2021 Policy SummitImage Banner

2021 Policy Summit

You are here

2021 Policy Summit

September 14 Policy Summit Update: Registration is now open for the virtual Policy Summit! Browse sessions and register today!

After pressing pause to adapt what we had hoped to be an in-person event to a virtual format, ANCOR is thrilled to invite you to participate in our newly reimagined event, taking place on the afternoons of Tuesday, October 12 and Wednesday, October 13. 

Registration for the virtual 2021 Policy Summit is accessible at significantly discounted rates, and ANCOR members save even more! Your registration unlocks access to a total of seven sessions, including six taking place on October 12-13 and an additional post-Summit bonus session (date and time TBD) that would otherwise require a paid registration but is included in the cost of registration for all Summit participants. Sessions will take place between 1 pm and 4:30 pm EDT on the two days of the Summit, and sessions will be recorded and made available for viewing on-demand after the conclusion of the Summit.

If Not Now, When? Developing Solutions for a Workforce in Crisis

Long before COVID-19 changed our world, community-based providers of disability services were experiencing significant shortages of direct support professionals. In turn, providers have grappled with dual crises for the past 18 months, navigating through an array of recruitment and retention challenges on one hand while being forced to attend to the immediate demands of the pandemic on the other, such as obtaining PPE, being recognized as essential workers, and securing funding for hazard pay and other extraordinary costs. All along the way, community providers did what they always do: make impossible choices in the face of unprecedented demands to overcome seeming unthinkable obstacles so the people they support can continue living fully inclusive lives. But if the pandemic offers any silver lining, it is the reminder that providers—and the public policy environment in which we operate—can adapt and be nimble in the face of crisis.

With this lesson in mind, the 2021 ANCOR Policy Summit raises an important question: if not now, when? If the struggles of a once-in-a-century public health emergency didn't demonstrate the urgency of investing in our services, when will we acknowledge the harsh realities in which providers are forced to operate? What better time is there than now to develop solutions for a workforce in crisis?

To grapple with these questions, we are eager for you to join us for two afternoons of virtual programming laser-focused on our workforce crisis at this pivotal moment. On October 12-13, we will explore the most recent data on the I/DD workforce, engage in robust discussions about policy proposals from all corners of the federal government, and advocate on behalf of solutions that truly begin to tackle the direct support workforce crisis once and for all. Now more than ever, we need to come together.


Special Thank You to Our Summit Sponsor


2021 ANCOR Policy Summit Schedule

Schedule and session information are subject to change. All times are Eastern Daylight Time.


Opening Plenary: Our Moment is Now
Tuesday, October 12 | 1-2 pm EDT

Community-based providers have been experiencing significant shortages of direct support professionals long before the COVID-19 pandemic. In the face of changing landscapes, workforce crises and a global pandemic, providers have forged on to provide critical supports and services. The time has come to acknowledge the sacrifices and barriers faced by providers, direct support professionals, and the families we serve. If not now, when?

ANCOR leaders will open the 2021 Policy Summit with reflections on the imperatives of coming together as a community to chart a course for a multi-pronged workforce strategy. Drawing on the troubling results from ANCOR's brand-new survey data on the state of the direct support workforce crisis, presenters will articulate why the workforce crisis is a major barrier to full inclusion of people with I/DD in communities, and why the crisis must be a priority in policy discussions about I/DD services. 


  • Josh Evans, IARF
  • Charlie Hooker, Keystone Human Services
  • Mark Matulka, Mosaic
  • Shannon McCracken, ANCOR
  • Barbara Merrill, ANCOR
  • Carey Sowle, Sandata


ANCOR’s Legislative Priorities: Updates from Congressional Allies
Tuesday, October 12 | 2:15-3:15 pm EDT

Medicaid and community-based services have garnered unprecedented attention on Capitol Hill, including in the form of emergency relief in response to the public health emergency. This has created space at the table for community services stakeholders to work directly and transparently with congressional allies to highlight the decades-long impact of the direct support workforce crisis and instability of access to services. This roundtable discussion will bring together professional staff from key congressional offices to share bipartisan and bicameral perspectives on how Congress is addressing the direct care workforce crisis and increasing access to home- and community-based services.


  • Elizabeth Dervan, U.S. Senate Committee on Finance
  • Seth Gold, U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy & Commerce
  • Stuart Portman, U.S. Senate Committee on Finance
  • Rick Van Buren, U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy & Commerce
  • Elise Aguilar, ANCOR (co-moderator)
  • Al Guida, Guide Consulting (co-moderator)


Solutions to a Workforce in Crisis: Perspectives from our Colleagues
Tuesday, October 12 | 3:30-4:30 pm EDT

The unprecedented investment by the Biden administration in home- and community-based services and the Better Care Better Jobs Act came to fruition with the support of leaders from disability, aging and caregiver/labor groups. The work of grassroots advocacy and ANCOR members drove focused discussion and highlighted the direct support workforce crisis before and throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. This roundtable discussion will bring together key collaborators to discuss how this moment in history came to be and how our collective advocacy is making a significant positive impact on the future of services.


  • Ai-Jen Poo, National Domestic Workers Alliance
  • Bill Dombi, National Association for Home Care & Hospice
  • Connie Garner, Easterseals
  • Ruth Katz, LeadingAge
  • Shannon McCracken, ANCOR (moderator)


An ANCOR Get-Together with Friends Old & New, Hosted by Bonnie-Jean Brooks
Tuesday, October 12 | 4:30-5 pm EDT

What would an ANCOR Policy Summit be without a little socializing? This informal hangout, hosted by the incomparable Bonnie-Jean Brooks, will be a perfect opportunity to drop in and say hi to old friends or make some new ones. This hangout is open to Summit registrants and all ANCOR members, so grab a drink, bring a friend, and enjoy a mid-day break or happy hour libation!



From Data to Solutions: Implications of the 2020 DSP Workforce Survey
Wednesday, October 13 | 1-2 pm EDT

It is essential that we understand the perspective of our critical workforce as we strive to find better solutions for recruitment and retention. In this session, participants will learn about the findings from a 2020 survey conducted by the National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals and the Institute on Community Integration at the University of Minnesota. Participants will also learn about a recent paper published by the Human Services Research Institute that highlights best practices for improving recruitment and retention of DSPs. Bringing together data and best practices will offer participants concrete insights they can implement in their organizations.


  • Valerie Bradley, Human Services Research Institute
  • Amy Hewitt, Institute on Community Integration, University of Minnesota
  • Donna Martin, ANCOR (moderator)
  • Steve Pellito, Sandata (moderator)


ANCOR’s Administrative Priorities: Updates from the Executive Branch 
Wednesday, October 13 | 2:15-3:15 pm EDT

With the declaration of a public health emergency and access to increased federal funding, state agencies were able to utilize new procedural tools and application processes to expand, strengthen and enhance Medicaid services. CMS guidance provided states with a broad range of interpretive support to leverage these mechanisms to stabilize and provide support to individuals with disabilities accessing I/DD services. As a companion to Tuesday’s discussion with congressional allies, this session will bring together experts to discuss the Biden administration’s efforts to address the direct support workforce crisis and the impact of the crisis on people with disabilities.


  • Matt Salo, National Association of Medicaid Directors
  • Jessica Schubel, White House Domestic Policy Council
  • Mary Sowers, National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services
  • Daniel Tsai, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
  • Shannon McCracken, ANCOR (moderator)
  • Barbara Merrill, ANCOR (moderator)


Honoring Our Advocates & Heeding their Calls to Action
Wednesday, October 13 | 3:30-4:30 pm EDT

Our Policy Summit would not be complete without recognition of the many advocates and champions who are propelling our workforce and our services forward.

We’ll start by honoring The Honorable Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) as the inaugural recipient of ANCOR's Congressional Legacy Award. Senator Casey's insight and leadership in the development of the Better Care Better Jobs Act gives hope to providers, direct care workers and American families to secure meaningful access to home- and community-based services with a sustainable workforce. Then, we’ll honor five outstanding recipients of ANCOR’s 2021 Excellence in Public Policy Awards, including honorees for three awards: the Suellen Galbraith Award for Excellence in Public Policy, the Bonnie-Jean Brooks Rising Star Award, and the Diane McComb State Association Star Award. You can learn about the outstanding leaders being recognized this year by reading our release.

Finally, as we reflect on the words of the inspiring advocates and policy champions being honored, we’ll close out the 2021 Policy Summit with a call to action to inspire all participants to seize this crucial moment in our community's history.


  • Shannon McCracken, ANCOR
  • Barbara Merrill, ANCOR



The Power of Unconscious Bias & How to Mitigate It (w/ Dr. Monica Almond)
12-3 pm EDT | Register Today

Everyone carries mindbugs—what scientists refer to as “ingrained habits of thought that lead to errors in how we perceive, remember, reason, and make decisions.” These errors in judgment are pervasive in our unconscious mind, which controls the vast majority of our decision-making processes. This session will engage participants in exploring individual and cultural biases they may hold through context setting and mind activation. Participants will leave with specific strategies for reducing the impact of unconscious bias in their decision-making.

The Leadership Forum is offered annually at no cost to participants in the ANCOR Foundation's Leadership Academy and for a nominal registration fee for a limited number of interested participants. Summit registrants are encouraged to participate, but separate registration is required. Register today.



Exclusive Post-Summit Bonus Session: The Impact of Federal Minimum Wage Hikes on DSP Wages & Provider Operations
This session will take place within a couple weeks of the conclusion of the Policy Summit. Although this session will require participants to pay to register, Policy Summit registrants will have access to this session for free. Further details will be provided via email.

With Congress expected to take action to raise the federal minimum wage later in 2021 or in 2022, ANCOR engaged Burns & Associates, a division of Health Management Associates (HMA-Burns), to study the potential impact on provider organizations, and state and federal spending. To provide policymakers with information about the costs that providers will incur if the federal minimum wage increases, the report developed state-by-state estimates that illustrate the level of funding needed for providers to be able to meet the financial demands of a higher minimum wage. Participants in this session will learn about the impact of a federal minimum wage increase and the cost to states and providers to implement the increase.


  • Donna Martin, ANCOR
  • Stephen Pawlowski, HMA-Burns

Elise joins ANCOR with over 10 years of public policy and advocacy experience. Prior to coming to ANCOR, she served as both State Policy Counsel and Federal Policy Counsel at Americans United for Separation of Church and State. She also led the National Coalition for Public Education, a group of over 50 national education, civil rights, disability rights, secular, and religious organizations in support of funding for public education. Elise has previously worked as a legal fellow for FairVote and on successful congressional campaigns in both Florida and Virginia. Elise obtained her Juris Doctor from the University of Florida Law School in 2011 and her Bachelor of Arts in Government from the College of William and Mary in 2008.

VALERIE BRADLEY | Human Services Research Institute

Valerie Bradley is President Emerita of the Human Services Research Institute (HRSI), which she founded in 1976. Her vision for HSRI was to combine a rigorous approach to research with the necessary technical assistance and advocacy to support valued lives in the community for all, with a focus on real choice and control for all people. With more than 40 years of experience, Val is a nationally recognized expert in the intellectual and developmental disabilities field. She has devoted her career to working with public agencies and other researchers to strengthen services, improve programs and inform policy—all as an early and staunch advocate for the direct participation of people with disabilities in these efforts. Val is particularly passionate about assisting organizations to measure and improve the quality of community-based services and supports. Having helped create the National Core Indicators, she’s relied on nationwide as an expert in best practices in performance measurement and quality improvement. She also helped to design skills standards for direct support professionals, written books on quality assurance and person-centered practice, was chair of the President’s Committee on Persons with Intellectual Disabilities under the Clinton administration, and is a past president of the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. She was until recently the Public Member of the American Occupational Therapy Association. She is the co-author of a book, titled Self-Direction: A Revolution in Human Services, published by SUNY Press.


Elizabeth Dervan serves as health counsel for Chair Ron Wyden of the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance, where she is the point person for the Committee’s work related to Medicaid and CHIP. Previously, she was an associate with Manatt Health, where she counseled state governments, foundations, health care providers and plans, and others in the health care industry. Prior to that role, she served as a fellow with the Senate Committee on Finance through the Heyman Fellowship. She is a graduate of Yale Law School and Yale College.

BILL DOMBI | National Association for Home Care & Hospice

Profile coming soon


Profile coming soon

CONNIE GARNER | Easterseals

As Senior Policy Director for Foley Hoag, Connie Garner focuses her practice on policy development, implementation and advocacy strategy related to vulnerable populations. In addition, she continues to serve as the Executive Director of “Allies for Independence,” a nonprofit coalition dedicated to addressing long-term service and support needs in the disability and aging community. Her areas of expertise include health care, disability, mental health and substance use disorders, long-term care and education policy.

Garner completed her ED.S. in Education Policy from George Washington University, her MS in Nursing from George Mason University and her BS in Nursing from the University of Pennsylvania. She is also certified as a Pediatric and Neonatal Nurse Practitioner.

SETH GOLD | U.S. House of Representatives

Seth Gold currently serves as a Professional Staff Member for the Committee on Energy and Commerce’s minority staff, handling issues related to Medicaid, CHIP and 340B for the Ranking Member. Prior to joining Energy and Commerce, Seth served as the Health Policy Advisor to Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) and the Health Legislative Assistant to Representative Michael Burgess (R-TX). Seth received both his BS and MPH from The George Washington University and hails from the Queen City of Cincinnati.

AL GUIDA | Guide Consulting Services

Al Guida is the President and CEO of Guide Consulting Services, a government relations firm advancing mental health policy and public affairs. Before starting Guide Consulting, Al was previously affiliated with the National Mental Health Awareness Campaign and Mental Health America. He has nearly three decades of experience in advancing legislation and public policy, and has impacted government and regulatory issues across a broad legislative field. As a top strategic thinker in the field, Al continues to champion initiatives ranging from Medicaid reform to child welfare. He earned a BA in Political Science from American University, and completed his JD at the Southwestern University School of Law.

AMY HEWITT | University of Minnesota

Amy Hewitt, Ph.D., has an extensive background in the field of intellectual and developmental disabilities. She has worked in various positions over the past 38 years to improve community inclusion and quality of life for children and adults with disabilities and their families. Her career began as a Direct Support Professional (DSP) and she currently employs DSPs to support her brother-in-law. She is the Director of the University of Minnesota’s Institute on Community Integration and conducts research, evaluation and demonstration projects about community services for children, youth and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. She has authored numerous journal articles, curriculum and technical reports, including a book entitled Staff Recruitment, Retention and Training.

Dr. Hewitt is on the editorial board of Inclusion and serves as associate editor of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, both journals of the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AAIDD). She is a Past President of both the Association of University Centers on Disability (AUCD) and AAIDD.

CHARLIE HOOKER | Keystone Human Services

Profile coming soon

RUTH KATZ | LeadingAge

Ruth Katz is Senior Vice President for Public Policy at LeadingAge, where she is responsible for leading strategy on public policy and advocacy to advance the nonprofit’s public policy agenda. She works with LeadingAge leadership, state affiliates and members to solve policy challenges and find solutions that free providers to deliver high quality services to older people. The policy office works on affordable housing, health care quality, managed and integrated care, survey and certification issues, elder justices and other important concerns.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Ruth has led the LeadingAge Policy Team’s outward facing, member-focused response with daily/biweekly Coronavirus Update Calls (each drawing 500+ callers), direct technical assistance to members and state partners, a robust and successful advocacy program, and tools and resources for members.

Prior to joining LeadingAge, Ruth was a longtime senior executive at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE).  As Associate Deputy Assistant Secretary, she led a group that focused on the development and execution of policy research and analysis for programs in aging, long term care and disability. The Advisory Group for the National Alzheimer’s Project Act is led within this group. Over many years, Ruth’s group initiated and led programs, surveys and initiatives, including serving as the initial lead on CLASS implementation (and the lead on its conclusion), the Cash and Counseling Demonstration (the first consumer directed long-term care program), the only nationally representative survey of CNAs, the caregiver supplement to the National Health and Aging Trends Survey, and the development of a model for estimating participation in and costs of long-term care reform proposals.


Donna Martin has worked in the field of providing supports and services to people with developmental disabilities for over 30 years. She began as a weekend DSP while in college and over time, she has held positions at every level of service provision.

Prior to joining ANCOR, Donna served as the Executive Director of Community Provider Network of Rhode Island (CPNRI) for 14 years. CPNRI is an association of 22 member agencies that provide supports and services to children and adults with developmental disabilities. In that role, Donna was a long-standing member of ANCOR, and before joining the staff served as the State Association Executives’ representative to the Board of Directors.

Donna has a BA from Providence College and an M.Ed. from Rhode Island College. She is also a 2009 graduate of Leadership RI, Epsilon II.


Profile coming soon


Shannon McCracken has been advocating for and serving people with intellectual and developmental disabilities since 2002, although her passion stems from a time well before then. Growing up with a family member who received waiver services for many years, she truly believes every person can have choice, personal power and control of their lives.

Shannon brings a diverse and deep background to ANCOR. Most recently Shannon was with BrightSpring Health Services (formerly ResCare, Inc.) as Vice President of Kentucky Operations. She has held leadership positions in both private and nonprofit companies, owned her own conflict-free case management company, led the state association, and served as a lobbyist and advocate.

Her greatest passion is standing up for the people she serves, fighting relentlessly on their behalf.


A seasoned disability and association professional, Merrill was selected to serve as ANCOR’s Chief Executive Officer in November 2014, concluding a national search by the ANCOR Board of Directors. Merrill, who had previously served as ANCOR's Vice President for Public Policy, has been involved in disability issues since 1992 as an advocate, state legislator and attorney for people with disabilities and the providers who serve them. At ANCOR, she has led the development and implementation of all aspects of ANCOR's public policy agenda, representing ANCOR's diverse membership of private providers of services for people with disabilities before federal and state policy makers, while keeping ANCOR members fully apprised of the impact of critical system changes and providing guidance and technical assistance.

Prior to joining ANCOR, Merrill was the Director of Government Relations for the MENTOR Network, a national network of community health and human services providers headquartered in Boston. Elected to ANCOR's Board of Directors in 2010, Barbara co-chaired ANCOR's Government Relations Committee prior to joining ANCOR's professional staff.  A native of the state of Maine, she brings over 20 years experience working with associations. She has represented a variety of clients, including psychologists, NAMI-Maine, nursing facilities, and providers of services to people with disabilities. She successfully orchestrated the passage of legislation in Maine to increase wages for Direct Support Professionals, and Maine’s Mental Health Parity law, and in 2002, became the first Executive Director of the Maine Association for Community Service Providers. Barbara left private practice in 2004 to serve in Maine’s House of Representatives, and in 2005 ran for Governor of Maine as an Independent, earning the loser’s prize of hosting Inside Maine, a political talk show aired on Maine’s most popular talk radio station.


Steve Pellito is Senior Vice President of Provider Sales at Sandata Technologies. Steve is responsible for the Provider Sales team, including Sandata’s national go-to-market strategy, business development and overall growth of the provider market. Steve has 21 years of health care industry experience in various markets and client segments.

Steve started in the home health care industry in 2000 when he joined Maxim Healthcare Services, a large national provider of home health care, medical staffing and wellness services. In his last role as National Director of Maxim Health Systems, Steve led sales, strategic partner relationships and overall service delivery of a $40 million+ business unit. 

AI-JEN POO | National Domestic Workers Alliance

Ai-jen Poo is a next-generation labor leader, award-winning organizer, author and a leading voice in the women’s movement. She is the Executive Director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, Director of Caring Across Generations, Co-Founder of SuperMajority and Trustee of the Ford Foundation. Ai-jen is a nationally recognized expert on elder and family care, the future of work, gender equality, immigration, narrative change and grassroots organizing. She is the author of the celebrated book, The Age of Dignity: Preparing for the Elder Boom in a Changing America. Together with Alicia Garza, Ai-jen co-hosts the podcast, Sunstorm. Follow her at @aijenpoo.

She has been recognized among Fortune’s 50 World’s Greatest Leaders and Time’s 100 Most Influential People in the World, and she has been the recipient of countless awards, including a 2014 MacArthur "Genius" Award. Ai-jen has been a featured speaker at TEDWomen, Aspen Ideas Festival, Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity, Skoll World Forum and the Obama Foundation Inaugural Summit. She has made TV appearances on Nightline, MSNBC and Morning Joe, and her writing has been featured in The New York Times, the Washington Post, TIME, Maire Claire, Glamour, Cosmopolitan and CNN.com among others. Ai-jen has been an influential voice in the #MeToo movement and attended the 2018 Golden Globe Awards with Meryl Streep as part of the launch of #TimesUp.

In 12 short years, with the help of more than 70 local affiliate organizations and chapters and over 200,000 members, the National Domestic Workers Alliance has passed Domestic Worker Bills of Rights in 10 states, the cities of Seattle and Philadelphia, and brought over 2 million home care workers under minimum wage protections. In 2011, Ai-jen launched Caring Across Generations to unite American families in a campaign to achieve bold solutions to the nation’s crumbling care infrastructure. The campaign has catalyzed groundbreaking policy change in states including the nation’s first family caregiver benefit in Hawai’i, and the first long-term care social insurance fund in Washington State.


Stuart Portman serves as Senior Health Policy Advisor on the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance for Ranking Member Mike Crapo. In this capacity, he handles all policies related to Medicaid and CHIP, and in the past has led policy development on issues related to the ACA Exchanges, health taxes and health information technology. Previously, he served as the Senior Health Care Legislative Assistant and Legislative Correspondent for Senator Orrin G. Hatch, where he focused on Medicaid, FDA-related policies and issues affecting individuals with disabilities. Stuart received his Master of Public Health degree specializing in health policy from the Milken Institute School of Public Health at The George Washington University and his Bachelor’s in Biology and Political Science from the University of Denver.

MATT SALO | National Association of Medicaid Directors

Matt Salo was named the first Executive Director and, at the time, only staff member of the National Association of Medicaid Directors (NAMD) in February 2011. This was a bit of a homecoming, as his first real job out of college was working for the Medicaid Directors from 1994 to 1999.

Matt formerly spent 12 years at the National Governors Association, where he worked on the Governors’ health care and human services reform agendas, and where he firmly believes he was responsible for securing the entire tobacco settlement for the states, getting more than $100 billion in state fiscal relief, and in modernizing the Medicaid program.

Matt taught high school for two years at T.C. Williams High in Alexandria, VA, which actually bears no resemblance to the school they profiled in the Disney movie, Remember the Titans. He holds a BA in Eastern Religious Studies from the University of Virginia, and is still trying to find ways to explain how that got him to where he is today.

JESSICA SCHUBEL | White House Domestic Policy Council

Before joining the Domestic Policy Council as the Director of the Affordable Care Act and Health Care, Jessica worked at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) where she examined issues related to Medicaid and other coverage issues. Prior to her role at CBPP, Jessica served in various capacities at the Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services at CMS during the Obama administration, working on Medicaid, CHIP and the Basic Health Program, and was an integral member of the Center’s senior leadership team. Before joining CMS, Jessica worked at the District of Columbia’s Medicaid agency, helping to oversee the city’s school-based health services program, Medicaid waivers as well as implementation of health reform and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Born and raised in western New York, Jessica graduated from Syracuse University and the George Washington University.

MARY SOWERS | National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services

Mary became the NASDDDS Executive Director on July 1, 2019. Prior to this role, Mary served as the association’s Director of Special Projects for five years, working on a variety of federal and state initiatives on behalf of NASDDDS’ members. Before joining NASDDDS, Mary was with Mercer Government Human Services Consulting where she provided consultation and technical assistance to state governments on a wide array of Medicaid-related issues, with a focus on home and community-based services and managed long-term services and supports.

Prior to joining Mercer in 2011, Mary served with federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Disabled and Elderly Health Programs Group within the Center for Medicaid, CHIP and Survey and Certification. During her tenure at CMS, Mary specialized in Medicaid home and community-based services, managed long-term services and supports (including strategies for reducing institutional reliance), self-direction and strategies to design person-centered systems of care.

Before joining CMS, Mary led Maryland's efforts around home and community-based services for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD). In that role, she managed two waivers serving more than 10,000 individuals, served as primary legislative contact on I/DD issues for the department, and led stakeholder input and advisory efforts, with a focus on building partnerships with self-advocates and families.


Carey Sowle is Senior Vice President of Implementation Services at Sandata Technologies. Sandata’s software and services are designed to make it as simple as possible for payers and providers to work together, achieving operational efficiencies and increasing compliance, while also ensuring people receive the highest quality of care possible by streamlining internal processes and software systems. As Senior Vice President, Carey leads the provider implementation team with a focus on servicing organizations in the home care and intellectual and developmental disability industries. She has held this position since February 2021 and has been in a leadership capacity since 2007.  

Carey graduated from Lake Superior State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Secondary Education. She has an extensive background in the field of intellectual and developmental disabilities, both in direct support and leadership positions. At Sandata Technologies, Carey and her team have assisted more than 180 organizations across the country with software implementation. One of Carey’s primary focuses is providing an exceptional customer experience throughout the implementation process to ensure ongoing success. 

DANIEL TSAI | Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

Daniel Tsai is the Deputy Administrator and Director of the Center for Medicaid and CHIP services at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), where he leads the Center in addressing disparities in health equity and serving the needs of individuals and families who rely on these essential programs.

Before joining CMS, Dan was the Assistant Secretary for MassHealth and Medicaid Director for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, serving for six years—the state's longest-serving Medicaid director in nearly two decades. His tenure focused on building a robust and sustainable Medicaid program to ensure equitable coverage and improve how health care is delivered for two million individuals and families in the state.

Dan also helped lead Massachusetts Medicaid through its most significant restructuring since the 1990s through its landmark 2016 Medicaid 1115 waiver. Under these reforms, MassHealth implemented one of the most at-scale shifts to value-based care in the nation. Through the waiver, MassHealth also launched a unique program committing significant investments for nutritional and housing supports to address the social determinants of health for high cost, at-risk individuals. In addition, during his tenure, the agency has made critical investments in strengthening community health centers, behavioral health, and home- and community-based services.

Having worked closely with organizations across almost every aspect of health care, including a diverse range of Medicaid programs and provider organizations, Dan brings extensive experience across Medicaid, Medicare and working with stakeholders to design and implement innovative models for health care coverage, delivery and payment. Dan earned a Bachelor of Arts in Applied Mathematics and Economics from Harvard University, summa cum laude.

RICK VAN BUREN | U.S. House of Representatives

Profile coming soon

What's Included?

Registration for the virtual 2021 Policy Summit is accessible at significantly discounted rates compared to the in-person event, and ANCOR members save even more!

By registering for the Summit, your registration unlocks access to a total of seven sessions, including six taking place on October 12-13 and an additional post-Summit bonus session (date and time TBD) that would otherwise require a paid registration but is included in the cost of registration for all Summit participants. Sessions will take place between 1 pm and 4:30 pm EDT on the two days of the Summit, and sessions will be recorded and made available for viewing on-demand after the conclusion of the Summit. For more information about the sessions and speakers, visit the "Sessions" tab of this webpage. 

Registration Fees

ANCOR Members: $199

Non-members: $299**

**Not a member but interested in joining the ANCOR community? Contact Jerri McCandless by email.

Register Yourself | Register Others



We’re here to help! Reach out by email or call 703.535.7850.