sophia dengo

Current work

I help deliver federal digital services

I've been at Ad Hoc for a little over two years and have had the privilege to support three teams: VA.gov (formerly Vets.gov), WDS/Healthcare.gov, and Medicare's Quality Payment Program (QPP).

On the WDS/Healthcare.gov and QPP teams, I help lead the design systems work.

  • For WDS, I'm one of a team of three that runs the WDS Design System work. We're expanding the documentation around the system and maturing its functionality, as more teams at the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services adopt the design system into their toolsets.
  • On QPP, I lead the development of QPP's design system (QPPDS). Based largely on WDS' system, QPPDS aims to be a comprehensive collection of UI components and interaction patterns on the QPP site. Because QPP is supported by multiple contractors, the design system also serves as a single source of truth that bridges the gap between disparate UI teams.

On vets.gov (now VA.gov), I helped Veterans discover, apply for, track and manage the benefits they've earned.

  • Formation: Built on top of the US Web Design System, Formation is VA.gov's design system. It houses all of VA's visual patterns and the code that drives them, and is in consistent development as the team's needs and patterns evolve. I kick-started the system in 2018, doing the research, building the proof of concept with help from the Vets.gov engineering team, and getting buy-in from above. I've since rolled off the team, but Formation remains in production on VA.gov.
  • Discharge Upgrade Tool: About 7 million Veterans were discharged from the military with "bad paper" -- meaning that their discharge status keeps them from receiving VA benefits they've earned -- as a result of Don't Ask Don't Tell, military sexual trauma, and PTSD, among other circumstances. They might be able to get their status upgraded, and thereby access their benefits, but the process is confusing at best. I designed a new interaction pattern to support the logic tree that guides Veterans through the process, based on their particular circumstances. My team and I then built, tested, and released the tool, which was received favorably by the community.