Oxendine honored with Irvine Leadership Award for strengthening California health workforce

Jeff Oxendine, associate dean for public health practice at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health, is one of six California leaders honored with the 2013 James Irvine Foundation Leadership Award. The awards, given on February 4 at a luncheon in Sacramento, celebrate extraordinary leaders who are advancing proven, innovative solutions to some of California’s most difficult problems.

“I’m inspired by the transformative results these leaders have achieved by collaborating across sectors to come up with new and effective solutions,” said Jim Canales, president and CEO of the Irvine Foundation. “They each have excelled at building upon the assets of California’s residents to improve the future of our state.”

Oxendine is working at multiple levels to help develop a robust, diverse health workforce to meet California’s growing health needs. As head of the School's Center for Public Health Practice & Leadership, Oxendine places more than 125 interns each year in health departments, community-based organizations, health care systems, and other public health organizations. He founded the Center for Multicultural Health and Center for Health Leadership. He is also cofounder and president of Health Career Connection, a nonprofit that has empowered more than 1,400 undergraduate students, 900 of them in California, to discover and pursue health careers. Oxendine also champions innovative policy reform at the statewide level, as co-leader of the California Health Workforce Alliance.

The James Irvine Foundation Leadership Awards have been given out since 2006 to individuals and organizations in a variety of fields, including education, health, agriculture, economic development, and the environment. The Foundation provides each recipient with $125,000 to support his or her work benefitting the people of California.

Other California leaders honored are: Aida Cardenas, Building Skills Partnership; Karen Christensen, Resource Conservation District of Santa Cruz County; Stuart Cohen, TransForm; José Quiñonez, Mission Asset Fund; and Jill Vialet, Playworks. The California State Senate will recognize the recipients during its February 4 floor session. Oxendine’s award will be presented by State Senator Ed Hernandez, Senate Health Committee Chair (D-24th District).

The James Irvine Foundation is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to expanding opportunity in the State of California. Since 1937 the Foundation has provided over $1.3 billion in grants to more than 3,500 nonprofit organizations throughout California.