Press Releases
May 9, 2024

Better Medicare Alliance Strengthens Team with Key Hires

Reflects Commitment to Education and Research in Support of Advocacy for Medicare Advantage Beneficiaries

WASHINGTON – Better Medicare Alliance (BMA), the nation’s leading research and advocacy organization supporting Medicare Advantage for the more than 32 million beneficiaries it serves, is pleased to announce the addition of six new staff to its growing team. These new hires are a critical part of BMA’s overall strategic efforts to broaden and strengthen its advocacy and research capabilities at a time of tremendous growth as increasingly more seniors choose to enroll in Medicare Advantage.

With Medicare Advantage now representing more than 50 percent of the Medicare population, the task of enhancing the health care experience for a growing, diverse beneficiary population, and strengthening this program for the future, is more important than ever. To that end, BMA is adding staff to better serve and engage with the 200+ diverse Ally organizations, Medicare Advantage stakeholders, and one million grassroots seniors and to further BMA’s mission to support research and advocacy for high-quality, affordable care for Medicare beneficiaries.

“We are excited to welcome these talented individuals to the Better Medicare Alliance team at a pivotal time with more seniors relying on Medicare Advantage,” said Mary Beth Donahue, president and CEO of Better Medicare Alliance. “Their diverse backgrounds and extensive experience are instrumental in helping us educate policymakers, stakeholders, and the public about the important role Medicare Advantage plays in improving health outcomes for more than 32 million seniors and people with disabilities across the country.”

The new hires include:

  • Teal Baker, Chief Operating Officer – Announced separately last week, Teal Baker is BMA’s chief operating officer, collaborating across policy, government affairs, communications, and operations teams to drive strategic alignment and operational excellence. With more than 15 years of experience in senior operational roles for political campaigns and professional services firms, Teal most recently served as executive vice president and chief operating officer at Invariant, where she guided the firm’s rapid expansion to the 5th-largest government relations firm in the country.
  • Don Dempsey, Vice President of Policy and Research – Don Dempsey is BMA’s vice president of policy and research, adding over two decades of health care policy experience in both government and private sector roles. Don oversees BMA’s policy team, leading research into the impact and outcomes of Medicare Advantage. Prior to BMA, Don oversaw the Marwood Group’s DC office and served as the vice president for policy and regulatory affairs at CVS Health. Don also brings years of legislative and executive branch experience having served as program associate director at the Office of Management and Budget during former President George W. Bush’s administration, legislative director for former Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC), and director of health policy of the Senate Budget Committee. 
  • Jennifer Nord Mallard, Vice President of Government Affairs – As vice president of government affairs, Jennifer Nord Mallard works closely with Capitol Hill policymakers to advocate for policies supporting Medicare Advantage beneficiaries. With more than 20 years of policy, regulatory and legislative experience, Jennifer joined BMA from Tempus, an AI-enabled precision medicine company where she served as head of government affairs. She was also head of the health care practice at The Vogel Group and managed Mayo Clinic’s DC office. Jennifer earlier worked as chief health care policy advisor for former Rep. Rick Lazio (R-NY) and at the American Hospital Association as senior associate director.
  • Susan Reilly, Vice President of Communications – Susan Reilly serves as BMA’s vice president of communications, bringing more than 15 years of communications and public affairs experience. Susan serves as BMA’s primary spokesperson, overseeing external communications and media relations as well as digital content and strategy. Susan previously worked as director of communications at the Association for Accessible Medicines (AAM), where she developed and executed AAM’s communications strategy around promoting access to generic and biosimilar medicines.
  • Jonathan Wolfe, Senior Director of Strategic Partnerships – Jonathan Wolfe is BMA’s senior director of strategic partnerships, overseeing the organization’s Ally coalition and strategic partnerships with stakeholders in the Medicare Advantage community. Prior to joining BMA, he was the senior director of communications at the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, where he led communications strategy throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Andrew Young, Director of Grassroots – Andrew Young serves as BMA’s director of grassroots, leading advocacy efforts educating Medicare Advantage beneficiaries on the program and connecting seniors with policymakers in efforts to strengthen Medicare Advantage. Andrew previously worked as a senior coordinator the American Clinical Laboratory Association, where he managed member engagement and assisted with day-to-day operations.

Read their full bios here.


Better Medicare Alliance is a community of more than one million grassroots beneficiaries and 200+ ally organizations working to improve health care through a strong Medicare Advantage. Learn more at

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