The Coast News Group
Rancho Santa Fe Senior Center Executive Director Terrie Litwin is flanked by Monty Silverstone and DiDi Silverstone. Photo by Christina Macone-Greene
Community Rancho Santa Fe

RSF conference educates seniors on healthy aging

The Rancho Santa Fe Senior Center’s fourth annual Healthy Aging Conference opened its doors at the Fairbanks Ranch Country Club on April 27. The sold-out event educated attendees on a variety of topic matters to enhance the lives of seniors.

Rancho Santa Fe Senior Center Executive Director Terrie Litwin said the day was an educational event for area seniors featuring speakers who are experts in the field of aging. The afternoon also served as an opportunity for guests to become acquainted with local senior service providers.

A total of five guest speakers took part in the day. The first was the bestselling author and Holocaust survivor Edith Eger, Ph.D., whose topic was The Celebration of Life. Next up was Douglas Ziedonis, MD, who spoke on Spirituality and Aging. Following this, bestselling author and columnist Richard Lederer, Ph.D., took center stage for his lecture The Gift of Age.

After the first three guest speakers, attendees broke away for lunch. Following the meal, everyone returned to the conference hearing the clinical professor of medicine at UCSD Joseph Weiss, MD, who spoke about World Full of Wonder. The last speaker of the day was Lisa Eyler, Ph.D., whose topic was Healthy Brain Aging.

Lizzy Weiss, the assistant director at The Rancho Santa Fe Senior Center, said The Healthy Aging Conference never ceases to amaze her with much joy the event brings to so many seniors and local community members.

“One memory that particularly comes to mind this year is a woman sharing her personal story with the audience after just having lost her husband a little less than a month ago,” she said. “The share was prompted by a personal poem Dr. Douglas Ziedonis wrote after his mother passed. He prefaced that reciting this poem is something he never does, but he was inspired to do so from listening to our previous speaker, Edith Eger, Ph.D. Dr. Eger is memorable in her own right for being one of the most resilient women I know.”

Weiss said the emotion and the exchange between the woman in the audience and Ziedonis were palpable.

“I could instantly see the shift and the emotion of the room turn to one of empathy and compassion for this woman who has just gone through one of the hardest and inevitable factors of life … death,” Weiss said. “It’s a concept all too familiar for many in the room, and to have this event also be a source of support and community is one of the greatest gifts I can think of.”

In between guest speakers, attendees had the opportunity to visit event sponsor tables. Title Sponsors were Casa Aldea Senior Living and San Diego Sleep Therapy. Silver Sponsors included Belmont Village Senior Living and La Costa Glen. The Bronze Sponsors consisted of ActivCare Living, At Home Nursing Care, Brookdale Senior Living, Comfort Keepers, Care Placement, La Vida Del Mar, OneWest Bank, Olivenhain Guest Home, Palma de la Reina, Rancho Santa Fe Audiology, Seacrest Village Retirement Communities, Vi at La Jolla Village, Windward Life Care, The Estate Planning and Legacy Law Center.

“The Healthy Aging Conference would not exist without our sponsors, not to mention the time our speakers donate to be available for this daylong event, and the volunteers that are involved in helping throughout the day,” Weiss said. Each of these moving parts contributes to the whole of creating a memorable and inspirational day for our seniors along with providing them the valuable information of services our sponsors provide. Each sponsor is a company the Rancho Santa Fe Senior Center believes in and appreciates.”