text: charting the future: innovation in dementia research, treatment and care

Friday, September 13, 2019, 11am-2pm
DoubleTree, South Portland ME

***Update: September 12, 2019*** Online registration is now closed. If you still need to register or have questions, please please contact Molly Stokes at 207-396-6547 or mstokes@smaaa.org.

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Join us on Friday, September 13th for our 2nd annual educational luncheon to understand the latest in the drive for advancements in dementia research, treatment and care at the Doubletree in South Portland. Last year, 220 guests heard from leading speakers in the field including both our state senators. 

This year’s topics will include the most current updates in terms of early diagnosis, prevention, and treatment, while also focusing on BOLD (Building Our Largest Dementia Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act 2/18), a federal legislative act sponsored by Maine’s senators: Susan Collins and Angus King, Jr. BOLD aims to create a national public health network to increase early detection and diagnosis as well as preventing avoidable hospitalizations.



Michael Sasner, Ph.D.
Research Scientist and Center Manager for the MODEL-AD Program at The Jackson Laboratory

Mike Sasner is a Research Scientist and the Center Manager for the MODEL-AD program at the Jackson Lab. He obtained his B.A. in Biology and Biochemistry from Colby College, and his Ph.D. from the department of Physiology & Neurobiology at the University of Connecticut. He completed his post-doctoral work in the Unit on Molecular Neurobiology in NICHD at the NIH. Since joining JAX, he has worked on the Mouse Genome Informatics project, served as Associate Director of the Genetic Resource Science program, and created and characterized mouse models of Parkinson’s disease with funding from the Michael J Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s research.

The MODEL-AD program (Model Organism Development & Evaluation for Late-Onset Alzheimer’s Disease) has the goals of: generating new animal models of late-onset AD based on human genetic variants; characterizing models in a standardized and rigorous manner; aligning pathophysiological features with corresponding states of clinical disease using translatable biomarkers; establishing guidelines for preclinical testing in animal models; and making all models, protocols, and validation data available without restriction. FULL BIO


Reina Benabou, MD, PhD
SVP & Chief Medical Officer at Cognivue, Inc.

Reina Benabou, MD, PhD joined Cognivue® in October 2018 as Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Benabou is an accomplished global clinical development and medical affairs pharmaceutical executive who is passionate about innovating in Neurosciences and creating value to make a difference in patients’ lives.

During her career, Dr. Benabou has been granted several awards embodying patient focus, cross-functional collaboration, high business impact and exemplary leadership.  She has a MD from Sao Paulo, Brazil; Neurology training, fellowships and a PhD in Neurological Sciences completed respectively at McGill University and University of Montreal, Canada. FULL BIO


Erin Stevens, DO
Geriatrician and Palliative Care Physician at Mass General Hospital

Dr. Stevens is involved with the Dementia Co-Management Clinic Pilot, an initiative to improve care for people with cognitive concerns or who have been diagnosed with dementia.  She is also an instructor at Harvard Medical School. 



Laurie Bowie
Executive Director of the Maine Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association

Cliff Singer, MD
Chief Geriatric Mental Health, Northern Light Acadia Hospital

Dr. Cliff Singer is a psychiatrist and geriatrician. He has been a physician, teacher and researcher for more than thirty years and currently serves as Chief of Geriatric Mental Health and Neuropsychiatry at Acadia Hospital and Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor and an Adjunct Professor at the University of Maine. He leads a multidisciplinary team in the Mood and Memory Clinic at Acadia Hospital and is principal investigator for the Acadia/Eastern Maine Medical Center’s Alzheimer’s disease clinical trials program. He has made national and regional television and radio appearances speaking on topics related to aging. He has published 38 papers and 19 book chapters and given more than 330 presentations at regional and national meetings. He has been selected by peers to “Best Doctors in America” every year since 2004.  FULL BIO


Susan Wehry, MD
Chief of Geriatrics, The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine

Dr. Susan Wehry is a nationally recognized keynote speaker and workshop facilitator on depression, dementia, and healthy aging.

Her presentations combine over 30 years’ experience with wisdom, compassion, and common sense, to engage attendees, help build skills, and use proven techniques. FULL BIO


Jud Knox
Chief Executive Officer, President and Trustee of York Hospital

Jud Knox has served as the president and CEO of York Hospital since 1982.  He has over 45 years’ experience in health care leadership. 

Mr. Knox earned a master’s in healthcare administration from George Washington University [in 1972] and is a [1970] graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University.  He also served in the U.S. Navy from 1972-1975.

Jud and his wife Laurie live in York and have six children. An avid reader, Jud enjoys family, kayaking, classic cars, carpentry and gardening.

Mr. Knox will moderate the panel discussion.


Tickets are $40 per person. Lunch is included. You may purchase up to 7 tickets at a time online. If you would like to purchase an entire table, or would like to purchase a larger quantity of tickets, please contact Molly Stokes at 207-396-6547 or mstokes@smaaa.org.

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Sponsorship for this event will directly benefit the Southern Maine Agency on Aging Adult Day Center Scholarship Fund. The Adult Day Center Scholarship Fund serves to bridge funding for families who need to enroll a family member with cognitive loss at our day center, The Sam L. Cohen Center in Biddeford.

These scholarships will relieve the stress of caregiving while families sort out funding issues with state or federal programs such as the Veteran’s Administration or Section 61 of Maine Care.

Attending the center allows the person with dementia the opportunity to socialize, build community and try new experiences in a safe and supportive place. The faster a caregiver is able to enroll their family member, the quicker the person with cognitive loss can begin building community and the caregivers get the benefit of daily respite.

Please contact Molly Stokes at 207-396-6547 or mstokes@smaaa.org for more information.


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