Diana M. Bontá, R.N., Dr.P.H., is the president and chief executive officer of The California Wellness Foundation (TCWF), a private independent foundation created in 1992 with a mission to improve the health of the people of California by making grants for health promotion, wellness education and disease prevention. One of the largest health grantmaking organizations in the state, the Foundation has awarded 6,919 grants totaling more than $852 million.
As part of its Responsive Grantmaking Program, TCWF prioritizes the following eight issues for funding: diversity in the health professions, environmental health, healthy aging, mental health, teenage pregnancy prevention, violence prevention, women's health, and work and health. It also responds to timely issues and special projects outside the funding priorities. The Foundation is recognized nationally for its strategic core operating funding, public policy grantmaking, and pioneering public education campaigns.
Dr. Bontá brings to TCWF 40 years experience in health care, public policy and corporate health philanthropy. Before joining the Foundation in January 2012, she was vice president of public affairs for Kaiser Permanente, Southern California Region. Her responsibilities included providing the strategic direction in the areas of public relations, community and government relations, grant management, corporate communications, and media relations.
Prior positions include being appointed by California Gov. Gray Davis to lead the state's Department of Health Services, where she oversaw one of the nation's largest anti-smoking campaigns and the State of California's Medicaid program. Her budget totaled $32 billion and included more than 6,000 employees. From 1988 to 1999, Dr. Bontá served as Director of Health and Human Services for the City of Long Beach.
Dr. Bontá is a trustee for both the Archstone Foundation and the Annie E. Casey Foundation. She has served as trustee of the Health Professions Education Foundation for nine years under the leadership of three governors. She was a U.S. Mexico Border Health Commissioner and recent member of the DHHS Office of Minority Health Advisory Committee.
Dr. Bontá's contributions have been recognized with numerous awards, including the American Public Health Association's Presidential Citation Award and the National Hispanic Medical Association Leadership Award.
Dr. Bontá holds doctorate and master's degrees in public health from the University of California, Los Angeles, where she also serves as an adjunct professor. She received her bachelor's degree in nursing from the State University of New York at Buffalo and holds an associate's degree in nursing from Bronx Community College in New York City.
Dr. Bontá lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Frank, and has three children.
Guided by our mission, we pursue the following goals through our grantmaking: