Spotlight Exclusives

Sharon Parrott Becomes Counselor on Human Services to HHS Secretary Sebelius

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Due to delays in appointing a secretary, the Department of Health and Human Services got a late start on filling key senior posts. But they۪re now picking up steam and are making some great choices. Case in point is Sharon Parrott۪s appointment as counselor to the secretary. Sharon۪s key post at HHS is good news for low-income community advocates. August 24 is the date she moves into the administration from her position as the director of the Welfare Reform and Income Support Division at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. This division is responsible for the Center’s work on the TANF program and other federal and state policy issues related to welfare reform, child care funding and child support enforcement. The division also conducts much of the Center’s broader analyses of poverty trends and the effectiveness of the safety net.

Sharon۪s analytic skills are legendary. In addition to TANF, she is an expert on services for families with barriers to employment, as well as the interaction and integration of benefit program rules in Medicaid, Food Stamps, TANF, Child Care and SCHIP. It doesn۪t end there. At CBPP, Sharon played a key role in the Center۪s work on the federal budget, the impact of federal budget decisions on low-income populations, low-income tax policy, and policies that ensure that solutions to climate change do not adversely impact low-income households.

Sharon is one of DC۪s brainiacs. But what I like most about Sharon is her passion. Largely because of her, national-level attention is beginning to be given to those living in “extreme poverty.” She۪s prompted conversation, analysis and policy discussions. Now, with Sharon in her key post, this issue and others may soon see some action! On to TANF reauthorization!!

Posted by Mike


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