WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving today announced that K. Conwell Smith is the new Director of Operation Family Caregiver (OFC) and Military Programs.
OFC is tailored to the unique needs of military families who are supporting servicemembers or veterans. Smith has 25 years of experience in policy and advocacy, including significant expertise in national health care policy.
“Conwell’s deep experience in health care policy and advocacy will be a tremendous asset for RCI as we work to elevate the needs of unpaid caregivers, and position caregiving as a critical national priority,” said Dr. Jennifer Olsen, Executive Director of RCI. “The COVID-19 pandemic has made it clearer than ever that caregiving is an issue of public health, with significant impact on both the strength and stability of our health care system, and on the mental and physical well-being of caregivers nationwide.”
Serving military families is a priority for RCI, which launched OFC, its signature military program, in 2011. OFC provides free and confidential coaching to help the families of returning service members and veterans. The program helps caregivers find strength through their journey, so they feel fully capable of living their best lives, while managing their care responsibilities.
“I have had an exciting and fulfilling career in health care, but it wasn’t until I became a caregiver myself that I fully realized the complexities of caregiving or the lack of institutional supports or resources available to the nation’s growing population of caregivers,” said Smith. “At RCI, caregivers learn that they aren’t alone, that they are stronger and more resilient than they realize, and that there are proven resources and approaches out there to help them on their caregiving journey. I am honored to join the team of this incredible organization and represent a founder with as much courage, conviction, and compassion as former First Lady Rosalynn Carter.”
Smith’s resume includes eight years as Vice President of Legislation and Political Affairs for the Federation of American Hospitals, as well as time with the American Medical Association and the Senate Budget Committee, where she served as Senior Health Policy Advisor. Most recently, Smith was the founder of Inside Pitch Government Affairs LLC, a consulting firm committed to the development of sound policy and project management through strategic advocacy.
Smith will be based in Washington, D.C., positioning her to most effectively advocate for caregiver interests as a national health care priority.