For Immediate Release | January 21, 2021


Meghan Griffin at (202) 243-7286

The Board of Directors of the National Academy of Social Insurance has approved the election of 56 distinguished experts as Academy Members, bringing the total active membership to over 1,100. (A complete list of individuals newly elected to the Academy may be found below.)

“It is my privilege to welcome this newest cohort to the Academy. They bring an inspiring range of perspectives to our work,” said William Arnone, the Academy’s Chief Executive Officer. “It is essential to include various types of expertise and disciplines when it comes to the complex challenges we face – from the impacts of COVID-19 to systemic racism in our society and economy. We are excited to engage our newest Members in the Academy’s initiatives and to support their diverse contributions to social insurance policy.”

The Academy advances solutions to challenges facing the nation by increasing public understanding of how social insurance contributes to economic security. This mission encompasses established social insurance programs – Workers’ Compensation, Unemployment Insurance, Social Security, Medicare – as well as related policy areas, including Universal Family Care, health security, other social protection programs, and private employee benefits.

“This newest cohort represents excellence in program administration, policymaking, research, education, and advocacy. As with past years, the individuals elected have distinguished themselves across a wide array of areas, from contributions to longstanding programs – Social Security, Medicare, Unemployment Insurance, and Workers’ Compensation – to addressing emerging risks and unmet needs,” said Shaun O’Brien, Chair of the Membership Committee.

“The Academy welcomes our newest Members with a renewed focus on the vital role of social insurance in the lives of America’s families, and in an inclusive, democratic society,” said Academy Board Chair William Rodgers III. “The insights they will bring to the Academy’s work could not come at a better time.”

New Academy Members are nominated by current Members in recognition of their professional contributions in one or more areas of social insurance. Members make significant contributions to the Academy’s research, education, and leadership development initiatives by volunteering their time on study panels, task forces, and committees, at conferences and on webinars, and in other Academy programs. For more information about membership in the Academy and a full list of active Members, please visit the Academy’s website:


Newly elected Academy Members and their affiliations at the time of nomination:

Olugbenga Ajilore, Center for American Progress

Mir Ali, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Riaz Ali, Saeidan, Inc.

Jessica Bartholow, California State Legislature

Linda Benesch, Social Security Works

Yonatan Ben-Shalom, Mathematica

Deborah Berkowitz, National Employment Law Project

Raphael Bostic, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

Alexandra Bradley, HIPS

Niall Brennan, Health Care Cost Institute

Caroline Bruckner, Kogod Tax Policy Center, American University

Kevin Cahill, Center for Retirement Research, Boston College

Debbie Chang, Blue Shield of California Foundation

Anqi Chen, Center for Retirement Research, Boston College

Rita Choula, AARP Public Policy Institute

Lisa Cook, Department of Economics, Michigan State University

Damir Cosic, Urban Institute

William Darity, Jr., Sanford School of Public Policy, Duke University

Miranda Dietz, University of California – Berkeley Labor Center

Rebecca Dixon, National Employment Law Project

Melanie Egorin, U.S. House Committee on Ways & Means

Vicki Fung, Harvard Medical School

Colleen Grogan, School of Social Service Administration, University of Chicago

Jean Hall, Life Span Institute, University of Kansas

Darrick Hamilton, The New School

Mary Hamman, University of Wisconsin, La Crosse

Samuel Hammond, Niskanen Center

June Hopkins, Georgia Southern University

Nan Hunter, Georgetown Law

Camara Jones, Morehouse School of Medicine

Damon Jones, Harris School of Public Policy, University of Chicago

Janelle Jones, Groundwork Collaborative

Robert Leflar, School of Law, University of Arkansas

Jaia Lent, Generations United

Michael LePore, LiveWell Institute, Brown University

Laurel Lucia, University of California – Berkeley Labor Center

C. Nicole Mason, Institute for Women’s Policy Research

Samantha Morales, New Mexico Aging & Long-Term Services

Denise Murray, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency

Caroline Pearson, NORC at the University of Chicago

Ninez Ponce, UCLA Center for Health Policy Research

Leigh Purvis, AARP Public Policy Institute

Lynette Rawlings, The Policy Academies

Mary Romero, Arizona State University

Ruth Schau, TIAA

Ian Shapiro, Yale University

David Super, Georgetown Law

Christina Swoope Carrere, White House Office of Management & Budget

John Tambornino, U.S. Department of Labor Office of Disability Employment Policy

Sherece West-Scantlebury, Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation

Kelly Whitener, Center for Children & Families, Georgetown University

Jasmine Wigfall, Social Security Works

Taryn Williams, Center for American Progress

Patrice Willoughby, Signal Group

Claire Winiarek, Pharmaceutical Care Management Association

Abigail Zapote, Latinos for a Secure Retirement

Since the National Academy of Social Insurance was founded in 1986, it has provided rigorous inquiry and insights into the functioning of our nation’s social insurance programs – Social Security, Medicare, Unemployment Insurance, and Workers’ Compensation. Comprised of over 1,100 Members – the nation’s top experts in social insurance and related policies and programs – the Academy studies how social insurance can continue to meet the changing needs of American families, employees, and employers, including uninsured or underinsured economic risks. To learn more about the Academy’s work, please visit, or follow @socialinsurance on Twitter.

See related news: News About NASI

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