Ron Sims (Closing Keynote)

50ec3f_2fdd95e1d77a4a87ba194bd780cedf9a.jpg_srz_p_350_414_75_22_0.50_1.20_0.00_jpg_srzRon Sims will close the 2015 National Walking Summit with his keynote address, “Bring It Home.” Mr. Sims is a civic volunteer active in health, education, environmental and social equity issues. Appointed by Governor Jay Inslee, Sims serves as the chair of the Washington Health Benefit Exchange Board. The board is responsible for the implementation of the Affordable Care Act in Washington State. Mr. Sims also serves on the Board of Regents, the university’s governing body, of Washington State University and the Board of Directors of the Washington Health Alliance, formerly the Puget Sound Health Alliance, a nonprofit organization he helped found where employers, physicians, hospitals, patients, health plan providers and others from throughout the region come together to improve health care quality.

 Sims served as the Deputy Secretary for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development from 2009-2011. He was appointed by President Obama and unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate. As the second most senior official at HUD, Sims managed the day-to-day operations of an agency with 8,500 employees and an operating budget of nearly $40 billion.

Prior to his appointment at HUD, Sims served for 12 years as the elected Executive of Martin Luther King, Jr. County in Washington State, the 13th largest county in the nation with 1.8 million residents and 39 cities including the cities of Seattle, Bellevue and Redmond. As County Executive, Sims was nationally recognized for his work on the integration of environmental, social equity and public health policies that produced groundbreaking work on climate change, health care reform, affordable housing, mass transit, environmental protection, land use, and equity and social justice.