Skip to content

The Budget Center communications team sat down with Adriana Ramos-Yamamoto (she/her), Senior Policy Analyst at the Budget Center, who conducts research and analysis on issues that impact the health and well-being of Californians.

This Q&A series is your chance to get to know our team, their areas of expertise, and how their work at the Budget Center supports policy change in California. In this conversation, we’ll explore Adriana’s personal and professional journey in the health care landscape.

This interview was edited by Kat Petsalis, Communications Strategist at the Budget Center.

Can you tell us about your role at the Budget Center?

I joined the team in 2019, and my focus was on strengthening our health portfolio. I analyze state budgets and policy proposals related to health, covering areas like behavioral health, health care access, and public health funding. Additionally, I support our process-related publications and engage with various coalitions to align policies with our mission of ensuring everyone has access to the resources they need to thrive.

I really enjoy the collaborative nature of our work here at the Budget Center, and value the diverse perspectives and expertise within our team. For example, I had the opportunity to collaborate with Monica Davalos on our health equity report, and Eric Saucedo and I worked closely on the early identification and intervention project.

What inspired your passion for public health and policy?

My passion for public health and policy is deeply rooted in my personal experiences. Growing up in a working class immigrant family, I witnessed the economic and health injustices that disproportionately affected marginalized communities. My journey into the realm of public health began with an autoimmune disease diagnosis during my late teens. Navigating the health care system without insurance highlighted the disparities ingrained within our health care system.

It was through these experiences that I came to recognize the power of policy in shaping public health outcomes. I became involved in community health programs and engaged with advocacy organizations, which furthered my passion for addressing health disparities through research and impactful policy advocacy.

What is something exciting you have recently worked on or are currently working on?

One recent project that I was excited to work on focused on universal health coverage in California. I collaborated with my colleague, Monica Saucedo, and we conducted a comprehensive analysis of the state’s health coverage landscape, identifying disparities and advocating for policy reforms to expand access to health care.

The project was particularly timely amidst federal policy changes impacting Medicaid eligibility. We engaged with health advocates and community stakeholders to gather insights and perspectives, ensuring our recommendations reflected the diverse needs of Californians.

Analyzing data and synthesizing complex policy issues challenged us to think critically and creatively. The project highlighted the importance of research-driven advocacy in advancing health equity and addressing systemic barriers to health care access.

What’s one thing you can’t get through the workday without?

As an extrovert, I thrive on interpersonal interactions and value the camaraderie within our team. Whether it’s sharing ideas, collaborating on projects, or simply engaging in casual conversations, fostering meaningful connections enriches my work experience.

Music also serves as a source of motivation throughout my day. Curating playlists based on moods, occasions, or personal preferences enhances my productivity and overall well-being.

How do you like to spend your time outside of work?

Outside of work, I enjoy exploring creative pursuits and engaging in leisure activities that recharge my mind and spirit. More specifically, I really love creating playlists and playing video games like Super Mario Wonder.

In need of some new music inspiration? Adriana’s got you covered! Listen to her playlist contentment on Spotify 🎧

Media Contacts

Kyra Moeller
Communications Strategist

Stay in the know.

Join our email list!