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Meet Tierra McKinley: Navigating Complexities and Embracing Innovation

Before coming to Chamber Hill Strategies, you served as a Paralegal Specialist at the Department of Appeals Board at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)?  What lessons did you learn there about working with federal agencies that  help inform your work?  

During my time with HHS, I worked alongside attorneys and judges to resolve Medicare appeals cases. Navigating the complexities of the cases required me to develop a deep understanding of laws and regulations.  Medicare law is complicated!  Any time you get into the weeds of policy is helpful for the next project you’re working on.  Federal agencies build their regulations on precedent, and knowing what has come before helps you understand where the agency is going next. 

You also have experience in the private sector. Can you talk about that and how it compared to working at a federal agency?  

Sometimes the private sector and the public sector require the same skills.  Processing the vast case volume my team managed at HHS honed my organizational expertise.  The also allowed me to work collaboratively across teams to meet deadlines.  But the private sector can allow for more creativity in how I approach obstacles. Sometimes you have different resource limitations in the private sector that you don’t have in the government, and limitations can mean you need to look at things more flexibly when crafting solutions.  

You have more than a decade of experience as an entrepreneur. What professional accomplishment are most proud of?  

In 2021, at the height of the pandemic, I launched a logistics company. As people shifted to working from home, demand for home delivery skyrocketed and I wanted to capture that opportunity.  I had to rapidly scale my operations to accommodate clients up and down the East Coast.  I am particularly proud of the innovative approaches we took to provide seamless deliveries to our customers.  

What is the most important lesson you learned as a business owner?  

Building a healthy organizational culture is just as important as building a book of business. When you are starting out, it is so tempting to say yes to every new opportunity.  As a leader, the way you approach your work directly impacts your team and your clients.  It is essential to ensure new initiatives align with your mission statement.  

What excites you the most about joining the firm?  

I am looking forward to the project management aspect of my role. No day is ever the same which means I am constantly learning something new.   

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