16+ years of Medicare experience
My career helping people with Medicare started when I volunteered as a SHIP Counselor. As a Counselor with SHIP (State Health Insurance Assistance Program), I helped Medicare-eligible individuals navigate the complexities of Medicare. This was my 2nd encounter with Medicare. My first introduction to Medicare was when I worked for the American Geriatrics Society and discovered that I enjoyed working with older adults.
A few months after my SHIP Counselor training, the non-profit I volunteered with hired me because it received funding to launch the new Medicare Part D program. As a Medicare Outreach Specialist, I went all over San Francisco giving presentations on Medicare Part D, Medicare, Medicare Supplement, and Medicare Advantage.
I was promoted to Program Manager when the former Manager left to pursue a master’s degree.
My next stop was California Health Advocates, a statewide non-profit providing training and technical assistance to SHIPs in California and policy advocacy on behalf of Medicare consumers. I had the opportunity to go all over California training SHIP Counselors.
I was promoted to Executive Director when the former CEO stepped down. Serving a growing Medicare population was challenging: 10,000 people became eligible for Medicare every day. The unprecedented growth started in 2011, when the first of the baby boomers turned 65, and will continue until 2030.
I started to teach a course on Health Care Insurance Options in 2015 at UC Berkeley Extension. Teaching this course expanded my knowledge from Medicare to other public health programs (Medicaid, Tricare, VA) as well as private health insurance (employer-sponsored, Affordable Care Act Marketplace plans).
I have come full circle now as a licensed health agent. I draw on my experiences as a SHIP Counselor, advocate, and educator. Best of all, I get to work with people, helping them understand Medicare and how it can work for them.