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Claire Green, Staff Director

Green joined the Board staff in October 2012 as Deputy Staff Director and was named Staff Director in September 2013. Before that, Green worked for the Senate Finance Committee as a Congressional Fellow. Green’s portfolio included SSA programs, solvency, deficit reduction issues, SSA’s administrative budget, and public and private sector disability programs. Green worked at Social Security for 18 years, earning over a dozen performance and team awards. In 2004, Green was promoted to the Chief Judges Attorney-Advisor where she worked on complex program and policy issues, the electronic business process, bias and misconduct complaints against Administrative Law Judges, and employee and labor relation issues. Claire has a JD from Western State University College of Law and graduated with honors from Assumption College in English and sociology.

Diane Brandt, PhD, Research Director

Dr. Brandt joined the Board staff in September 2017 as a Senior Advisor. Brandt began a career with the federal government in 2008 as a protocol manager for the National Institutes of Health, Clinical Center, Rehabilitation Medicine Department, Epidemiology and Biostatistics Section. Brandt worked principally on an interagency agreement with the Social Security Administration in support of the agency disability programs. In addition to a diverse clinical background, Brandt’s research interests include public policy/health policy and implications for vulnerable populations; and, the geospatial implications of policy outcomes. Brandt holds a BS in physical therapy from the University of Missouri-Columbia, a MS in gerontology and neurorehabilitation from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri and a MA and PhD from the University of Missouri-St. Louis in political science, specializing in public/health policy.

Cheri Cannon, General Counsel

Cannon joined the Board in April 2021 as the General Counsel.  Immediately before, from 2014 to 2021, Cannon was a Partner at Tully Rinckey PLLC and head of the Federal Labor and Employment practice in Washington, DC. Cannon also served for a little over 3 years as Managing Partner of the DC office. Prior to Tully Rinckey, from 2008 to 2014, Cannon served as the SES Deputy General Counsel for Fiscal, Ethics and Administrative Law for the Department of the Air Force, and from October 2007 to August 2008, Cannon was the Chief Counsel to the Chairman of the Merit Systems Protection Board.  Other government service includes 17 years at the Small Business Administration, where Cannon served in SES roles of Deputy Director of the Disaster Loan Program and Associate General Counsel for General Law. Prior to government, Cannon was an associate at two law firms in Washington, Venable LLP and Beveridge and Diamond PC. Cannon earned a bachelor’s in political science (with Honors) from the University of California at Santa Barbara and a JD from Georgetown University Law Center.

Bethel Dejene, Management Officer

Dejene joined the Board staff in June 2014 as a Research Analyst and currently serves as a Management Officer. Prior to joining the Board, Dejene completed an internship at the Ethiopian Community Development Council in Arlington, Virginia. Dejene was also a participant in Capital Area REACH, job-readiness, and community service program. Dejene earned a BS in psychology from George Mason University.

Sunny Bick, Management Analyst

Bick joined the Board staff in January 2020 as a Management Analyst. Bick comes from a research background, most recently studying the pathology of Alzheimer’s Disease with the Mayo Clinic Institute of Neurodegenerative Diseases in Jacksonville, Florida. Bick’s previous work at Stanford University’s Hopkins Marine Lab involved marine species genetic diversity and adaptation to environmental stress. Bick spent several years with the Federal government doing collaborative VA Medical Center /NIH research into cholesterol metabolism and alcoholism’s effect on diabetes and hyperlipidemia in the Veteran population. Bick graduated with honors from the University of Maryland, receiving a BS in microbiology and biochemistry.

Pamela Crawford, PhD, Senior Advisor

Dr. Crawford joined the Board staff in June 2018 as a Senior Advisor. Crawford’s federal service includes positions at the Social Security Administration (as a STEM Presidential Management Fellow), Department of Health and Human Services (Assistant Secretary for Preparedness Response, Division of International Health Security), Department of Defense, the National Institutes of Health and the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. Professional experience in academia includes Harvard University, Brigham and Women’s Hospital; the Johns Hopkins University at the Schools of Medicine, Public Health, Nursing, Evidence-based Policy Center, and the Center for American Indian Health. International work includes service at Mexico’s National Institute of Public Health, the World Bank Institute, and the World Health Organization. Crawford holds graduate degrees from Harvard University (SM), Johns Hopkins School of Medicine (MS), Johns Hopkins University (PhD), and Cambridge University (MPhil).

Paul Frazier, Systems Engineer

Frazier joined the Board in January 2022 as a Systems Engineer. At the Board, Frazier is responsible for IT systems and cybersecurity. Since 2007, Frazier has served as a contractor for different companies where he managed IT environments for clients such as the Department of Justice, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Federal Judiciary, US Navy, and Social Security Administration.

Conway Reinders, Lead Policy Analyst

Conway Reinders is a Lead Policy Analyst at the Social Security Advisory Board. He focuses on Social Security’s service to the public and program administration, including issues such as customer experience, evidence-based policymaking, administrative burdens, and financial capability. He also serves as the agency’s Communications Officer, coordinating the Board’s messaging, external outreach, and public events. Reinders joined the Board staff in 2017 as a Policy Analyst. Previously, he was a research consultant for the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative and a special assistant at the Hamilton Project at the Brookings Institution. In 2021, Reinders was elected to the National Academy of Social Insurance. He holds a BA from George Washington University, graduating magna cum laude in international affairs with special honors in economics.

Jenn Rigger, Senior Advisor

Rigger came to the Board as a Social Security Administration (SSA) detailee in March 2015 and currently serves as a Senior Advisor. In a 30-year career in Washington, DC, Rigger has focused on employment policy for people with disabilities, particularly Social Security beneficiaries’ return-to-work efforts. Rigger’s career began on Capitol Hill and in presidential primary campaigns. Rigger spent eight years at the Department of Education’s Rehabilitation Services Administration and nine more at SSA focused on the Ticket to Work and related employment support programs, including serving as staff to the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Advisory Panel. At the Board, Rigger focuses on disability policy and administrative issues. Rigger obtained a BS in political science and history from James Madison University.

Omar Shalabi, Policy Analyst

Shalabi first came to the Board in September 2019 as a Research Intern and subsequently joined as a Policy Analyst in April 2020. Shalabi graduated with a BA in Economics from the University of Maryland, completing a research practicum with the strategic advisory and M&A firm Kaulkin Ginsberg. At Kaulkin Ginsberg, Shalabi studied the student loan market, particularly regulatory changes and trends in loan issuance and collection.

Emma Tatem, Lead Policy Analyst

Emma Tatem is a Lead Policy Analyst at the Social Security Advisory Board, where she focuses on Social Security disability and Supplemental Security Income policy. Tatem joined the Board staff in 2018 as a Policy Analyst. Previously, she worked as a Research Assistant at the Latin American Public Opinion Project, a survey research group at Vanderbilt University. In 2021, Tatem was elected to membership in the National Academy of Social Insurance. She holds a BA in political science with honors from Pepperdine University and is a current MPP candidate at the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy.