Press Release: Tod Lending to Deliver Keynote

Tod Lending to Deliver Keynote at Global Intergenerational Conference

Award-Winning Documentary Film Producer to Present at Opening Plenary of
2017 Global Intergenerational Conference in Milwaukee.

(Washington, DC) – Generations United, in partnership with St. Ann Center for Intergenerational Care, announced today that Tod Lending, an Academy Award® nominated and Emmy Award® winning producer, director, writer, and cinematographer, will be the keynote speaker at the opening plenary on June 15, 2017, at the Hyatt Regency in Milwaukee.

Lending is best known for his feature-length documentary, Legacy, which tells the inspiring story of how members of one African-American family, filmed over a five-year period, recovered from the loss of their child, broke free from welfare, overcame addiction, and escaped the specter of violence in their community. In addition to receiving international accolades, the film inspired the creation and passing of federal housing legislation on behalf of grandparents raising their grandchildren.

Lending’s work has aired nationally on ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS and HBO; has been screened theatrically and awarded at national and international festivals; and has been televised internationally in Europe and Asia. He is the president and founder of Nomadic Pictures, a Chicago-based documentary film production company, and the executive director of Ethno Pictures, a nonprofit film company that produces and distributes educational films.

“At a time of pivotal social and economic change, we are honored to welcome Tod Lending’s unique perspective on the essential role of older adults and young people in building strong, vibrant communities,” said Donna Butts, Executive Director of Generations United. “Through his gift of storytelling, Lending will challenge and inspire us to consider ways in which we can nurture dialogue, mentorship, and support networks that cross generational boundaries.”

Generations United’s Global Intergenerational Conference provides an opportunity for professionals and community leaders from all over the world to learn, network and share about innovative research, policies, and programs that connect older and younger generations. Themed “Generations Remixed”, the 19th biennial conference aims to spark new ideas, put a spotlight on best practices, and energize attendees to build stronger communities by tapping into the strengths of all ages.

Educational sessions cover a broad range of topics, such as Grandparents Raising Grandchildren; Community Building, Workforce Development, Technology Linking Generations, Health & Wellness, Lifelong Co-Learning & Education, and Creative Expression, Workforce Development and more.

Past conferences have featured remarks from distinguished speakers such as political scientist and bestselling author Robert Putnam, Emmy Award winning journalist Daniel Schorr, bestselling author Judith Viorst, Emmy Award winning journalist and commentator Juan Williams and others.

The four-day event, June 13-16, will attract a broad audience including community leaders, business executives, advocates, researchers, educators, funders, and caregivers. The multidisciplinary gathering makes for a one-of-a-kind opportunity for learning, networking, and relationship building across professions and sectors. Attendees are united by a common aim to invest in intergenerational solutions that improve lives, organizations, communities, and beyond.

Held for the first time in Milwaukee, the event will feature a special preconference, led by local host St. Ann Center for Intergenerational Care. During the one-and-a-half day workshop, attendees will learn how to build, open and operate a shared-site intergenerational day center that serves youth and elders, based on St. Ann Center’s award-winning model.

Additional preconferences include a half-day Grandfamilies Forum, focused on issues affecting grandparents raising grandchildren, and a guided tour to some of Milwaukee’s most innovative programs that are connecting older and younger generations.

“It’s vital that we value the gifts of older people and the positive effect they have on the growth of our children, and the power of our young to bring joy and a sense of purpose to older adults,” said Sr. Edna Lonergan, OSF, president of St. Ann Center for Intergenerational Care. “We are proud and excited to partner with Generations United in promoting intergenerational programs as a social, spiritual and economic solution that will strengthen our communities from within.”

To register or learn more about Generations United’s 19th Global Intergenerational Conference, cohosted by St. Ann Center for Intergenerational Care, click here, follow us on Twitter @GensUnited, or like us on Facebook at

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