DSS: Commissioner - Department of Social Services

Commissioner - Department of Social Services

Roderick L. Bremby
Connecticut Department of Social Services

Professional Biography

Roderick L. Bremby is serving in his second term as Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Social Services, following re-appointment by Governor Dannel P. Malloy and confirmation by the House of Representatives in March 2015.


During his first five years at the Department of Social Services, Commissioner Bremby has directed initiatives in such areas as health care program restructuring and service innovation, modernization of technology and business processes for improved client service delivery, and implementation of significant budgetary and legislative program changes.  The Commissioner has worked with the Governor’s Office, Office of Policy and Management and Department of Administrative Services’ Bureau of Enterprise Systems and Technology to modernize the agency’s technology and service infrastructure during a time of increased applications and program enrollment.
Accomplishments have included:

  • Successful transition of Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program from primarily for-profit managed care contractors to a streamlined administrative-services system, bringing service enhancements, innovations and economies.  Benchmark metrics for state fiscal year 2015 include a 7.5% increase in primary care providers; 19.3% increase in specialists; reduction of emergency department usage by 22.7% by members receiving Intensive Care Management; and reduction of per member/per month cost by 5.9%.

  • Developing quality initiatives in Medicaid, including Person-Centered Medical Homes, Intensive Care Management (including reduction of in-patient admissions for participants by 43.9% and reduction of readmission rates by 28%; tobacco cessation incentives; health equity review, and prevention strategies).  Person-Centered Medical Homes serve over one-third of Medicaid members (274,000 individuals) with extended hours, care coordination and electronic health records.

  • Continued implementation of Connecticut’s Medicaid expansion under the national Affordable Care Act, extending health coverage to a total of 196,000 low-income adults without dependent children as of February 2016, while leading DSS coordination with Access Health CT.

  • Implementing an electronic document scanning and workflow process that has digitized over 12.5 million incoming documents, while offering first-time online application, renewal and change reporting options for applicants and clients.

  • Planning and development of a new integrated eligibility management system, ‘ImpaCT,’ to replace agency’s 1980s-era eligibility system, utilizing 90% federal funding.

  • Building agency capacity that has enabled service to over 400,000 Connecticut residents eligible for the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and nearly 750,000 eligible for Medicaid, among other  health and human services.

  • Improving accuracy and timeliness in SNAP eligibility processing, moving Connecticut from 41st nationally in the payment error rate to 11th-best and second in most-improved (82% decrease in error rate between 2011 and 2015 federal fiscal years).  In SNAP application processing timeliness, Connecticut improved 57% between 2011 and 2015 (last nationally to 6th-best).

  • Expansion of home- and community-based services for older adults and adults with disabilities, and implementation of Governor Malloy’s Strategic Plan to Rebalance Long-Term Services and Supports in Connecticut.

Commissioner Bremby is a member of several executive panels in state government, including the Governor’s Health Care Cabinet, Governor’s Certificate of Need Taskforce, Access Health CT Board of Directors, Health Information Technology Strategic and Operational Planning Group (co-chair), Basic Health Plan Work Group, Connecticut Employment and Training Commission, and Interagency Council for Ending the Achievement Gap.


Commissioner Bremby joined Connecticut state government in April 2011 after an extensive public-sector career in Kansas and Texas, and academic service at the University of Kansas.

From 2003 to 2010, Commissioner Bremby served as the Secretary (chief executive officer) of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, that state’s combined public health and environmental protection agency.  Appointed by Governor Kathleen Sebelius, he led programs dedicated to providing disease surveillance and prevention efforts, bioterrorism planning guidance, local and rural health assistance, health care and environmental information, and statewide health promotional campaigns.  In addition, he oversaw the regulation of public and environmental health functions, including child care centers, hospitals and medical facilities, laboratories, food service, establishments, landfills, confined animal feeding operations, and construction and operating permits for all companies with the potential to pollute the environment. 
From 2000 to 2003, Commissioner Bremby served as an Assistant Research Professor at the University of Kansas, where he also served as Associate Director of the university’s Work Group on Health Promotion and Community Development, and coordinated the launch of the Institute for Community Health and Development. 
At the municipal government level, Commissioner Bremby was Assistant City Manager of Lawrence, Kansas, from 1990 to 2000, serving as chief operating officer responsible for police, fire and medical, public works, water and sewer, parks and recreation, finance, information systems, airport management, and budget preparation functions.  The Commissioner’s municipal experience also includes four years as an Assistant to the City Manager in Fort Worth, Texas.
Commissioner Bremby has contributed volunteer services to many civic endeavors, including service on the Boards of Kansas Action for Children, and the Kansas Advisory Group on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency.  He co-founded the Lawrence Partnership for Children and Youth, a group fostering community collaboration on behalf of the well-being of children and youth.  He is a past president of the Lawrence, Kansas, branch of the NAACP.
The Commissioner holds a bachelor of arts degree in communication studies and psychology, and a master of public administration degree, both from the University of Kansas. 
Awards include the national Sierra Club’s 2011 Distinguished Achievement Award; the Roderick Bremby Award for Exceptional Courage by a Public Official, 2011, from the Breaking the Silence Conference, a Kansas environmental public interest organization; the 2010 Kansas Public Health Association President’s Award; the 2009 Kansas Natural Resource Council Environmental Action Award; and the 2008 Kansas Public Administrator of the Year recognition from that state’s Chapter of the American Society of Public Administration.

About the Department of Social Services
DSS delivers a wide variety of services to children, families, individuals, people with disabilities and older adults, including health care coverage, food and nutrition assistance, child support services, independent living services, energy assistance, and program grants.  DSS administers Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (together known as HUSKY Health); the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program, among others. With a staff of about 1,900, the department provides services to more than 1 million individual Connecticut residents of all ages.  www.ct.gov/dss


If you would like to invite Commissioner Bremby to speak at an event
Please fill out the Speaking Engagement Request Form.
Please allow at least two weeks to process your request.
Updated April 2016
Further information:
David.dearborn@ct.gov; 860-424-5024


Content Last Modified on 4/5/2016 12:17:00 PM