President's New Freedom
Dennis Smith, M.P.A.
Dennis Smith is the Director of the Center for Medicaid and State Operations (CMSO), part of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS.) Mr. Smith was appointed to this position on July 29, 2001. One of HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson's priorities for CMS under the Bush Administration is to instill a spirit of responsiveness and to make sure that people who use Medicaid and Medicare know exactly what choices they have for their health care coverage. As part of that initiative, Dennis Smith has been charged with fostering increased cooperation with states and promoting greater flexibility that will allow states to develop innovative approaches to meet health care needs.
As the Director of CMSO, Mr. Smith provides leadership in the development and implementation of national policies governing Medicaid, survey and certification, the State Children's Health Insurance Program, and insurance reform provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. The Center also serves as the focal point for all CMS interactions with States, local governments, as well as Native American and Alaskan Native Tribes.
Prior to his appointment as Director of CMSO, Mr. Smith served on the Bush-Cheney transition team as chief liaison to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Previously he served as the Director of the Department of Medical Assistance Services for the Commonwealth of Virginia. As Director, he was accountable for an agency with a $3 billion budget and staff of 270. The Department is responsible for several health insurance programs including Medicaid, the State Children's Health Insurance Program, the Indigent Health Care Trust Fund and the State and Local Hospitalization Trust Fund.
Mr. Smith has a Master's Degree in public administration from George Mason University and a degree in political science from Illinois State University. He is married and he and his wife have four daughters.