Name: Jordan Burgess
Hometown: Fort Smith, AR
Title/Position: Senior Health Care Policy Advisor & Department of Human Services Liaison in Governor Asa Hutchinson’s Office
Briefly describe your role: As a health care policy advisor and DHS liaison for Governor Hutchinson, I focus on policy changes that could impact the health care of Arkansans. I work closely with DHS and industry stakeholders to ensure that Arkansas is adopting policies that will provide the best results and the best care for those in need.
Q: Is what you’re doing now what you always pictured you would do?
A: I’ve always had an interest in policy development and public service, so this role has been the perfect combination of those interests. I didn’t realize how much I’d learn from the various health care stakeholders that I’d work with, but that has truly been one of the most rewarding parts of this role. Having all of these things come together in one role makes me think this is the role I’d always envisioned I would have.
Q: What do you see as the greatest challenges for women in your chosen industry? What are the greatest opportunities?
A: I’m fortunate to work in government in a time when women have a growing number of opportunities for success. I consider it a privilege to work with and learn from several senior-level, female staffers in the Governor’s Office who are brilliant, strong, and well-respected in our office and among the entire industry. Currently, seven of the fifteen cabinet secretaries in Arkansas are women and the number of women in the Arkansas General Assembly continues to grow. While there will probably always be certain hurdles for women to overcome, I’m encouraged by the fact that Arkansas has so many impactful women in leadership roles.
Q: Who has inspired you in your life/career?
A: So many people influence me, guide me and inspire me on a daily basis that it’s hard for me to name just a few. One person that comes to mind though is Ruth Bader Ginsburg. I recently attended her speaking event in Little Rock and was reminded of how fierce of an advocate she’s been for the things that she believes in -- particularly women’s rights. Sometimes when I need to be strong, I try to channel her tenacity and grit!
Q: What advice would you give to an aspiring professional?
A: Always be open-minded about accepting a challenge! Showing that you’re willing to work outside of your comfort zone and learn something new shows people that you’re eager to grow and grab ahold of new opportunities. If people can count on you to take on new projects, unexpected opportunities will come your way.
Q: What’s been your secret to success?
A: Always being open-minded about accepting a challenge! I think some of my biggest accomplishments have come from stepping outside of my comfort zone and beyond the expectations that my role at the time required.