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In-Person May 22 8:30 am - 12:10 pm Member - $99 Non-Member - $149 Pines Manor
2085 Lincoln Hwy, Edison, NJ 08817
The NJBIA Event Team Email

Presented by NJBIA

Engage as a Partner

If you’re interested in healthcare and want to stay up to date with the latest trends and innovations, then you won’t want to miss out on this exciting event.

Join us as we bring together some of the brightest minds in the industry, including industry experts, practitioners, researchers, policymakers, and other stakeholders, to exchange ideas and discuss the various challenges and opportunities in healthcare delivery.

From regulatory roadblocks to groundbreaking innovations, this event will cover it all. With interactive Q&A sessions, you’ll have the chance to engage with the speakers and be a part of the conversation.

Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to gain insight into the healthcare continuum and network with like-minded individuals.

Symposium Agenda

We’ll keep this page regularly updated, so make sure to check back frequently!
  • Click Here to View Our Program
    8:30 AM
    Breakfast, Networking & Registration
    9:00 AM
    Opening Remarks
    Presented by Michele N. Siekerka, Esq., NJBIA
    9:10 AM
    Role of AI and Technology in Advancing Healthcare
    We will engage AI leaders from Hackensack Meridian Health and Otsuka on how they are utilizing this burgeoning technology to improve patient outcomes and identifying opportunities to improve and implement operational efficiencies.

    Presented by:
    Tifani McCann, Otsuka
    Sameer Sethi, Hackensack Meridian Health
    Moderated by Althea Ford, NJBIA

    10:00 AM
    Networking Break
    10:15 AM
    Healthcare Workforce
    Representatives from hospitals, schools, and facilities that serve aging populations i.e., nursing homes, and home health will discuss the current scope of the workforce shortage issue, challenges, innovative solutions, and new models to respond.

    Presented by:
    Nancy Fitterer, Home Care & Hospice Association of New Jersey
    Assembly Majority Leader Louis D. Greenwald
    Dr. Susan Pagano, Brookdale Community College
    Deborah Visconi, Bergen New Bridge Medical Center
    Moderated by Neil Eicher , The New Jersey Hospital Association

    11:15 AM
    Healthcare Cost and Quality
    Our panelists will discuss facets of the healthcare continuum, pain points, and strategies taken or that need to be taken to address issues. The role of government, and how NJ compares nationally will also be addressed.

    Presented by:
    Chrissy Buteas, HealthCare Institute of New Jersey
    Dr. Jamie Reedy, M.D., Health Solutions
    Ward Sanders, JD, Association of Health Plans
    Linda Schwimmer, New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute
    Moderated by Kimberly Jackson, Public Partnerships | PPL

    12:15 PM
    Closing Remarks
    Presented by Michele N. Siekerka, Esq., NJBIA

Meet Our Featured Speakers

Keep checking in as we announce more speakers!
Michele N.     Siekerka, Esq. Michele N. Siekerka, Esq. President & CEO, NJBIA

Michele N. Siekerka, Esq., President and CEO of the New Jersey Business & Industry Association, leads the nation’s largest, most influential employers’ organization, advocating on behalf of New Jersey’s large and small businesses for policies that will make New Jersey more affordable and regionally competitive.

Being known as a collaborative leader, Siekerka is leading an NJBIA established coalition (New Jersey Business Coalition) comprised of more than 100 business and nonprofit associations across the state to tackle the tough economic and business challenges our state is facing during COVID 19.

Well versed on the ‘boots on the ground” issues affecting our state’s business community, Michele is often the “go to” resource for media and is sought after to share her expertise in public forums across the state.

Chrissy Buteas Chrissy Buteas President & CEO, HealthCare Institute of New Jersey

Chrissy Buteas serves as President & CEO of the HealthCare Quality Institute of New Jersey (HINJ). Founded in 1997, HINJ serves as the trade association for the leading research-based biopharmaceutical and medical technology companies in New Jersey.

Buteas, a seasoned leader, has held significant positions in her career. Before joining HINJ, she served as the VP of Government Affairs at Altice (Optimum), a prominent broadband communications and video service provider operating across 21 states. She served as the Chief Government Affairs Officer of the New Jersey Business & Industry Association (NJBIA), a role that allowed her to influence policies that affect 1 million employees of member companies. She also led the NEW JOBS PAC, the State’s largest and most influential ideological business political action committee.

Before joining NJBIA, Buteas was president and CEO of the Home Care & Hospice Association of New Jersey, representing New Jersey home health agencies, hospices, and healthcare service firms servicing the state’s Medicare, Medicaid, and private-pay patients.

She currently serves on the board of trustees of Middlesex College, Thanexus, Inc. (funeral service cooperative), Northern Board of Junior Achievement, and Board Chair of the Girl Scouts Heart of New Jersey, whose mission is to build girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place.

She also serves on the board of Focus NJ, an independent research nonprofit conducting timely, innovative, nonpartisan economic and workforce research, and the South Jersey Technology Park @ Rowan University.

Previously, Buteas served on the Murphy-Oliver Transition 2018 Healthcare team as vice president of the Capital Impact Group, a public affairs and business development firm that advocates for nonprofit organizations and Fortune 500 companies. She was also a policy specialist at the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities. Buteas is also the former president and current board member of the Women’s Political Caucus of New Jersey, a statewide nonprofit dedicated to advancing women in government.

Buteas served as a member of the New Jersey Medical Assistance Advisory Council, New Jersey Small Employer Health Benefits Program, as well as the Boards of Associated Member Trust and the New Jersey Mandated Health Benefits Advisory Commission, which responds to requests from the State Legislature to provide independent analysis of the medical, financial and social impacts of proposed health insurance benefit mandates.

In 2022, Buteas received the President’s Award from the Women’s Political Caucus of NJ. In 2021, Buteas was named a Woman of Distinction by the Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore, NJBIZ’s 2021 Next Generation of Leaders, a Barrier Breaker as part of Jersey’s Best magazine’s Spring issue honoring trailblazing women in the state and recognized on ROI-NJ’s Influencers: Power List for Government Affairs. In 2018, Buteas was named to NJBIZ’s Best 50 Women in Business list. She was named to NJBIZ’s “40 Under 40” and “Power 50 Health Care” lists in 2017, as well as the 2017 “Insider 100 Policymakers” list by Insider NJ.

Buteas holds an MPA from the School of Public Affairs and Administration at Rutgers University-Newark and a BA from Rowan University. She is also a graduate of Leadership NJ, a leadership development program, and served as a Raimondo Fellow at the Eagleton Institute of Politics. She is also a member of the Eagleton Institute of Politics Alumni Association.

Neil Eicher Neil Eicher Vice President of Policy, New Jersey Hospital Association
Althea Ford Althea Ford Vice President of Government Affairs, NJBIA

Ford, who previously served as director of government relations for the New Jersey State Funeral Directors Association (NJSFDA), brings valuable experience as a skilled researcher, legislative policy analyst and public speaker to her new role at NJBIA.

“Althea is well-respected by the business community, and the balanced, experienced and thoughtful approach she brings to advocating for New Jersey businesses will be a great asset as we expand the NJBIA Government Affairs team,” Siekerka said.

The NJBIA Government Affairs team also includes Chief Government Affairs Officer Christopher Emigholz, Deputy Chief Government Affairs Officer Ray Cantor, Vice President of Government Affairs Alexis Bailey, and Director of Economic Policy Research Kyle Sullender.

A New Jersey native and Edison resident, Ford began working for the not-for-profit trade organization NJSFDA in 2012 as a government and external relations representative before her promotion to director of government relations in 2018.

Prior to joining NJSFDA, Ford worked in higher education administration at Columbia University’s Teachers College in New York City.

Before moving back to New Jersey, Ford was an executive assistant to Tennessee State Senate Speaker Pro Tem Rosalind Kurita, managing two legislative and district offices.

Ford is a graduate of Vanderbilt University and earned her master’s degree in politics and education from the Teachers College at Columbia University in 2010. She completed the New Leaders Council–New Jersey (NLC-NJ) Fellowship Program in 2012 and served on its executive board.

Assembly Majority Leader Louis D. Greenwald (D-6) Assembly Majority Leader Louis D. Greenwald (D-6) New Jersey General Assembly

Assemblyman Lou Greenwald has represented New Jersey’s 6th Legislative District since 1996. He currently serves as the Assembly Majority Leader. During his tenure in the Assembly, Majority Leader Greenwald has led the fight on many key initiatives. He was the architect of the 2003 legislation to increase competition in New Jersey’s broken auto insurance market, which stopped a ballooning crisis in New Jersey and significantly increased the number of auto insurers in the State. Additionally, he was the lead sponsor on recent legislation to expand the use of design-build for New Jersey construction contracts, aimed to ensure greater efficiency and effectiveness for the state’s procurement process. As a supporter of cancer research and trying to find a cure, the Majority Leader helped in bringing a branch of the Cancer Institute of New Jersey to South Jersey, ensuring South Jersey cancer patients would not have to cross the Delaware River just to get the treatment they needed. He also played an integral role in protecting charity care funding for our State’s hospitals, and he led the fight to get students vaccinated for meningitis before college. A leader on health care policy, Majority Leader Greenwald successfully fought to ensure all women in New Jersey continue to have access to affordable healthcare services, which were jeopardized by the federal government’s Title X “gag” order. Additionally, he was a critical advocate for legislation to create a state-wide healthcare insurance exchange, so that residents of New Jersey can purchase affordable healthcare coverage.

Majority Leader Greenwald has been a champion of the effort to reduce gun violence. He authored laws that, among other things, limited ammunition magazines to 10 rounds, banned-armor piercing ammunition, and closed the background check loophole. Recognizing that gun violence is a public health crisis, he also championed laws to stem cycles of gun violence through hospital-based violence intervention programs, which has gained broad support from gun control advocates and physicians alike.

Most recently, with New Jersey gripped by the impact of the Coronavirus Pandemic, Majority Leader Greenwald fought to support Main Street businesses by sponsoring legislation authorizing the Economic Development Authority to award millions in grants and loans to struggling small businesses. He also sponsored a law which prevented potential billion-dollar unemployment payroll tax increases, to allow business owners to better recover from the economic fallout of the pandemic.

The Majority Leader has been widely honored and recognized for his legislative leadership and dedication to public service. He has received the Legislator of the Year award from the Southern New Jersey Chamber of Commerce, the South Jerseyan of the Year award from the Walter Rand Institute, the New Jersey Elected Official of the Year award from the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Consortium, the Standing Ovation Award from the South Jersey Cultural Alliance, and the Legislative Champion Award from the New Jersey Commission on Cancer Research.

Nancy Fitterer, MA Nancy Fitterer, MA President & CEO, Home Care & Hospice Association of New Jersey

Prior to joining the Home Care & Hospice Association of NJ, Nancy Fitterer served as Chief of Staff to two New Jersey Attorney Generals. Nancy also served in various other capacities during her eight-year tenure in the Office of the Attorney General, including Chief of Staff of the Division of Consumer Affairs. Nancy was Chief of Staff for Sen. Jennifer Beck and Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon, a trusted policy advisor to the New Jersey Assembly Republican Office and a constituent relations advocate to New Jersey Governors DiFrancesco and Whitman. She is a graduate of both The College of New Jersey with a B.A. in political science and Seton Hall University with an M.A. in international relations and diplomacy.

Kimberly Jackson Kimberly Jackson Senior Regional Director, Client Engagement, Public Partnerships | PPL

Kimberly Jackson, Sr. Regional Director, Client Engagement, is a seasoned leader with over two decades of program management and operations oversight within the healthcare sector, specializing in State government programs. As the Sr. Regional Director, Client Engagement, Kimberly brings a wealth of expertise to her role. She joined Public Partnerships in 2017 to spearhead the launch of 3 self-direction programs in NJ, that now collectively serve over 30,000 participants. Kimberly has demonstrated exceptional leadership and strategic vision and now initiates business development strategies in multiple states across the country. Kimberly is known for her commitment to creating efficient processes that create positive user experiences while ensuring business and contractual metrics and goals are met. She is passionate about community outreach that allows her to foster strong executive relationships with clients, stakeholders and advocacy agencies.

Tifani McCann, Ph.D. Tifani McCann, Ph.D. VP, Data & Analytics, Otsuka

With 25 years of creating value from data in the Pharmaceutical and CRO industries, Tifani developed from a technical expert to an enterprise leader. Over the course of her career, she has demonstrated success leading across various functional areas supporting global R&D, Corporate functions, and Commercial portfolios. As a data-guided risk taker, she has established enterprise data and AI strategies, enabled effective decision making with high-quality insights, and provided measurable business impact and efficiencies against enterprise priorities. In 2023, Tifani was named in the DataIQ Data Leader US 100, as a CDO100 US Life Science Data Leader, and in the AI100 US MachineCon awards. But what she’s most proud of and passionate about is her ability to attract, retain, engage, and develop effective technical teams and leaders.

Currently serving as Vice President, heading the Data & Analytics organization at Otsuka America Pharmaceutical, Inc. (OAPI) and Otsuka Pharmaceutical Development and Commercialization (OPDC), Tifani leads the team that is responsible for harnessing the organization’s existing data assets as well as procuring essential data from external sources and converting these into actionable insights. She guides the organization’s data science strategy to accelerate the responsible adoption of advanced analytics and artificial intelligence, and ensure these insights provide meaningful business value.

Before joining Otsuka in 2019, she served as VP, Global Head of Biostatistics and Data Analytics at Covance. In this role, Tifani led the global teams of biostatistics, statistical programming, risk-based monitoring and medical data review organizations. Prior to her experience at Covance, Tifani began her career at Bristol-Myers Squibb serving in various roles of increasing responsibility including the Biometrics therapeutic area head for Immunosciences to leading the business operations of the Global Biometrics Sciences organization as well as Global Head of the Data Strategy and Solutions organization. Tifani joined BMS immediately after earning her Ph.D. in Biostatistics from the Medical College of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University and she also holds B.A. in Mathematics.

Dr. Susan Pagano Dr. Susan Pagano Executive Director Continuing & Professional Studies, Brookdale Community College

Dr. Susan Pagano currently serves as the Executive Director of Continuing and Professional Studies at Brookdale Community College, where she oversees non-credit workforce development and lifelong learning programs. Some of these programs include healthcare, educator preparation, technology, and others. Dr. Pagano previously served as Acting Dean of Continuing and Professional Studies, Acting Director of Workforce Training, and Program Manager for Business, Career, and Technology Training at Brookdale. Dr. Pagano holds a doctorate degree in educational leadership, as well as a master’s degree in public policy, from Monmouth University.

Dr. Jamie L. Reedy, MD, MPH Dr. Jamie L. Reedy, MD, MPH Chief Population Health Officer & SVP, Health Solutions, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of NJ

Jamie Reedy, MD, MPH, is the Chief of Population Health and responsible for ensuring the success of value-based care programs for Summit Health.  She provides leadership, medical expertise and business direction for population health and quality initiatives that support strategic growth, the continuous improvement of care, wellness and greater value. Her position currently involves leadership of numerous, diverse high performing value-based contracts across multiple lines of business.

Dr. Reedy is leading the redesign of value-based care analytics in collaboration with our vendor partner, Arcadia, in order to enhance the efficiency and accuracy of reporting that will drive improvements in clinical care. She previously served as Senior Vice President and Medical Director of Population Health and Quality at Summit Health and was also formerly Chief of Hospital Medicine and Post-Acute Care. In those roles, she has overseen the design and implementation of innovative care delivery models involving care management, care navigation, social work, clinical pharmacy and other disciplines.

Prior to joining Summit, Dr. Reedy was Medical Director, Compliance Officer and a practicing physician with Paramount Medical Group/Westfield Family Practice in Westfield, NJ. In that role, she led an initiative to become a Level-3 National Committee for Quality Assurance recognized Patient-Centered Medical Home.

Dr. Reedy has a bachelor’s degree from New York University and a master’s degree in Health Policy and Management from the Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health. She earned her medical degree at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School (now known as the Rutgers New Jersey Medical School). She also completed her internship and a residency in Family Medicine at Robert Wood Johnson. She is board-certified by the American Board of Family Medicine and a Diplomate of the National Board of Medical Examiners.  She is a Board member of America’s Physician Groups and the National Association of ACOs (NAACOS), and has held board positions with the Paramount Medical Group and the NJ Academy of Family Physicians. She is also a former Chair of the Academy’s Government Affairs Committee and a former policy fellow and advisor for the NJ State Senate.   Dr. Reedy is a recognized thought leader who has been a featured speaker at many national conferences.

Linda J. Schwimmer, JD Linda J. Schwimmer, JD President & CEO, New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute

As President and CEO, Linda Schwimmer leads the Quality Institute’s work and advances its vision of a world where everyone receives safe, equitable, and affordable health care. Linda is a leading voice in health care quality and health care equity in New Jersey. She regularly advises leaders in the State’s legislative and executive branches on health care policy. Linda also is a noted national advocate for
patient safety and health care quality.

Linda routinely is called upon by media outlets to engage on health care issues — from maternal child health to health care access and affordability. She lends her voice and service to many nonprofit and government boards and commissions that advance health equity and quality in New Jersey and nationally.

Linda serves as Vice Chair of the Leapfrog Group’s board of directors, a national patient safety advocacy group. She also serves as Vice Chair for Parker Health Group, Inc., a not-for-profit, aging services organization committed to empowering older Americans. Linda is also the Vice Chair of the recently formed Center for Health Equity, the Public Health Institute for NJ. Previously, Linda served on the
board of the National Quality Forum (NQF) and was co-chair for Governor Phil Murphy’s transition team on health.

Before joining the Quality Institute, Linda worked in all three branches of government across state and federal levels, experience that supports her work to drive sustainable policy change. She also worked in  the private sector, including serving on the leadership team of Horizon Healthcare Innovations, a subsidiary of Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey. Linda served as Director of Legislation and Policy for the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance and in counsel positions with the New
Jersey Senate Majority Office.

For over a decade, she practiced ERISA, bankruptcy, and commercial law, representing the federal government, individuals, and businesses.

Linda received a B.A. with honors from the University of California, Berkeley, and a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center.

Sameer Sethi Sameer Sethi SVP, Chief Data & Analytics Officer, Hackensack Meridian Health
Deborah Visconi Deborah Visconi President & CEO, Bergen New Bridge Medical Center

Deborah Visconi is the President and CEO of Bergen New Bridge Medical Center, the largest hospital in New Jersey and the fourth largest publicly owned hospital in the country. In her more than three decades in healthcare, she has excelled in providing strategic direction, vision, and leadership.

Recognized for her servant leadership style and unparalleled commitment to innovation, operational excellence, and strategic collaborations, Visconi has helmed the Medical Center’s transformation leading to a financial turnaround and 5% positive operating margin. She drove negotiations with major insurers, which led to the hospital now accepting 99% of commercial insurance plans.  She has championed the Medical Center’s Foundation and has been instrumental in securing millions of dollars in grant funding to renovate and innovate both infrastructure and services at the Medical Center.

Visconi is known for her passionate commitment to healthcare access for traditionally underserved communities. This dedication has led the Medical Center to create satellite offices in nearby communities as well as establishing CareRite Now primary care centers at Bergen County supermarkets.

Visconi’s efforts have resulted in Bergen New Bridge being selected as a Veterans Community Care Provider, receiving the Joint Commission’s Advanced Health Equity certification, and maintaining leadership in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality in the Human Rights Campaign Healthcare Equality Index. She is steadfast in the fight against the opioid epidemic, recently overseeing the establishment of the Comprehensive Center for Addiction Treatment which provides an innovative holistic model of care. Under her tenure, Bergen New Bridge received its first Leapfrog A Grade as well as being named a Top Hospital and a Top Teaching Hospital.

Visconi has been recognized as being a healthcare innovator, mentor, and thought leader by numerous organizations and publications. In 2024, she was #8 in the NJBIZ Power 100 List of the most influential people in New Jersey. In 2023, she was named one of the Top 25 People of Color, a Champion of the C-Suite, and a Top Woman in Business by ROI-NJ. NJBIZ honored her with an Icon Award and the Healthcare Professional of the Year Award. She was listed in the top ten of NJBIZ’s Power 100 and was selected for their Health Care Power 50. She was also named a 2023 Becker’s Women CEOs You Need to Know and a 2023 Crain’s Notable Leader in Healthcare.

Board Appointments and professional affiliations include New Jersey Hospital Association (NJHA), Hospital Alliance of New Jersey, Care Plus Bergen, Commerce Industry Association of NJ (CIANJ), Eastwick College and Felician University as well as American College of Healthcare Executives, American Management Association (AMA), American Hospital Association (AHA), and America’s Essential Hospitals.

Visconi earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Health Services Administration as well as a Master of Science in Health Care Administration from The New School for Social Research In New York City.

Ward Sanders Ward Sanders President, New Jersey Association of Health Plans

As President of the New Jersey Association of Health Plans, Ward leads the state trade association that represents the major health plans in New Jersey, including all five Medicaid health plans. He became President of NJAHP in October of 2006.

Ward is a recognized expert on health-care policy, speaking to national and regional audiences. In 2014, Inside New Jersey and Star Ledger writers named Ward one of New Jersey’s 100 most influential residents. He also has been named on a number of other New Jersey power lists. He has received the Community Health Law Project’s 2015 “Ann Klein Advocate Award,” the New Jersey Mental Health and Addiction Agencies 2016 “Leadership in Health Care Award,” and the Hemophilia Association of New Jersey’s 2017 “Humanitarian Award.”

Prior to coming to the NJAHP in 2006, Ward served for 15 years in State government positions. He was the Executive Director of the New Jersey Individual Health Coverage Program Board and the New Jersey Small Employer Health Benefits Program Board, the two State agencies charged with regulating the individual and small group health benefits markets, which then covered about one million New Jersey residents. Ward began his State service as a Deputy Attorney General in the New Jersey Division of Law.

As President of the NJAHP, Ward was appointed by Governor Corzine to both the Mandated Health Benefits Advisory Commission and the Health Care Access Study Commission, by Senate President Codey to the Medical Care Availability Task Force, and by Governor Murphy to the State’s Restart and Recovery Council’s health care committee.

Ward is a 1991 graduate of the Villanova University School of Law, where he was an editor of the Villanova Environmental Law Journal and was the student commencement speaker. Ward is also a 1984 graduate of Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, where he received his BA in Government. He is a member of the New Jersey and Pennsylvania bars, the New Jersey Bar Association, and is a member of the Bar Association’s Insurance Benefits Committee.

From 1984 to 1988, prior to earning his law degree, Ward worked in Washington, D.C. for the International Center, a human rights and foreign policy research organization.

Ward lives in Lambertville, New Jersey, with his wife and two children. Ward was elected five times to Lambertville’s City Council and served from 2008 through 2022.  He also has served on a number of local bodies, including the Planning Board, the South Hunterdon Regional High School Municipal Work Group, and the Environmental Commission. Ward is also involved local youth basketball, serving as a volunteer coach and referee since 2005.


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Refund Policy:
If you cancel 7 days or more prior to the scheduled event date, you will be eligible for a full 100% refund.
Unfortunately, cancellations made within 1 week (7 days) of the event will not be eligible for any refunds