2021 TALA Conference Agenda

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

7:30 – 8:30 am

Registration and Check-in- Welcome!


8:00 – 9:00 am

Nursing: Hollie Glover: “Ambiguous Grief”

Ambiguous grief (AG) is a different kind of grief than you may be familiar with. It is the feeling experienced from the loss of a loved one who is still living, This session will touch on how the Pandemic made us experience ambiguous grief.


9: 00 – 10: 00 am

Nursing: Jaime Cobb- “Innovations in Dementia Education”

Dementia Innovations’ mission is to embrace those living with dementia through its core pillars: Education, Community Collaboration and Dignity of Risk Lifestyle Education Dementia Innovations is committed to sustainable education solutions to better support multiple disciplines that strive to improve the care of those with dementia.


10:00 – 10:15 am



10:15 – 11:15 am

Nursing: Gail Snider – “Virtual Activities Programs”

This session will showcase Dementia Friendly Fort Worth’s virtual activity program, “Activities for People Living with Dementia” and emphasize how these live and pre-recorded programs can be used in the residential care setting to provide activities around the clock. Session will also provide insight into how these types of programs can help to combat social isolation, depression, and an overall decline in cognitive function. Special attention will be given to the positive impact on persons living with dementia and their care partners. Session will include discussion on the role that collaborations and partnerships played in the development of these programs.


11:15 am – 12:15 pm

Nursing: Hollie Glover – “Depression vs. Dementia: Differentiate Before You Label”

A session on the difference between Depression and Dementia and how Depression can lead to Dementia.


12:15 – 1:15 pm

Lunch on your own


1:15 – 2:15 pm

Nursing: Linda Abel – “Ensuring a Human Rights Approach to Persons Living with Dementia ”

This talk looks at the broader emphasis on advocacy, legislation, and care as it is now being emphasized as part of the UN Declaration on the Rights of the Disabled.


2:15 - 3:15 pm

Nursing: Constanza Pierre – “Infection Control in the Post – COVID-19 Era”

How we have changed our processes and procedures Post-Covid in infection control.


2:00 – 5:00 pm

Registration and Check-in


3:15 – 3:30 pm



3:30 – 4:30 pm

Nursing: Misty Miller- “Disaster Preparedness Concerns for Nurses”

What Nurses are still facing in light of the disaster preparedness of COVID, and other disasters which we may face.


4:30 – 5:30 pm

Panel: Gwen Wilburn, Misty Miller, Rose Saenz – Infection Control and Disaster Preparedness”

Panel discussion of what we learned Post-Covid in both infection control and disaster preparedness


5:30 – 7:00 pm

Board Reception -This is an invite only event. TALA Industry Partners, Board Members, and Nursing Conference Participants are invited to join.

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

6:30 am – 5:30 pm

Registration and Check-In: Welcome Nurses and Manager’s


8:00 – 9:15 am

Welcome and Conference Kick-off: Diana Martinez

Keynote Address: Dave Davlin - “The Game Winning 3” Making it Count…In Business and Life

Success can be defined in its simplest form as making life better for someone else. Whether it comes in creating a better product, helping to relieve someone’s stress or pain, bringing someone laughter or joy or helping someone get more out of their life, success is always about serving.

This being the case, the key to success in any business lies not only in the development of great products and services, but more importantly in the development of great people. In this insightful presentation, Dave Davlin shares three essential ingredients for developing a purpose-driven mentality to achieve a fulfilling career and balanced life.

This presentation is an hour of interaction, humor and audience participation mixed with a powerful message. It is a roller coaster ride of emotion that will find the audience engaged in hilarious laughter one moment and brought to tears the next. The audience will be challenged to make the most of every moment in order to develop themselves personally and professionally while creating value and making a difference in the lives of others.


9:15 – 10:15 am

Plenary Session: Carmen Tilton and Jaime Capelo - “Public Policy Update”

Carmen and Jaime will cover the actions and results of the 87th Texas Legislative Session, the impact of new legislation on assisted living communities, and what’s next.


10:15 – 10:30 am

Break- Relax, Refresh, and Recharge before your next session.


10:30 – 11:30 am

Breakout Sessions

  • Nursing & Dementia: Jaime Cobb - “Communication Strategies Across the Stages of Dementia”

This program will discuss the common changes in communication that occur for persons with dementia as the disease progress through the stages and best communication strategies that focus on individuals’ abilities, prolonging dignity and enhancing quality of life.

  • Marketing: Joyce Lamilla - “The Power of Moments”

A defining moment is a short experience that is both memorable and meaningful. Defining moments shape our lives. We don’t have to wait to make them happen, we can create them. Defining moments are created from one or more of the following elements: Elevation; Insight; Pride; and Connection. The Power of Moments is about why certain brief experiences can surprise us, elevate us and change us—and how we can learn to create such extraordinary moments in our life and work. Great experiences hinge on peak moments- we’ll call them “defining moments”; short experiences that are both meaningful and memorable. These defining moments shape our lives, but we don’t have to wait for them to happen. We all work to improve the experience of the people we serve. We want to create memories that matter. This session will focus on teaching the participants how to lift people out of their normal routine to create flagship moments to enhance the experiences of their team members as well as the elders they serve.

  • Leadership: Dave Davlin - “Rebound-Finding Victory at the End of the Madness”

The late Jim Rohn once said, “Life is difficulty mixed with opportunity.” While most individuals and organizations find it comfortable to thrive in times of opportunity, it requires specialized skills and a specific mindset to be victorious in times of difficulty and change.

In this presentation, Dave connects the “March Madness” created by the 2020 COVID-19 world-wide pandemic with the unexpected changes and challenges that can manifest themselves in conventional business and everyday life. He reveals seven principles that can lead us to thrive amid uncertainty and to be triumphant in the face of our own March Madness moments.


11:30 – 1:00 pm

Lunch on your own - Check out Kalahari’s plentiful dining options.

Decision Maker’s Lunch -This event is by invitation only


1: 00 – 2:00 pm

Nursing & Plenary Session: Linda Abel - “Health Maintenance Activities”


2: 00 – 3:00 pm

Nursing & Plenary Session: Michael Crowe – “Resident Agreement Terminations, Discharges, and Evictions”

One of the most unpleasant duties of an assisted living community is to terminate a resident’s agreement and to discharge the resident. Unfortunately, this action always comes at a time of acute stress in the relationship between the community, the resident, and, typically, the family. It is also, in most cases, a matter of extreme urgency. Compounding the already present anxiety are the legal nuts and bolt of how this can be accomplished. This session will attempt to relieve some of the stress by walking through those legal nuts and bolts and will try to demystify the termination and discharge process. We will walk through the regulatory issues that govern agreement terminations and discharges in Texas as well as the eviction process set forth in Texas law. We will also review some of the more common termination provisions in assisted living residency agreements. Hypothetical situations will be explored, presenting an opportunity for audience participation. Through this process, we will review some of the best practices for handling these situations.


3:00 – 3:15 pm


Breathe, Stretch, and Take a Break!


3:15 – 4:15 pm

Breakout Sessions:

  • Nursing & Dementia: Hollie Glover“The Heartbreak & Cost of Isolation: Strategies for Coping”

In December of 2020, the CDC reported that among US adults surveyed more than 40% said they had at least one mental health event in 2020. 11% of those interviewed said they had seriously considered suicide in 2020. The majority of those interviewed were over the age of 65. Approximately 31% of all suicides were health care workers last year. We are all in a state of “collective grief” from the past year’s events. We will talk seriously about the cost of the pandemic and how isolation has affected all of us. Practical advice to help us change our thought process and perceptions will be detailed.

We all watched it happen within our walls. How many of our resident’s and staff’s deaths were due to the virus and how many of them were Covid related due to loneliness and isolation? How many of our resident’s family members did we lose to a broken heart? Why were there more than 26,000 additional dementia deaths last year than in 2019? We will look at the latest statistics concerning residents, family care partners, and professional health care workers. We will discuss ways to equip our resident’s families as they work their way through the grief and loss of isolation.

Now, more than ever, we must practice emotional hygiene, but you cannot treat a wound you do not know you have. Many of us in healthcare have been working on autopilot for over a year now. Let’s discuss 5 real solutions and learn doable self-care and coping skills.

  • Marketing: Anthony Ormsbee-Hale – “Interview Best Practices for the Accidental Recruiter”

Finding qualified candidates is one of the most significant business challenges facing employers, and solutions are elusive. Yet many organizations continue to recruit using ineffective methods. In Senior Living, many of the leaders tasked to hire new recruits are also the nurse, chef or other department leader and lack the time and background that a full-time recruiter has at many large organizations. To win the race for talent, every business—no matter the industry or size—must deliver a spectacular candidate experience. Whether you are an experienced recruiter or you landed in the position by chance, this is a must-attend session. Anthony Ormsbee-Hale shares best practices and easy to adopt solutions that will improve your hiring capabilities and guide you through a candidate's job search; identify crucial touchpoints; and provide tips and insights on how to reach, engage and convert more qualified job seekers into applicants.

  • Leadership: James Lee – “Content Strategy and Thought Leadership in Senior Living”

Content marketing is a specific type of marketing around the creation and sharing of valuable and relevant material, such as social media posts, blogs, videos, podcasts and articles (as well as other content), to gain a clearly defined target audience and convert them to customers.

Imagine that you come across a website for a cooking event. You see digital banners everywhere hyping the upcoming event. You see pop-up fields to enter your information to receive promotional giveaways like a drink coozie; you can submit a photo of your favorite dish and hashtag the event for a chance to win free tickets; and you see flyers about the next event they're hosting after this one.

All of that is marketing, but it isn't content marketing.

Content marketing in this example would be a blog about the "8 most important cooking utensils that every kitchen should have"; a video about why good cleaning habits is essential for home cooks; a podcast episode with a well-known chef that helps you think through how to put together efficient shopping lists.

Advertisement’s hype. Content helps.

All advertisements are inherently disruptive. They pull your attention from what you are doing. Content marketing is a magnet. It draws people into what they want to be doing.


4:15 – 5:15 pm

Breakout Sessions:

  • Nursing & Dementia: Chastiti Horne – “Dancing, Digging, and Dementia: Programming Activities to Make Every Day Count”

This presentation will examine the everyday challenges that arise in programming for dementia residents, particularly during isolation. I will examine the prevalence of repetitive programs that are failing to stimulate the brain and, instead, locking our residents deeper into the dementia abyss.

My presentation will promote going beyond the normal and easy routes for programming. The presentation will walk you through unique activities to stimulate and motivate our most vulnerable population in the long-term care industry. Focusing on the individual, the resources and a great deal of creativity, the audience will have the tools to implement inspirational activities that both the residents and their families will enjoy. During the presentation, videos and photos of imaginative programs will be shared. Audience participation will assist in bringing home the importance of thoughtful programming for our ALF communities. The goal is to implement programs that will be a benefit and not a burden on the resident or on the facility staff. Making every day count, as the objective, ensures that the activity or activities will arouse and exercise the brain providing relief and enjoyment.

  • Marketing: Loree Tamayo & Jacy Crim – “Digital Marketing Strategies”

Digital marketing is essential to reaching the consumer in today’s senior living market. Understanding how to properly execute a digital campaign on the various digital platforms can by tricky. This session will provide the common mistakes, advertising options, the basics for the various platforms for reaching prospective residents and family members.

  • Leadership: Dana Garnett – “Preventing Stress and Hurried Aging: The Science of Self-Care”

As a leader in your organization, you are required to be fully present, not only on a daily basis, but especially when dealing with often challenging and long-drawn-out stressful situations. This can drain your energy, challenge your focus, reasoning and objectivity, and also put a severe strain on your ability to make effective executive decisions. Moreover, along with any issues stemming from outside your professional life, the buildup of stress over time can cause you career burnout, have a negative impact on your personal and professional relationships, and ultimately rob you of your overall health and happiness.

Often, we think we just need balance in our lives, and then everything will be ok; yet it seems there’s always something to deal with that keeps balance and ease just out of reach, effecting your ability to achieve your short-term and long-term goals.

But there’s good news. Based on findings from decades of scientific research, you can find that balance and easily manage and even avoid debilitating stress - whether during a crisis or just going about each day - it just takes knowing how.


5:30 – 7:30 pm

Tradeshow Kick-off and Opening Reception

Everyone gathers in the Tradeshow for the Kick-off and Opening Reception and recognition of our 2021 TALA Heroes.

Thursday, October 21, 2021

6: 30 – 7:30 am


Strike a pose!


8:00 am

Registration and Check-In


8:30 – 9:30 am

Breakout Sessions:

  • Dementia: Carrie Harper - “Drum Exercise: Music, Motion, & Memory”

Join us while we explore the use of research-based music therapy and drum exercise to increase socialization, range of motion and cognitive function. Drum and music programs will transform your resident’s optimism, recall and mobility with intentional rhythm patterns and drumming to generational music that residents will love.

  • Marketing: Chastiti Horne – “Social Media Marketing and Staying within the Legal Boundaries”

Social Media Ethics will give guidelines for using social media as part of your marketing and communications strategy, while ensuring appropriate use to prevent and mitigate facility-damaging postings.

  • Leadership: Dave Keaton - "Empathy in Leadership"


9:30 am

Tradeshow Opens

Feel free to make your way to the tradeshow when you are available. Meet our exhibitors and learn about their products and services. We appreciate their support for the Assisted Living Industry!


9:30 – 10:00 am

Break – Yoga Awards in the Tradeshow

Take a break and head to the Tradeshow!


10:00 – 11:00 am

Breakout Sessions:

  • Dementia: Julie Porter and Heather Armstrong – “The Value of Connection”

The Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman asked friends and family members of Texas residents living in nursing and assisted living facilities to share the effects of the suspension of visitation through an online survey. The survey was shared through the Texas Long-Term Care Ombudsman social media page, by long-term care ombudsmen, and on Texas Health and Human Services training webinars for assisted living and nursing facilities. We received 240 responses in July and August 2020. The responses tell of the heartbreak of separation, the physical and mental decline in resident well-being, feelings of powerlessness to protect their loved ones and hopelessness about being able to visit again soon. Based on an analysis of surveys completed by families and friends of residents, we will share what impact visitation restrictions had on residents and families, and meaningful ways to help restore the connection between residents and their loved ones.

  • Marketing: Greg Hunteman & Matt Schuler – “Dining Innovations that Drive Move-Ins”

As more people get vaccinated, COVID infection rates continue to drop, and isolation restrictions are being lifted, AL residents are looking forward to a good meal with friends and family. In this session, you’ll learn about the latest trends, best practices, safety measures, and new technology that will make dining a driving force in your community’s success and popularity.

We will share expertise from a range of areas and viewpoints, and we will explore ways to maximize your space with cutting-edge adaptable concepts, and we’ll share the full range of dining trends, touching on customer preferences and helping you to identify the best and most cost-effective changes for your community’s dining services program. We’ll not only discuss innovative dining options, such as food trucks, carryout windows, and food kiosks; we also discuss new options for dining layouts and design to maximize safety as well as comfort. Additionally, the session will address the world of outdoor eating and what it takes to have outdoor patios and other areas for dining that residents will love and that add to the ambiance of a great meal.

Wellness is on everyone’s minds, so we will talk about healthy dining options and how to appeal to a wide range of older adults, from the vegetarians to the wine connoisseur. We will look at design elements that can enhance the enjoyment of meals, dining, and the social aspects of eating.

Great dining amenities and options will play a key role in attracting new residents in the coming months, and this primer will help ensure that your dining program and facilities bring prospects to the table and convert them to satisfied residents.

  • Leadership: Chantelle Julian – “Leadership: Are you IN?”

This session on Leadership is designed to encourage those of us who are in a position of authority to understand the significance of our leadership style and how that impacts those we are engaged to serve through leadership. This session will focus on providing leadership with Integrity, Inspiration, and Investment; and the keys of Introducing Process and Investigating the Outcome of Specific Project Leadership.


11:00 am – 1:00 pm

Lunch Served in Tradeshow

This lunch is included with your reservation. Join us in the Tradeshow for:

  • Tradeshow
  • Pitch off
  • Raffle Drawings


1:00 – 2:00 pm

Panel: “Finding the Gems”

Discussion on the bright side of such a challenging year.


2:00 – 3:00 pm

Breakout Sessions

  • Dementia: Loree Tamayo – “Montessori Method for Dementia”

The Montessori approach to dementia, based on the works of Dr. Maria Montessori, focuses on enhancing the quality of life for people living with dementia by creating environments that allow individuals to do as much for themselves as possible. Activities with meaning and purpose, based on their needs, interests, skills and abilities are tailored to the individual.

  • Marketing: Jack Angel – “Beyond Driving – with Dignity (A Safe Drive Through the Aging Process)”

This presentation is a practical, entertaining and realistic approach to the issue of "senior drivers versus the aging process". It is not meant to be another safe-driving or driver-refresher program but rather it is designed to increase awareness concerning the onset of diminishing driving skills related to the aging process. The presentation takes a direct yet compassionate approach to the very sensitive subject of recognizing that someday it may be time to relinquish some of that treasured driving independence. The ultimate goal is not to take away driving opportunities of older drivers, but rather to offer suggestions on how to recognize and compensate for diminishing skills so that our seniors may remain on the roadways as safe drivers.

This presentation will improve TALA’s members understanding of options for their residents as it relates to safe driving skills and alternatives to maintain their independence. The material in this presentation is provided by Matt Gurwell, Founder of the national “Keeping Us Safe's” programs (https://www.keepingussafe.org/). These curricula have been recognized by the NY Times, the Kiplinger Retirement Report, The Huffington Post, the Canadian Medical Association Journal, NPR, the Alzheimer's Foundation of America, NBC and CBS News, and the National Institute on Aging’s Alzheimer’s Disease Education and Referral Center.

  • Leadership: Stephen Popovich – “New Technology and How it Helps Increase Revenue, Lower Costs and Mitigate Risk”

Technology has not served assisted living facilities well in the past, it has been hard to separate the useful tech from the difficult. However, the pandemic has elevated the need for technology in assisted living facilities and much has changed in today’s technology. This session will explore the latest technological innovations, and how they can be applied to be useful and promote user adoption amongst staff, residents, and families. Special emphasis will be placed on how useful technology can inform and provide actionable information that can increase revenue, lower costs and mitigate risks.


3:00 – 3:15 pm


On three… one, two, three…break! Recharge those human batteries.


3:15 – 4:15 pm

Plenary Session: James Balda – “Argentum Update”

Argentum will give a update on Global issues, and where the Senior Living Industry is headed as a whole.


4:15 – 5:30 pm

Plenary Session: Closing Keynote Dr. Michael Krol – Lessons Learned During COVID-19 and How they Help Prepare us for the Future.

Dr. Michael Krol, Medical Director of one of Texas's first COVID-19 isolation nursing facilities and Deputy of the Austin Public Health Nursing Home Task Force, reflects on lessons learned during the pandemic. Dr. Krol’s first-hand experiences on the front lines of fighting this virus inform his analysis of the challenges in responding to COVID-19 in long-term care settings, his assessment of the need to educate the public and broader healthcare system on the unique nature and capabilities of assisted living facilities, and his recommendations for how we all can better prepare for future outbreaks.