News Release| Commencement 2012; Cal State L.A.

Richard D. Cordova, president and CEO of Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles, to address Cal State L.A.’s Class of 2012

Los Angeles, Calif—Richard D. Cordova, president and CEO of Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles (CHLA), and California State University, Los Angeles’ (CSULA) 2010 Alumnus of the Year, will address CSULA’s Class of 2012 during its two-day, 65th annual Commencement.

Cordova will be the keynote speaker, Friday, June 15, at 5 p.m. during the first of two graduation ceremonies. Eduardo M. Ochoa, U.S. assistant secretary for postsecondary education and a former CSULA professor, will speak Saturday, June 16, at 8 a.m. More than 5,000 bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate students will graduate during the ceremonies.

“It’s an honor to be giving the commencement speech for my alma mater,” said Cordova.  “I grew up in this neighborhood and I’m coming home to the college that I graduated from. I look forward to sharing my life, and more than 35 years of work experiences in the health field, with the graduating class of 2012.” 

CHLA is the fifth ranked children’s hospital in the country, according to the latest U.S. News & World Report “Best Children's Hospital” survey. Cordova began his current position at the hospital in 2006. He also serves as a member of its Board of Trustees.

Prior to his arrival at CHLA, Cordova worked with Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals, a nonprofit health care system that included 30 hospitals in eight states. He served as president of the Southern California Region of the Kaiser Permanente Health Plan and Hospitals with responsibilities for 11 hospitals, and led the organization’s regional efforts in marketing, strategic planning, finance, quality and patient safety.

Before his appointment as president at Kaiser, he served the hospital as chief operations officer for Southern California, after being senior vice president and service area manager, with responsibilities for four hospitals in the Northern California East Bay Service Area.

Cordova began his career in healthcare after graduating from CSULA with a degree in business administration in 1972. A year later, he began working for the Department of Health Services for the County of Los Angeles. Through 1991, he held various roles as a leader for Los Angeles County, serving as administrator of General Hospital of Los Angeles County (LAC/USC Medical Center) and associate hospital administrator of operations at Olive View Medical Center.

Cordova also worked with the Department of Public Health for the County of San Francisco in 1991. Through 1998, he served as executive administrator of the Community Health Network with responsibilities for San Francisco General Hospital, Laguna Honda Hospital and 12 community health centers.

During that time, he served as CEO of San Francisco General Hospital, an acute care hospital specializing in trauma and AIDS. Cordova was a founding member of the San Francisco Public Health Authority, which created the Medi-Cal-managed care organization for the County of San Francisco. 

Cordova has also served on many councils, boards and has chaired a variety of healthcare-related organizations. He currently is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE), and recently was elected to the Board of Governors. He serves as board chair of the California Children’s Hospitals Association, and is a board member of the California Hospital Association, ThinkCure, the official charity of the Los Angeles Dodgers. 

Cordova is also a founding member of the National Forum for Latino Healthcare Executives and past-chair of the Institute for Diversity in Health Management, a non-profit organization that works closely with healthcare organizations and educators to expand leadership opportunities for ethnic minorities in health services management.

Cordova has earned many accolades as a hospital leader.  Most recently he was selected “CEO of the Year” by the Los Angeles Business Journal. Modern Healthcare magazine twice named him one of the “Top 25 Minority Executives in Healthcare” and named him one of “The Most Powerful People in Healthcare.” He was also named one of America’s “Top 100 Most Influential Hispanics” by Hispanic Business magazine.

Cordova received his master’s degree from the Graziadio School of Business and Management at Pepperdine University in 1984. 

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