State Medicaid Advisory Committee (SMAC) Members

SMAC is composed of a 15-member committee and includes the following:

  • 6 - Members of the public
  • 6 - Health care providers or professionals
  • 3 - Ex-officio Members (AHCCCS, DHS, DES Directors, or their designees)

Members are appointed for two-year terms. Appointments are made on a staggered basis with half the public and professional/provider members completing their terms annually.

  • Ex-Officio Members
    • Thomas J. Betlach, Director, AHCCCS Administration
    • Kathy Waite, DES/AHCCCS Liaison, AZ Dept. of Economic Security
    • Will Humble, Director, AZ Department of Health Services
  • Provider/Professional Members
    • Tara McCollum Plese, Director of Government & Media Relations, AZ Association of Community Health Centers
    • Kathy Byrne, Executive Director, El Rio Community Health Center
    • Amanda Aguirre, CEO/President, Regional Center for Border Health
    • Kathleen Collins Pagels, Executive Director, Arizona Health Care Association
    • Kevin Earle, MBA, MPH, Executive Director, Arizona Dental Association
    • Peggy Stemmler, M.D., Pediatrician and Consultant, Arizona Academy of Pediatrics and Stemmler and Associates
  • Public Members
    • Phil Pangrazio, AZ Bridge for Independent Living
    • Dr. Leonard Kirschner, Arizona Perinatal Trust
    • David Mitchell, State Director, AARP Arizona
    • Kim VanPelt, Associate Director, St. Luke's Health Initiative
    • Vernice C. Sampson, Senior Pastor, Salt River Assembly of God
    • Tomás León, Chief Executive Officer, People of Color Network