Senior director joins ADEA

Nov. 8, 2010
Yvonne Knight, J.D., has been appointed senior director in the ADEA Center for Public Policy and Advocacy.

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Yvonne Knight, J.D., has been appointed senior director in the ADEA Center for Public Policy and Advocacy at the American Dental Education Association. Her appointment is effective Nov. 8, 2010.

Knight has experience in public policy, advocacy, and higher education. Most recently, she was director of Government Relations at the National Academy of Public Administration, a nonprofit independent coalition.

Her responsibilities there included interacting with the House and Senate Appropriations Committees, drafting legislative proposals, appropriations, and authorizing language, and researching and analyzing proposed rules and regulations.

Knight’s career includes serving for 11 years as the Chief of Staff to a Texas state senator, after which she joined the administration of Texas Governor Ann Richards in Austin as her legislative liaison. In this position, she represented the governor on the floor of the Texas House and Senate and negotiated legislative proposals, on behalf of the governor, with elected officials.

Her advocacy skills were honed not only in electoral politics, but also in academia.

For four years, she held the position of assistant vice chancellor for Governmental Relations in the University of Texas system, advancing the legislative interests of 15 campuses, including teaching hospitals, in Texas and Washington, DC. As the director of Government Affairs at American University in Washington, D.C., she was the point of contact for the White House, members of Congress, federal agencies, the D.C. city council, the D.C. mayor’s office, and surrounding states’ governmental entities.

At American University, she established the Government Relations Department and crafted a strategic plan to delineate its goals. Knight received her law degree from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas, and her undergraduate degree in government from the University of Texas at Austin.

In announcing the appointment, ADEA Executive Director Richard W. Valachovic, DMD, MPH, noted that Knight “is a skilled advocate with a reputation among her professional colleagues for credibility and effectiveness. She is an expert in handling politically and legally complicated and sensitive issues.

“Yvonne brings 30 years of experience advocating in academic and public policy forums at both state and national levels. That combination of venues will contribute significantly to her ability to effectively represent academic dentistry on Capitol Hill and to the Administration,” Dr. Valachovic added.

Added Jack Bresch, associate executive director and director of the ADEA Center for Public Policy and Advocacy: "Ms. Knight is a most welcome addition to the ADEA CPPA staff. She will add a new and valued perspective to our work on behalf of academic dental institutions and the oral health of our nation.”

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