HOUSTON – (Aug. 7, 2018) – Kara Crawford has been named associate vice president for the Office of Governmental Relations at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth).
“Kara will be a true asset to UTHealth in Austin and her comprehensive knowledge of relevant state budget and policy issues will be invaluable,” said Scott Forbes, vice president of Governmental Relations for UTHealth. “Kara has a unique background with experience in the Legislature, the Governor’s office and the Texas Health and Human Service Commission that will be a great benefit to UTHealth’s efforts in Austin.”
Crawford will manage UTHealth’s state relations, promoting an understanding of university initiatives and needs at the state level of government.
“I’m thrilled to be part of the UTHealth team and be able to advocate for programs and research initiatives that are positively impacting Texans’ lives on a daily basis,” Crawford said.
Before joining UTHealth, Crawford served for two years as the chief of staff for the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. Her duties included advising the executive commissioner and chief deputy executive commissioner, leading a senior-level team dedicated to hospital finance and negotiation of the 1115 Medicaid Managed Care Waiver, and managing legislative affairs and communications programs.
From 2015 to 2016, Crawford was a senior advisor for health budget and policy in Gov. Greg Abbott’s office, where she directed the health care budget and policy team, and focused on complex health care issues to improve access, value and quality of care for Texans.
As director of Women’s Health Coordination for the Texas Health and Human Services Commission from 2013 to 2014, Crawford directed new program initiatives and legislative outreach while serving as the primary women’s health liaison to all key external stakeholders to address their concerns, build consensus and, ultimately, improve health outcomes for women and infants in state health care programs.
Crawford, who has a master’s degree in public administration from Texas State University, also has experience as the health and human services budget analyst for the state’s Senate Finance Committee and as a senior manager for government relations for a major health insurance company.