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HHS ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR LEGISLATION IS LABOR UNION LOBBYIST JERRY KLEPNER; ASSISTANT FOR PLANNING AND EVALUATION IS HARVARD PROFESSOR ELLWOOD

Executive Summary

HHS' assistant secretary for legislation will be Jerry Klepner, who has served as director of legislation for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees since 1987. A former staff director on the House Post Office and Civil Service/Compensation and Employee Benefits Subcommittee, Klepner practiced law with the Washington, D.C. firm of Anderson, Benjamin, Read & Haney before joining AFSCME. The selection of Klepner was included in a batch of subcabinet appointments announced by the Clinton Administration Feb. 23. As director of HHS' legislative efforts, Klepner probably will have a key role in selling the Administration's health care reform plan on Capitol Hill. Joining him in the legislative office will be Principal Deputy Secretary for Legislation Richard Tarplin, previously the staff director of the Senate Labor & Human Resources/Subcommittee on Children, Family Drugs and Alcoholism; Deputy Assistant Secretary for Legislation/Congressional Liaison Kimberly Parker, director of PAC and constituency services for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee; and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Legislation/Health Karen Politz, a former aide to Sen. Rockefeller (D-W.Va.). Other topsiders named include Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation David Ellwood, PhD; HHS Deputy Secretary Walter Broadnax, PhD; General Counsel Harriet Rabb; and Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs Avis LaVelle. Ellwood is the academic dean and professor of public policy at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. He serves on various National Academy of Sciences panels, including the National Forum on the Future of Children and Their Parents and the Committee on the Status of Black Americans. Reporting to Ellwood are: Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation Judith Feder, PhD; Deputy Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation/Health Policy Kenneth Thorpe, PhD; and Senior Policy Analyst Atul Gawande. All three were key members of the Clinton health transition team and subsequently moved to HHS to begin work on developing health care reform proposals. Broadnax, an Arkansas native, served as a Clinton transition team leader in personnel and management issues. Since 1990, he has been president of the Center for Governmental Research, a Rochester, N.Y.-based non-profit consulting organization. Rabb has been with Columbia Law School since 1971, serving as vice dean, professor of law and social responsibility, director of clinical education and assistant dean for urban affairs. LaVelle, the top spokesperson for HHS, was the national press secretary for the Clinton-Gore campaign. From 1989-92, she served as press secretary for Chicago Mayor Richard Daley. The Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs is Anne Lewis, who will report to LaVelle.
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