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Innovators,
Researchers and Doers

Led by Congresswoman Allyson Y. Schwartz, Better Medicare Alliance and our team drives the future of health care forward through data-driven evidence and research supporting Medicare Advantage. Leading health care policy researchers, dedicated communications experts, and grassroots organizers create our effective team. As the leading voice on Medicare Advantage, Better Medicare Alliance’s staff, board of directors and council of scholars are nimble and skilled, driving innovative solutions forward for Medicare.

Our Staff

Our in-house staff manages the day-to-day operations of the coalitions, ranging from organizing our grassroots supporters to setting vision, writing policy and attending hill briefings.

Mary Beth Donahue
President and Chief Executive Officer
Mary Beth Donahue was named President and CEO of Better Medicare Alliance in 2021, bringing nearly three decades of management, health care policy, and patient advocacy to the role. Mary Beth began her career working in state government in her native Massachusetts and ascended to a role as Chief of Staff at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under Secretary Donna E. Shalala during the Clinton administration. Most recently, she served as Executive Director of Kidney Care Partners, a coalition of patient advocates, dialysis professionals, care providers, researchers, and manufacturers dedicated to improving quality of care for individuals living with kidney disease. A leader in patient advocacy and health equity, Mary Beth additionally serves on the Board of Directors for the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, a national nonprofit dedicated to empowering children to develop lifelong healthy habits. She served as an Advisory Council Member to the Cancer Support Community. Mary Beth is also the past Executive Vice President of Advocacy and Operations of AHIP, the trade association representing companies providing health insurance coverage in the United States. She holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Boston College and a master’s degree in public policy from Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy where she served on the Alumni Board of Directors. Mary Beth lives in Maryland with her two daughters.
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Susan Reilly
Vice President of Communications
Susan Reilly joined Better Medicare Alliance as Vice President of Communications in August 2023, bringing more than 15 years of communications and public affairs experience. In her role at Better Medicare Alliance, Susan serves as the primary spokesperson for the organization, including external communications and media relations, while overseeing digital and communications strategy. Prior to joining Better Medicare Alliance, Susan served as Director of Communications at the Association for Accessible Medicines, where she developed and executed AAM's communications strategy around promoting access to generic and biosimilar medicines. Susan has worked at leading global public relations agencies and healthcare trade associations, including the Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA) and Safe Kids Worldwide, a nonprofit affiliate of Children's National Hospital. Susan is a graduate of Hollins University where she received her B.A. degree in French. Susan and her husband live in Washington, DC where they raised their two, now young adult, children.   
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Chris Long
Chief Strategic Officer and Senior Vice President of Government Affairs
Chris Long joined Better Medicare Alliance as Vice President of Government Affairs in early 2022, bringing three decades of government relations, advocacy, and public service leadership. Long started his career as an aide to Congressman George “Buddy” Darden (D-GA) and, most recently, was partner at Bluestone Strategies LLC, a top bipartisan government affairs firm where he lobbied for over a decade on behalf of clients including Serco Inc., Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA), America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), and Kaiser Permanente. Prior to co-founding and leading Bluestone Strategies, Long served as Executive Vice President of Public Affairs for CareCore National, where he advocated for evidence-based specialty benefit management programs during the historic debate on the Affordable Care Act.  Earlier, Long served as Director of Congressional and Public Affairs for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and as Director of Tax and Fiscal Affairs for the Associated General Contractors (AGC). Long hails from South Carolina, is a graduate of the University of Georgia, and holds a Master of Arts from American University. He served on the board of the Literacy Volunteers and is Chair of the local Young Life Committee in his community.  Email Chris at CLong@bettermedicarealliance.org.
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Kaitlyn Saal-Ridpath
Senior Director of Policy and Research
Kaitlyn Saal-Ridpath serves as Senior Director of Policy and Research at the Better Medicare Alliance. She first came to the organization in early 2021 as Policy Associate. Prior to joining the Better Medicare Alliance team, Kaitlyn worked across the public, private, and non-profit sectors, with a mission to improve the health and well-being of individuals across the country. She brings with her a range of public health, health law, and policy experience, focusing primarily on social determinants of health. Kaitlyn holds a JD and MPH in Health Policy & Management from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law and Graduate School of Public Health, as well as a bachelor's degree in Public Health from Elon University. Email Kaitlyn at KSaalRidpath@bettermedicarealliance.org.
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Kristen Voyvodich
Administrative Manager
Kristen Voyvodich is the Administrative Manager at Better Medicare Alliance. Before working at Better Medicare Alliance, Kristen worked at AIPAC in the Marketing, Creative and Events department, where she was part of the Event Operations team, working on large-scale national and regional events. She holds two Masters degrees, one in Drama and Movement Therapy from the University of London and one in Shakespeare Studies from the Shakespeare Institute at the University of Birmingham. Kristen has a BA from Mount Holyoke College. Email Kristen at KVoyvodich@bettermedicarealliance.org.
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Andrew Young
Director, Grassroots
Andrew Young joined the Better Medicare Alliance (BMA) in late 2023 as Director, Grassroots. Prior to joining BMA, he had spent over five years with the American Clinical Laboratory Association (ACLA), notably during the COVID-19 pandemic. Before his time at ACLA, he worked as a political consultant during the 2016 election campaign. Young previously served as the Wayne Townsend Legislative Fellow in the office of U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly, where he worked on a range of policy issues, including health care. Young holds a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Political Science as well as a minor in Public and Environmental Affairs from Indiana University. Email Andrew at ayoung@bettermedicarealliance.org.
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Lorenzo Rodriguez
Government Affairs Associate
Lorenzo Rodriguez joined Better Medicare Alliance as Government Affairs Associate after a nearly six-month-long internship, during which time he provided valuable aid to the team’s government affairs and Ally engagement efforts – conducting legislative research, staffing Congressional meetings, and helping to organize Hill briefings and advocacy events. A graduate of Florida International University, Lorenzo held previous roles as a legislative intern for Congresswoman Diana DeGette (D-CO) and an intern for the World War One Centennial Commission. He is a candidate for his Master of Political Science from American University. Email Lorenzo at LRodriguez@bettermedicarealliance.org.
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Caroline Coopersmith
Policy Associate
Caroline Coopersmith joined Better Medicare Alliance as a Policy Associate in August of 2023. She is originally from Texas and has her bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University where she majored in History and minored in Public Health and Theology and Religious Studies. Prior to Better Medicare Alliance Caroline interned for Pandemic Action Network as well as the American Red Cross
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