and dying.
This was especially timely given that California's "End of Life Option Act" took effect June 9
Our lead speaker was Tess Lorraine who has been facilitating Death Cafe Sonoma in Santa Rosa, which
is an informal gathering for people of all ages to share their experiences and considerations around death and dying. Personal stories touch the hearts of the group and a broader perspective on how to approach end of life passages emerges.
In Boulder, CO, Tess collaborated with Broomfield County hospice in offering adjunct comfort touch therapy for hospice patients and trained craniosacral therapists in hospice care. She has been involved in developing share-the-care infrastructures for end of life. Presently she offers retreats to support a contemplative, in-death approach to designing advanced directives in Sonoma County.
Because the topic of death is often considered taboo in social circles, people don't often talk about this transition that is not only significant to the quality of our end of life but to the loved ones who are impacted. In the LPN session, we'll experience first-hand the death cafe forum, ending with a discussion about how you can get more involved in facilitating or participating in Death Cafes in your geographic area.
Saturday, May 21, 2016 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
Topic: Design Thinking for Business Success by Roberta Ryan
Business coach, Roberta Ryan, owner of Design Thinking for Business Success,
discussed how to harmonize analytical and intuitive methods in your business.
Saturday, March 19, 2016 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
Topic: Story Branding for the Solo / Encore Entrepreneur
Everybody has a story to tell, but many of us need help framing and telling it.
Janet Wentworth led an interactive presentation focused on "Story Branding for the Solo / Encore Entrepreneur"
Saturday, September 26, 2015 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
Topic: Business Problem-Solving Made Simple
Roberta Ryan, owner of Ryan Business Design, discussed "Business Problem-Solving Made Simple."
This fun and interactive presentation introduced an easy-to-learn business problem-solving model designed
to help business owners who are not as successful as they would like to be change their situation.
Saturday, April 11, 2015 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
NorCal LPN member Terry Lamb is a producer/coach at his company Life Stories On Video.
People want to know where they come from and the forces, incidents, and personalities that have influenced their lives. They want to know their ancestors' stories.
Terry helps seniors tell their Life Stories through the window of video, bestowing a priceless gift on their descendants by communicating their experiences and their insights in their own lively voice. They share their memories with the humor, pain, wisdom, and idiosyncrasies that family members will treasure for years to come.
As a speech and acting coach, Terry makes Life Stories on-camera comfortable for the teller and compelling for the viewer. For over 25 years, he has put people at ease on-camera, so they can share their dynamic and authentic voice with the viewer.
- Saturday, January 17, 2015 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
Sandra Clark, workshop facilitator and coach specializing in LinkedIn educationLinkedIn discussed this powerful business tool for growing
a personal brand.
- Learn how to create an inviting profile that effectively promotes yourself
- Find out how to choose proper keywords and place them effectively so you show up in searches
- Understand the implications of the information you share, including personal information
- Understand the impact of endorsements, recommendations, status updates, and group membership
- Saturday, October 18, 2014 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
Topic: Sara Zeff and Mary Radu led business networking with activities,
followed by a session with the NorCal LPN leadership team strategizing about development and leadership of an even stronger NorCal LPN in 2015.
- Saturday, July 12, 2014 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
Topic: Creating a One-Page Business Plan
Cynthia Riggs, MBA, Biz Diva, accomplished speaker, innovative educator, and dynamic leader, discussed what a business plan is, it benefits, and how to develop one.
- Thursday, June 26 - NorCal LPN SF Connect meeting
12 noon at AgeSong SF
Deena Zacharin, NorCal LPN member and Estate Planning Attorney, spoke about Estate Planning
and what it means at different stages and situations in life.
- Saturday, April 26, 2014 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
How Boomers are Changing the Last Taboo: Death
Suzette Sherman of
an organization that provides people with new ways to think about death and ideas for embracing the end of life,
discussed a number of tools she uses with her clients.
We also talked about our feelings about death
and what we have experienced so far in our own lives.
- Saturday, Janury 18, 2014 - Chapter-wide, In-person Meeting
Our presenter, Marie Theilade, Senior VP and Financial Advisor at Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, discussed a variety of SSA topics, including benefits and
eligibility, overall program stability and outlook for the future, how to decide whether to take benefits or delay, strategies to maximize benefits,
benefit taxation, working while collecting benefits, and integrating benefits into overall retirement planning.
After Marie’s presentation, Mary Radu updated the group on LPN’s new
Advocacy Leadership for Positive Aging (ALPA)
program, designed to teach service providers who work primarily with low- and moderate-income seniors information and skills to benefit them,
their work, and their clients.
- October 19, 2013 - Chapter-wide, In-person Meeting
Members discussed networking and brainstorming
- September 7, 2013 - NorCal Social
NorCal members were invited to Mary Radu’s home to socialize and get to know each other better.
August 13, 2013 - SF Financial Planning Association
NorCal LPN was invited to collaborate with the SF Financial Planning Association at its
August 13 luncheon program at the City Club in San Francisco.
This was an opportunity for our chapter to expand its visibility
in the Bay Area while networking with local financial, estate and gift giving planners.
Libby Palomeque, CFP®, Portfolio Manager, First Republic Investment Management
presented "Concrete Tips for Working with Grieving Clients".
- July 13, 2013 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
Topic: Heart and Soul: Marketing and Selling to the 50+ Consumer
Pat Sullivan, author, speaker and workshop leader, discussed how to turn fears and
misconceptions about marketing and selling into a rich, satisfying way to
serve others while increasing sales. She helped us identify our barriers
to confident marketing and selling and help us overcome them through some interesting and
- April 20, 2013 - In-Person Chapter Meeting
Topic: Sage-ing: Making Elder Years the Summit of Life
We discussed the inner work of Sage-ing and its potential of calling forth the joy, wisdom, and
vitality inherent in each of us. Elizabeth Bell, Ph.D., the founder of the Elder Wisdom Initiative, an organization
committed to altering the conversation about aging, discussed how she designs and facilitates courses
which acknowledge elder years as a time of ongoing growth and development, of deep
integration, alignment of mind, body and spirit and a time of harnessing a wisdom that
can benefit and gift the world.
In addition, we networked and discussed
of how people are planning to use the information from the April 5 LPN marketing webinar
with Sandra Beckwith.
- January 12, 2013 - Face to Face Chapter-wide Meeting
Topic: Using social media in marketing our businesses.
Kathryn Gorges, a marketing consultant and social media expert
dicussed the types
of social media available to us, how each is used, and how to determine the right approach for your business.
November 30, 2012
Topic: "Cohousing: Pro-active Adults Creating Their Own Retirement Communities"
By combining the privacy of individual homes with extensive community facilities,
cohousing communities create some of the most socially and environmentally sustainable neighborhoods
being built in the United States. Kathryn McCamant, a nationally recognized architect and co-author of the newly published
Creating Cohousing: Building Sustainable Communities, discussed her 25 years of
experience designing and building award-winning, sustainable communities throughout the United States.
Saturday, October 27, 2012
Topic: This in-person meeting focused on building our businesses through the use of the soon to be released LPN book -
LIVE SMART AFTER 50! The Experts Guide to Life Planning for Uncertain Times - and identifying related partnering opportunities.
NorCal LPN October 6, 2012 SOCIAL!
LPN NorCal members gathered for a social event.
- Friday, July 27, 2012 - Teleconference
Topic: Publish! (But don't perish!)
NorCal LPN's teleconference featured an expert who discussed what it takes to get the book out of our heads and onto the printed page (or e-page!).
He also discussed various ways one can publish a book in today's world. Fascinating!
Joel Orr is a writing coach and published author. He has written and published more than 10 books, some through traditional publishing houses and some self-published.
The most recent of Joel's publications are ebooks with a print-on-demand option.
He has studied writing as a creative outlet and also as a way to become a "thought leader" in one's chosen field.
Today he coaches authors - all kinds of authors.
Find out more about our teleconference leader: www.joeltrainsauthors.com/about.
- Friday, May 25, 2012 - Teleconference
Long term care insurance specialist Lee Abel discussed the critical nature of financing long term care and what you need to know now in order to help guide your clients and family.
She addressed the costs of care, ways to pay for care, insurance options and tax deductions, and the asset protection of
The California Partnership for Long Term Care.
- Saturday, April 21, 2012 - In-Person Quarterly Meeting
9:00 - 9:30 - Networking and light breakfast
9:30 - 12:00 - "Growing Your Business Through Networking and Interdisciplinary Resourcing."
We will be following a structured process for learning about what each of us does and how we can
collaborate in our practices and grow our respective businesses.
You will come away with new ideas for your practice and a much fuller understanding of how the practices and businesses of
other LPN members intersect with yours.
The fee for the morning program is $15.
After the April 21 morning program, we offered an opportunity for those LPN members who would like to participate in the 2nd annual NorCal LPN planning retreat to stay for lunch (hosted by LPN), and help us create a "dynamic and sustainable NorCal LPN for 2012 and beyond."
12:00 - 12:45 - Lunch
12:45 - 3:00 - A collaborative planning session for our growing organization.
We hope you will join us for both of these exciting programs.
- Friday, March 30,2012 - Teleconference
Topic: Deborah Abel, Certified Financial Planner, and Marc Kriessmann, Longevity Planner, discussed how their
firms help clients navigate the broad range of personal and financial transitions and challenges faced in the second half of life.
Who are these people called financial life planners and what exactly do they do? You'll have a much better understanding of what is now
called "Integrative Advising", the new role of financial advisors and the dramatic difference they can make in people's lives.
No, they won't predict the direction of the stock market - or give any hot investment tips
- but they will provide you with a picture of what you should expect working with a financial professional today.
- February 24,2012 - Teleconference
Topic: LPN e-book, LIVE SMART AFTER 50 -- Life Planning for Uncertain Times
Speaker: Doug Dickson
As most of you probably know, LPN (National) will soon be releasing an e-book with the greater theme of positive life planning for those 50+. It covers many different aspects of aging positively and truly has something in it for everyone. Doug is a past president of LPN. He is also the president of Discovering What's next (www.discoveringwhatsnext.com).
Each of the eleven chapters was written by a different person or small group of professionals, all LPN members including three of our NorCal members Sara Zeff Geber, Mary Radu and Donna Schempp.
Doug provided an overview of the book and some tips for how you might plan to use it in your practice - or to PROMOTE your practice.
- January 21,2012 - In-Person Meeting
Topic: Resistance to Planning: The Fear Factor
Speaker: Linda Blachman
Most adults know that they should plan for life's inevitable challenges and
changes, but they also resist it, with fear being a frequent subtext. Through
presentation, interactive exercises and discussion, we'll explore the complex
role of fear in life planning, identifying how it manifests and how we as
professionals can address fear to better prepare our clients and ourselves for
- October 28, 2011 - Healthy Sexuality in the Second Half of Life - Teleconference
Our guest speaker, Joan Price, is a Bay Area sexuality expert and prolific writer on the subject of sex after 60.
She has written two books: Naked At Our Age: Talking Out Loud About Senior Sex, and
Better Than I Ever Expected: Straight Talk about Sex After 60. Check out Joan's web page
and blog at www.JoanPrice.com.
- September 17, 2011 - Community and Housing Models for Today and Tomorrow - In Person
Susan Poor will be talking to us at our quarterly face-to-face meeting. Susan is a Senior Policy Advisor with NCB Capital Impact, and Principal of Susan Poor Consulting. She brings over 25 years experience in health care policy, planning, and administration to her work in community approaches to aging. Her practice focuses on cutting-edge approaches to supporting older adults who wish to remain in their homes and communities as they age.
- August 19, 2011 - Making plans for taking care of yourself and loved ones at the end of life
Paula Taubman, executive director of the Northern California chapter of
Compassion and Choices, discusses the importance of preparing advanced health care
directives so that your (and your client's) wishes are honored when you are not able to express them yourself.
- June 24, 2011 - Aileen Kim of Osher Life Long Learning - Teleconference
Topic: Aileen Kim discusses the work Osher Life Long Learning is doing in the Bay Area.
- May 27, 2011 - 50+ minus kids: Sara Zeff Geber - Teleconference
Topic: Fifty Plus, Minus Kids
Sara discussed the special needs of solo agers in the 21st century and what solo agers can do now to prepare for their elder years.
- May 2, 2011 - Lifelong learning - In Person
- March 25, 2011 - Carleen MacKay: Understanding The Predictably Harsh Cost of Life Stage Demographics in an Aging
Nation: What LPN Members Can Do to Help Clients Influence Positive Outcomes - Teleconference
- February 11, 2011 - Ageism - The psychology - Teleconference
January 22, 2011 - Strategies for Maintaining Optimal Health and Wellness in the 2nd Half of Life.
Our three speakers, Guy Mc Cormack on brain health, Nancy Schmit on physical health, and Robin Pokoloff on optimal nutrition,
are all experts in their field and will be sharing their knowledge and engaging us in some lively discussions about the latest
thinking in these fields and how we can all keep ourselves in the best shape possible - In Person.
- September, 24, 2010 - Geriatric Care Management, Geriatric Care Manager discusses the field of Geriatric Care Management
and how these professionals help families and individuals deal with the issues of later life. - Anne Rosenthal - Teleconference
- August 27, 2010 - Elder Law, Priscilla addresses trusts and wills through use of case studies and Q&A.- Priscilla Camp, Esq. - Teleconference
- July, 2010 - LPN National Update and Positive Aging Conference, An update - Barbara Babkirk, Andrea Gallagher, Mary Radu - Teleconference
- June 2010 - Person-Centered Elder Care, Panel of experts for an experiential and educational program, Brenda Besdansky, Priscilla Camp,
Mark MacAvoy, Donna Schempp, Peggy Simon - In Person
- March 19, 2010 - Ethical Wills, A tool for legacy development and life planning - Linda Blachman (member) - Teleconference
- February 26, 2010 - Gerontology 2010, Donna Schafer, Natl Assoc. of Prof Gerontologists - Teleconference
- January 2010 - Are You Ready for the Future?..The Impact of the Economic Crisis of 2008 on Our Clients, Jeff Chow - In Person
- December, 2009 - LPN National Branding/Strategy Meeting, Sharon Sokoloff joined us in our discussion/update (LPN National President) - Teleconference
- November 6, 2009 - Smart Brains, Insights on current brain functioning and how it effects our clients - Alvaro Fernandez - Teleconference
- September 29, 2009 - Developing Your Value Proposition, Presentation and Discussion Leader for marketing topic: Andrea Gallagher - Teleconference
- September 21, 2009 - Strategy planning for our group, subgroup to discuss direction.
This group became our core group to feed into national LPN Identity/Branding effort. (core members) - Teleconference
- August 2009 - ARE YOU READY FOR THE FUTURE?
Your Past Won't Get You There! Learn about the impact of economic and societal changes that are imminent Carleen MacKay and Mary Radu - In Person
- July, 2009 - Christine Kennedy of Leading Age Institute, *Local Silicon Valley Positive Aging luncheons,
*Regional monthly Positive Aging Forums and *National Positive Aging Conference December 2009 / national virtual community building - Teleconference
- June 19, 2009 - Coming of Age, Dick Goldberg on the national "Coming of Age" initiative.
Megan McCarthy and Susan Pool added perspectives about the SF/Alameda County project that is locally underway. (members) - Teleconference
- May 2009 - Village Movement/SF Village, Susan Poor lead a discussion of the growing "village"
movement, an aging-in-community model pioneered by Beacon Hill Village in Boston 2001 - Teleconference
- April, 2009 - Silicon Valley Salon's, Chris Kennedy shared information about the monthly Salon meeting of end users and life planning professionals
that she is developing in Silicon Valley - Teleconference