Office of Strategic Operations and Regulatory Affairs

Office of Strategic Operations and Regulatory Affairs

Kathleen Cantwell, Director

Kerrian Reynolds, Deputy Director 

Functional Statement

  • Manages CMS’ decision-making and regulatory process.
  • Serves in a neutral broker coordination role which includes: scheduling meetings and briefings for the Administrator and coordinating communications between and among central and regional offices to ensure that emerging issues are identified early, all concerned components are directly and fully involved in policy development/decision making, and that all points of view are presented.
  • Provides leadership, direction, and advocacy, on behalf of top CMS officials in connection with official policy matters for presentation to the Administrator and Principal Deputy Administrator to insure that all points of view and program interests of concern to the Administrator and Principal Deputy Administrator are developed and properly presented for consideration. Reviews policy statements by component Directors and others to anticipate potential problems or inconsistencies with views of the Administrator, Principal Deputy Administrator, and the Administration. Assists in resolving these matters to the satisfaction of CMS and top management.
  • Manages meeting requests for or on behalf of the Administrator and Principal Deputy Administrator. Coordinates the preparation of briefing materials for the Administrator, Principal Deputy Administrator, and the Department in advance of the Administrator and Principal Deputy Administrator’s participation in meetings, appointments with major groups, etc. Works with CMS components to assure that appropriate briefing materials are presented to Senior Leadership. Senior officials in CMS and the Department, as well as officials of other Federal agencies, State and local governments, and outside interest groups attend these meetings.
  • Coordinates the preparation of manuals and other policy instructions to ensure accurate and consistent implementation of CMS’ programs.
  • Manages CMS’ system for developing, clearing and tracking regulations, setting regulation priorities and corresponding work agendas; coordinates the review of regulations received for concurrence from departmental and other government agencies, and develops routine and special reports on CMS’ regulatory activities.
  • Manages the regulations development process to ensure timely decision making by the Administrator and Principal Deputy Administrator on CMS regulations.
  • Provides leadership and management of CMS’ Executive Correspondence system.
  • Operates the CMS-wide correspondence tracking and control system and provides guidance and technical assistance on standards for content of correspondence and memoranda.
  • Manages the CMS-wide clearance system to ensure appropriate involvement from CMS components and serves as a primary focal point for liaison with the Executive Secretariat in the Office of the Secretary.
  • Provides management and administrative support to the Office of the Attorney Advisor and staff.
  • Monitors and coordinates major CMS legislative initiatives such as tracking the status of CMS’ implementation of the Balance Budget Act, Balanced Budget Refinement Act, and the Benefits Improvement and Protection Act provisions.
  • Coordinates and prepares the advance planning reports for the Secretary and the Administrator.
  • Acts as the liaison with the Office of the Secretary for Reports to Congress and maintains a tracking system to monitor status. Also serves as the CMS liaison with the Small Business Administration’s Office of the National Ombudsman.
  • Conducts activities necessary to the receipt, management, response, and reporting requirements of the Department under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) regarding all requests received by CMS.
  • Maintains a log of all FOIA requests received by Central Office, refers requests to the appropriate components within headquarters, the Regions or among carriers and intermediaries for the collection of the documents requested. Makes recommendations and prepares replies to requesters, including denials of information as permitted under FOIA, and drafts briefing materials and responses in connection with appeals of denial decisions.
  • Directs the maintaining and amending of CMS-wide records for confidentiality and disclosure to the Privacy Act to include: planning, organizing, initiating and controlling privacy matching assignments.
  • Provides direct services and develops policy, standards, and procedures for CMS' records, management and vital records program for all CMS Central and Regional Offices.


Page Last Modified:
09/06/2023 04:51 PM