Skip to Main Content
Professional Photo

Sheila P. Burke*

Strategic Advisor

As chair of the Firm's Government Relations and Public Policy Group, Sheila Burke brings a deep knowledge of federal policy and programs drawn from her distinguished career in the private and public sectors to provide clients with the perspective they need for effective strategic and public policy decision-making.

Professional Biography

Ms. Burke brings a deep knowledge of federal policy and programs drawn from her distinguished career in the private and public sectors to provide clients with the perspective they need for effective strategic and public policy decision-making.

In addition to her role at the Firm, Ms. Burke continues as a faculty member at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University where she teaches a number of health policy courses. From 1996 to 2000, she was executive dean and a lecturer in public policy at the Kennedy School. Ms. Burke also serves as a senior advisor to the Bipartisan Policy Center.

Ms. Burke served for 19 years on Capitol Hill. Early in her career, she was a member of the staff of the Senate Finance Committee responsible for legislation relating to Medicare, Medicaid and other health programs. She ultimately became Deputy Staff Director of the Finance Committee. She went on to serve as Deputy Chief of Staff to Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole and later as his Chief of Staff. In these roles, she was involved with numerous legislative issues including those related to Medicare, Medicaid and the Maternal and Child Health programs, welfare reform, budget reconciliation and the previous legislative efforts to reform health care. In 1995, she was elected as Secretary of the Senate, the chief administrative officer of the United States Senate. Ms. Burke served from 2000 – 2007 as a member of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC).

In addition to her government and academic experience, Ms. Burke served as the deputy secretary and chief operating officer of the Smithsonian Institution, the world's largest museum and research complex. As the chief operating officer, she had responsibility for the overall operations of the 19 individual museums and galleries, the National Zoo and nine research facilities located in Washington, D.C., five states and 150 foreign countries with revenues of approximately $1 billion and an endowment of $1 billion. During her seven-year tenure at the Smithsonian, she oversaw the completion of the National Air and Space Museum's Udvar-Hazy Center, the National Museum of the American Indian and the renovation of the Smithsonian's Reynolds Center for Art and Portraiture. She was also involved in the initial planning for the National Museum of African American History and Culture. She began her Smithsonian tenure in 2000 as the undersecretary for American Museums and National Programs, becoming deputy secretary and chief operating officer in 2004.

  • Named as one of Washingtonian Magazine's "500 Most Influential People Shaping Policy" (2022, 2023, 2024)
  • Named as one of Washingtonian Magazine's "Most Influential People in Washington" (2022)
  • Member – National Academy of Medicine, National Council (2012 – 2018); Chair, Nominating Committee (2013 – 2015)
  • Member – Board of Regents, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (2011 – 2021)
  • Member – Board of Directors, The Chubb Corporation, Zurich, Switzerland (1997 – present)
  • Member – Board of Directors, Ascension, St. Louis, Missouri (2014 – present)
  • Member – Board of Directors, Abt Associates (2015 – present)
  • Member – Board of Directors, Accolade, Inc. (2015 – 2018)
  • Member – Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, Washington, D.C. (1997 – 2016)
  • Member – Board of Visitors, School of Nursing and Health Studies, Georgetown University (2003 – 2023)
  • Member – Board of Directors, Bipartisan Policy Center, Washington, DC (2008 – 2016)
  • Distinguished Visitor – O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law, Georgetown Law Center, Georgetown University (2007 – 2023)
  • Recipient – Daisy Foundation's Health Impact DAISY Nurse Leader Award (2023)
  • Recipient – JD Supra Readers' Choice Award – Top Author in Health Care (2018)
  • Recipient – Helen Manzer Award, New York University Rory Meyers College of Nursing (2016)
  • Recipient – Second Century Award for Excellence in Health Care, Columbia University School of Nursing (2016)
  • Named as one of Profiles in Diversity Journal's 2015 "Women Worth Watching"
  • Fellow – American Academy of Nursing
  • Fellow – National Academy of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences
  • Fellow – National Academy of Public Administration
  • Member – The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality National Advisory Council (2019 – 2020)
  • Honorary Doctorate in Military Medicine, University of the Uniformed Services (1999)
  • Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters, Marymount University (2005)
  • David Rall Medal, Institute of Medicine (2008)
  • Robert Mills Award, Smithsonian American Art Museum (2007)
  • Smithsonian Institution Exceptional Service Award (2005)
  • Panelist – "CUIMC Election Forum: Health Policy & the Upcoming Election," Columbia University Irving Medical Center (October 2020)
  • "The Added Value of Government Relations Teams," 2020 TerraLex Virtual Global Meeting (June 2020)
  • "Federal Policy Landscape as it Relates to Biotech and Medtech," Georgia Bio Innovation Summit (October 2019)
  • "The Future of Military Medicine," Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (September 2019)
  • "Does Prevention Save Money?," AcademyHealth Spending Salon (January 2019)
  • Moderator – "Integrating Clinical and Mental Health in the U.S.," Bipartisan Policy Center public event (January 2019)
  • "Wiser About Funding Threats: Why the Safeguarding of the Medicaid Program is Crucial," Grantmakers in Aging Annual Conference (October 2018)
  • "The Future of the Affordable Care Act: What Happens Next?," 31st Annual Mississippi State University Insurance Day (April 2018)
  • "Political Policy Recap and Look Ahead," American Association of Diabetes Educators webinar (December 2017)
  • Panelist – "The Future of The Affordable Care Act: What Happens Next?," The Forum, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Reuters (September 2017)
  • Panelist – "Priorities from a National Academy of Medicine Initiative," Vital Directions for Health and Health Care (March 2017)
  • "Strategic Outlook for Healthcare," Harvard Business School (February 2017)
  • Moderator – "Future of Health Care," Federal Budget and State Choices at Bipartisan Policy Center (February 2017)
  • Panelist – "Health Care and the Trump Administration: The First 100 Days," webinar, Nashville Health Care Council (December 2016)
  • Panelist – "Post-Election Health Care Outlook," Harvard Healthcare Alumni Association (November 2016)
  • "God Bless the USA: Post-Election View – What the Election Means for Long Term Care Providers," Baker Donelson Long Term Care Symposium (November 2016)
  • "Post-Election Health Care Outlook," DentaQuest Retreat (November 2016)

Email Disclaimer

NOTICE: The mailing of this email is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Anything that you send to anyone at our Firm will not be confidential or privileged unless we have agreed to represent you. If you send this email, you confirm that you have read and understand this notice.
Cancel Accept