CDA Timeline

The California Department of Aging (CDA) was established on January 1, 1974, charged with creating policy and administering federal Older American Act (OAA) programs and services in California*. CDA supports California’s 33 Area Agencies on Aging to plan and deliver tailored programs and services to older adults, adults with disabilities, and caregivers in their local communities. Learn more

*In 1980, CDA was established as the single state agency responsible for administering the Older Americans Act (OAA) within the Older Californians Act (OCA). In 1996, the Legislature amended the OCA by establishing new programs and making structural changes to service delivery.

  • 1974

    The California Department of Aging (CDA) was established.

    On Lok Demonstration Project (Program of All Inclusive Care for the Elderly/PACE) was authorized under Medicare.

    The Burton Act for Aging assigned policy making and administrative responsibility for the federal OAA programs and funding to a new State Office on Aging.

  • 1975

    Adult Protective Services (APS) was authorized under Title XX of the Social Security Act.

    AB 1810 authorized Adult Day Health Care (ADHC) pilot projects that were administered by the California Department of Health Services (CDHS). These pilot sites formed the California Association for Adult Day Health Care Services (CAADS).

  • 1977

    The Multipurpose Senior Services Project (MSSP) was legislatively authorized as a federal four-year research and demonstration project.

  • 1978

    Governor Jerry Brown designated Disability Rights California (DRC), then known as Protection & Advocacy, Inc., as the organization within California to advocate for the rights of people with developmental disabilities.

  • 1979

    California Long-Term Care Ombudsman Association (CLTCOA) formed.

    Services & Advocacy for LGBT Elders (SAGE), a national advocacy and service organization to support LGBT elder issues, founded.

  • 1980/82

    Senator Mello requested the CCoA convene a session of the Silver-Haired Legislature, a forum through which older Californians could develop their legislative priorities. In 1982, the Silver-Haired Legislature became the California Senior Legislature (CSL).

  • 1980

    Formation of the Family Caregiver Alliance.

  • 1981

    Reauthorization of the Older Americans Act.

  • 1982

    The National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) founded.

  • 1983

    California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform (CANHR) founded to improve the choices, care, and quality of life for California's long-term care consumers.

  • 1984

    California Alzheimer's Disease Centers (CADC) established.

    The statewide network of Caregiver Resource Centers (CRC) established.

  • 1985

    The Nursing Home Patients Protection Act (NHPPA) signed into law.

  • 1987

    Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987 created guidelines for long-term care nursing homes that received federal Medicaid and Medicare funding.

  • 1990

    The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) established a clear and comprehensive prohibition of discrimination on the basis of disability.

  • 1996

    The California State Independent Living Council (SILC) established as an independent California state agency.

  • 1999

    Via the Olmstead Decision, the United States Supreme Court held that people with disabilities have a qualified right to receive state-funded supports and services in the community rather than institutions.

  • 2000

    National Family Caregiver Support Program (NFCSP) established.

    The Assisted Living Waiver Program (ALWP) created.

  • 2003

    The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act, also called the Medicare Modernization Act (MMA) enacted.

  • 2004

    Olmstead Advisory Committee established.

    Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) initiative launched.

  • 2005

    The Money Follows the Person (MFP) program authorized.

  • 2006

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention established the Healthy Brain Initiative (HBI).

    The California Aging and Disability Alliance (CADA), formerly referred to as the LTSS Exploratory Coalition, began meeting and incorporated a year later.

  • 2008

    The California Elder Justice Coalition (CEJC) launched.

  • 2010

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act signed into law.

  • 2011

    California State Plan for Alzheimer’s Disease released.

  • 2012

    Administration for Community Living (ACL) created.

    California’s Coordinated Care Initiative (CCI) established.

  • 2014

    Administration for Community Living (ACL) Caregiver Task Force on Family Caregiving established.

    Reframing Aging Initiative and Reframing Elder Abuse initiatives launched.

    AARP’s California Livable Communities Program initiated.

    Senate Select Committee on Aging and Long-Term Care established.

  • 2017

    The California Aging and Disability Alliance (CADA), formerly referred to as the LTSS Exploratory Coalition, began meeting and incorporated a year later.

  • 2019

    Governor Gavin Newsom signed Executive Order N-14-19 calling for the development of the California Master Plan for Aging.

  • 2021

    The California Master Plan for Aging launched and implementation activities immediately followed.

Celebrating 50 Years of Serving Older Californians

2024 marks 50 years of partnership and programs serving older Californians. Together, CDA and California’s Aging Network of programs and services have enriched communities across the state through improving the well-being and independence of older adults. We are celebrating our 50th anniversary by sharing stories that highlight pivotal moments from the past five decades and our ongoing collective efforts toward building a California for all ages and abilities.

Celebrate with us as we share stories from the past 50 years.

50 Years, 50 Stories

portray of Marcos Montes
Marcos Montes

Intergenerational Activities

"Seeing my (4-year-old) daughter confident and comfortable around older people is valuable."

portray of Absalon Gagaza
Absalon Gagaza

Evidence-Based Health Promotion

"This keeps me active and gives me something to look forward to."

portray of Hanifa Anwarzai
Hanifa Anwarzai

Adult Day Health Care

This is "a second home for us."

portray of Liz Saldana
Liz Saldana

Older Adult Mental Health Services

"It’s an awesome feeling when you get peace of mind back."

portray of Ricardo Benegas
Ricardo Benegas

Older Californians Nutrition Program

"The food is delicious, fresh, and helps me save money."

portray of Anthony Juarez
Anthony Juarez

Older Californians Nutrition Program

"The kindness and the care that you give in something as simple as a meal — it’s huge to us."

portray of Rose Glazner
Rose Glazner

Older Californians Nutrition Program

"The lively tunes had a delighted Rose dancing and gleefully singing along."

portray of Maricela Flores
Maricela Flores

Older Californians Nutrition Program

"Now I can create these beautiful memories."

portray of Vivianne Mbaku
Vivianne Mbaku

Legal Services

"We need to make sure we focus our efforts on those who need it most."

portray of Roberta Cruz
Roberta Cruz

Caregiver Resource Centers

"We feel supported, and we feel heard. We feel held, in times when there's no one else."

portray of Zia Agha
Dr. Zia Agha

Master Plan for Aging

"Patients do much better recuperating at home."

portray of Joyce Gandelman
Joyce Gandelman

Legal Services

"When I hear about someone taken advantage of, I’ve got to do something."

portray of Suzanne Chevalier
Suzanne Chevalier

Local Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program

"The greatest reward is seeing the smiles and hearing thanks for just being there for them."

portray of Kwok Tam
Kwok Tam

Health Insurance Counseling & Advocacy Program

"People are very thankful when they can see a light at the end of the tunnel. I do feel satisfaction for that."

portray of Jean Square
Jean Square

Digital Inclusion Program

"The best thing was learning Zoom and connecting with friends and family around the country."

portray of Chao Fong
Chao Fong

Older Californians Nutrition Program

"I reconnect with several former classmates and return home full of good food and fond memories!"