Leadership & Staff

SNP Alliance Staff

Cheryl Phillips, MD, AGSF
President and CEO

Dr. Cheryl Phillips is the President and CEO of the Special Needs Plan Alliance, a national leadership association for special needs and Medicare-Medicaid plans serving vulnerable adults.

Prior to this, she was the Senior VP for Public Policy and Health Services at LeadingAge. She has also served as the Chief Medical Officer of On Lok Lifeways, the originator of the PACE (Program of All-Inclusive care for the Elderly) model based in San Francisco, and the Medical Director for Senior Services and Chronic Disease Management, for the Sutter Health System, a network of doctors, hospitals and other health providers in Northern California. As a fellowship-trained geriatrician, her clinical practice focused on nursing homes and long-term care continuum. While at Sutter Health, she developed and led a care coordination program for high-risk seniors enrolled in the Medicare Advantage plan.

Dr. Phillips is a past president of the American Geriatrics Society, the organization representing health care professionals committed to improving the health of America’s seniors; and is also a past president of the American Medical Directors Association, the physician organization for long-term care. She continues to serve on multiple technical advisory groups for chronic care, nursing home quality, and home and community-based services and has provided numerous testimonies to the U.S. Congress.

She is a frequent speaker to boards of directors for aging service providers, state, and national meetings. She served as a primary care health policy fellow under Secretary Tommy Thompson, and was appointed by the Governor as a California Commissioner on Aging and appointed to the Olmstead Advisory Committee for California. Dr. Phillips is on the Board of Directors of the SCAN Foundation and the SCAN Health Plan Board.

Joe Perretta
Senior Manager, Communications and Media

Joe Perretta joined the SNP Alliance in March 2018 after 15 months on the road, educating specialists in rural care settings from Montana to Mississippi on the specifics and requirements of coordinated care in the era of MIPS and MIPS ACOs.

Prior to his work in the field, Joe worked as a technical writer for the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s Chemotherapy Safety and Certification Program, proudly overseeing the editorial process for the ASCO-ONS 2016 Chemotherapy Standards update. An academically-trained rhetorician, Joe learned that studying ‘healthcare communication’ in the few academic settings in which it’s formally offered meant designing better game strategies for cessation apps and selling them; he’s strived to present his technical writing bona fides alongside an emphasis on subject matter expertise over ideas marketing. His passion for healthcare developed alongside his experience as a patient navigator and clinical research coordinator at a private orthopedic practice in Miami, Florida, and several college summers billing in a hospital based Miami behavioral health practice.

While medical governance and health policy have become his career, he maintains strong ties to the world of competitive academic debate, coaching online weekend and summer programs for the University of Texas and speaking regularly at workshops for debate educators.

Will Dede
Associate Director, Health Policy

Will Dede joins the SNP Alliance from Duty First Consulting, where he spent over two years supporting the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in its administration and oversight of the Affordable Care Act. During his time there, Will supported the state technical assistance team’s oversight of the 39 state Exchanges using the federal platform HealthCare.Gov by working directly with those state governments. Will provided these 39 states policy and operational guidance with matters related to the certification of Qualified Health Plans intended to be sold on HealthCare.Gov.

Prior to his time with Duty First Consulting, Will worked as a Consultant for Applied Self Direction, researching state self-directed Medicaid programs. As a fellow with the National Academy of Social Insurance, he researched the Social Security Advisory Board (SSAB) on the representative payee criminal bar policy, which was included in the SSAB’s January 2018 Improving Social Security’s Representative Payee Program report.

Additionally, Will was a Program Analyst with the National Resource Center for Participant-Directed Services (NRCPDS). At NRCPDS, Will worked directly with the Veterans Health Administration on oversight of the Veteran-Directed Home and Community-Based Services (VD-HCBS) program by providing management and policy guidance to medical centers on the implementation of VD-HCBS.

Will holds a Bachelor of Arts with a double-major in Political Science and History from Randolph College and a Master of Public Policy from American University.

SNP Alliance Policy Consultants


Pamela J. Parker, MPA
Medicare-Medicaid Integration Consultant, SNP Alliance

Pamela has over 34 years of experience in state government in Minnesota, with specialized expertise in management of integrated Medicare and Medicaid health care policy, operations and financing for people with dual eligibility, managed long term services and supports, rate setting, and MA D-SNP policy and contracting.

She was responsible for the creation of the first CMS-approved state Medicare-Medicaid integration demonstration for people with dual eligibility in 1995. She also developed and managed several specialized managed care programs for seniors and people with disabilities, as well as the first Medicare Medicaid D-SNP demonstration approved by CMS in 2013.

Pam served as Director of Long Term Care and has a long history of consumer advocacy serving as the states’ first long term care ombudsman. Pam has been an advisor to CHCS, MedPAC, MACPAC, AARP, NCQA, NASHP, and the Alliance for Health Reform and has been a frequent speaker at national conferences on topics related to MLTSS and dual eligibility.

After retiring from her state management position, Pam joined the SNP Alliance team as Medicare-Medicaid Integration Consultant.

Pam has a Masters of Public Administration degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, where she was a Bush Leadership Fellowship Recipient.

Dr. Deborah Paone, DrPH, MHSA
Performance Evaluation Lead and Policy Consultant, SNP Alliance

Dr. Deborah Paone serves as the Performance Evaluation Lead and Policy Consultant to the Special Needs Plan Alliance. She is the subject matter expert in quality measurement, Model of Care, and social determinants of health factors. Dr. Paone collaborates with organizations such as the National Quality Forum, NCQA, and with government agencies such as CMS. She also leads work on the SNP Alliance Annual Member Survey and innovation projects.

Deborah serves on the CMS/RAND Technical Expert Panel on Medicare Stars (2018-2021), National Quality Forum committees and teams (2018-2021), and U.S. Administration on Aging/NCoA Independent Expert Review Panel examining criteria for evidence-based programs (2018-present).

Dr. Paone continues to maintain her practice as a consultant and independent evaluator through Paone & Associates, LLC (Minneapolis, MN). Previously, she served as Vice President and Senior Research Associate of the National Chronic Care Consortium, as Executive Director of a community-based nonprofit serving older adults and family caregivers, and as Director of the Section for Aging and Long-term Care Services of the American Hospital Association.

Deborah has experience in provider, health plan, association, and research settings and at the national, state, and local levels. She works across disciplines and settings—bridging policy, practice, and research—toward a more connected system of health care and social supports for older adults, people with disabilities, and family caregivers.

Dr. Paone holds a Doctor of Public Health from the Gillings School of Global Public Health of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (NC), a Master of Health Services Administration from the University of Michigan (MI), and a Bachelor in Gerontological Issues in Community Health from the University of Rochester (NY)

SNP Alliance Legislative Consultants

Rich Bringewatt
President and CEO, National Health Policy Group (NHPG)

Richard J. Bringewatt is Co-founder and President of the National Health Policy Group (NHPG) and Co-founder of the SNP Alliance, where he formerly served as President and CEO. He now serves as Ex Officio on the SNP Alliance Board of Directors.

NHPG is a national health policy and consulting group established to help improve policy and practice in the care of high-risk beneficiaries, including the dually eligible, frail elders, adults with disabilities, and others with severe chronic conditions. Clients include Medicare and Medicaid plans, providers, health systems, the public sector, and national associations.

Prior to his current leadership positions, Mr. Bringewatt co-founded and served as President and CEO of the National Chronic Care Consortium. NBCC is a strategic alliance of leading acute and long-term care systems seeking to advance care for persons with severe or disabling chronic conditions as their conditions evolve over time and across care settings.

Functioning as a policy entrepreneur and catalyst for change, Mr. Bringewatt works with other national health leaders and groups to improve health policy and practice for poor, frail, disabled, and chronically ill persons. He has a long history of success in advancing program innovation for persons with complex care needs and related specialized managed care policy.

Tracy Spicer
Principal, Avenue Solutions

Avenue Solutions’ founding partner Tracy Spicer is a 20-year veteran of political campaigns at every level.

Ms. Spicer began her involvement in politics in 1992 in former US Senator Edward M. Kennedy’s Senate office before transitioning to his campaign staff in 1994 to assist in his successful re-election campaign. She quickly rose to Political Director and Deputy Chief of Staff, and since that time, has worked with and coordinated numerous campaigns, ranging from municipal and state candidates to the US Congress as well as the White House. During her decade of experience on Capitol Hill, she coordinated successful political and legislative strategies for Senator Kennedy and managed his legislative priorities in the areas of healthcare, education, labor, and economic development.

Ms. Spicer is widely recognized for her political acumen and expertise in designing legislative and regulatory strategies and her established network of long-standing professional contacts among elected officials, appointed policymakers, and their staffs. She draws on her vast political and legislative experience to help clients navigate the labyrinth of Capitol Hill and government bureaucracy and to position them strategically to head off obstacles, find common ground, and achieve success.

Ms. Spicer has played a leading role in the consideration, negotiation, and implementation of the Affordable Care Act, Medicare and Medicaid legislation; healthcare information technology initiatives; mental health parity legislation; genetic non-discrimination legislation; small business incentives proposals; and prescription drug coverage legislation.

Elizabeth Barnett
Partner, Avenue Solutions

Elizabeth Barnett is a Partner at Avenue Solutions, a government relations firm that provides strategic legislative, policy, and political expertise based in Washington, DC. Elizabeth advises numerous clients across the spectrum of the health care industry on a range of federal legislative and regulatory issues related to Medicare, Medicaid, and the Affordable Care Act. Ms. Barnett brings a wealth of political and legislative experience to this all-female, all-Democratic firm.

Elizabeth has 15 years of experience in health care policy both in the private sector and on Capitol Hill. Before joining Avenue Solutions, she was a lead Democratic lobbyist for the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Elizabeth has a deep understanding of Capitol Hill, where she spent eight years working for U.S. Senator Blanche Lincoln (D-AR). As the Senators principal health policy advisor, Ms. Barnett developed and managed her health care and social policy agenda, created and implemented legislative strategies, and served as her chief negotiator on priority legislation, including the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003, the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families reauthorization.

Elizabeth also spent time serving as the Senator’s speechwriter. A true veteran of the Washington political process, Elizabeth has also served as a researcher at EMILY’s List and on the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.

A native of Southern Maryland, Elizabeth’s tenure in DC began with an internship with U.S. Representative Steny Hoyer (D-MD). Elizabeth holds a Master of Public Administration from George Mason University and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Washington College.

Ginger G. Loper
Principal, Loper Consulting

Ginger Loper founded Loper Consulting in January 2010 after serving as a Vice President at Timmons and Company for four years, where she advised a range of Fortune 500 clients and major trade associations on legislative and regulatory strategy.

Prior to her work in the private sector, Ginger served as Special Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs from 2002-2005. As a senior lobbyist for President George W. Bush, Ginger served as the primary point of contact for the President and senior White House staff to the Committees on Agriculture, Finance, and Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP). She advocated for the President’s agenda in the areas of health care, Social Security, tax, education, and agriculture.

Prior to her White House service, Ginger served as a Legislative Assistant to then-Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott from 1997 to 2001. She assisted with the management of legislation in the areas of health care, tax, education, and the federal budget. In 2011, Ginger was named one of the top lobbyists under 40 by Washingtonian Magazine. Ginger serves on the Board of Directors for the Arlington Free Clinic.

She graduated with honors from the University of Alabama in 1995. She received her Master’s degree from George Washington University in 1997.

SNP Alliance Legal and Regulatory Council

Mark S. Joffe, Esq
Legal and Regulatory Counsel, SNP Alliance

Mark S. Joffe is the principal in the Firm of Law Offices of Mark S. Joffe in Washington, DC. Mr. Joffe specializes in legal and business issues affecting managed care organizations with a particular focus on Medicare and Medicaid managed care, including Medicare Advantage special needs plans and Medicare-Medicaid Plans.

Mr. Joffe was previously the Associate Counsel, Group Health Association of America (currently AHIP), the managed care and health insurance trade association. Before that position, Mr. Joffe was a Senior Attorney with the Office of the General Counsel, Department of Health and Human Services.

Mr. Joffe has a Masters of Arts degree in Health Services Administration from George Washington University.