Dr. Jean Accius is a passionate champion and catalyst for changing how the world sees and values aging. He is an internationally recognized thought leader on aging, longevity, equity, health systems transformation and modernizing the delivery and financing of long-term care. With tri-sector experience and deep knowledge, he has a strong track record of building high-performing teams, managing cross-functional operations and processes, and developing innovative and actionable solutions, policies, and programs to close the opportunity gap so that everyone can live longer, healthier and more productive lives.
As President & CEO of CHC: Creating Healthier Communities, Jean leads a high-performing team that is dedicated to breaking down the barriers to health and empowering communities to thrive. With business acumen and deep experience across sectors, Dr. Accius understands how to develop creative and actionable solutions, policies, and programs that uncover the economic advantages of addressing disparities. He has a proven track record of collaborating across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors to accelerate the pace of change.
Prior to CHC, Dr. Accius was a member of the policy team for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, and spent more than 15 years at AARP, the nation’s largest nonprofit, most recently serving as Senior Vice President of International Affairs and Global Thought Leadership. At AARP, Jean led his team in creating a business case for diversity in the workforce and conducting seminal research on the contributions of the aging population to the global economy.
Dr. Accius is an Executive Leadership Council Fellow, member of G100’s Transformational Leadership Network, and holds a bachelor’s degree in hospitality administration and a master’s degree in aging studies from the Claude Pepper Institute at Florida State University. He also holds a Ph.D. in public administration from American University. Dr. Accius is a graduate of Leadership Maryland’s Class of 2014, the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health program on health reform, and Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business Corporate Innovation program.
Prior to this appointment, he served as a Senior Policy Advisor within the Disabled and Elderly Health Programs Group at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. In that role, he implemented, directed and monitored national grant programs and projects designed to support and improve the delivery of long-term services and supports within and across States. Jean also led a team in exploring potential implications for creating a seamless experience through benefit design and a path to affordable coverage by 2014 between Medicaid, CHIP, the Exchanges and Basic Health Programs for the aged, blind and disabled populations.
Dr. Accius sits on the Generations Editorial Advisory Committee for the American Society on Aging. He is an elected member of the National Academy of Social Insurance and also serves on the Board for the Florida State University Alumni Association. He holds a master’s degree in aging studies from the Claude Pepper Institute at Florida State University, and a Ph.D, in Public Administration from American University.
Diego Cartagena is the President and CEO of Bet Tzedek Legal Services. Diego has focused his entire legal career on addressing issues of access to justice. As a former Equal Justice Works Fellow and Teen Advocate with The Los Angeles Center for Law and Justice’s Teen LA project, Diego helped give low-income teen mothers and fathers a voice in court by providing them with legal advocacy and outreach in the areas of family and immigration law. Diego then went on to serve as Pro Bono Director for The Alliance for Children’s Rights, while simultaneously serving as the agency’s Probate Legal Guardianship Program Director.
Diego joined Bet Tzedek in 2012 as Director of Pro Bono Programs and was promoted to Vice President Pro Bono in 2015. Under his leadership, Bet Tzedek increased clinic participation opportunities for both law firms and in-house legal department volunteers. He also guided the building of Bet Tzedek’s Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) program, capitalizing Bet Tzedek’s organizational expertise in guardianship law. After witnessing the need for comprehensive legal services for small businesses and entrepreneurs in underserved communities, he launched the Small Business Legal Academies in 2016. In 2017, Diego became Bet Tzedek’s Vice President of Legal Programs. Under his leadership, Bet Tzedek launched a number of the organization’s flagship programs including the Preventing and Ending Homelessness Project, Bet Tzedek’s Rapid Response: Family Preparedness program, the Harbor UCLA Medical-Legal Partnership, and the SSI Advocacy Project.
Diego is a “Double Bruin,” having received his BA in American Literature and Culture from the University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA) and his J.D. from UCLA’s School of Law, where he concentrated on Critical Race Studies.
Diego is a board member of the National Legal Aid & Defender Association’s Civil Council, and a member of the California Access to Justice Legal Aid Funding Committee. He joined Justice in Aging’s Board of Directors in 2021.
Richard Alexander, Esq. is Chairman of Arnold & Porter, a member of the Firm’s financial services group, and is based in Washington, DC. His practice involves some of the most significant enforcement, supervisory, and governance matters affecting the financial services industry. Mr. Alexander’s practice includes representing financial service companies with respect to a wide range of issues arising out of the supervisory process. He has extensive experience in federal anti-money laundering laws and frequently counsels clients on the bank examination process. Mr. Alexander also has significant experience with respect to issues arising out of the conservatorship or receivership of regulated financial service companies. He regularly is called upon to counsel clients with respect to complex corporate governance issues, often representing Boards of Directors or their Audit and Special Committees. He has conducted many internal or independent investigations into alleged accounting fraud, legal, ethical, and internal control violations, self-dealing, and other wrong doings. An alumnus of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, he is a graduate of Brandeis University and received his JD from the Syracuse University College of Law.
Mary Jane Ciccarello is the Self-Help Center Director with the Utah State Courts. She was an elder law attorney in private practice in Salt Lake City, Utah, for several years and provided Older Americans Act Title III legal services to older persons in Summit and Wasatch Counties in northern Utah. She also served previously as the Legal Services Developer for the Utah State Division of Aging and Adult Services, a staff attorney with the Legal Aid Society of Salt Lake and Utah Legal Services, and the dean of students at the University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law where she now teaches elder law as an adjunct professor. A Fellow with the Borchard Foundation Center on Law and Aging since 2001, she has served as the foundation’s assistant director since 2007.
Yanira Cruz is the President & CEO of the National Hispanic Council on Aging (NHCOA). She also currently serves on the Boards of the Consumer Health Foundation and the American Society on Aging. Ms. Cruz has been appointed to serve on the Advisory Panel on Medicare Education (APME), which advises the Secretary of DHHS and the Administrator of CMS on opportunities to enhance the federal government’s effectiveness in implementing a national Medicare education program. She also holds an adjunct faculty appointment at The George Washington University School of Public Health. Before joining NHCOA, she served as executive director and chief operating officer of the Hispanic-Serving Health Professions Schools (HSHPS) in Washington. She joined HSHPS after serving as director of the Institute for Hispanic Health at the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) where she led numerous public health programs to improve the health status of Latinos nationwide. Ms. Cruz received her Bachelor of Science in Biology and holds a Master’s degree in Public Health and a Doctorate in Public Health with a specialty in global health from The George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services.
Verna Eggleston has led the Women’s Economic Development initiatives at Bloomberg Philanthropies since the inception of the program in 2007. The initiatives, part of the Founder’s Projects at Bloomberg Philanthropies, have impacted over 537,700 women benefiting over 2.15 million family members globally, ensuring their economic independence.
Eggleston currently holds a permanent seat at the United Nations Economic and Social Development Council (ECOSOC), representing Bloomberg Philanthropies in a consultative status and currently serving as an Adjunct Professor of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. Eggleston has recently been appointed to the Africa Advisory Board for the University of Global Health Equity in Rwanda.
Prior to joining Bloomberg Philanthropies, Eggleston worked for more than four decades in human and social development, both in government and the private sector. Eggleston returned to government as the Commissioner for New York City’s Human Resources Administration (HRA) for the Bloomberg Administration. She was the longest serving Commissioner of the agency, serving in this role from 2002 to 2007, and was the first Commissioner appointed to the position twice by the same sitting Mayor. Under her leadership, HRA developed “We Care,” a Mayoral initiative which received the 2008 Innovation Award from the United States Department of Labor. In 2016, Eggleston received the Civic Leadership Award from the Citizens Committee in New York and in 2017 received the Radical Generosity Award from the New York Women’s Foundation.
Eggleston received her Master’s Degree as a Mayor’s Scholar at the New School of Social Research School of Urban Development.
David H. Fry is a litigation attorney with Munger, Tolles & Olson of San Francisco, CA. He has frequently represented major national corporations in high level cases, however his pro bono work helped Justice in Aging and others in the well-known Martinez v. Astrue case. This case obtained $500 million for thousands of people who were wrongfully denied government benefits such as Social Security and Supplement Income Security (SSI). His firm received the National Law Journal’s 2009 Pro Bono Award for work on that case and, in 2010, he received personal recognition for pro bono work from California Lawyer magazine and the Wiley W. Manuel award from the State Bar of California. Fry is a graduate of Pomona College and received his law degree from Yale Law School.
Russell Hirschhorn is a partner in the Labor & Employment Law Department at Proskauer and is based in New York City. Russell represents plan fiduciaries, trustees, sponsors and service providers on the full range of ERISA and state law benefit and fiduciary issues. He represents clients across a wide array of publicly-held, multi-national companies and privately owned companies across a multitude of industries including, banking, finance and investments, pharmaceuticals, retail products and construction, to name just a few. In addition, he also counsels benefit plan clients on a host of compliance and federal and state government agency enforcement matters, including complex and lengthy investigations and audits by the U.S. Departments of Justice and Labor. Russell is management co-chair of the American Bar Association Employee Benefits Committee. He also writes on cutting-edge ERISA litigation issues, serving as the co-editor of the Firm’s Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Blog and as a contributing author and a past chapter editor to Employee Benefits Law (BNA Fourth Edition). Deeply dedicated to pro bono work, Russell was a principal drafter of several amicus briefs for the Innocence Project, a legal non-profit committed to exonerating wrongly convicted people. Russell has been recognized on several occasions for his commitment to pro bono work including by President George W. Bush in receiving the U.S. President’s Volunteer Service Award.
Dr. Sam Ho was most recently Chief Medical Officer for UnitedHealthcare, UnitedHealth Group’s health benefits division, and was responsible for the clinical, cost, and experience outcomes of 50 million UnitedHealthcare consumers throughout the U.S., including enrollees in commercial, Medicare, Medicaid, and military health plans. He was specifically responsible for executing strategies to help improve and transform U.S. health care.
He is nationally recognized in the areas of health policy, program innovation, and operational execution with continuously improved results. He has served on several National Academy of Medicine committees focused on improving health care in America, including aligning incentives in Medicare, and on framing Essential Health Benefits as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act reform law of 2010. In addition, he has won numerous national awards for innovation and for increasing accountability to consumers within the health care system.
Dr. Ho previously served as the Chief Medical Officer at PacifiCare/Secure Horizons, which joined UnitedHealthcare in 2005. Additionally, he served as deputy director of health, medical director and county health officer for the San Francisco Department of Public Health from 1988-1991. Dr. Ho had extensive experience in academic and family medicine and has held clinical faculty appointments at both the Schools of Medicine and Nursing at the University of California, San Francisco. Moreover, in 1981, he founded the San Francisco Family Health Programs, a multi-disciplinary non-governmental clinic, which provided primary care services to the most underserved San Francisco neighborhood.
A Honolulu native, Dr. Ho received his undergraduate degree from Northwestern University, with Phi Beta Kappa honors. He received his medical degree from Tufts University School of Medicine, and completed his residency in family medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Ho joined Justice in Aging’s board in 2021.
Robert Johnson is of counsel to the law firm of Munger, Tolles & Olson in Los Angeles and was co-managing partner for six years. He also worked for the United States Department of Justice Antitrust Division as a Special Assistant to the Assistant Attorney General and as an associate for Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton. Johnson is an active member of the American, California and Los Angeles County Bar Associations and a past member of the Board of Trustees of the Los Angeles County Bar Association where he served as Chair of its Taxation Section and Chair of its Employee Benefits Committee, receiving its Dana Latham Memorial Award in 1999. Johnson also served as Chair of the Taxation Section of the State Bar of California and received its V. Judson Klein Award in 1997. He is a Fellow of the American College of Tax Counsel and the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel. Johnson is currently listed in The Best Lawyers in America under Employee Benefits Law and Tax Law. He is a graduate of Harvard University and Stanford Law School where he served as an officer of the Stanford Law Review. Johnson also currently serves on the Board of Directors and as President of the Housing Rights Center, which is California’s largest nonprofit organization dedicated to security fair housing.
Gregory (Greg) R. Jones is an attorney at Polsinelli in the firm’s Health Care Litigation practice. He is a distinguished litigator with more than 16 years of experience representing clients in a variety of health care litigation matters. Greg represents a broad range of health care companies, including health systems, hospitals, medical providers, physicians, and physician groups, in lawsuits and arbitrations involving a wide array of disputes. Greg partnered with Justice in Aging as pro bono counsel in the Kelly v. Kent case in California while at McDermott.
Greg’s experience includes representing a broad range of clients (health care providers, hospitals, physicians and physician groups, independent physician associations and medical device companies) in lawsuits and arbitrations involving an array of commercial health care disputes, such as defending against claims for unfair competition/business practices, health insurance fraud, antitrust, breach of contract, false advertising and other business torts. Greg has also defended numerous clients in the health care industry in qui tam actions brought under the Federal False Claims Act, the California False Claims Act and the California Insurance Frauds Prevention Act.
Based in the firm’s Los Angeles office, Greg has litigated and tried cases in federal and state courts throughout the country, including California, New York, Texas, Nevada, Oregon, Colorado, Virginia, Washington, D.C., New Mexico and Delaware.
While in law school, Greg was the editor in chief of the Georgetown Law Journal’s Annual Review of Criminal Procedure. He also served as a judicial intern for the Honorable Paul L. Friedman, US District Court for the District of Columbia.
Nina Kohn is the David M. Levy Professor of Law at Syracuse University College of Law, and the Solomon Center Distinguished Scholar in Elder Law with the Solomon Center for Health Law and Policy at Yale Law School. She is also a faculty affiliate with the Syracuse University Aging Studies Institute, a member of the American Law Institute, and a former Visiting Professor at Yale Law School.
Kohn’s research focuses on how the law shapes and responds to the experience of growing older and the needs of older adults. She regularly writes for both academic and non-academic audiences, and her work has appeared in diverse forums including the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review, the Georgetown Law Journal Online, and the Washington Post. She is also the author of Elder Law: Practice, Policy & Problems (2d ed. 2020).
Among other public interest roles, Kohn is the Reporter for the Uniform Law Commission’s Uniform Health Care Decisions Act and Advisor to the American Law Institute’s Restatement of the Law Third, Torts: Concluding Provisions project. Kohn previously served as Reporter for the Third Revision of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act and has testified about guardianship abuse before the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging.
Kohn earned her A.B. from Princeton University and a J.D. from Harvard University. Prior to entering academia, she clerked for Fred Parker of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals and worked at Legal Assistance of the Finger Lakes as a Skadden Fellow representing nursing home residents and frail older adults. She joined Justice in Aging’s Board of Directors in 2021.
Hannah Lieberman is Special Counsel at the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights & Urban Affairs. Before that, Ms. Lieberman was with David A. Clarke School of Law as Associate Dean of Experiential and Clinical Programs.
For twelve years after graduating from law school, Ms. Lieberman was a litigation Associate and, later, a Partner, at the DC law firm of Shaw Pittman Potts & Trowbridge (now Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman). Following a move to Arizona in 1992, she followed her passion and became the Director of Advocacy for Community Legal Services (CLS), supervising the free civil legal assistance CLS provides to low-income persons in five Arizona counties and to migrant farmworkers statewide. After six years in Arizona, she became the Director of Advocacy and later Deputy Executive Director for the Legal Aid Bureau of Maryland (LAB), where she was responsible for the direction and quality of the program’s legal services, including major litigation and appeals in both federal and state court. Litigation that she led at LAB established important precedents in juvenile rights, housing, and constitutional protections for immigrants. Under her guidance, LAB developed new areas of practice and expanded its training program.
After 10 years at LAB, Ms. Lieberman opened her own consulting firm to assist legal aid programs across the country develop the quality and impact of their work. Her work focused on strategic planning, advocacy support, training and evaluation, and served a wide variety of clients, including statewide, regional, and city-wide legal services organizations, funders of legal services, and national organizations. While a consultant, Ms. Lieberman also served as the part-time Interim Director of Advocacy and Special Litigation for Legal Services of New York City – Bronx.
In 2012, Ms. Lieberman joined Neighborhood Legal Services Program for the District of Columbia (NLSP) as its Executive Director, where she led a significant program restructuring, substantially diversified and strengthened its financial base, improved the quality, impact and strategic focus of its services and rehabilitated its reputation in the DC and national legal services communities.
In 2005, Ms. Lieberman received the Benjamin L. Cardin Distinguished Service Award from the Maryland Legal Services Corporation. She is a graduate of Yale University and the University of Pennsylvania Law School.
Barrett S. Litt, Esq. is a partner at Kaye, McLane, Bednarski & Litt in Los Angeles, CA. He began his career as a criminal defense attorney, and worked on the Pentagon Papers and Chicago Conspiracy trials. He has spent most of his career litigating civil rights and constitutional cases in the civil arena. Many of the civil rights cases he has tried and settled involved multi-million dollar awards. In 2003, Litt was lead counsel in the McClure v. City of Long Beach trial, a Fair Housing Act case that resulted in a unanimous verdict and an award of $22,500,000.00 after seven months of trial, the largest Fair Housing Act verdict in the country. Litt has been recognized frequently for his public interest and civil rights work with the UCLA School of Law naming him as its public interest 1995 alumnus of the year. He was also named a “Super Lawyer” in Civil Rights/First Amendment and Class Action/Mass Tort actions for the years 2005, 2006, 2007,2008, 2009 and 2010. Litt is a graduate of the University of California at Los Angeles School of Law.
Ann Marie Marciarille is an associate professor of law specializing in health care law. Her research interests are in health care regulation and finance with a particular interest in health care reform. Before joining UMKC, she had a long career as health law attorney, including 10 years as a health care antitrust prosecutor for the California Attorney General’s office and several years as a legal services attorney specializing in health care matters.
Professor Marciarille is a summa cum laude graduate of Amherst College and a cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School, where her studies were focused on public interest representation. She also holds a Masters in Theology, specializing in ethics, from Harvard Divinity School.
She has published articles on Medicare reform, health care finance reform and health care provider quality issues. Professor Marciarille taught Health Law, Health Care Reform, Elder Law, Disability Law, and Public Health Law at the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, Boalt Hall/Berkeley Law School and Pacific McGeorge School of Law.
Paul is Justice in Aging’s former Executive Director and served as special counsel. Paul was the organization’s founding Executive Director from 1972-1980, and returned to lead Justice in Aging in 2008-13. In between, he was the director of the University of New Mexico (UNM) Institute of Public Law, and a member of the UNM law school faculty where he is now an emeritus professor. Paul is a past president of the American Society on Aging and a founding member of the ABA Commission on Law and Aging. In 2018 ASA honored Paul with its Hall of Fame Award for decades of effective advocacy on behalf of low-income seniors. He has also served as National Secretary of the Gray Panthers and is a past Chair of the Board of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare (NCPSSM); he is currently on the NCPSSM Board. Paul is a graduate of Duke University (JD) and the University of Chicago (MCompLaw).
E. Percil Stanford,Ph.D. is currently President of Folding Voice and also San Diego KIND Corporation. Positions at AARP included West Region Director, Interim Director of the State Affairs Department and Senior Advisor in the Thought Leadership Group. In his role as AARP’s Senior Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion he led AARP’s initiative to implement a strategy that would ensure equal opportunities for all employees and volunteers and ensure that services, programs and products would be user friendly for all.
Dr. Stanford began his career at Iowa State University and subsequently worked at the US Department of Health and Human Services in the Administration on Aging. While serving as a Congressional Fellow, he worked in the House of Representatives and Senate focusing on Veteran’s Affairs. As a professor at San Diego State University (SDSU), he founded the University Center on Aging, The National Institute on Minority Aging and the Gerontology Department and was Interim Director of the School of Social Work. Stanford continues to serve as Professor Emeritus at SDSU. He is a widely published author of several books and articles on a wide range of Age-related topics.
Leadership roles have been assumed in numerous professional organizations such as The Gerontological Society of America, The Association for Gerontology in Higher Education, The National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, and The American Bar Association Commission on Legal Problems of the Elderly. Dr. Stanford has been appointed to several National, State and local Commissions and Task Forces including White House Conferences on Aging.
Fernando M. Torres-Gil is a Professor of Social Welfare and Public Policy at UCLA, an Adjunct Professor of Gerontology at USC, and Director of the UCLA Center for Policy Research on Aging. He earned his first presidential appointment in 1978 when President Jimmy Carter appointed him to the Federal Council on Aging. He was selected as a White House Fellow and served under Joseph Califano, then Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (HEW), and continued as a Special Assistant to the subsequent Secretary of HEW, Patricia Harris. He was appointed (with Senate Confirmation) by President Bill Clinton as the first-ever U.S. Assistant Secretary on Aging in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). As the Clinton Administration’s chief advocate on aging, Torres-Gil played a key role in promoting the importance of the issues of aging, long-term care and disability, community services for the elderly, and baby boomer preparation for retirement. He served under HHS Secretary Donna Shalala, managing the Administration on Aging and organizing the 1995 White House Conference on Aging, in addition to serving as a member of the President’s Welfare Reform Working Group. In 2010 he received his third presidential appointment (with Senate Confirmation) when President Barack Obama appointed him as Vice Chair of the National Council on Disability, an independent federal agency that reports to the Congress and White House on federal matters related to disability policy. During his public service in Washington, D.C., he also served as Staff Director of the U.S. House Select Committee on Aging under his mentor, Congressman Edward R. Roybal.
At the local level, Torres-Gil has served as the Vice President of the Los Angeles City Planning Commission and a member of the Harbor and Taxi Commissions for the city of Los Angeles. He currently serves Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa as an appointed member of the Board of Airport Commissioners.
Dr. Torres-Gil was born and raised in Salinas, California, the son of migrant farm workers. He earned his A.A. in Political Science at Hartnell Community College (1968), a B.A. with honors in Political Science from San Jose State University (1970), and an M.S.W. (1972) and Ph.D. (1976) in Social Policy, Planning and Research from the Heller Graduate School in Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University.
Kate Villers, both as a non-profit organizational leader and activist in philanthropy, has spent the better part of three decades elevating consumer and community voices in the fight for all people in the U.S. to obtain quality, affordable health care. Villers is the president and founder of Community Catalyst, a national non-profit organization that builds state-level advocacy networks and consumer leadership to improve health and health care. Community Catalyst works directly with diverse organizations and coalitions in over 40 states, providing them with tailored policy information, financial resources, campaign strategies, advocacy training, and opportunities to work with local, state, and federal policymakers. Prior to founding Community Catalyst, Villers in 1982 co-founded the Villers Foundation and, in 1989, its successor organization, Families USA.
An urban planner by trade, Villers previously founded New Communities Housing Management Corporation and also was research director for the Interfaith Housing Corporation and the Massachusetts Housing Finance Agency. She has served on the boards of several national, state and local organizations, including the Associated Grantmakers of Massachusetts, Women and Foundations, Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities, Concord Housing Authority and the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy. She chairs the Community Catalyst board of directors, and serves on the boards of Massachusetts Health Care for All and the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare Foundation. She has a master’s degree in urban affairs from Boston University and a bachelor’s degree in American Studies from Grinnell College
Joyce Walker serves as the Vice President of Community Development for PK Management, LLC, a diversified real estate development and property management company. Mrs. Walker earned her undergraduate degree in Sociology and Business Administration from Knoxville College, Knoxville, TN. She obtained her graduate degree in Social Administration from Case Western Reserve University, Mandell School of Social Sciences, and post graduate work at Harvard University. Ms. Walker is responsible for the company’s media and public relations efforts, Crisis Management, Social Service department, Rehab and Construction support, grant writing, and community partnerships in 26 states. Mrs. Walker participates on local boards and volunteers with nonprofits in her community. Mrs. Walker joined Justice in Aging’s Board of Directors in 2021.