Mario Molina named founding dean of KGI School of Medicine

Keck Graduate Institute (KGI) has appointed J. Mario Molina as the founding dean of the KGI School of Medicine. Dr. Molina served for 20 years as the chief executive officer of Molina Healthcare, a Fortune 500 company founded by his father in 1980 to provide healthcare to low-income individuals.

His vision for the KGI School of Medicine is to change the approach to healthcare education. The KGI School of Medicine will focus on the intersection of multicultural competency, population health research and commercial innovation.

“Dean Molina is highly regarded by his colleagues for his vision, passion, expertise and leadership,” KGI President Sheldon Schuster said. “He has an immense amount of experience in serving Southern California communities and we are confident in his ability to develop an innovative medical school for the 21st century.”

Through community partnerships, KGI School of Medicine students will acquire the skills and knowledge necessary to work effectively in the diverse communities within Southern California. The aim of the school will be to effect systemic healthcare change—first within the San Gabriel Valley and Inland Empire areas, and then statewide and nationally.

“I am humbled by the opportunity to launch the new medical school at the Keck Graduate Institute,” Dr. Molina said. “As I reflect on my professional journey in the US healthcare system, the experiences I have gained confirm both the need and the timely imperative at KGI to transform medical education by providing students tools to become compassionate physicians and to advocate for the good health of the communities they serve.”

Dr. Molina received a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from California State University, Long Beach in 1980 and earned his medical degree from the University of Southern California in 1984. He performed his residency in internal medicine at Johns Hopkins Hospital and followed that with a fellowship in endocrinology at the University of California, San Diego.

Prior to joining Molina Healthcare, Dr. Molina was a faculty member at USC. He also received a certificate in management from the Anderson School of Business at UCLA. In 2005, Dr. Molina was recognized as one of Time Magazine’s most influential Hispanics in America. In 2013, Claremont Graduate University awarded Dr. Molina with an honorary doctorate.

He is a trustee of Johns Hopkins Medicine and served on the visiting committee for the Harvard Medical School. He is also a member of the Founder’s Council of the United States of Care. A member of The Claremont Colleges, more information about KGI can be found at


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