August 5, 2019 – Washington, DC: Special Olympics has announced Alicia Bazzano, MD, PhD, MPH, as Chief Health Officer. Dr. Bazzano is a pediatrician and public health executive who has dedicated her career to improving the health of people with intellectual disabilities (ID).
In her new role, Dr. Bazzano will be a member of the organization’s senior leadership team and will be responsible for providing strategic oversight of all health activities around the world to ensure public funding, policies, medical training programs, and health service delivery are inclusive of people with ID.
“We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Bazzano to Special Olympics and our global leadership team. As we create a world where people with intellectual disabilities have equal opportunities to be healthy, Dr. Bazzano’s expertise as a clinician, public health expert, professor, advocate, fundraiser, and organization builder make her a powerful addition to our six million-strong global movement.”
Prior to joining Special Olympics, Dr. Bazzano served as Senior Medical Director for Health Policy at Acumen, LLC. She previously was Chief Physician at the Westside Regional Center, the Los Angeles agency charged with serving individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. She is on the faculty of the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine, where she teaches medical students and residents. Dr. Bazzano was deeply involved in the founding, planning and development of the Achievable Health Center, a first-of-its-kind federally qualified health center dedicated to developmental disabilities, and served as founding co-Chief Medical Officer.
Dr. Bazzano served as Clinical Director for Special Olympics Healthy Athletes® Health Promotion for Special Olympics Southern California and secured several grants to educate health professionals.
Dr. Bazzano completed medical school and pediatric residency at UCLA. She also completed her Masters’ in Public Health and her PhD in the Department of Health Policy and Management at UCLA. She has been appointed to several state and national executive boards, including the American Academy of Developmental Medicine and Dentistry and served as a Healthcare Leadership Fellow by the California Health Care Foundation.
Dr. Bazzano has been published and cited in leading peer-reviewed journals and has been awarded foundation, state, federal and international funding to design, implement, and continually evaluate programs for children and adults with developmental disabilities.
About Special Olympics
Special Olympics is a global inclusion movement using sport, health, education and leadership programs every day around the world to end discrimination against and empower people with intellectual disabilities. Founded in 1968, and celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year, the Special Olympics movement has grown to more than 6 million athletes and Unified Sports partners in over 190 countries. With the support of more than 1 million coaches and volunteers, Special Olympics delivers 32 Olympic-type sports and over 100,000 games and competitions throughout the year. Special Olympics is supported by individuals, foundations and partners, including Bank of America, the Christmas Records Trust, The Coca-Cola Company, ESPN, Essilor Vision Foundation, the Golisano Foundation, IKEA Foundation, the Lane Family, the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics, Lions Clubs International, Safilo Group, Stavros Niarchos Foundation, TOYOTA, United Airlines, and The Walt Disney Company. Click here for a full list of partners. Engage with us on: Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and our blog on Medium. Learn more at www.SpecialOlympics.org.