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Lauren Padilla-Valverde

Senior Program Manager

The California Endowment


Ms. Padilla-Valverde, a physician assistant and health educator practioning family medicine, women’s health and homeless health for 25 years, is Senior Program Manager overseeing the strategic grantmaking in Salinas as part of the 10-year Building Healthy Communities (BHC) initiative. Lauren has supported the development of leadership at the grassroots and systems level to address structural root causes of health inequities through a healing informed, racial justice lens. Her grantmaking strategy has focused on the application of a racial justice lens through an investment in the leadership of those most impacted by systemic inequities. This racial justice vision has now expanded regionally and in early 2018, East Salinas BHC launched Towards a Racially Equitable Monterey County, an ecosystem of stakeholders in government, philanthropy, business and resident leaders working to internalize and deepen racially equity as a core value to realize systems transformation. Her vision for racially equitable system change in government, education, and philanthropy are informing the field of philanthropy. Prior to TCE, Padilla-Valverde was professor, director and chair of the Joint Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies, Master of Public Health Program at Touro University-California. There, she oversaw the development of an innovated program that graduates health care providers in both medicine and public health with a focus on increasing health professionals of color who are from disinvested communities in California. The program is a national model in PA education and continues to graduate a high number of students of color who continue to work California’s health professional shortage areas to this day.

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