For more than 30 years, Leslie Margolin has worked to improve the quality, safety, efficiency, accessibility and affordability of health care. As President of Anthem Blue Cross (California), she spearheaded a successful turnaround of the company’s commercial book of business and launched “Patient Safety First … A California Partnership for Health”, a patient safety collaborative of unprecedented scale and impact, credited with saving more than 3,600 lives and achieving savings of approximately $63M in its first three years of operation.
As leader of all hospital and health plan operations nationally for Kaiser Permanente, Margolin served as lead negotiator in historic interest-based bargaining efforts with 29 local and 9 international unions representing 86,000 employees. Her partnership successes were lauded by the U.S. Department of Labor and were studied by academic institutions across the nation. Margolin began her health care career with CIGNA Corporation, serving as corporate counsel for ten years and rising to serve as assistant general counsel and later as President and General Manager of CIGNA HealthCare of California.
In establishing The Margolin Group, and launching Partners Transforming Health®, Margolin advances her health care strategy to an entirely new level. Building on her deep and trusting relations with hospital, health plan, medical group, purchaser, consumer and distribution channel partners across the state, Margolin is establishing a comprehensive, system-wide, coalition-based business to drive meaningful and sustainable improvements in cost, quality and safety, a business model that virtually reinvents health care.
Margolin earned her Bachelor of Arts in Government from Connecticut College, her Juris Doctor from Hofstra University, and her Masters of Laws (LL.M) in Labor Relations from New York University. She serves as Board Chair of the Gitenstein Institute for Health Law and Policy at Hofstra Law School, as Board Advisor to ActualMeds, and as an Advisory Board Member to Union Village. Margolin previously served as Secretary-Treasurer for the Board of Directors of the California Association of Health Plans and served on the Boards of Directors of: Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian in Orange County; Presbyterian Health Plan in Albuquerque, NM; the Los Angeles Urban League (and as Chair of its Development Committee), the March of Dimes (as its Chair) and the Ambassador Council of AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA), where she formerly was Chair of the Board of Directors. She has also served as Chair of the Board of Directors for Connecticut College’s Alumni Association, and as a Board Member of the Red Cross and the YMCA.
In 1999, Margolin addressed the California Governor’s Conference for Women in a segment entitled “Wildly Successful Women Leaders”. In 2006, she was named one of four Bay Area “Women of the Year” by the American Diabetes Association, and in 2010 was named “Woman of the Year” by the Southern California Chapter of Women in Health Care. Margolin’s early health care leadership successes were profiled in Dennis Perkins’ Leading at the Edge, Leadership Lessons from the Extraordinary Saga of Shackleton’s Antarctic Expedition (for publication purposes, using the name “Anna Berlin”).
An avid athlete, Margolin has run 8 marathons, including Boston, New York and LA. She is a cyclist and a cross-country skier, plays tennis and racquetball, and enjoys gardening, cooking and international travel. In the summer of 2006, she completed a 4,000 mile bicycle trek across North America.