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APCO Worldwide Adds New Members to Health Care Policy Team and Health Advisory Board

Washington (January 27, 2016) – Anita Manning, former USA TODAY medical reporter, and Cybele Bjorklund, former Democratic staff director of the House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee, joined APCO Worldwide’s Health Advisory Board (HAB), announced Margery Kraus, founder and executive chairman. Niko Stemple, former director of congressional outreach at PhRMA, also joins APCO as a director.

“Today’s health care industry is more complex than ever, and adding the expertise of Anita and Cybele to our Health Advisory Board and Niko to our health care team provides our clients with the in-depth knowledge and strategic counsel they need to succeed in a challenging environment,” Kraus said. “I’m proud to welcome them all to APCO and look forward to seeing their experience in action.”


Manning’s reporting on public health issues spans 28 years. She served as a medical reporter at USA TODAY for nearly 25 years, covering issues such as diabetes, infectious diseases, pandemic preparedness and vaccines. She was also a writer and consultant for notable health care leaders such as the National Eye Institute and the American Diabetes Association.



Bjorklund served in various high-level health care advisory capacities on Capitol Hill, including as Democratic staff director on the House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee for 14 years. During this time, she developed and advised policymakers on major health care legislation, including the addition of a drug benefit to Medicare and passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  She is currently a consultant and serves as both a senior fellow at Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy and a distinguished visitor at the Law Center, where she guest lectures and advises on health-related public policy matters.

Manning and Bjorklund join a group of distinguished experts on APCO’s Health Advisory Board including:

    • Dan Glickman, former U.S. secretary of agriculture
    • Kavita Patel, former director of policy for the White House Office of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs
    • Leslie V. Norwalk, former acting administrator for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
    • Bob Kocher, M.D., former special assistant to President Barack Obama for health care
    • Lanhee Chen, former senior official at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
    • Derek Yach, former senior vice president of global health and agricultural policy at PepsiCo

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Stemple joins APCO’s Washington, D.C., office as a director in the firm’s health care practice. She brings 15 years of legislative, government affairs, and communications experience, including positions at coalitions such as Together Rx Access, the Alliance for Safe Biologic Medicines, and in the U.S. House of Representatives, where she supported a senior leader on the Energy and Commerce committee on passage and implementation of the Medicare Modernization Act (MMA). Niko joins APCO’s team of health policy experts including:

  • Wayne L. Pines, former chief spokesman and chief of consumer education and information for the U.S. Food & Drug Administration
  • William Pierce, former deputy assistant secretary for public affairs at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
  • Elizabeth Funderburk, former senior director of communications & public affairs at the Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA)

“The addition of Anita and Cybele to our Health Advisory Board and Niko to our team illustrates the growth and deep knowledge of APCO’s health care practice,” said Courtney Piron, executive director and chair of U.S. health care at APCO Worldwide. “These additions expand our ability to provide the skills, experience and perspective that our health care clients demand of their strategic communications partner.”