CHCF Health Care Leadership Program

CHCF Cohort 18 Smiling

What is the CHCF Health Care Leadership Program?

This two-year fellowship prepares clinically trained professionals to lead California’s health care organizations and creates a network of strong and effective leaders who are focused on improving health care for all Californians. 

View the 2021 Prospective Applicant Webinar

  • Learn about the program and curriculum
  • Hear directly from CHCF alumni about their experience  
Program Details 

The California Health Care Foundation's (CHCF) Health Care Leadership Program prepares clinically trained professionals to lead California’s health care organizations and creates a network of strong and effective leaders who are focused on improving health care for all Californians.

Each year, 32 highly qualified fellows are selected to participate in the rigorous, two-year program which builds leadership and management skills and covers business aspects of health care as well as environmental trends, policy topics, and more. This rigorous, part-time, two-year fellowship addresses essential leadership and management skills, as well as health care trends and policy topics. Since 2001, over 500 health professionals have participated in the CHCF Health Care Leadership Program. The California Health Care Foundation sponsors this program, which is administered by Healthforce Center. Learn more about the program

Transforming Health Care

California Health Care Improvement Projects (CHIPs)

CHIPS are designed by CHCF Health Care Leadership Program participants with the goal of addressing meaningful challenges or opportunities in health care. Browse CHIPs to leverage the work, expertise and experience of CHCF alumni and find opportunities to collaborate in order to improve health for Californians.

CHCF Alumni Network 

The CHCF Alumni Network offers access to more than 500 clinician leaders who transform health care - and communities - across California. To learn more about the network, please click here.

See a list of current fellows and all alumni. 

Stories from CHCF Fellows:


The fellowship is grounded in Healthforce Center’s competency-based leadership model, which consists of four interlinked domains – Purpose, Process, People, and Personal. Each domain consists of a set of distinct leadership competencies. Elements of the CHCF Health Care Leadership Program include onsite learning experiences, interaction with colleagues from the field, and exposure to nationally recognized faculty experienced in business, leadership, health care, and public policy. Fellows are actively engaged throughout the two-year program by means of:

  • Seminars. Seminars focus on the skills and competencies needed to advance in executive leadership positions. These sessions provide interactive, experiential lessons that allow clinician leaders to explore challenges and develop strong peer networks.
  • Intersession activity. Between seminars, fellows participate in a variety of activities to reinforce skills and lessons and to prepare for seminars. Assignments include readings and case studies; peer group interactions; telephone and web conferences with faculty and advisors; and tools to track development goals and share experiences and progress. Fellows are expected to devote five to ten hours per week between sessions to program-related activities.
  • Pods. Pods are teams composed of five or six fellows. The primary role of the pod is to provide support, feedback, and learning opportunities to each other throughout the fellowship.
  • Coaching. Each fellow receives five hours of individual executive development coaching.
  • Organizational project. Each fellow completes a leadership project at their home organization on a topic of their choice following program guidelines.


View the 2021 Prospective Applicant Webinar

  • Learn about the program and curriculum
  • Hear directly from CHCF alumni about their experience   


CHCF Alumni Network

Joining the CHCF Health Care Leadership Program gives you access to 500 clinician leaders that make up the CHCF Alumni Network. This unique collective of leaders serves as a trusted community of peers connected by shared values and approaches to leadership. Strong relationships help leaders tackle some of the most difficult challenges in the field. Nearly all Alumni (90%) agree that the Network plays a role in transforming health care in California, according to an external program survey conducted by Informing Change, December 2019. Learn more about the Alumni Network. 

Here’s what participants have said about the CHCF Health Care Leadership Program:
“The CHCF Health Care Leadership Program was and continues to be a transformational experience for me. Through its network of fellows and alumni, I believe the program is making quality, cost, and health care experience improvements at every level of policy and operations throughout the state.”
– Susan Ehrlich, MD, MPP, CEO, San Mateo Medical Center
“Health care providers are trained to excel in utilizing clinical skills to provide patient care. When I assumed leadership responsibility, I was challenged to acquire the necessary skills to lead an effective health care team. The CHCF fellowship closed that gap. It will also provide the origin for your leadership journey.”
– Amy Gutierrez, PharmD, Vice President, Chief Pharmacy Officer, Kaiser Permanente
“The program has been the best thing I have ever done for my professional and personal development. Leadership is not a sprint, but a marathon. To be successful, you can’t run it alone.”
– Michael Scott, MD, Department Chair, Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center, Los Angeles County

“To learn how we as clinicians can be influential and to be able to meet decision makers for California, is really an incredible opportunity.” -Efrain Talmantes, MD, MBA, MSc, Medical Director for Health Equity, AltaMed Health Services  


The CHCH Health Care Leadership Program is for clinically trained health care professionals with at least five years of leadership experience who live and work in California.

We seek diversity across disciplines, regions, racial/ethnic groups, and organizations with a special focus this year on:

  • Clinicians in Southern California,
  • Black and Latinx health care providers,
  • Safety net providers,
  • Behavioral health clinicians.

A full applications include: 

  • Completed online application 
  • Resume
  • Two recommendations 

Before submitting an application, we encourage all applicants to work closely with their organizational leaders to identify the internal process for choosing applicants. It is the applicant's responsibility to confirm organizational support to participate, including attendance at all seminars and payment of tuition.

The California Health Care Foundation covers most program costs, but fellows’ home organizations must pay tuition, as shown below. In addition, fellows are responsible for travel expenses. 

The tuition for Cohort 21 is:

  • Safety net organizations†            $6,000 per person
  • Not-for-profit organizations       $9,200 per person
  • All other organizations                $11,000 per person

As with past cohorts, the ability to pay is not a consideration in the selection process. Financial assistance is currently available for individuals working in Southern California (i.e. Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego and Imperial counties) and the safety net for this cohort of the program.

•    Up to 100% tuition waiver for those working in the safety net in Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego or Imperial counties.
•    Up to 90% tuition waiver for those working in the safety net in other counties.

Financial assistance may not be available for future cohorts. If you have questions or if your participation in the program is dependent on financial assistance, please contact us. 

† Safety net organizations are those that organize and deliver a significant level of health care or health-related services to uninsured, Medicaid, and other vulnerable populations, as well as providers who by mandate or mission offer access to care regardless of a patient’s ability to pay and whose patient populations includes a substantial share of uninsured, Medicaid, and other vulnerable patients. Examples of safety net organizations include: Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), Rural Health Centers, Indian or Tribal Clinics, non-profit community or free clinics licensed by the state as primary care clinics, clinics affiliated with DSH facilities, governmental health agencies, and publicly operated health plans.

Program Participants

Meet the most recent cohort, Cohort 20. In November 2020, thirty-two clinical leaders were selected to participate in the California Health Care Foundation’s Health Care Leadership Program to expand their leadership and management skills to meet the challenges facing our state’s health care system. Cohort 20 includes a great diversity of clinicians including physicians, behavioral health specialists, nurses, social workers, pharmacists, and a dentist. They hail from across the state – from San Diego to the North Coast. More than 500 health care professionals have participated in the program since its inception in 2001.  View a list of all current fellows and alumni

Cohort 20

  • Cesar Anaya, LMFT, Regional Program Manager, Monterey County Behavioral Health-ASOC Salinas

  • Marco Angulo, MD, Physician, AltaMed Health Services

  • Shelly Barker, RD, CDE, Program Director, Health Improvement Partnership of Santa Cruz County

  • Maria Barrell, DO, President & COO, Primary Medical

  • Sanjay Bhatt, MD, MMM, Medical Director, Alameda Alliance for Health

  • Jennifer Clancy, MSW, Director of Strategic Initiatives, CA Institute of Behavioral Health Solutions

  • Sally Dang, OD, MPH, Chief, Optometry Service, VA Long Beach Healthcare System

  • Sujana Gunta, MD, MS, Director of Pediatric Services, Vista Community Clinic

  • Reshma Gupta, MD, MSHPM, Interim Chief of Population Health and Accountable Care, UC Davis Health

  • Devanne Hernandez, MA, LMFT, Director of Behavioral Health Programs Eisner Health

  • Lilavati Indulkar, MD, Medical Director SDU/Tele Unit, Alameda Health System

  • Marie Jeannis, RN, MSN, Director, Enterprise Analytics, CalOptima

  • Constanza Kadera, DDS, Chief Dental Officer, Marin Community Clinics

  • Casey KirkHart, DO, Chief Medical Officer, Santa Cruz Community Health

  • Paula Lee, RDHAP, MPH, Interim Dental Supervisor One Community Health 

  • Nathana Lurvey, MD, Director Women's Health, Eisner Health

  • Anjali Mahoney, MD, MPH, Vice Chair of Clinical Affairs, Keck School of Medicine

  • Marlene Martin, MD, Director of Addiction Care Team and Associate Clinical Professor, UCSF/ZSFGH

  • Fumi Mitsuishi, MD, MS, Division Director, Associate Clinical Professor, UCSF/ZSFGH Department of Psychiatry, Division of Citywide Case Management

  • Jennifer Miyamoto Echeverria, LCSW, Director, Social Programs & Services, Blue Shield of California

  • Dara Papo, MSW, LCSW, Director of Whole Person Integrated Care, San Francisco Department of Public Health

  • Chad Pierce, PsyD, Mental Health Program Manager, Contra Costa County

  • Kiti Randall, PhD, Medical Director, IE Autism Assessment Center of Excellence

  • Barbara Rubino, MD, Primary Care Director, Los Angeles County + USC Medical Center

  • Magdalena Serrano, MSW, LCSW, Director of Behavioral Health and Psychiatry Services, Community Health Centers of the Central Coast, Inc.

  • Takudzwa Shumba, MD, MPH, Clinical Assistant Professor, Stanford Health Care

  • Manel Silva, MD, MPH, Site Medical Director, AltaMed Health Services

  • Susana Sou, Pharm.D., MHA, Chief of Pharmacy and Laboratory, Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health

  • Sohini Stone, MD, MBA, Medical Director/Senior Staff Clinical Specialist, Google

  • Ashley Wiley Johnson,  Ph.D., CCC-SLP, Vice President, Los Angeles Speech and Language Therapy Center 

  • Camilo Zaks, MD, Assistant Medical Director, San Fernando Valley Health Centers Group, Los Angeles County Department of Health Services 

  • Shaina Zurlin, LCSW, PsyD, Chief of Substance Use Disorder Services, County of Santa Cruz


Healthforce Center 

We are located at Healthforce Center at UCSF, the leading source for research insights into the evolving health care workforce and for pioneering training programs that empower leaders to navigate change. In partnership with the California Health Care Foundation, the CHCF Health Care Leadership Program prepares clinically trained professionals to lead California’s health care organizations and creates a network of strong and effective leaders to improve health care for all Californians.

Contact Us

CHCF Health Care Leadership Program
Healthforce Center at UCSF
3333 California Street, Suite 410
San Francisco, CA 94143
Voice: 415-502-7979
Fax: 415-476-4113
Renae Waneka, MPH
Senior Manager for Leadership Development
Gina Lima
Program Manager
Christina Travlos 
Leadership Development Associate

About the California Health Care Foundation

CHCF is leading the way to better care for all Californians, particularly those whose needs are not well served by the status quo. The Foundation works to ensure that people have access to the care they need, when they need it, and at a price they can afford.
CHCF informs policymakers and industry leaders, invests in ideas and innovations, and connects with change makers to create a more responsive, patient-centered health care system.

Featured Testimonial

This fellowship was truly a life-changing experience.
Patricia Fajarado, MPH, RN
Director of Nursing, ChapCare (Community Health Alliance of Pasadena)
CHCF Health Care Leadership Program Alumni
View All Testimonials »