Online September 21st through 23rd

“Caregiving in the New Normal”

The 8th Annual Williamson County Caregiver Conference returns online on  September 21st through 23rd, with 3 days of virtual expert presentations, 10:00 am to 11:20 a.m. each day.  Sponsored by AARP Texas, the free Conference will address “Caregiving in the New Normal” and feature presentations by regional and national caregiving experts.  
The annual free event was created to help ease the challenges of caring for an aging family member by providing unpaid caregivers with relevant information and vital resources.  Participants will discover local resources, acquire skills to better manage their caregiving situation, and connect with local experts on aging.

2021 Conference Presentations:






2021 Conference Presenters:

Tuesday, September 21st – 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.:
“Cumulative Stress and Caregiving Resilience: Put Your Oxygen Mask on First”
Lynn Hartje, MS, LPC-S
Bluebonnet Trails Community Services

     Lynn Hartje is a Licensed Professional Counselor, working for Bluebonnet Trails Community Services, the local Mental Health Authority.  He received his graduate degree from Texas A&M University and is currently a clinical consultant, leading the Criminal Incident Response Team, the Critical Incident Stress Management Team, and provides clinical training for teams across the state of Texas.
     Lynn was in private practice for the first 20 years of his career, working with adults and adolescents as a psychotherapist.  He then entered the public mental health services field as Behavioral Health Services Director at Collin County MHMR, then Helen Farabee Regional MHMR Centers, prior to his work with Bluebonnet Trails.
     Lynn has chaired or served on several statewide committees and has served on the boards of numerous organizations, including Texas Council of Community Services, Behavioral Health Director’s Consortium, United Way of North Central Texas, NAMI Board of Directors, Homeward Bound Homeless Coalition, and others.
     Lynn is certified to teach Mental Health First Aid for Youth, Adults and Law Enforcement; Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training, as well as Clinical Services mentoring and training. 

Wednesday, September 22nd – 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.:
“Maybe You Should Talk to Someone: Q & A with a Dementia Counselor”
Alyssa Aguirre, LCSW
University of Texas Dell Medical Center

Alyssa Aguirre is the Assistant Director of Dementia Care Transformation at UT Dell Medical School Department of Neurology and Assistant Professor of Practice for the UT Steve Hicks School of Social Work. She has been a practicing clinical social worker for 12 years and has dedicated her career to implementing evidence-based Alzheimer’s interventions, advocating for early diagnosis, and supporting family caregivers. She received her Master’s in Social Work from the University of Michigan as a Hartford Fellow and holds a Specialist in Aging certificate. She completed her undergraduate degree in psychology and graduated summa cum laude from the University of Minnesota in 2008. In her current role, she provides counseling at the UT Health Austin Comprehensive Memory Center and works on several research studies.

Thursday, September 23rd – 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.:
“Driving While Aging – Safety Considerations for the Aging Population”
Jennifer Perez Del Rio, OTR
St. David’s Adaptive Driving Program

Jennifer has more than 20 years of experience working as an occupational therapist and certified driver rehabilitation specialist at St. David’s Adaptive Driving Program in Austin, Texas. Jennifer specializes in driver safety assessments and training for clients of all ages and diagnoses, with a goal of helping families navigate the complexities of driving and independent community mobility. Jennifer enjoys reaching out to the community to educate clients and caregivers about driver safety so that our community safe.