Bruce Lesley President

Mr. Lesley has more than 25 years of public policy experience at all levels of government and a demonstrated commitment to making children’s lives better. Lesley directs all aspects of policy development and internal operations at First Focus.

In 12 years on Capitol Hill, Lesley worked on health care, education, human services, and immigration issues in several different capacities. Prior to his work at First Focus, he served as Senior Health Policy Advisor on the Senate Finance and Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committees for U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman. He also worked for U.S. Senator Bob Graham on the Senate Finance Committee, served as minority Chief of Staff for the Senate Special Committee on Aging, and was a legislative aide in the offices of U.S. Representatives Ronald Coleman and Diana DeGette.

In addition to public service at the federal level, Lesley worked at the state and county levels of government on health and human services policy for Texas State Representative Mary Polk, El Paso County Judge Pat F. O’Rourke, and Texas Governor Ann Richards in the Texas Office of State-Federal Relations in Washington, D.C.

Lesley has also worked in the healthcare sector as the Director of Congressional Relations for the Children's Hospitals of America (also known as the National Association of Children’s Hospitals) and as Director of Government Relations for University Medical Center, a public hospital in El Paso, Texas. Lesley holds a Bachelor’s of Arts in Government and Politics from the University of Maryland University College, in College Park, Maryland. He also attended the University of Texas at El Paso and University of Texas at Austin.

Bruce resides in Maryland with his wife and four children.

Resources by Bruce Lesley


In the News: Clock ticking down on children’s health funding

| September 18, 2017 |

From The Hill: BY NATHANIEL WEIXEL – 09/17/17 07:30 AM EDT WASHINGTON–Differences between the House and Senate ahead could threaten funding for a program that


Hurricanes and Medicaid Caps ‘Do Not Mix’

| September 11, 2017 |

EDITOR’S NOTE: This was originally published on Medium. Why the Current Sen. Graham Should Heed the Warnings of a Former Sen. Graham Sens. Lindsey Graham


In the News: Will Congress Continue Health Care For 9 Million Children?

| September 6, 2017 |

Will Congress Continue Health Care for 9 Million Children? (NPR) A popular federal-state program that provides health coverage to millions of children in lower-


Trump DACA Move Jeopardizes the Lives of Hundreds of Thousands of Children & Families

| September 5, 2017 |

WASHINGTON–President Trump announced today that he will end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) affecting nearly 800,000 young people and their families. First Focus


Charlottesville: Our Children Are Listening

| August 30, 2017 |

Twitter’s most shared post in its history is this one by former President Barack Obama in the aftermath of Charlottesville. “No one is born


In the News: Texans lucky Gov. Abbott didn’t get wish for Medicaid block grant, funding critics say

| August 29, 2017 |

Bruce Lesley was quoted in article for Inside Health Policy published on August 29, 2017 about block grants in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.  


In the News: New research links increased minimum wage to reduced child maltreatment

| August 29, 2017 |

Bruce Lesley, Cara Baldari and Rricha Mathur provided comments for an article for the Chronicle of Social Change published on August 29, 2017 about the


Children’s Groups Urge Quick Bipartisan 5-Year CHIP Extension

| August 4, 2017 |

First Focus and leading organizations dedicated to the well-being of children are calling on Congress to immediately enact a five-year extension of CHIP funding.


Senate Health Bill Violates Principle to ‘Do No Harm’

| July 27, 2017 |

EDITOR’S NOTE: This was originally published on Medium. Back in January, First Focus Campaign for Children (FFCC) signed a letter with all the other major


Senate Threatens the Health of Pregnant Women and Babies

| July 12, 2017 |

EDITOR’S NOTE: This was originally published on Medium. Real health reform would start with some basic goals and principles, such as: (1) expanding health coverage;