Our Washington, DC, staff is committed to furthering the goals of the coalition, bringing deep government relations and Capitol Hill experience, research expertise and insights, as well as networking and partnership ideas that bring our members' work and collaborations to fruition.
Ms. Petee has served as the inaugural Executive Director of the Coalition since its founding in 2015. Drawing from more than 34 years of experience in healthcare communications and government relations, Ms. Petee leads the Coalition's efforts to unite cross-sector organizations under the common goal of achieving health equity. The Coalition's membership has grown from 17 inaugural partners into a diverse collection of more than 70 leading organizations from various states, sectors and services. For the past decade, Ms. Petee's focus has been addressing food insecurity and other basic needs so as to help develop and lift-up sustainable solutions that can be scaled and replicated across the nation, thereby improving the health and well-being of individuals and communities.
Committed to helping develop and implement a new model of healthcare delivery that considers all the various social, physical and mental needs of individuals, Ms. Petee’s work in the social determinants has been widely recognized across the nation. She has served on myriad local, regional and national boards and committees, and is currently a board member of the Alliance to End Hunger, an affiliate of Bread for the World; a member of the Government Relations Officers Network for the American Hospital Association; and serves on the Legislative Policy Panel for the Michigan Health and Hospital Association. Follow Barbara on Twitter: @BarbaraPetee
Tom Dorney is Director of The Root Cause Coalition. He leads the Washington office’s day-to-day advocacy efforts, manages its operations and supports the work of the Executive Director, board and membership groups.
In his prior role, Mr. Dorney served as senior policy advisor to Congressman John Lewis. He advised on all health matters in Rep. Lewis’ work as Chairman of the Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee, and developed legislation and initiatives focused on HIV/AIDS providers, kidney and cardiac health, and the Medicare Shared Savings Program.
Mr. Dorney holds a Master of Social Work degree and a Bachelor of Arts degree in social work from The Catholic University of America.
Senior Advisor, Research and Communications
Alexandra Lewin-Zwerdling, PhD, MPA, is the Senior Advisor, Research and Communications for The Root Cause Coalition. She also is the owner of Fruitful LLC, a food and nutrition consulting business in Washington, DC. With nearly 15 years of experience working at nonprofits, member associations and the United States Department of Agriculture, Alexandra specializes in the intersection of consumer insights, communications and public affairs. Prior to Fruitful LLC, Alexandra served as the Vice President, Research & Partnerships, for the International Food Information Council.
Senior Programs Manager
Hannah Miller is senior programs manager at The Root Cause Coalition. She develops and maintains the organization’s yearly event calendar and coordinates the planning of the Coalition’s major programming, such as the annual advocacy fly-in on Capitol Hill and the National Summit, an annual gathering of hundreds of leaders from a wide range of disciplines who are interested in learning more about health equity. She also manages the Coalition’s advocacy efforts and monitors federal and state legislative and regulatory issues related to the social determinants of health.
Prior to joining the Coalition, Ms. Miller worked as a Policy and Research Associate at a small nonprofit in Washington, DC. She has extensive experience working with state legislators across the country and researching and writing about key public policy issues related to social and economic equity. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Denison University and earned her Master of Science degree from American University’s School of Public Affairs.
Manager of Member Relations, Events and Digital Communications
Madison Flores is Manager of Member Relations, Events and Digital Communications. She graduated from Southwestern University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and history. During her time at Southwestern, she worked as a research assistant to Dr. Emily Sydnor, writing a book chapter on political incivility. On campus, she served as the corresponding secretary for Zeta Tau Alpha and events manager for the Student Foundation. Ms. Flores also worked on a number of congressional campaigns and served as an intern for Congressman John Lewis.