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AHE is delighted to host its first in-person convening, From Theory to Action: Implementing the Roadmap to Advance Health Equity,” since the fall of 2019. From October 23-25, Learning Collaborative (LC) participants, the AHE team, and AHE’s National Advisory Committee members will spend several days working together to realize our goal of creating a future without health and healthcare inequities. Please keep reading to see the agenda, attendees, speaker bios, and various resources that we’ve created to help attendees to both navigate and enjoy the beautiful city of Chicago.


Over the course of the Convening, attendees will:

  • Build relationships working side-by-side with other LC teams, the AHE team, and AHE’s National Advisory Committee members; 
  • Learn from each other via networking activities, breakout sessions, and updates from all LC teams; 
  • Support the LC teams’ implementation of The Roadmap to Advance Health Equity, including care delivery transformation, payment reform, and transformative partnerships with patients and communities; and 
  • Continue to build a culture of equity and antiracism in all aspects of our time together, including a 2-hour workshop on power led by AHE partner, The Justice Collective.

To see our sessions and how we are implementing our theme in more detail, please download the agenda (at right).

The Fall Convening Agenda reflects AHE’s belief that we can’t create, ideate, or change the status quo if we’re exhausted. We encourage attendees to check in on friends and family, take a walk around our beautiful city (with a jacket!), or maybe even take a nap during a break. Covid-19 ushered in seismic changes in how we live, work, and interact with one another. Being forced to relinquish the hectic pace of life reminded us of the restorative power of slowing down.

Fall Convening Risk Management Plan

We highly encourage attendees to take a Covid test before their arrival in Chicago.

Attendees should revisit the information in their Convening binder regarding steps to take if they begin to feel unwell or exhibit symptoms of COVID-19.

Current CDC COVID-19 recommendations

  • If you test positive: You should quarantine for at least 5 days, regardless of your vaccination status. Wear a high-quality mask if you must be around others.
  • If you have a fever or are still feeling sick, continue to stay home until 24 hours after your fever resolves and symptoms improve.
  • If your symptoms worsen, seek immediate attention from a healthcare provider.
  • If you have no symptoms but may have been in contact with someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19, you should also get tested and protect others as follows. 
  • If you have had confirmed or suspected close contact with someone who has COVID-19, you should wear a mask for 10 days around others in indoor settings and take a COVID-19 test five days after the exposure. It’s recommended to test sooner if you develop symptoms.

For more information regarding COVID-19, please visit: Chicago’s Covid-19 Resources website

While we have taken precautions to mitigate risks, everyone’s comfort level varies. Please respect the choices of others regarding mask-wearing and physical distancing. Contact AHE with questions.

Speaker Bios

Getting Around Chicago

Chicago is a great city, both in size and beauty—we’ve even got a Great Lake! (pun intended). That greatness, though, can make decisions about getting around and what to see slightly overwhelming. Please use this guide (as well as the Fall Convening Tourism Guide spreadsheet and the Fall Convening Google Map to help you plan some team-based or solo excursions. If you have any questions, reach out to us at:


Because we don’t do anything halfway, Chicago has two major international airports, O’Hare and Midway. Both are accessible by the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) and taxi or rideshare. Here’s how to get to Swissotel (323 E. Wacker Drive) from both.

  • O’Hare: Rideshare or a taxi can cost anywhere from $25-50 depending on the time of day you arrive. Because of construction on I-90/94 (The Kennedy), it can take between 35-75 minutes to get to the hotel. Be sure to keep this in mind when you plan your return trip at the end of the convening. If you want to make a new friend while you’re here, sit somewhere populated and just say, “Man! The Kennedy!” in an exasperated manner. You’ll immediately draw a crowd of Chicagoans trying to top each other with “stuck in construction” stories.

    You can also take the Blue “L” line from inside the airport to Clark/Lake or Washington, where you’ll take a scenic, pleasant ½ mile walk to the hotel. For Terminals, 1, 2, & 3, follow the “Trains to City” signs through the pedestrian tunnels on the Basement Level. Trains run often but be sure to allow extra time for unexpected delays.
  • Midway: Rideshare or a taxi can cost anywhere from $25-35 depending on the time of day you arrive. Generally, a trip from Midway in a car is about 30-45 min depending on traffic. Like O’Hare, it’s also easily accessible by train with the Orange line. Midway is the terminal stop, so the only direction is into the city. Get off at State/Lake and take a scenic, pleasant ½ mile walk to the hotel.
    On the way back to Midway, you can walk or take Bus #6 from Upper Wacker Drive/Stetson two stops to State/Lake and take the train to Midway from there. Trains run often but allow extra time for unexpected delays.

Rideshare, Bus, or Train

Uber, Lyft, and Curb apps are a good option if you want to avoid public transit. Please note that prices can climb quickly during peak times. Riding the bus is really easy in Chicago. Bus drivers are generally friendly and willing to give directions if you hop on the wrong bus. To use the CTA system, you can simply wave your credit card over the reader when entering the bus or train station. You can also purchase a Ventra card, single-use tickets, or day passes at most L stations. If you want to get outside of the city, you can purchase Metra Rail tickets using the Ventra mobile app.

One of the most accurate ways to track the buses is with the Ventra app, not Google Maps. We recommend downloading the Ventra App from the Chicago Transit Authority for up-to-date, real-time info. Buses and trains are still having pandemic-related service issues. Plan extra time to get to your destinations. 

Important note: Buses are exact change only. If you put $20 in the machine by accident, Chicago thanks you in advance for your donation. 

If you decide to drive into Chicago, we’re actually really nice people off the road. Promise! There are parking garages located all over the city. You might also find parking apps such as ParkWhiz and SpotHero helpful. Parking onsite at the convening space is available, but please note that there are no in and out privileges. 

Bike, e-Bike or e-Scooter

Divvy stations are available throughout the city for convenient bike and e-bike rental. While Chicago is becoming more bike- and scooter-friendly, it can be dangerous to ride on roads with heavier traffic. Caution is advised. Consider checking out The 606 (The Bloomingdale Trail) “A 2.7-mile elevated rail trail linear park running east/west on the northwest side of Chicago. It is the longest greenway project of a former rail line in the Western Hemisphere, and the second longest in the world, after the Promenade Plantée linear park in Paris,” says Wikipedia, which is never, ever wrong.

A good way to explore the city is with the bike path that runs along Lake Michigan and the entire length of the city. The water is refreshing, but not too hot and not too cold. Montrose Beach has a bird sanctuary, swimming, and places to picnic. Oak Street beach (downtown) is good for distance swimming and people-watching. If you’re thinking, “Why are they telling me about beaches in October?” It’s because Chicagoans don’t let a little thing like cold weather keep them from taking a dip in the lake! 

Resources & Highlighted Publications