Nightly contributor Joanne Kenen, POLITICO’s former health editor, is the Commonwealth Fund journalist-in-residence at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health.
Kenen has covered everything from Haitian voodoo festivals to U.S. presidential campaigns. (Sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference.) Since arriving in Washington in 1994, she has focused on health policy and health politics.
She joined POLITICO in September 2011 and led the health care team for nearly a decade, more than doubling the size of the team as it covered everything from the bumpy implementation of the Affordable Care Act to the pandemic. Kenen got the newspaper bug in second grade (the Teeny Town News), spent way too much time at the Harvard Crimson and then found herself in Central America, where she had an Inter American Press Association fellowship.
She worked for Reuters in New York, Florida and the Caribbean and Washington – mostly covering Congress. As a Kaiser Family Foundation media fellow in 2006-07, she wrote about aging and palliative care. She also wrote about health policy at the nonpartisan New America Foundation.
Her work has appeared in numerous publications including The Atlantic, Kaiser Health News, the Washingtonian, CQ, The Washington Post, the Center for Public Integrity, Health Affairs, National Journal and Slate.
She co-authored two books that have absolutely nothing to do with health: “The Costa Rica Reader” and a parenting book, “The Sleep Lady’s Good Night, Sleep Tight.” One was adopted in college courses. The other one made money.
When she isn’t busy trying to figure out what Congress is up to (not that Congress always knows what Congress is up to), she can be found in Bethesda, Md. Besides health policy, she’s written about her kids, chocolate cake and cross-dressing female pirates.