Institute on Aging


aka IOA   |   San Francisco, CA   |


The mission of The Institute on Aging is to enhance the quality of life for adults as they age by enabling them to maintain their health, well-being, independence and participation in the community. We fulfill this mission for a diverse community by developing and providing innovative programs in health, social service, creative arts, spiritual support, education and research.

Ruling year info


President and CEO

Mr. J. Thomas Briody MHSc

Main address

3575 Geary Boulevard

San Francisco, CA 94118 USA

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Formerly known as

Goldman Institute on Aging

Mount Zion Institute on Aging



NTEE code info

Senior Centers/Services (P81)

Community Health Systems (E21)

Geriatrics (H94)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

The U.S. population is aging. In the San Francisco Bay Area, 12.7% of the population is aged 65+. As people reach their senior years, they experience greater frailty, dependence, and vulnerability to stressors. Increasing infirmity, dementia, and decreased mobility put seniors at risk of social isolation and depression, well documented as having a profound effect on quality of life, physical and mental health status, and longevity. 70% of those turning 65 can expect to use some form of long-term care during their lives. In San Francisco, almost one in three adults over 75 lives in poverty. Similar trends prevail throughout the Bay Area and beyond.

Far too many lives are impoverished by inadequate or inappropriate care. Yet older adults can be spared a great deal of pain, confusion, and indignity if they can be matched with appropriate resources and affordable supportive services. The Institute on Aging (IOA) exists to address this need.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

The Institute on Aging's major programs include adult day health centers, case management, intergenerational arts projects, home care, specialized Alzheimer's programs, counseling and support groups, and referral services. The Institute's many innovative offerings include the Center for Elderly Suicide Prevention, which provides a 24-hour toll-free telephone helpline that offers urgent therapeutic care and referral options for older adults who may be depressed, bereaved, lonely, abused, alcoholic, and/or suicidal. The Institute also administers the Consortium for Elder Abuse Prevention, a coalition of over 50 nonprofit organizations and city agencies united to combat elder abuse. Working in partnership with UCSF, the Institute's expert research department provides valuable information for clinicians, program staff, caregivers, and researchers, guiding improvements in care and providing information needed to formulate intelligent public policy related to aging. Throughout the year, the Institute also offers educational workshops targeting specific areas of need in the city, helping to promote better-informed and healthier communities. Established in 1985, the Institute has grown to become the largest non-profit community-based organization offering comprehensive services for Northern California's senior population and reaches over 20,000 older adults annually. The Institute on Aging continues to expand, enrich, and refine its offerings to meet the complex and changing needs of our city's rapidly growing senior population.

Population(s) Served

Care management, full medical care (acute and long-term), prescription drugs, adult day care, personal care, physical therapy, transportation, and home care for a census of more than 300 adults over the age of 55. Provided in association with OnLok Lifeways.

Population(s) Served

Structured, engaging activities and meals five days per week for individuals with memory loss, dementia, and physical frailties. Music and movement sessions, arts projects, board and brain games, daily group exercise, news discussions, and special parties and events accommodate the individual needs and specific abilities of clients, while encouraging a sense of achievement within a safe environment.

Population(s) Served

Counseling, individual and group grief support (both structured and drop-in groups), and bereavement debriefings for those suffering from traumatic loss.

Population(s) Served

Accredited by the American Association of Suicidology, Friendship Line is the nation’s only 24/7 suicide hotline for seniors. Both a crisis intervention hotline and a warmline (non-urgent calls), Friendship Line provides round-the-clock crisis support services that include active suicide intervention, elder abuse counseling, grief support, assistance, reassurance, and information and referrals for isolated older adults, adults with disabilities, and caregivers throughout the United States. In addition to receiving incoming calls, FL offers an outreach component, connecting with clients on a regular basis and helping to monitor their physical and mental health concerns. The call-out services act as an intervention to prevent suicide in the long term by improving the quality of life and connectedness of isolated older adults. Staffed by a corps of one hundred specially trained volunteers supported by IOA staff, last year Friendship Line handled 140,000 calls from throughout the United States.

Population(s) Served

Outreach and education to seniors and professionals, plus advocacy and strategic partnerships, to prevent and respond to the abuse of elders and dependent adults in the Bay Area and beyond. Although EAP activities are concentrated in San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, and Marin counties, EAP staff engage in numerous statewide conferences and actions.

Recently, the dedicated staff of IOA’s Elder Abuse Prevention Program have been among the first to call attention to the pension poaching scam that is devastating the financial well-being of thousands of elder veterans across the country. Partnering with the San Francisco County Veterans Service Office, they worked tirelessly to bring together for the first time a coalition that includes representatives from California’s Office of the Attorney General, the California Department of Insurance, California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform, and San Francisco’s Veterans Affairs Commission, Adult Protective Services, and other local senior services agencies.

Population(s) Served

Assistance for people with limited incomes to transition out of nursing facilities and back to living independently in the community, and services to aging adults and people with disabilities living in the community who are at imminent risk of institutionalization.

Population(s) Served

Personalized care for aging adults and adults with disabilities in the comfort of their own homes. Services include design and implementation of a personalized care plan developed by certified clinicians and expert caregivers in conjunction with clients and their families/support systems, as well as training, placement, and oversight of a staff of bonded and insured caregivers on call 24/7.

IOA also offers money management and fiduciary services that can include representative payee, durable power of attorney, trustee or special needs trustee executor of estate, conservatorships, bookkeeping, in-home mail management, bill pay and bank account reconciliation budgeting, medical insurance filing, and organization of tax information.

Population(s) Served

Conferences and other educational forums providing seniors, caretakers, and health and social service professionals as well as the greater community with information to improve quality of life and tools to make decisions about health care, housing, legal issues, and other topics concerning seniors. A key focus of IOA educational outreach is on topics related to loneliness, depression, and suicidal thoughts among isolated older adults.

Population(s) Served

Supportive, evidence-based therapies including cognitive behavioral therapy, problem solving therapy, supportive therapy, reminiscence therapy, sleep and relaxation coaching, pain management therapy, and bereavement therapy. Offered both in clients’ homes and at IOA.

In addition, IOA conducts a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (PsyD) practicum training program to help prepare the next generation of geriatric professionals. Year-long programs held at IOA’s San Francisco campus for both third-year and first-year doctoral students draw applicants from colleges and universities throughout the greater Bay Area.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

IOA aims to support older adults and adults with disabilities in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond in maintaining their vitality, independence, and involvement in the community, and to enable them to enjoy the highest possible quality of life while remaining in the places they feel most comfortable. We also strive to serve as a resource offering support to families coping with aging relatives. We aim to educate health, social services, law enforcement, legal, and other professionals and the general community about issues affecting older adults. And we endeavor to shape the conversation about aging, reminding everyone that the hopes, dreams, and ambitions of those over 65 are not only alive and well, but are as vibrant and strong as ever.

Under the IOA umbrella are multiple programs designed to prolong health, promote longevity, prevent abuse, alleviate isolation, and enable older adults to continue living independently and in safety in their own homes, with the highest possible quality of life, for as long as possible. IOA also offers information and support to families and caregivers struggling to care for vulnerable older adults, and to healthcare, social service, law enforcement, and other professionals who work with this population.

IOA Connect offers a comprehensive, toll-free, multilingual community resource providing a confidential single point of contact for information, referrals, assessments, and assistance with service navigation for seniors, families, caregivers, and concerned community members. IOA's adult social day program provides structured activities and meals five days per week for individuals with memory loss, dementia, and physical frailties. The Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) delivers full medical care (both acute and long-term), prescription drugs, adult day care, personal care, physical therapy, transportation, and home care for adults 55 or older. Care management by social service professionals involves in-home assessments and implementation/coordination of services needed to avoid institutionalization for frail individuals. Home care is provided by IOA's staff of bonded and insured caregivers. IOA's Fiduciary Services include bookkeeping and bill paying, Durable Power of Attorney for Finance, trusteeships, and court appointed conservatorships.

Friendship Line is a 24-hour, toll-free crisis intervention telephone helpline for isolated, depressed, or suicidal older or disabled adults throughout the United States. The Center for Elderly Suicide Prevention offers counseling, grief support, and extensive educational outreach to seniors, caretakers, and mental health professionals. Evidence-based clinical interventions to address the symptoms of depression and anxiety with which many older adults struggle as they cope with changes related to aging include problem-solving, mindfulness-based stress reduction, psychotherapy, reminiscence, cognitive behavioral therapy, and sleep coaching. The Elder Abuse Prevention Program promotes public awareness, educates seniors and professionals, and advocates for policies and services that increase safety for vulnerable adults. Conferences and other educational forums provide medical and social service professionals and the greater community with information to spark discussions and tools to make decisions on key topics pertaining to older adults and aging.

IOA has over 30 years of experience providing comprehensive health, social, and psychological services for seniors and adults with disabilities. The agency holds home health, community clinic, and adult day program licenses. Our 425 FTE (full-time equivalent) staff includes Licensed Clinical Social Workers, Masters of Social Work, Masters of Public Health, Medical Doctors, Registered Nurses, Licensed Physical Therapists, Doctors of Psychology, Masters of Business Administration, licensed fiduciaries, licensed and bonded home health aides, and more, with fluency in multiple languages and diverse cultural competencies.

IOA has a well-established reputation for successful collaboration with a variety of community organizations, municipal agencies, health care providers, and educational institutions serving the needs of older adults, adults with disabilities, and their families, partners and caregivers. Our education division provides Continuing Education Units for the American Psychological Association, Board of Behavioral Sciences, Board of Registered Nursing, the State Bar of California's MCLE, and Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly.

IOA has the organizational infrastructure and administrative/financial capacity to operate complex programs and comply with all applicable regulations and contract provisions. All compliance issues are addressed by an annual certified audit performed by outside auditors.

The agency's programs and staff have garnered numerous awards, including the 2017 National Association of Area Agencies on Aging Innovations Award; the 2016 California Department of Healthcare Services Innovation Award; a 2017 Supporting the Safety Net Award Honorable Mention from the national Association of Community Affiliated Plans; the 2006 Above and Beyond Award from San Francisco Adult Protective Services; the 2004 Social Responsibility Award from the California Association of Homes and Services for the Aged; and the 2000 Archstone Foundation Award for Excellence in program innovation.

IOA's internship program for psychology doctoral students won the 2015 Center for Excellence in Diversity Training Award from Palo Alto University and the 2013 Council of Professional Geropsychology Training Programs' Award for Innovative Geropsychology Training. Dr. Patrick Arbore, Founder/Director of IOA's Center for Elderly Suicide Prevention, has been awarded the 2016 Norma Satten Community Service Innovation Award from the Community Living Campaign; the 2015 Jefferson Award for Public Service; and the American Society on Aging's 2013 Mental Health and Aging Award. Shawna Reeves, MSW, Director of IOA's Elder Abuse Prevention Project, received the Service Recognition Award at the 2010 Legal Assistance for Seniors Annual Elder Abuse Conference, and a 2016 Commendation from the San Francisco Department on the Status of Women.

IOA's antecedents lie in the pioneering geriatrics programs of San Francisco's Mount Zion Hospital, which called attention to the special needs of seniors and inaugurated adult day health and home care services as alternatives to nursing homes. Incorporated as an independent non-profit in 1985, IOA has continued its legacy of innovation by creating unique models and services addressing all aspects of adults' needs as they age.

Highlights among IOA's achievements:
• Creating Center for Clinical and Aging Services Research with the University of California, San Francisco (1986)
• Launching the nation's first multi-disciplinary post-graduate fellowships in geriatrics (1987)
• Developing formal affiliations with On Lok to operate PACE (Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly)
• Receiving United Nations Award for Excellence in Aging for IOA's intergenerational arts programming (1999)
• Creating Northern California's largest clinical training program in home-based psychotherapy (2002)
• Partnering with California Pacific Medical Center to open Swindells Center for Adult Day Services providing activities to people in the beginning to middle stages of dementia
• Being honored by San Francisco Adult Protective Services with its Above and Beyond Award for contributions to the field of elder abuse (2006)
• Serving as one of the original four lead organizations statewide to develop the California Community Transitions (CCT) Medi-Cal program transitioning or diverting vulnerable individuals from nursing home to community living (2007)
• Opening new 50,000-square-foot building housing IOA services and 150 senior apartments operated by Bridge Housing (2010)
• Partnering with UCSF Geriatric Healthcare Center, housed on IOA premises (2013)
• Contracting with Health Plan of San Mateo, the first Medicaid plan in California to assume financial risk for nursing home use, to replicate our community transitions model in a managed care environment in San Mateo (2014). The Santa Clara County Department of Aging and Adult Services engaged IOA to launch a similar program in 2015. And in Fall 2017 IOA entered into an agreement with Inland Empire Health Plan to replicate the San Mateo model in San Bernardino and Riverside Counties.

Currently, thanks to a 2017 grant from the Sorenson Impact Center, IOA is engaged in research to evaluate and explore replicating across multiple geographies our unique nursing-home-to-community transition program. In addition, a grant from the Mount Zion Health Fund is enabling IOA to expand our Behavioral Health Services. We are also planning to expand our home care services.


Institute on Aging

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Institute on Aging

Board of directors
as of 08/29/2018
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Ms. Jeannee Parker Martin

LeadingAge California

Term: 2014 - 2023

Marlene Litvak

David Lowenkopf

Aaron Cooperband

New Aspect Financial Services

James Davis


H. Andrew Fisher

E. Anne Hinton

Theresa A. Matacia

Anita Borg Institute

Louise C. Walter


C. Diana Whitehead

Amy W. Zellerbach