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Health Action Conference 2023 Agenda

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*Agenda is subject to change.

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

6:00 p.m.-7:30 p.m. ET


Welcome Reception

Thursday, January 26, 2023

8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. ET


8:30 a.m.-9:30 a.m. ET

Continental Breakfast / Networking

9:30 a.m.-10:45 a.m. ET

General Session- The Power of Perseverance: Building Resiliency in the Health Reform Movement


Our movement has experienced major wins and significant setbacks. Learn from our nation’s fiercest advocates who’ve led movements and won by building resilience and finding strength in their setbacks.


  • Angelina Spicer, Comedian & Health Advocate


  • Sen. Ron Wyden, U.S. Senate


  • Sarah de Guia, Changelab Solutions


  • Rep. Park Cannon, Georgia House of Representatives
  • Abigail EchoHawk, Urban Indian Health Institute
  • Rebecca Desir, Black Health Coalition
10:45 a.m.-11:00 a.m. ET

Networking / Refreshment Break

11:00 a.m.-11:45 p.m. ET

Workshop Session 1

Communications In-Person Only

Reaching the Right People with Your Message

Learn tips and tools to identify and connect with your audience and drive action. Dive into which social media platforms can get the most eyes and ears on your content and expand your reach.


  • Chantez Bailey, Director of Communications, Families USA
  • Justin Charles, Digital Media Associate, Families USA
  • Genelle Adrien, Politics & Government Outreach, Meta

View the Slide Deck from this presentation.

Organizing Virtual Only

Community Voices for Change: Making Advocacy More Equitable

This workshop will elevate community voices on key issues we all care about, such as oral health issues and Medicaid issues, as well as share strategies for centering community voices in advocacy.


  • Tera Bianchi, Community Catalyst, Project Director for the Dental Access Project


  • Sookyung Oh, Director, Hamkae Center 
  • Ciearra Walker, Executive Director, St. Louis Community Health Network 
Policy In-Person and Virtual

State Responsibilities in Protecting Choice

The recent Supreme Court decision changed access to safe abortion care across state lines. Learn how advocates can advance policies that make reproductive health care available and accessible for all.


  • Elizabeth Nash, Guttmacher Institute


  • Nikia Grayson, Choices: Memphis Center for Reproductive Health
  • Melissa Reed, Planned Parenthood Keystone
  • Nicole Wells Stallworth, PPMI
Policy Virtual Only

Medicaid: A Piece of the Sustainable Financing Puzzle for Community Health Workers

Learn from on-the-ground advocates about how they were able to use state plan amendments as a tool to explicitly reimburse community health workers for their critical services.


  • Angie Kuzma, Policy & Advocacy Manager, National Association of Community Health Workers 


  • Gilbert Arvizu, Community Development and Engagement Director, Valley of the Sun United Way
  • Cara Stewart, Director of Policy Advocacy, Kentucky Voices for Health
  • Mar Velez, Director of Policy, Latino Coalition for a Healthy California


11:45 p.m.-1:15 p.m. ET

Networking Luncheon

1:15 p.m.-2:00 p.m. ET

Workshop Session 2

Communications In-Person and Virtual

So You Have a Story: Now What?

This session will explore strategies for leveraging your stories to inspire change and outline critical tools to prepare your storytellers for media appearances.


  • Kasey Hampton, Families USA


  • Amber Macdonald, Former HHS Speechwriter
  • Barion Grant, The Hub Project 
Organizing In-Person Only

Partnering with Philanthropy to Advance Community Change in 2023

Learn from senior philanthropic and foundation leaders about how foundations will address health equity, reproductive health and justice, and health care value in 2023 and beyond.


  • Ann McMillan, Program Director, Grantmakers in Health


  • Alexandra Spratt, Director – Health Care, Arnold Ventures
  • Jennie Riley, Executive Director, Rx Foundation 
  • Timothy Lash, President, West Health 
Policy Virtual Only

The “Emergency” is Ending, What Next? Perspectives of Coverage Defenders

The continuous Medicaid coverage requirements associated with the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency are coming to an end soon. Learn key strategies they’ll use to protect health coverage.


  • Erica Andrade, Chief Program Officer, El Centro Inc
  • Sara Cariano, Senior Health Policy Analyst, Virginia Poverty Law Center 
  • Rebecca Cerese, Health Policy Advocate, North Carolina Justice Center 
  • Dr. Jamila Michener, Associate Dean for Public Engagement, Brooks School of Public Policy, Cornell University
Organizing In-Person and Virtual

Toward Resilience: Skills for Breaking the Burnout Cycle

As advocates, we tirelessly fight for the health of our communities. Learn tangible skills and methods from key experts on how to recognize and prevent burnout for ourselves and within our movements.


  • Dr. Cecile Bhang, Assistant Professor, Sonoma State University
  • Rosa Martha Zárate Macías, Vision y Compromiso 
  • Dr. Latifat Cabirou  
2:00 p.m.-2:15 p.m. ET

Networking/Refreshment Break

2:15 p.m.-3:15 p.m. ET

General Session: The Future of the Movement: Ending the Corporate Looting of America’s Health


Corporate looting in the health care system leads to skyrocketing costs for America’s families. Hear from leaders across the national movement to rein in health industry abuses.

Keynote Speaker:

  • Beth McCracken, Health Care Consumer


  • Sophia Tripoli, Director, Center for Affordable Whole Person Care, Families USA


  • Katie Martin, Health Care Cost Institute
  • Cynthia Fisher, Founder and Chairman,
  • Cora Opsahl, Health Funds Director, SEIU 32BJ 
3:15 p.m.-5:00 p.m. ET

We are Family Joint Networking Reception with Families USA and Community Catalyst

5:30p.m.-7:30p.m. ET

Screening of InHospitable Documentary

Join us for a special screening of InHospitable, a documentary about a community that fought back and won when a hospital system abused its power and hurt patients. Light refreshments will be served.

Friday, January 27, 2023

8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. ET


8:30 a.m.-9:30 a.m. ET

Continental Breakfast / Networking

9:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m. ET

Opening Plenary: Fireside Chats with Federal Policymakers: Creating Equitable Health Care with Policy Change


Hear how America’s most inspirational leaders draw upon their lived experiences to transform federal policy and gain insight on how you can drive change from your local community to Washington D.C.


  • Sister Simone Campbell, Executive Director, NETWORK Lobby 
  • Frederick Isasi, Executive Director, Families USA


  • Matt Fuentes, Office of Senator Schumer (D-NY)
  • Hannah Katch, CMS
10:30 a.m.-10:45 a.m. ET


10:45 a.m.-11:30 a.m. ET

Workshop Session 3

Organizing In-Person Only

View from the Hill 2023 - closed to media

Join senior Congressional and Administration staff to hear their insights on opportunities to advance health care policy in a new Congress as well as upcoming priorities for the Biden Administration.


  • Jay Gulshen, House Ways and Means Committee (GOP)
  • Kristi Martin, HHS
  • Shawn Bishop, Senate Finance Majority 
Communications Virtual Only

All News is Local: How to Talk to Reporters

Learn practical tips for generating local media coverage to showcase how strong health care reform initiatives improve health care access and affordability for your neighbors and communities.


  • Tawana Jacobs, Director of Brand and Communications, DC Action
  • Keya Vakil, Deputy Political Editorial Director, Courier Newsroom 
Policy In-Person and Virtual

Channeling the Power of Recent Federal Wins on Prescription Drug Pricing to Lead State Action

This workshop will delve into ways that state governments can push for cheaper prescription drugs, foster greater transparency, and tailor their markets to their populations.


  • Ashley Blackburn, Director of Private Insurance and Prescription Drug Reform, MA Health Care For All
  • Vinny Demarco, MA Health Care For All
  • Natalie Litton, Patients for Affordable Drugs
Organizing In-Person and Virtual

The Last Mile–Next Steps for Advocates to Ensure that Health Coverage is Available and Affordable to All

Enhanced premium tax credits have been extended to 2024. How can we make them permanent? What state-level wins can expand coverage for immigrants and make it more affordable for small businesses?


  • Philippe Villers, Families USA Co-Founder & President 
  • Cheryl Fish-Parcham, Families USA’s Director, Private Coverage


  • Stephani Becker, Associate Director of Healthcare Justice, Shriver Center on Poverty Law
  • Adam Fox, Deputy Director, Colorado Consumer Health Initiative
  • Dr. Jessie Ice, Executive Director, West Virginians for Affordable Health Care 
11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m. ET

Awards Luncheon


  • Angelina Spicer, Comedian & Health Advocate



1:00 p.m.-1:45 p.m. ET

Workshop Session 4

Policy In-Person Only

Bringing Soaring Health Care Prices Back to Earth: Recent State Success

States are taking on the high healthcare costs that burden families, workers, and employers. Learn from state advocates working to end pricing abuses.


  • Katherine Mills, Senior Director for Market Oversight and Transparency, Massachusetts Health Policy Commission
  • Anthony Wright, California Health Access 
Communications Virtual Only

People First Care: De-Wonkifying Your Policy Message

In this session, messaging experts discuss how we can talk about wonky health care policy, including payment and delivery system reform, in a way that is engaging and inspiring to persuadable voters.


  • Drew Westen, Westen Strategies
  • Allyn Brooks-LaSure, Vice President Communications, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Organizing In-Person and Virtual

Data Justice: Who Counts?

The ways we compile data may harm or exclude marginalized communities. Data justice is key to developing policies that improve health outcomes. Learn more about state and local solutions.


  • Dr. Gary Puckrein, National Minority Quality Forum 


  • Dr. Chandria Jones, NORC at the University of Chicago
  • Richard Chang, UCLA Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Data Policy Lab 
  • Rachel Bryan, HHS OIG 
1:45 p.m.-2:00 p.m. ET

Refreshment Break

2:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m. ET

General Session- Our Health Is Bound Together: Building Power Across Movements


Since the pandemic began, movement leaders have built new and innovative partnerships to fight for a better future. Hear how they are building on these relationships to meet the challenges ahead.


  • Yael Lehmann, Families USA 


  • Sister Simone Campbell, Sister of Social Service, mischief maker, lawyer & author. Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient  
  • Selest Manning, Indigenous Healer & Body Worker, Blacksheep Healing
  • Matt Morrison, Executive Director, Working America 
  • Maria Lemus, Executive Director, Visión y Compromiso
3:00 p.m.-4:30 p.m. ET

Happy Hour


  • Angelina Spicer, Comedian & Health Advocate

Saturday, January 28, 2023

8:00 a.m.-9:30 a.m. ET

Breakfast Roundtables

9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. ET

DC Activities