Paula Ryan

Paula Ryan is a Community Work Incentives Coordinator (CWIC) with the Social Security Work Incentives and Planning Assistance (WIPA) program at Empower Tennessee. Paula has worked as a benefits counselor for over four years. In addition to working as a Community Work Incentives Coordinator (CWIC), she worked with the Social Security Benefit Offset National Demonstration (BOND) as an Enhanced Work Incentives Counselor (EWIC). This Social Security demonstration project is testing the partial adjustment of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits for individuals who return to work. Prior to that, Paula worked for the Social Security Administration for over 30 years. She has experience with Social Security Title II Retirement, Survivors and Disability (SSDI) and Title XVI Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Disability. Her last 15 years with Social Security was in a highly specialized job as a PASS Specialist (Plan to Achieve Self-Support). Paula has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from UAB, Birmingham AL. Paula enjoys being a benefits counselor. She understands the confusion and frustration individuals with disabilities face as they attempt to get reliable information about how work will affect their Social Security disability cash benefits and their medical insurance under Medicare and/or Medicaid. She finds it rewarding to be able to help individuals understand how work impacts the benefits they receive so they can make good, informed decisions about work.