Sharon Lewis is a nationally lauded expert in disability policy spanning home and community-based services (HCBS), education, employment, independent living supports, and person-centered services. At HMA, she works with federal partners, states, providers and consumer advocates to advance opportunities for people with disabilities to fully participate in all aspects of community, across the lifespan. Sharon is a collaborator and consensus builder with a natural ability to put policy into practical perspective.
Sharon came to HMA having served in presidentially appointed leadership roles at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) including principal deputy administrator of the Administration for Community Living, senior disability policy advisor to the HHS Secretary, and commissioner of the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. At HHS, she improved access to quality integrated home and community-based services across multiple programs and funding sources in collaboration with states, stakeholders and other federal agencies including the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the Social Security Administration, and the U.S. Departments of Labor, Education, Transportation and Justice.
Sharon co-founded the Administration for Community Living, an HHS division established in 2012 to maximize the independence, well-being and health of older adults and people with disabilities, their families and caregivers. Managing $1.9 billion in national, state and local programs, she championed investments in preventative home and community-based supports and social services, reducing reliance on unnecessary facility-based care. In collaboration with CMS leadership, Sharon led significant reforms in Medicaid HCBS policy and regulations to ensure community integration and increase person-centered services. She advanced performance measurement and quality metrics for HCBS, expanding participation in a voluntary system of measures for developmental disabilities services from 22 to 43 states in just five years and piloting a similar system for aging and physical disabilities services in a dozen states. She also increased investment in research and development in HCBS quality metrics.
As senior disability policy advisor to the U.S. House Committee on Education and Labor and as a Kennedy Public Policy Fellow for the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Children and Families, she advised members on legislative strategy and disability-related policy issues in education, employment and health care.
At the state level in Oregon, Sharon led public policy, legislative strategy and grassroots organizing for multiple non-profit advocacy organizations and coalitions for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Sharon completed an executive leadership program at the Harvard University John F. Kennedy School of Government and earned her bachelor’s degree in graphic communications from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.
Sharon is a busy mom of three wonderful daughters, including one with developmental disabilities, and host to two giant Newfoundlands. A Michigan native who now lives in Falls Church, Virginia, Sharon calls Oregon her “happy place.”