Barbara Fain was appointed Executive Director of the Betsy Lehman Center for Patient Safety in December 2013. Barbara’s career has been devoted to health policy development and analysis, public engagement, and strategic planning for government agencies, academic institutions, policy think tanks, and healthcare organizations. Her work for the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies focused on developing standards for allocating scarce medical resources in disasters.
Before then, Barbara was executive director of a health policy research center at Harvard Law School. For over a decade she served as an Assistant Attorney General in the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office where she spearheaded the state’s Community Benefit Guidelines for hospitals and health plans. Since 2010, Barbara has taught public health law at the Tufts University School of Medicine.
Barbara received her BA from Brown University, a JD from UC Berkeley, and an MPP from Harvard Kennedy School.
M.E. Malone joined the Betsy Lehman Center in 2014 as the director of policy and planning. In her role as deputy director, she works with state agencies, the provider community, consumers, and other stakeholders to research and develop policy approaches to ensuring that patients in Massachusetts receive high-quality, safe care in all settings. Together with the executive director, she sets strategic goals and priorities to advance the Center’s vital public health mission.
Prior to joining the Betsy Lehman Center, she spent 25 years as a news journalist, including more than 10 as a staff reporter and assistant editor at the Boston Globe. She was a researcher for the newspaper’s investigative unit, the Spotlight Team, and a daily beat reporter covering government affairs at Boston City Hall and the Massachusetts State House.
In 2014, M.E. earned both a master’s degree in public health from Tufts University's School of Medicine and a master's in science from Tufts' Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy. She also holds a B.A. in English from Boston College.
Director, Research and Analysis
Paul Karner, Research Director, leads the Betsy Lehman Center’s efforts to analyze new and existing data sources on patient safety, provide analytic support to other state agencies and collaborate with partner organizations, and conduct research for its other initiatives.
Prior to joining Betsy Lehman Center in February of 2016, Paul managed research and consulting engagements on topics such as patient safety, treatment patterns, direct and indirect health care costs, and drug effectiveness at Analysis Group, a Boston-based economic consultancy. His work spans a variety of disease areas and has led to numerous publications in peer-reviewed journals. He has also consulted and conducted extensive research on energy as well as international development.
Paul completed his doctorate in economics at Boston University and undergraduate education in business and international relations at the University of Pennsylvania.
Tom Mashberg, Editor for the Betsy Lehman Center, supports the Center’s monthly newsletter, Patient Safety Beat, by assigning and editing articles and focusing the newsletter on how to identify, explain and prevent medical errors, and promote patient safety, in keeping with the mission of the Betsy Lehman Center.
Prior to joining the Betsy Lehman Center, Tom worked as an investigative reporter and editor with longtime experience in health care coverage and content management. He has previously worked for The New York Times, The Boston Herald and The Boston Globe, and written for Vanity Fair, Commonwealth, Technology Review and dozens of other publications. Tom is a 2014 Pulitzer Prize co-finalist for a yearlong series on opioid abuse and recently completed a white paper for the Pioneer Institute on overdoses in Massachusetts emergency rooms.
Tom received his B.A. in history and government from Brown University and his master’s degree in Journalism from the University of Southern California.
Director of Policy
Linda Naval joined the Betsy Lehman Center in April 2017. Linda collaborates with other state agencies, the provider community, consumers, and other stakeholders to advance the Center’s policy agenda to improve the safety of health care for patients in Massachusetts.
Linda comes to the Betsy Lehman Center after four years with Scholars Strategy Network, a nationwide association of professors who seek to improve public policy through research. Linda worked as the Senior Director of Public Policy and Strategic Initiatives and led efforts to influence a variety of policy issues including health care, criminal justice, and education reform. Previously, she worked in Washington, D.C. as a policy advisor for U.S. Senator Christopher Murphy and staffed him as a member of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. She has also worked in the U.S. House of Representatives for Representative Christopher Murphy and Representative Carolyn Maloney of New York.
Senior Communications Manager
Michael Perry, Senior Communications Manager, is responsible for executing the Center’s overall communication strategy. Michael oversees day-to-day operations and serves as primary editor for the Center’s communication program, including publication and dissemination of monthly e-newsletter, special reports, and research findings.
Prior to the Betsy Lehman Center, Michael worked as Communications Manager at the Harvard Advanced Leadership Initiative, responsible for the development and delivery of all tactical communications and targeted marketing campaigns. Michael has worked in communications at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for an invention recognition and educational outreach program, and has held communications and marketing positions in health care technology, architecture and design.
Michael received his B.A. in public communications from American University.
Senior Project Manager
Brigido Ramirez Espinosa, Senior Project Manager for the Betsy Lehman Center, supports the agency’s operational functions and ongoing initiatives, including the development of an innovative web-based tool aimed at helping Massachusetts health care providers understand, communicate about, and report adverse events in patient care.
Prior to joining the Betsy Lehman Center, Brigido worked for the Oklahoma Department of Public Health where he collaborated in the design, application and early implementation of a State Innovation Grant, sponsored by the CMS Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation. He also worked for the Medicaid agency in Oklahoma where he participated in the development of a pioneer online enrollment system to determine eligibility in real-time.
Brigido earned a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Oklahoma, and has focused his professional career on improving the functioning and operations of government organizations in health care. Prior to coming to the U.S. he received his B.A. in communications from the National Autonomous University of Mexico.
Senior Program Manager
Sarah Roberto, Senior Program Manager for the Betsy Lehman Center, supports the agency’s ongoing initiatives, including its expert panel work and partner engagement.
Prior to joining the Betsy Lehman Center, Sarah worked for several years at Partners in Health, a global health organization, where she supported the clinical and advocacy teams. She also served as a case manager and house supervisor for Heading Home Inc. under the state’s emergency assistance shelter program.
Sarah earned a master’s degree in public policy from Brown University, focusing on issues of economic opportunity and health policy at the state level. She received her B.A. in political science and international studies from Boston College.
Yvonne Torres, Administrative and Executive Assistant for the Betsy Lehman Center, ensures the smooth operation of the office on a day-to-day basis. She engages in database and budget management for the Center as well a s internal policy-development and new staff training.
Prior to joining the Betsy Lehman Center in 2012, Yvonne provided paralegal and administrative services to the Narragansett Bay Insurance Company in Rhode Island. She also has worked in the legal division of the Massachusetts Division of Insurance where she compiled legal briefs and case summaries, maintained the law library, and supervised and provided training to staff.
Yvonne earned a certificate in paralegal studies from Northeastern University and training in Business Management and Accounting from Bunker Hill Community College.
Alyssa Gocinski, Communications Associate for the Betsy Lehman Center, supports the Center’s communication program. Alyssa is involved in the management of social media communication, contributes to the publication of the monthly e-newsletter, and helps with other areas of the program.
Alyssa previously supported the communication programs at Massachusetts General Hospital Research Institute and Community Research Initiative of New England, a nonprofit organization dedicated to HIV and hepatitis C clinical research, through her work as the communications intern. Most recently, she served as the public relations and marketing intern at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Boston, where she helped organize both internal and external publications.
Alyssa recently graduated from Emerson College with her B.S. in Journalism.