2019 Alliance Annual Dinner

October 15, 2019


225 7TH ST SE, WASHINGTON D.C. 20003

In the complicated and ever-changing field of health policy, we know that the work by experts, policymakers, press members, and other leaders is never easy – and never done alone.  That’s why we wanted to celebrate the people who have kept and continue to keep the conversation going.This year, we invited the health policy community to join the Alliance for Health Policy for an evening of reconnecting with friends and colleagues as well as an opportunity to meet new friends along the way.  The Alliance Annual Dinner brought together dedicated experts and emerging leaders in health and acknowledged those who recommitted every day to learning, educating, and sharing their knowledge of health and health care issues.


2019 Alliance Annual Dinner

©Andrew Noh Photography

 The Alliance Annual Dinner Awards recognized committed citizens, policymakers, media members, and leaders
who work toward solutions to improve health and health care through open, honest dialogue.

Bipartisan Health Policy Leader Awards

Visiting Research Professor, Georgetown and Marquette Universities

Lisa Grabert is currently research faculty at Georgetown University in Washington, DC and Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI. In addition to teaching policy to graduate students at both universities, Lisa researches quality and cost issues in the Medicare program, with an emphasis on hospital, nursing home and home health issues. Prior to her role as faculty, Lisa was a senior aide for the U.S. Representatives House Ways and Means Committee for Chairman Kevin Brady, Paul Ryan and Dave Camp. In her capacity on Ways and Means Lisa had responsibility over the Medicare Part A portfolio. Prior to Ways and Means, Lisa was a senior associate director of policy at the American Hospital Association (AHA). At AHA Lisa worked with hospitals on quality and payment issues. Prior to the AHA, Lisa was a policy analyst at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Lisa was with CMS for five years. At CMS, Lisa implemented national performance-based payment programs.

Lisa earned a Masters in Public Health, with an emphasis in Health Policy and Management from Emory University in Atlanta, GA and a Bachelors of Science degree with an emphasis in biochemistry and communication arts from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

President and Chief Executive Officer, Grantmakers In Health

Faith Mitchell is the President and CEO of Grantmakers In Health (GIH), where she was previously Vice President for Program and Strategy. Prior to joining GIH, Dr. Mitchell was Senior Program Officer at the Institute of Medicine (IOM) where she was responsible for the health disparities portfolio. Dr. Mitchell spent 12 years at the National Academies, both at the IOM and as a Center Director in the Division of Social and Behavioral Sciences and Education. She has also held leadership positions at the U.S. Department of State, The San Francisco Foundation, and The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Throughout her career, Dr. Mitchell has worked on the application of social science to domestic and international public policy, health policy, and programs.

She is a frequent writer on health-related topics and most recently published the articles “New Directions For Foundations In Health Equity,” with Patricia Doykos and Kristina Gray-Akpa, Innovations in Health Equity and Health Philanthropy, and Enabling Effective Health Philanthropy. Dr. Mitchell holds a doctorate in medical anthropology from the University of California, Berkeley.

Previous recipients of the Bipartisan Health Policy Leader Award:

  • 2018 Awardees:
    • Joseline Pena-Melnyk, Maryland House of Delegates, District 21
    • Lori Wing-Heier, Division of Insurance, Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development, State of Alaska
  • 2017 Awardees: 
    • Uwe Reinhardt, Princeton University
    • Gail Wilensky, Project HOPE

In honor of his 60 years of public service and leadership, the Alliance was honored to present this special award posthumously.

U.S. House of Representatives, State of Michigan

Bipartisan Congressional Staff Awards

Deputy Chief of Staff, Representative Raúl Grijalva (AZ-3)

Kelsey serves as Deputy Chief of Staff for Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva and has worked on Capitol Hill for over a decade to advance policies aimed at providing opportunities and economic fairness to vulnerable communities. Kelsey has demonstrated a commitment to working strategically on a bi-partisan level including her work around reopening of the Children’s Health Insurance Program in Arizona, strengthening maternal and Native American health, and promoting nutrition in medical education.

Kelsey a holds a Master of Public Health from George Mason University and is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma, where she received a B.A. in Political Science with a minor in Economics. Previous work experience at the National Association of Community Health Centers, and Central Oklahoma Community Mental Health Center sparked her passion for expanding access to quality health care.

Health Policy Advisor, Senate Committee on Finance

Stuart Portman currently serves as health policy advisor for the majority on the Senate Committee on Finance and previously served as a health policy aide for Sen. Orrin Hatch. He previously worked as a research assistant at the Department of Health Policy and Management at the George Washington University’s Milken Institute School of Public Health. Before that, Portman worked at the University of Denver’s Department of Biological Sciences in a forensic genetics laboratory. Portman received his M.P.H. from the George Washington University’s Milken Institute School of Public Health and his B.A. from the University of Denver.

Previous recipients of the Bipartisan Congressional Staff Award:

  • 2018 Awardees:
    • Melanie A. Egorin, House Committee on Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health
    • Nick Uehlecke, House Committee on Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health
  • 2017 Awardees:
    • JP Paluskiewicz, House Committee on Energy and Commerce
    • Arielle Woronoff, Senate Committee on Finance

Unsung Hero Award

Senior Social Science Analyst, Department of Health and Human Services,
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, Office of Health Policy

Kenneth Finegold is a Senior Social Science Analyst in the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (HHS/ASPE), where he works on prescription drug pricing, Medicaid, private insurance, and analyses of federal survey, administrative, and claims data. He is also the HHS Point of Contact for implementation of the Social Impact Partnerships to Pay for Results Act (SIPPRA). He has an A.B. in Government from Cornell and a Ph.D. in Government from Harvard.

Previous recipients of the Unsung Hero Award:

  • 2018 Awardee
    • Holly Harvey, Congressional Budget Office
  • 2017 Awardee
    • Ed Grossman, Office of the Legislative Counsel

The Alliance for Health Policy was honored to present a special

Excellence in Health Policy Journalism Award
in recognition of Robert Pear for his outstanding career
of reporting on health and health care policy.

Staff Writer, The New York Times

For more information about the dinner, please contact Kelly Appenzeller, director of external affairs at
202-789-2300, or kappenzellerallhealthpolicy.org