• Pasadena Community Foundation Appoints Kaiser Group President Benjamin Chu as Ambassador for Health


    The Pasadena Community Foundation (PCF) today announced the appointment of Benjamin K. Chu, MD, MPH, MACP, as their 60th anniversary Ambassador for Health. Dr. Chu is group president of Kaiser Permanente’s Southern California and Hawaii regions.   As PCF’s Health Ambassador, Dr. Chu will be advocating on behalf of nonprofits that serve the health care needs of low-income and uninsured individuals and families , helping to spotlight these programs and services in Pasadena.

    “To be a champion for healthcare, we need to ask, ‘What is best for the patient?” states Dr. Chu. “Healthy communities start with healthy individuals.”

    Dr. Chu and his wife Donna Moylan moved to Pasadena in 2005 when he was appointed Regional President of Kaiser Permanente Southern California. In January 2011, he was promoted to Group President responsible for both the Southern California and the Hawaii regions of Kaiser Permanente.  In this role, he directs Hospital and Health Plan Operations for 15 hospitals and 221 medical offices, serving more than 3.8 million members in both locations. Additionally, he serves as chair of the American Hospital Association Board of Trustees.

    Pasadena is known for having a robust array of healthcare services: Both Kaiser Permanente Southern California and Huntington Memorial Hospital make their home here. Additionally, Pasadena supports several community clinics (Community Health Alliance of Pasadena, Planned Parenthood and Pacific Clinics) and has a multitude of agencies that work in the area of substance abuse and addiction. In fact, Pasadena is one of only three cities in California with its own Public Health Department. 

    In appointing Dr. Chu as its ambassador, PCF spotlights the important role that area nonprofits play in the community. Since its inception, PCF has awarded over $5.3 million to healthcare organizations in Pasadena. Last month, in May 2013, PCF provided a grant of $10,000 to the Pacific Clinics’ Department of Older Adults, which provides services for low income seniors with mental illness. With this funding, Pacific Clinics is able to purchase eyeglasses, dentures, socks for diabetics and pay for transportation for seniors to medical appointments.

    Also last month, PCF awarded $25,000 to the Gooden Center’s Holliston Court sober living facility bringing its total funding to over $300,000 for this local nonprofit that helps individuals rebuild their lives through addiction recovery services.

    Finally, in April, with the help of a 2011 grant from PCF, the Pasadena Public Health Department opened a new dental clinic serving low income adults and seniors. PCF was the first organization to fund this capital renovation project which helped build momentum for PPHD to secure the needed funding.

    Through the work of its ambassadors, PCF is bringing visibility to worthwhile non profits that depend on philanthropic support to serve the community. On October 5, 2013 at

    6 p.m., state and local dignitaries will join the community and its honored guests in celebrating the Pasadena Community Foundation’s 60th anniversary. This gala event will be held at The Langham, 1401 S. Oak Knoll Avenue, Pasadena.  For more information, please visit: www.pasadenacf.org.

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