The Partnership for a Healthier America Names Lawrence Soler to Serve as President and CEO

Nov 30, 2010, 12:00 ET from Partnership for a Healthier America

WASHINGTON, Nov. 30, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Partnership for a Healthier America today announced it has appointed Lawrence (Larry) Soler to serve as President and CEO.  Soler, currently the Chief Operating Officer for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), will start his new position January 1, 2011.  

"Working with our full Board, we considered a number of exceptional candidates who want to help us achieve our goal of eliminating childhood obesity within a generation," said James R. Gavin III, MD, PhD, chairman of the Partnership board.  "Larry brings 20 years of successful executive leadership in health advocacy, a deep understanding of the complex issues that underpin childhood obesity, and a demonstrated passion for making a difference in the lives of children.  He is the right person to lead our efforts in support of the pillars of the 'Let's Move' initiative for reversing the current trend of childhood obesity and creating a new path toward improved health for our children and our nation."  

Soler joins the Partnership from JDRF, a $200 million organization devoted to finding better treatments and ultimately a cure for diabetes.  In his 13 years at JDRF, he has served as Legislative Counsel, Vice President of Government Relations, Executive Vice President of Government Relations and Operations, and his current role as Chief Operating Officer.  He has been an effective steward in shepherding priority legislative wins for JDRF, successfully managing key business units of a growing organization, and creating meaningful public-private sector partnerships to further galvanize a strong response to combat type 1 diabetes worldwide.  Organizations ranging from Research America to the Wall Street Journal have heralded JDRF in serving as the leading edge of patient group leadership and influence in advocacy and research for type 1 diabetes.  

"I am honored to join the Partnership and help mobilize leaders across the country to take on the cause of childhood obesity," said Soler.  "This is a crisis that we must tackle energetically, with a sense of urgency, and through creative, solution-oriented partnerships and activities.  I believe we can and will solve this crisis, and look forward to working with the Partnership, foundations, and other committed organizations to make an immediate difference to improve the health of our children."  

Board member S. Lawrence Kocot served as interim CEO and helped guide the search for Soler.  Post-transition, Kocot will continue to provide vital leadership to the Partnership via his position on the Board.  

"We are extremely indebted to Larry Kocot for his commitment and dedication to the Partnership," said Gavin.  "During his tenure as interim CEO we've made enormous strides in the development of exciting programs designed to help children eat better and have increased exposure to nutritious foods.  Larry has also played a vital role in developing our infrastructure and in shaping our leadership structure."

About the Partnership for a Healthier America

The Partnership for a Healthier America is an independent, nonpartisan organization that will mobilize broad-based support for efforts to solve the childhood obesity challenge.  Core activities of the Partnership with include:  

  • Developing a strong membership network of leaders across sectors with commitment to scaling meaningful and measurable solutions;
  • Convening members annually to affirm, align, and announce commitments;
  • Promoting broad understanding among all sectors about the role healthy food, physical activity, and the environment play in reversing the childhood obesity epidemic;
  • Facilitating and measuring the impact of members' commitments against clear and transparent targets; and
  • Connecting potential partners in the private and nonprofit sectors to each other and to the correct points of contact in government to ensure efficient leveraging of actions, and sharing of knowledge and lessons learned at the community, state, and national levels.  

The Partnership emerged out of a series of conversations between The California Endowment, Kaiser Permanente, Nemours, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, and the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, which is a partnership with the American Heart Association and the Clinton Foundation. SNR Denton LLP has provided valuable pro-bono operational and legal support in establishing the Foundation.  The Brookings Institution has also contributed thought leadership to the effort.

For more information about the Partnership for a Healthier America, please visit

SOURCE Partnership for a Healthier America