Home / 2013 National Primary Care Symposium on Aging – Keynote Speakers

2013 National Primary Care Symposium on Aging – Keynote Speakers

Dr. Seiji Hayashi

Chief Medical Officer

Health Resources and Services Administration

Bureau of Primary Health Care

Dr. Seiji Hayashi is the Chief Medical Officer of the Health Resources and Services Administration Bureau of Primary Health Care. Dr. Hayashi oversees the bureau’s clinical quality strategy for the nation’s community health centers, migrant health centers, health care for the homeless centers, and public housing primary care centers. Dr. Hayashi is a board-certified family physician and has been caring for patients at a health center program in the District of Columbia.


Edwin Walker

Deputy Assistant Secretary for Aging

Administration on Aging

Administration for Community Living

Mr. Edwin Walker is the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Aging of the Administration on Aging (AoA) within the Administration for Community Living, Edwin L. Walker serves as the chief career official for the federal agency responsible for advocating on behalf of older Americans.

In this capacity, he guides and promotes the development of home and community-based long-term care programs, policies and services designed to afford older people and their caregivers the ability to age with dignity and independence and to have a broad array of options available for an enhanced quality of life. This includes the promotion and implementation of evidence-based prevention interventions proven effective in avoiding or delaying the onset of chronic disease and illness.

A strong and experienced advocate for older persons, he has served as the primary liaison with Congress on legislation related to aging services and programs. For more than 25 years, he has been characterized as a consummate professional civil servant who can be relied upon to represent the best interests of our nation’s senior citizens.

Prior to joining the Administration on Aging, Mr. Walker served as the Director of the Missouri Division of Aging, responsible for administering a comprehensive set of human service programs for older persons and adults with disabilities.

He received a J.D. degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law and a B.A. in Mass Media Arts from Hampton University. A proud grandfather, he resides in Fort Washington, Maryland.


Yanira Cruz

President and CEO

National Hispanic Council on Aging

Dr. Yanira Cruz is the President and CEO of the National Hispanic Council on Aging (NHCOA). She focuses on providing the Latino perspective on public health and older adult issues to increase policy-maker and public understanding of the needs impacting Latinos and disenfranchised sectors of our society, and to encourage the adoption of programs and policies that equitably serve everyone.To further these efforts, Dr. Cruz serves on the Boards of the Consumer Health Foundation, the National Senior Citizens Law Center, and the American Society on Aging. Dr. Cruz is also an appointee serving on the Advisory Panel on Medicare Education (APME), which advises the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services and the Administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on opportunities to enhance the federal government’s effectiveness in implementing a national Medicare education program. She holds an adjunct faculty appointment at The George Washington University School of Public Health.


Dr. Thomas E. Edes

Director of Geriatrics and Extended Care for Clinical Operations

Department of Veterans Affairs

Dr. Thomas E. Edes is director of Geriatrics and Extended Care for Clinical Operations for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). He has national responsibility for operations and management of VA’s spectrum of services, providing care to our nation’s veterans with complex, chronic disabling diseases in all settings, including geriatric clinics, adult day health care, home-based primary care, purchased skilled home care, veteran-directed home care, homemaker/home health aide, respite care, dementia care, and various residential care settings, among others. Under his leadership since 2000, the number of veterans receiving home-based primary care has tripled, palliative care has become an established program in every VA medical center, and medical foster home care has grown from a pilot to a national program in 33 states. Prior to taking this position at VA Headquarters, he was chief of geriatrics and extended care at the Harry S. Truman Memorial VA Medical Center and associate professor of medicine at the University of Missouri in Columbia. There he was instrumental in developing geriatric evaluation and management inpatient and outpatient programs, subacute care and hospice units, a geriatric fellowship program, and the advanced disease planning initiative. He was medical director of the VA Nursing Home Care Unit and the Home-Based Primary Care program.


Dr. Erica Taylor

Data Analyst

Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation

Dr. Erica Taylor is a data analyst at the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation where her primary responsibilities are serving as an expert in program evaluation and serving as the health disparities liaison for the Million Hearts Initiative which is dedicated to preventing one million heart attacks and strokes nationally.