EDD Executive Staff
Sharon Hilliard was appointed director of the EDD in February 2020. The EDD administers several multibillion-dollar benefit programs including the Unemployment Insurance, Disability Insurance, and Paid Family Leave programs that provide financial stability to workers and their communities. The EDD also provides critical employment service programs to Californians, collects the state’s labor market information and employment data, and serves as one of the nation’s largest tax agencies through the collection of payroll taxes.
Hilliard brings to her position almost 37 years of state service in various capacities including chief deputy director of the EDD for seven years. She began her career in 1983 as a student assistant with the EDD while obtaining a bachelor’s degree in business administration. Hilliard has been in a leadership role for much of her career, including as deputy director of the Tax Branch, chief of the Field Audit and Compliance Division, and chief of the Tax Processing and Accounting Division. In addition, she has held positions in the Tax Support Division, Integrity Accounting Division, and the Directorate’s Office.
Chief Deputy Director
Chief Deputy Director
Tad Allred was appointed deputy director of the Administration Branch in July 2017. The Administration Branch serves as an operational arm of the director to implement administrative actions consistent with executive level direction, including budget, personnel, facilities, contracts, and mailing/printing services. The Branch is also responsible for ensuring that the EDD operates within legal and policy guidelines of the federal government and state control agencies.
Allred brings to this position over 17 years of state service at the EDD, including experience in the Administration Branch’s Fiscal Programs Division and the Unemployment Insurance (UI) Branch. He has served in a variety of roles such as budget analyst, budget officer, UI division chief, and Fiscal Programs division chief. Allred earned a bachelor of arts from California State University (CSU), Sacramento, and participated in the CSU Leadership for the Government Executive.
Disability Insurance Branch
Information Technology Branch
Gail Overhouse was appointed deputy director/chief information officer of the EDD’s Information Technology Branch in August 2012. Overhouse’s career spans over 30 years in state information technology in various executive positions. Prior to joining the EDD, she served as project director of the California Child Support Automation System for the Department of Child Support Services, implementing a single statewide child support system.
Overhouse’s experience also includes an executive role as deputy director of Statewide Telecommunications at the Office of Technology Services, and 13 years as bureau chief for the Department of Justice’s Hawkins Data Center, where she managed network services, system infrastructure, and communication applications for the state’s law enforcement agencies.
At the EDD, she oversees all aspects of the Department’s technology services, including desktop and server computing, telecommunications, and custom business applications. Overhouse works with the EDD programs to implement effective technology solutions to further the EDD’s mission.
Sandra Clifton was appointed general counsel in January 2002. She has over 20 years of state service and has been the senior counsel at the Department of Health Services since 1993, where she advised the Department on conflict-of-interest laws, the Public Records Act, and confidentiality laws, in addition to serving as their lead attorney on the implementation of HIPAA privacy and security rules and their internet and technology projects.
Clifton has also served as a deputy attorney general with the Department of Justice, where she represented the state in the criminal appeal process, and as a deputy legislative counsel with the Legislative Counsel Bureau, where she drafted legislation and prepared legal opinions on proposed bills and attended and testified at legislative committee hearings. In addition, she was also a trial attorney in private practice for more than seven years.
In 1979, Clifton received her J.D. law degree from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, in San Francisco.
Policy, Accountability, and Compliance Branch
Gregory M. Riggs
Gregory Riggs was appointed deputy director of the Policy, Accountability, and Compliance Branch (formerly Program Review Branch) in July 2008. The Policy, Accountability, and Compliance Branch contributes to the EDD’s programs by providing oversight, technical assistance, and other services that help improve both the effectiveness and efficiency of the program’s operations.
Riggs first began his career with the EDD in the early 1990s as an employment program representative for the Unemployment Insurance and Job Services programs. He has also held positions as chief of the Unemployment Insurance Adjudication Services Division, deputy director of the Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs Office, and assistant secretary of Policy and Program Development at the Labor and Workforce Development Agency.
Prior to entering state service, Riggs was employed by the municipal courts of San Joaquin and Sacramento counties and the Sacramento Alternative Sentencing Program, and earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of California at Santa Barbara.
Public Affairs Branch
Loree Levy was appointed deputy director of the Public Affairs Branch, which includes the Media Services, Strategic Communications, and Web Business Services divisions, in November 2002. The Branch is responsible for media relations, marketing and brand management, social media and other digital marketing efforts, website content management, usability review and guidance, and Spanish translations. Levy works closely with Department executives, the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency, and the Governor’s Press Office to release information about EDD programs and policies to the news media.
Levy began her career at the EDD in April 2001, when she was appointed assistant director of the Communications Office. Prior to her appointment, she spent 15 years in television news. In the Sacramento area, she was an on-air reporter for NBC-affiliate KCRA-TV Channel 3, and a news anchor for “Good Day Sacramento” at KPWB-TV Channel 31. Levy is a native Sacramentan and holds a bachelor’s degree in communications from California State University, Sacramento.
Lisa Wheeler was appointed deputy director of the Tax Branch in June 2013. The Tax Branch is responsible for the administration of the state’s employment tax program, working with 1.5 million employers to collect employment taxes and data to support the state’s employment security, child support, and personal income tax programs.
Wheeler has worked for the EDD for over 29 years, with over 25 years in leadership roles in the Tax Branch Collection Division and Tax Support Division, as well as with the Administration Branch Human Resource Services Division. She graduated with a bachelor of science degree in business administration from California State University, Sacramento (CSUS), with a concentration in Management. In addition, Wheeler is a graduate of the CSUS Leadership for Government Executives.
Unemployment Insurance Branch
Greg Williams was appointed deputy director of the Unemployment Insurance Branch in June 2017. Prior to his appointment, he served as the deputy director of the Administration Branch.
Before his career at the EDD, Williams served as chief operating officer at the Department of State Hospitals, where he was responsible for human resources, labor relations, business and risk management, and law enforcement operations. He has also served in leadership positions governing strategic planning, licensing and revenue, health and safety, and workers’ compensation at several other state departments. He participated in leadership academies through the California Health and Human Services Agency and at the Department of Fish and Wildlife (formerly Department of Fish and Game), and has taught leadership classes through the state university and community college systems. He holds a bachelor of science degree from California State University, Sacramento.
Workforce Services Branch