Debra Graham has more than 20 years of public sector financial and program management experience, with an emphasis on public assistance benefits, government accounting, budgeting, and financial management. She is responsible for the Massachusetts State Supplement Program. We assumed administration of this state cash assistance program from the Social Security Administration on behalf of the Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services, the Department of Transitional Assistance, and the Commission for the Blind. Our program administration has saved the Commonwealth over $65M since its inception four years ago.
As part of the Massachusetts team that implemented the national Electronic Benefit Transfer project in our state, Graham focused on accounting and reconciliation functions, and adapted state and federal requirements to enable electronic issuance of benefits. The policies and procedures she developed and implemented to reconcile electronically disbursed Food Stamp Program benefits were adopted by the USDA and incorporated into federal regulations. She has detailed knowledge of federal requirements for human service programs, and of the state and federal regulations under which they operate.
Before joining our team in 2008, Graham worked as an operations manager at the Massachusetts Executive Office for Administration and Finance, where, among other responsibilities, she analyzed business needs and coordinated with information technology staff to design and implement solutions. She also served as director of Financial Accountability at the Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance, responsible for accounting and fraud investigations. Graham previously served as Assistant Budget Director for the Massachusetts Department of Youth Services.
Graham earned a master’s degree in public administration as a Commonwealth of Massachusetts Fellow and a bachelor’s, with honors, in public policy and administration from Suffolk University. She earned her credentials as a Certified Government Financial Manager (CGFM) and member of the Association of Government Accountants during her tenure with the Commonwealth.