NASL Staff

Cynthia K. Morton, MPA, Executive Vice President


Cynthia Morton is a national expert on Medicaid, Medicare and other public policy affecting the long term and post-acute care sector. She joined NASL in 2010 as its Executive Vice President, where she advocates for her members’ interests.  Prior to joining NASL, Cynthia served as the Vice President for Political Affairs for the American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL). In over ten years with AHCA/NCAL, she represented the long term care profession before Congress, the Washington health care community, and the media. She also was responsible for increasing Member’s of Congress knowledge of and relationships with those in the long term care profession. In previous positions, she has developed policy and positions primarily on Medicaid and related long term care issues such as provider tax, Intergovernmental Transfers, dual eligibles, ICF/MR and developmental disability issues, Medicaid block grants, waivers and reform.


Previously, Ms. Morton served as the special assistant to the director of the Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services (the Virginia Medicaid agency), where she covered issues such as Medicaid managed care, long-term care, the children’s health insurance program, provider reimbursement rate setting and strategic planning activities. Cynthia has also served as an appointee in the offices of Governors Douglas Wilder and Gerald Baliles of Virginia. Earlier she worked in the health care and government relations practice area of the law firm Mezzullo and McCandlish.


Cynthia graduated from James Madison University with a Bachelor of Science in political science and holds a Master’s of Public Administration from Virginia Commonwealth University.



Michael J. Barnett, J.D., Manager of Legislative & Regulatory Affairs

Michael Barnett is NASL’s Manager of Legislative and Regulatory Affairs and has been with the Association since July of 2017.  Originally from Jackson, Mississippi, Michael is an attorney by trade and his background includes healthcare-related stints in both the public and private sectors throughout the Washington, DC, area.  Given his background in legal, legislative, and regulatory affairs, Michael is looking forward to making an immediate and meaningful impact at the Association and supporting the important work that NASL provides for its members. 



Laura de la Calzada, Director, Administrative Services

Laura de la Calzada is NASL’s Director of Administrative Services and has been with the Association since its move from Austin, Texas to the Washington, DC area in 1997. She has perfected the art of multi-tasking and serves NASL as our office manager, accountant, webmaster, meetings manager, and tech support department. Originally from the Bronx, Laura’s varied background includes stints in communications, banking and personal law, as well as commercial real estate development.



Donna Doneski, Director of Policy and Membership

Donna Doneski has extensive experience in national healthcare policy and issues advocacy to include grassroots outreach, crisis communications and coalition building. As the Director of Public Affairs at the American Health Care Association, Donna developed a cross-cutting knowledge of the SNF, ALF and post-acute care sector. She worked on issues such as Medicare and Medicaid policy, reimbursement, IT, pharmacy and quality and served as a liaison to the Pharmacy Quality Alliance (PQA) and Advancing Excellence in America’s Nursing Homes campaign.  Given her background and proven track record in serving the needs of association members at all organizational levels, Donna is looking forward to bringing even greater value to the NASL membership and to supporting the important work of current and future NASL members.