Winter 2007
From the Director | A New Congress Convenes
What's New | Fellowship Assignments of 2006-2007 Fellows
Job Notice | Current Opportunities
Where are they now? | Find out what your colleagues have been doing!








The November ’06 elections certainly captured the country’s attention.  For the first time in almost a quarter of a century, the Democrats took control of both the House and the Senate. Power shifts throw Congressional committees into immediate disarray with uncertainties regarding chairmanships, membership, rules changes, agenda setting and staffing. Whether you were inside the Beltway or across the country, it was hard to miss the sense of history being made with the emergence of the 110th congress, yielding some notable “firsts” including the first female Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and the first Muslim member of Congress, Keith Ellison (D- MN). Further, Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Reid (D-NV) immediately launched their ambitious “100 hours” initiative, which included two major health care issues: federal support of stem cell research and the role of the government in negotiating drug prices.  With those actions, health care moved up to the top of the legislative agenda.

For our Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellows, this early signaling of the prominence of health care issues was especially significant. Of course it meant an even greater demand for our fellows, which is always high.  As for the fellows, the always daunting decision of choosing a placement became even more challenging, with so much competition for their favor. Congressional offices were trying to figure out the implications of growing and, of course for some, shrinking space and resource availability. Some became suddenly inundated with the demands of being back in charge. Several new placement options opened up, creating some interesting path finding opportunities for some of our brave fellows.  I was particularly pleased that two fellows accepted placements in the House of Representatives, reversing a 15 year trend of Senate placements only.

While not nearly as exciting or monumental as the Congressional action, the program also experienced a few “firsts.”  In our last newsletter we mentioned the video project. We are now preparing to move to streaming video on the website this month. You will be able to both see and hear program alumni talk about their experience as fellows by clicking on an icon on our webpage. Also a “first,” we have in hand our brand new program DVD that can be used to accompany talks about the fellowship.  This video is an amalgam of the interviews conducted at the last Alumni Retreat.  I especially love how it captures so many of our diverse and dedicated colleagues as they eagerly and passionately describe their views of the fellowship. I will be happy to send you a copy of the DVD. Just let me know.

Thanks to my fellows alums for sending us updates for this edition of the newsletter. It is wonderful to hear from you and to learn about all you do to make a difference.  Keep up the good work.  And don’t forget to update your profile on the website.  These pages get a lot of traffic and we want everyone to benefit from the ability to search and find others who share your interests.



2006-2007 Fellows


Assignments of the 2006 - 2007 RWJ Health Policy Fellows

Guy Clifton, MD
Senator Orrin G. Hatch (R-UT)

Carmen R. Green, MD
Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT)

Nancy Hardt, MD
Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-NM)

Arthur Kellermann, MD, MPH
House Committee on Government Reform – Majority

Barbara L. Kornblau, JD, OTR/L
Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA)

Eugene Rich, MD
House Committee on Ways and Means – Majority

Howard Tuch, MD
Senate Committee on Finance – Majority



For more information about these job announcements, please log in to the Alumni Only section of the website using your username and password. If you do not remember your username and password, please contact the program staff at 202-334-1506.

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is seeking a Program Officer for its (Human Capital) Health Care Group and National Program Director for its Community Health Leadership Program.

The Commonwealth Fund
The Commonwealth Fund is seeking a Program Officer for its State Innovations Program. The Fund’s Executive Vice President for Programs (EVPP) is responsible for all of the Fund’s grantmaking programs and also serves as Executive Director of the Commission.





Life on the Lower Eastside cover

Sister Rosemary Donley

Richard Krugman

Myron Genel



Joseph Lieberman

Louis Diamond





Allen Nissenson

Linda Degutis

Suzanne Benett Johnson

Robert Miller




Mark Carlson

Michael Painter

John Ring

Leona Cuttler

Kathy Hebert

Sanchez Elected to San Francisco Health Commission
David Sanchez ('74-'75) has been elected Vice President of the San Francisco Health Commission for the Department of Public Health. Sanchez now serves as Professor Emeritus for the Department of Community Medicine at the University of California, San Francsico where he has taught for thirty-seven years and also served as Assistant Vice Chancellor Academic Affairs. 

Dans Coauthors Book
Princeton Architectural Press has published Life on the Lower Eastside: Photographs by Rebecca Lepkoff 1937-1950, which is coauthored by Peter Dans ('76-'77). You can view the book here on There will be an exhibition based on the book at South Street Seaport Museum in New York City starting February 2007.

Donley Named "Living Legend"
Sister Rosemary Donley ('77-'78) was named a Living Legend by the American Academy of Nursing. You can read more about the honor here.

Krugman Becomes Chair of AAMC's Executive Council
Richard Krugman ('80-'81) began his one-year term as Chair of the AAMC's Executive Council on October 29, 2006. Krugman was also elected as a member of the Institute of Medicine in October 2005.

Genel Elected VP of Connecticut Academy
Myron Genel ('82-'83) was elected vice president/president elect of the Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering in January 2006.

Paulson to Edit Pediatric Clinics of North America
Jerome Paulson ('85-'86) is coediting two consecutive issues of Pediatric Clinics on the topic of Children's Health and the Environment. Paulson coauthored two of the articles. The issues will be out in February and April 2007.

Lieberman Given State Leadership Award
Joseph Lieberman ('88-'89) has received the 2006 Statewide Leadership Award from the Delaware Covering Kids and Families program, an initiative of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Diamond Elected President of ACMQ
Lou Diamond ('90-'91) was elected president of the American College of Medical Quality, and Chair of the Planning Advisory Committee of the Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement.

Ringel Becomes VP at University of Colorado
Steven Ringel ('91-'92) has been named Vice President for Clinical Effectiveness and Patient Safety of the University of Colorado Hospital.

Hein to Receive Lifetime Acheivement Award
Karen Hein ('93-'94 ) will receive a Lifetime Acheivement Award for Social Justice next month, a Granger Award from Dartmouth College.

Nissenson Honored at Neprhology and Dialysis Events
Allen Nissenson ('94-'95) was named the Blagg Lecturer in Public Policy at the American Society of Nephrology Annual Meeting in 2006. At the 2007 Annual Dialysis Conference, he was the Kjellstrand Lecturer on the Future of the ESRD Program and was also given a Lifetime Achievement Award in Hemodialysis.

Degutis Elected President of APHA
Linda Degutis ('96-'97) has been named President-Elect of the American Public Health Association. She will begin her term in Autumn 2007.



Johnson's Work Pays Off as Bill becomes Law
The Lifespan Respite Care Act, which was written by Suzanne Bennett Johnson ('01-'02) when she was a fellow, was signed into law on December 21, 2006 by President Bush.



Miller Elected as Trustee of Boys and Girls Town
Robert Miller ('96-'97) was elected in December to the Board of Trustees of the Boys and Girls Town of America (best known as Boys Town). In addition, he has served on the IOM's Sleep Medicine and Research Committee as well as on the National Advisory Committee of the RWJ Faculty Scholars Program.


De Biasi Becomes Director at NBCC
Anne De Biasi ('00-'01) has become Director of Public Policy at the National Breast Cancer Coalition.

Carlson Appointed Chief Medical Officer at St. Jude
Mark Carlson ('02-'03) has been appointed Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President, Clinical Affairs, of St. Jude Medical's Cardiac Rhythm Management Division.


Painter Completes 100-mile Bike Ride for Charity
Michael Painter ('03-'04) recently completed a 100-mile bike ride as part of the Lance Armstrong LIVESTRONG event in Philadelphia. The event raised over $2.5 million that will be used to help patients and their families who are living with cancer or surviving the disease.



Ring Becomes Director at American Heart Association
John Ring ('04-'05) has become Director, Policy Research and Development at the American Heart Association.



Cuttler Receives Health Policy Researcher of the Year
Leona Cuttler ('05-'06) has been annouced as a Health Policy Researcher of the Year for Ohio in 2006 by the Health Policy Institute of Ohio. Read more by clicking here.

Hebert Advises in the Country of Georgia
Kathy Hebert ('05-'06) is working in the country of Georgia with the Millennium Challenge Corporation, a US government-owned corporation, where she is teaching a group of doctors and nurses how to run a US-style emergency room program. Before this she was in Mongolia developing a chronic disease program for prevention of heart disease, cancer, stroke and trauma.


If you have comments or questions about the newsletter or fellowship, please contact us.

© 2006 The RWJ Health Policy Fellowships Program
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