“A Conversation With EOHHS Secretary Marylou Sudders” 

Representative Jay Kaufman’s award winning public policy forum, “OPEN HOUSE,” takes an in-depth look at the Executive Office of Health & Human Services (EOHHS) Secretariat in the fourth forum of the 21st season of “OPEN HOUSE”. The forum will be held on Monday, December 21st, from 7PM-8PM, at the historic Depot in Lexington Center (13 Depot Square in Lexington Center).

Marylou Sudders was appointed Secretary of the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) by Governor Charlie Baker in January 2015. She leads the largest executive agency in the Commonwealth, overseeing a budget of over $19 billion dollars. Agencies under the purview of EOHHS include the departments of Public Health, Mental Health, Children & Families, Elder Affairs, Veteran’s Affairs, Youth Services, Transitional Assistance, and Mass Health, among many others. These combined agencies involve critical services that touch almost one in every six residents of the Commonwealth.

Professionally trained as a social worker, Sudders has dedicated her life to public service and to some of our most vulnerable citizens. She has been a public official, provider executive, advocate and college professor. Prior to her appointment, Ms. Sudders was the Massachusetts Commissioner of Mental Health from 1996 to 2003. Before that, she headed the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, promoting the rights and well-being of Massachusetts children and families, helping to create the state’s first children’s mental health commission and championing the rights of children, adults and elders with mental illness.

Do the many agencies of EOHHS function well under one cabinet secretary? Is $19 billion enough funding to execute the mission of delivering critical health & social services? Does the Department of Children & Families need a comprehensive reorganization? How does Massachusetts rank in the delivery of health & human services? Does the system work, and if not, how do we fix it? Find out the answers to these questions, or bring your own. Don’t miss this forum December 21st, from 7PM-8PM.As always; the forum will take its shape largely from questions from the audience. Questions can also be submitted in advance at jkaufman@mahouse.gov, or tweet your questions to @repjaykaufman. 

In 1997, OPEN HOUSE was awarded the prestigious Beacon Award, cable television’s equivalent of an Emmy. The series was also named the best television series by Massachusetts Cable Television Commission. The OPEN HOUSE series is produced through a partnership between Representative Kaufman and LexMedia which records the forums for broadcast in Lexington and Woburn.