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.

Allyson Y. Schwartz
President & CEO
Allyson Y. Schwartz, a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania who served from 2005-2015, is a nationally recognized leader on health care issues. Throughout her professional life she has worked on issues such as affordability, primary care, coordinated care, and increased access to coverage. Having worked as a health service executive, Schwartz was elected to the Pennsylvania State Senate in 1990, serving 14 years until her election to Congress. In the state Senate, Schwartz was the driving force behind Pennsylvania’s CHIP program, which was a model for the federal CHIP program five years later. In Congress, Schwartz was appointed to the powerful Ways and Means committee in her second term and served as a senior member of the Budget Committee. In both capacities, Schwartz was a strong advocate for Medicare. She was the leader in Congress on physician payment reform to encourage value over volume, supported research, innovation, and use of technology to improve quality, efficiency, and contain costs. Schwartz was instrumental in the passage of landmark health reform legislation, authoring key provisions such as the ban on pre-existing condition exclusions for children and increased access to primary care. Schwartz serves on the Executive Advisory Board of the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics of the University of Pennsylvania, as well as being a member of the Advisory Board, University of Pennsylvania Wharton School “Penn Wharton Budget Model”. Schwartz is a member of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Advisory Board, participates in an advisory group to Avalere Health’s Patient-Perspective Value Framework and serves as a member of RAND’s Technical Expert Panel on the Medicare Advantage Stars Rating System, She is on the Board of Trustees, Einstein Health, Philadelphia and served as Co-Chair of the Health and Housing for Seniors Task Force of the Bipartisan Policy Center, where she also frequently participates in roundtable discussions on the future of Medicare.. Schwartz earned a B.A. from Simmons College, and a Master of Social Service from Bryn Mawr College. She is married, has two grown sons, two daughters-in-law, and a 6-year-old granddaughter.
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Robin Goracke
Chief of Staff
Robin Goracke has nearly two decades of health care policy experience in both the public and private sectors. Robin served as a legislative analysist at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in the Office of Secretary, in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Legislation under both Secretary Sebelius and Secretary Burwell. Among her many responsibilities, Robin’s main policy areas of focus was on Medicare Parts B, C and D regulations. She also spent sixteen years in the U.S. House of Representatives, reaching the position of Legislative Director for U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN). Most recently she held the position of Director of Healthcare Policy at the National Restaurant Association, headquartered in Washington, D.C.. Robin is originally from Minnesota and holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota.
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Jonathan Frank
Communications Director

Jonathan Frank is the Communications Director at Better Medicare Alliance (BMA).

As the past Communications Director for Horizon Government Affairs and the BMA-allied Council for Affordable Health Coverage, Jonathan brings a depth of health policy communications experience to the BMA team.

Previously, Jonathan served in a variety of roles for then-Congresswoman Diane Black (R-TN), Chairman of the House Budget Committee and a member of the Ways and Means Committee, including stints as Press Secretary and Communications Director, culminating in a dual role with the House Budget Committee.

Jonathan’s writings on behalf of past principals and clients have appeared in Time, Forbes, Modern Healthcare, Medical Economics, The Hill, STAT News, Fox News, Washington Examiner, Morning Consult, and others.

Jonathan is a native of Nashville, Tennessee and a graduate of Tennessee Technological University.

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Deborah Estes
Director of Policy and Research
Deborah Estes joined Better Medicare Alliance as its Director of Policy and Research in early 2020, bringing nearly a decade of Medicare compliance and operational expertise to the role. Previously, Estes was the Director of Medicare Programs and Quality for PerformRx, a pharmacy benefits manager serving Medicare Part D plans. Estes also served a six-year tenure at Evolent Health, a medical technology company focusing on value-based care services and payment solutions, culminating in a role as Associate Director of Medicare and Medicaid Operations. There, Estes was responsible for reviewing all major Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) regulations and implementing operational changes stemming from CMS guidance. Earlier in her career, Estes served as a Medicare Quality Assurance Analyst for Catamaran, a pharmacy benefits manager now part of Optum. Estes began her health care career in 2011 as a Benefits Specialist for Health Advocate, a Pennsylvania-based firm helping beneficiaries navigate complex health coverage options. Estes is a Connecticut native and a graduate of Union College in Schenectady, NY. She received her Master of Science degree from Marymount University in Arlington, VA.
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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 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.

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Lorenzo Rodridguez
Government Affairs Assistant
Lorenzo Rodriguez joined Better Medicare Alliance as Government Affairs Assistant 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.
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Savanna Maloney
Digital Media Associate
Savanna Maloney is the Digital Media Associate at Better Medicare Alliance. Prior to joining the team, Savanna worked as the Project Manager at Men’s Health Network, where she assisted in raising awareness and advocating for men’s health as well as supporting the strategic growth and direction of the organization. Her start in health care began in her role as Community Liaison at Via Health, with a mission to improve patient outcomes through educating patients and helping them find community resources. Savanna graduated from The University of Florida where she obtained her bachelor's degree in Sport Management and a certificate in Digital Marketing.
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