Lia Margolis’ interest in community service and health care issues in California was formulated at an early age. Born and raised in the East Los Angeles area by Mexican American parents who worked very hard to provide for a family of ten siblings, Margolis, saw first hand the health and social disparities experienced by women, communities of color and low income families.
Margolis is a highly respected health care expert with more than 20 years of experience in executive posts in the Los Angeles County Health Department serving as the Associate Executive Director, LAC+USC Medical Center, one of the largest healthcare networks in the nation. She also served as Administrator, Newborn Services, LAC/USC Medical Center; Assistant Administrator, Harbor UCLA Medical Center overseeing Women’s and Children’s Health, Chief of Administrative Services, LA County Public Health Services.
In 1998, she established Lia Margolis and Associates. Upon retiring, from LA County DHS and in 2000 the Board of Directors of the Latino Coalition for a Healthy California (LCHC) asked that she assume the role of President and CEO because the agency had fallen on hard times. Margolis took a sabbatical from her private enterprise to serve “pro bono” for two years. In short order she moved the organization from San Francisco to the policy hub of Sacramento and raised nearly $800,000 to stabilize the organization and secure the reputation of the LCHC as the leading voice for health access for California’s Latinos. The tag line for Lia Margolis and Associates is “Planning to Make Things Happen” and her consultancy has gained a strong reputation for doing just that. Since its establishment Lia Margolis and Associates has specialized in helping non-profit organizations serving women, children and communities of color raising millions of dollars for them by providing consultation and support on grant writing, strategic, business and marketing planning and organizational development. She has created a diverse client base that includes health, corporate, philanthropic, government and social service agencies.
With a cadre of associates throughout the United States, she has built a service model that provides a wide range of timely expertise and services at a reasonable cost. The most rewarding for Margolis is the opportunity to mentor new talent (regardless of their age), constantly learning from others and building coalitions that bring about change. She believes strongly in “giving back to the community” through volunteerism and served proudly on the Board of Directors for the California Medical Association Foundation (she was the CMAF Program Committee Chair and served as the Vice Chair of the Board of Directors). She also served on the University of Southern California/Norris Cancer Center Foundation, which provides access to communities of color and underserved communities to cancer modalities, services and clinical trials.
Margolis has been published in JCAHCO, LACMA and American Public Health Association publications and has received numerous awards for her work. She is currently a Latina spokesperson for the Union of Concerned Scientists/Voces Verdes initiative to provide community based information on the environment and health. Margolis’ leadership is reflective of her personal values, as she continues to teach, increase understanding, and support the advancement of a healthy life for all.
She is featured in the recent book, “Mujeres de Consciencia” (Women of Conscience), which chronicles the contributions of such luminaries as Dolores Huerta, former Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis, and over 70 other outstanding Latinas.