National Advisory Board

Dr. Gail Wilensky

Gail
Wilensky
Biography 

Dr. Wilensky has been a senior fellow at Project HOPE, an international health foundation, since 1993.

Research Interests 

Project HOPE

Dr. Wilensky has been a senior fellow at Project HOPE, an international health foundation, since 1993. From 2008 to 2009, Dr. Wilensky was President of the Department of Defense Health Board and chaired its sub-committee on health care delivery. From December 2006 to December 2007, Dr. Wilensky co-chaired the Department of Defense Task Force on the Future of Military Health Care. During 2007 she also served as a commissioner on the President's Commission on Care for America's Returning Wounded Warriors. From May 2001 to May 2003, she was the Co-Chair of the President's Task Force to Improve Health Care for our Nation's Veterans. From 1997 to 2001, she was also Chair of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission. From 1992 to 1993, Dr. Wilensky served as the Deputy Assistant to President George H. W. Bush for policy development, and from 1990 to 1992, she was the Administrator of the Health Care Financing Administration (now known as the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) directing the Medicaid and Medicare programs for the United States. Dr. Wilensky has satisfied all the core director criteria set forth in the skills matrix. She also is a nationally recognized health care economist and has health care policy expertise. Dr. Wilensky currently serves as a director of Quest Diagnostics Incorporated. In the past five years, she has also served as a director of Cephalon, Inc., Gentiva Health Services, Inc. and SRA International Inc.

Dr. Wilensky testifies frequently before Congressional committees, serves as an advisor to members of Congress and other elected officials, speaks nationally and internationally before professional, business and consumer groups. She received a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a Ph.D. in economics at the University of Michigan and has received several honorary degrees.

Dr. Antonia Villarruel

Antonia
Villaruel
Biography 

Professor, Nola J. Pender Collegiate Chair, Associate Dean for Research and Global Affairs at The University of Michigan School of Nursing, and Dean of the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing.

Research Interests 

University of Michigan

Professor, Nola J. Pender Collegiate Chair, Associate Dean for Research and Global Affairs at The University of Michigan School of Nursing, and Dean of the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing. As a bilingual and bicultural nurse researcher, she has extensive research and practice experience with diverse Latino and Mexican populations and communities, and health promotion and health disparities research and practice. She incorporates a community-based participatory approach to her research. Specifically, her research focuses on the development and testing of interventions to reduce sexual risk behaviors among Mexican and Latino youth. She has been the PI and Co-PI of seven randomized clinical trials concerned with reducing sexual and other risk behaviors. As part of this program of research, she developed an efficacious program to reduce sexual risk behavior among Latino youth – entitled Cuídate!. This program is disseminated nationally by the CDC as part of their Diffusion of Evidence Based Interventions program. In addition to her research, Dr. Villarruel has assumed leadership in many national and local organizations. She is the past-President and founding member of the National Coalition of Ethnic Minority Nursing Associations and past-President of the National Association of Hispanic Nurses. She has served as a member of the HRSA/CDC HIV/STD Advisory Council, the HRSA National Advisory Council for Nursing Education and Practice, and also as a charter member of the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services’ Advisory Council on Minority Health and Health Disparities. She currently serves on the IOM Board of Population Health and Public Health Practice and chairs the IOM Roundtable on the Elimination of Health Disparities and the Advancement of Health Equity. She is a member of the Strategic Advisory Council of the AARP/RWJ Center for Health Policy Future of Nursing Campaign for Action and co-chairs the Diversity Task Committee. She has received numerous honors and awards including membership in the Institute of Medicine and selection as a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing.

Dr. Mark A. Peterson

Mark
Peterson
Biography 

Mark A. Peterson, Ph.D. (University of Michigan) is Professor of Public Policy, Political Science, and Law, and former Chair and incoming Chair of the Department of Public Policy in the UCLA Meyer and Renee Luskin School of Public Affairs.

Research Interests 

Professor, Public Policy, Political Science, and Law
University of California, Los Angeles

Mark A. Peterson, Ph.D. (University of Michigan) is Professor of Public Policy, Political Science, and Law, and former Chair and incoming Chair of the Department of Public Policy in the UCLA Meyer and Renee Luskin School of Public Affairs. A specialist on American national institutions and the policy process, his scholarship focuses on interactions among the Presidency, Congress, and interest groups, evaluating their implications for policy making within the general domain of domestic policy and with specific attention to national health care policy and Medicare reform, as well as the role of research evidence in policy making. Professor Peterson was a founding team member of the Blue Sky Health Initiative to transform the U.S. health and health care system, which advised Congress and the executive branch on the inclusion of population health strategies in the Affordable Care Act. As an American Political Science Association (APSA) Congressional Fellow, he was a Legislative Assistant for Health Policy for U.S. Senator Tom Daschle. He also served on the National Academy of Social Insurance’s Study Panel on Medicare and Markets and on the Health Policy Advisory Committee for the 2008 Barack Obama for President Campaign. He chairs the National Advisory Committees for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Scholars in Health Policy Research program and its Changes in Health Care Financing and Organization (HCFO) program, and is a member of the National Advisory Board or Committee for two other RWJF programs—the Center for Health Policy at the University of New Mexico and the Investigator Awards in Health Policy Research Program. A past elected member of the Council of the American Political Science Association, Professor Peterson is a founding member of the Association’s Organized Section on Health Politics and Policy, and was elected President of its Organized Section on Public Policy. He serves on the University of California Academic Senate’s Health Care Task Force and on the UC Office of the President’s Health Benefits Work Group. At UCLA he is the Co-Director of the Policy Core for the Center for HIV Identification, Prevention, and Treatment Services (CHIPTS); a Faculty Associate of the Center for Health Policy Research and the Institute for Society & Genetics; a member of faculty advisory committees, including for the Center for American Politics and Public Policy; and a member of the Policy and Community Advisory Committee for the UCLA site of the RWJF Clinical Scholars Program. He is an elected member of the National Academy of Social Insurance and recipient of a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Investigator Award in Health Policy Research.

See: On-line bio at UCLA Luskin School:

Dr. Marie T. Mora

Marie
Mora
Biography 

Dr. Marie T. Mora earned her Ph.D. in Economics from Texas A&M University and is currently a Professor of Economics at The University of Texas-Pan American.

Research Interests 

University of Texas-Pan American

Dr. Marie T. Mora earned her Ph.D. in Economics from Texas A&M University and is currently a Professor of Economics at The University of Texas-Pan American.

Dr. Mora’s research interests are in labor economics, particularly in the areas of Hispanic labor-market outcomes (including self-employment), the economics of the U.S.-Mexico border, and the economics of education. She has published more than 30 refereed journal articles on these topics, including in Industrial Relations, American Economic Review, Social Science Quarterly, Economics of Education Review, among others.

She is presently co-authoring a book (with Alberto Dávila) on Hispanic Entrepreneurs in the 2000s, under contract with Stanford University Press, and co-editing one on "The Economic Status of the Hispanic Population: Selected Essays", for Information Age Publishing. Her first co-authored/co-edited book, "Labor Market Issues along the U.S.-Mexico Border", was published by the University of Arizona Press in late 2009.

Professor Bette Keltner Jacobs

Bette
Jacobs
Biography 

Bette Jacobs is Georgetown University Professor of Health Systems Administration and Distinguished Scholar at the O’Neill Health Institute for Global and National Health Law.

Her current scholarship is on non-profit governance and the common good.

Dr. Jacobs has served in leaders hip roles in private industry, as an academic dean and in starting non-profit organizations.

Research Interests 

Georgetown University

Bette Jacobs is Georgetown University Professor of Health Systems Administration and Distinguished Scholar at the O’Neill Health Institute for Global and National Health Law.

Her current scholarship is on non-profit governance and the common good.

Dr. Jacobs has served in leaders hip roles in private industry, as an academic dean and in starting non-profit organizations.

Dr. Jacobs is a member of Cherokee Nation and has served on numerous board s supporting health and well being for indigenous people.

Dr. Joxel Garcia, M.D., M.B.A

Joxel
Garcia
Biography 

Dr. Garcia is a physician and a former four-star admiral in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. He served as the thirteenth Assistant Secretary for Health (ASH), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services from March 13, 2008 to January 20, 2009. Most recently he served as the President of the Ponce School of Medicine, Ponce, Puerto Rico.

Research Interests 

Director, DC Department of Health

Dr. Garcia is a physician and a former four-star admiral in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. He served as the thirteenth Assistant Secretary for Health (ASH), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services from March 13, 2008 to January 20, 2009. Most recently he served as the President of the Ponce School of Medicine, Ponce, Puerto Rico.

From 1999 to 2003 Dr. Garcia was Commissioner of Public Health for the state of Connecticut. During that time, he instituted a bioterrorism preparedness program, launched the national smallpox preparation and vaccination plans, and led Connecticut’s response to the anthrax attack. He also created urban health initiatives for disease prevention, and managed improvements in health literacy and economic conditions.

From 2003 to 2006, Dr. García served as Deputy Director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO)/Regional Office Western Hemisphere for the World Health Organization. As Deputy Director, García was responsible for setting the general direction and strategy of the organization alongside the director and for providing leadership and advice on all policy decisions. He was also responsible for maintaining effective relations between the organization and the governments of the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico.

Dr. Garcia was nominated for appointment by President George W. Bush for the position of Assistant Secretary for Health with the rank of admiral in the Public Health Service Commissioned Corps in late 2007. He was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on March 14, 2008, becoming the first Puerto Rican to serve as Assistant Secretary for Health.

As the Assistant Secretary for Health, García was the primary advisor to the Secretary of Health on matters involving the nation’s public health system and health science. He also oversaw the U.S. Public Health Service and its Commissioned Corps for the Secretary of Health. In his position, García’s responsibilities included disease prevention, health promotion, public health preparedness, women’s and minority health, reduction of health disparities, fight against HIV/AIDS, pandemic influenza planning, and vaccine preventable diseases. García's experience in public health encompassed health care delivery, bioterrorism preparedness, health policy, and international health affairs.

Dr. John Garcia

John
Garcia
Biography 

John A. Garcia is currently a Research Professor and Director of Community Outreach at the Inter-University Consortium for Political (Institute for Social Research-ISR at the University of Michigan), as well as Faculty Associate in the Center for Political Studies.

Research Interests 

University of Arizona

John A. Garcia is currently a Research Professor and Director of Community Outreach at the Inter-University Consortium for Political (Institute for Social Research-ISR at the University of Michigan), as well as Faculty Associate in the Center for Political Studies. In addition, he directs the Resource Center for Minority Data (ICPSR) and since 1/1/2014, he serves as Interim Director of the ICPSR Summer Program in Quantitative Methods. Dr. Garcia has held a Professorship in the School of Government and Public Policy at the University of Arizona prior to this appointment for 37 years. He received his Ph.D. in Government at Florida State University (1971).

His primary areas of research and teaching are: minority group politics, especially Latinos; political behavior; political mobilization, urban politics; social survey research; and public policy. He has published eleven books and over sixty articles and book chapters. They include: Latino Lives in America: Making It Home (co-authored) Temple University Press, 2010; Latinos Politics in America: Community of Interests and Culture. Rowman and Littlefield Pub., (2nd Edition), 2011; Latinos and the New Millennium: Exploring Political Behaviors, Attitudes, and Policy Preferences (co-authored) Cambridge University Press, 2012.

Some recently published articles and book chapters include: “Immigrants and Alien Suffrage: Adding to the Discourse by Integrating Domestic Dual Residency, Globalization and Dual Citizenship” Harvard Journal of Hispanic Policy, Vol. 24, 2012; “Latino Immigrants: Transnationalism and Patterns of Multiple Citizenship Patterns” in David Leal and Jose Limon (editors) Immigration and the Border: Politics and Policy in the New Latino Century. South Bend: University of Notre Dame Press., 2013; “A Holistic Alternative to Current Survey Research Approaches to Race ”in Laura Gomez and Nancy Lopez Mapping ‘Race: A Critical Reader on Health Disparities Research. Rutgers University Press (Rutgers’ Series, Critical Issues in Health and Medicine), 2013; and “In the New Millennium: Latinos, Partisanship and Electoral Engagement” in William Crotty (Ed.) Party and Voter Polarization in America (forthcoming, 2014).

He has been the recipient of over twenty grants to conduct research in his areas of interest, as well as instructor at the ICPSR Summer program spanning twenty –five years. He also has had grants for training programs and curriculum development. His involvement in the American Political Science Association has been as Vice-President; Secretary, Executive Council member; Latino Caucus Chair, section program section chair; Bunche Award committee; National Co-Program Chair of 1999 annual APSA meeting. Also, he is the recipient of the Goodnow Award for contributions to the discipline and service to the association. He has served on the Advisory committee for the Social, Behavioral and Economic Directorate of the National Science Foundation, member and Chair of the Hispanic Advisory committee for the 2000 Census, and past member of the Executive Council of ICPSR. He has been a Co-PI to the Latino National Political Survey and the Latino National Survey, as well as researcher for the National Chicano Survey. In addition the Society for Political Methodology established scholarships in his name (since 2008) for participation in ICPSR Summer Program on Quantitative Methods.

Dr. Joe Gallegos, MBA

Joe
Gallegos
Biography 

Senior Vice President for Western Operations
National Association of Community Health Centers

Joe Gallegos joined the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) as Senior Vice President for Western Operations in October 2005. Although NACHC’s corporate offices are in Washington, DC, Joe is based in Albuquerque, New Mexico in the offices of the New Mexico Primary Care Association.

Research Interests 

Senior Vice President for Western Operations
National Association of Community Health Centers

Joe Gallegos joined the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) as Senior Vice President for Western Operations in October 2005. Although NACHC’s corporate offices are in Washington, DC, Joe is based in Albuquerque, New Mexico in the offices of the New Mexico Primary Care Association. Joe works with State and Regional Primary Care Associations on state and federal policy on behalf of Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), supports grassroots advocacy that promote access to primary health care in underserved communities and provides technical assistance and consultation on health center operations. Joe’s portfolio includes Staff Lead for the Migrant Health Program. Joe works with State and Regional Primary Care Associations and University faculties to develop model curricula designed to train future health center leaders.

Prior to joining NACHC, Joe was Vice President of Planning and Development with Presbyterian Medical Services in Santa Fe, New Mexico for five years and Chief Executive Officer of Health Centers of Northern New Mexico in Espanola, NM for eleven years. He worked for the New Mexico Department of Health in health planning and delivery of behavioral health services for nine years. Joe began his career in 1976 as Executive Director of Las Clinics del Norte in northern New Mexico and served as President of the NM Primary Care Association for three terms.

Among his professional affiliations, Joe served on the National Advisory Committee on a grant initiative funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (Speaking Together/Alamos Juntas) to improve quality and availability of language services for patients with Limited English Proficiency (LEP) in hospital settings. Joe also served as a member of the National Advisory Committee on Rural Health and Human Services, Office of Rural Health Policy; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to advise and recommend to the Secretary of DHHS on rural health policies involving programs administered by DHHS.

Joe completed the Primary Care Policy Fellowship in 1998 sponsored by the U. S. Public Health Service, Bureau of Health Professions; DHHS in Washington, DC. Joe currently serves on the Advisory Council to the Rural Assistance Research Center at University of North Dakota.

Joe is the former Chair of the Board for National Association of Community Health Centers (2003-2004) and served in several capacities as a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors.

Joe brings over 30 years of work experience in health center management, health policy and development of health care delivery systems that serve rural areas and underserved populations.

Dr. Karina Walters

Karina
Walters
Biography 

Karina L. Walters is a Professor and William P. and Ruth Gerberding Endowed Professor in the School of Social Work at the University of Washington.

Research Interests 

Karina L. Walters is a Professor and William P. and Ruth Gerberding Endowed Professor in the School of Social Work at the University of Washington. She received her MSW (1990) and PhD (1995) from University of California, Los Angeles. An enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, Dr. Walters founded and directs the University-wide, interdisciplinary Indigenous Wellness Research Institute (IWRI).
The Institute’s many notable contributions include hosting the 2010 International Network of Indigenous Health Knowledge and Development conference, a biennial gathering aimed at improving the health of indigenous peoples in Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the United States through indigenous and community-led research, health services and workforce development.
Dr. Walters is also a recent recipient of the prestigious Fulbright Award where she was an honorary visiting scholar at Ngā Pae o te Maramatanga National Institute for Research Excellence in Maori Development and Advancement at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. Her research focuses on historical, social and cultural determinants of physical and mental health among American Indians and Alaska Natives. She has published and presented nationally and internationally on her research and mentors numerous American Indian and Alaska Native junior faculty, researchers, post-doctorate, graduate and undergraduate students.
Dr. Walters serves as principal investigator on several groundbreaking studies associated with health-risk outcomes among American Indian individuals, families and communities funded by the National Institutes of Health. These include the HONOR Project — a nationwide health survey that examines the impact of historical trauma, discrimination and other stressors on the health and wellness of Native American lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and two-spirited men and women; and Healthy Hearts Across Generations — a project in collaboration with the Tulalip Tribes to design and test a culturally appropriate, feasible and generalizable cardiovascular disease prevention program with American Indians living in the Pacific Northwest.

Dr. Bruce Vladeck

Bruce
Vladeck
Biography 

Bruce C. Vladeck is Professor of Health Policy and Geriatrics at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York.

Research Interests 

Bruce C. Vladeck is Professor of Health Policy and Geriatrics at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. He is also a member of the New York City Board of Health, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Primary Care Development Corporation, and Chairman of Senior Health Partners, a managed long-term care program. He is a Trustee of Ascension Health, the March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation, the National Academy of Social Insurance, and the Medicare Rights Center. 

From 1993 through 1997, Dr. Vladeck was Administrator of the Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. In that position, he directed the Medicare and Medicaid programs, providing health insurance to more than 65 million Americans with combined annual expenditures of more than $300 billion, and played a central role in the formulation and enactment of the Medicare, Medicaid, and Child Health provisions of the Balanced Budget Act of 1997. Subsequent to his service at HCFA, Dr. Vladeck was appointed by President Clinton to the National Bipartisan Commission on the Future of Medicare, a role that helped reinforce his reputation as one of the nation’s most committed and articulate advocates for improving and expanding health insurance for the elderly, the disabled, and the poor. 

Before joining the federal government, Dr. Vladeck served ten years as President of the United Hospital Fund of New York. He has also held positions on the faculty of Columbia University, at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and, from 1979 through 1982, as Assistant Commissioner of the New Jersey State Department of Health. 

At the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, to which he was elected in 1986, Dr. Vladeck chaired the Committee on Health Care for Homeless People. Among many other honors and awards, Dr. Vladeck received the 1995 National Public Service Award, the 1996 Hubert H. Humphrey Award of the American Political Science Association, and the 1998 President’s Award of the American Society on Aging. 

A nationally-recognized expert on health care policy, health care financing, and long-term care, Dr. Vladeck has published widely, perhaps most notably in his book, Unloving Care: The Nursing Home Tragedy (Basic Books: 1980). He received his BA, magna cum laude, from Harvard College, and an MA and Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Michigan

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