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Press Release


Dec 11, 2019

Michael Drake, M.D., Elected Commonwealth Fund Chairman; Carrie Byington, M.D., Alan Jones Elected to Fund Board

NEW YORK, Dec. 11, 2019 — Michael V. Drake, M.D., president of The Ohio State University, has been elected chair of the Commonwealth Fund, a private foundation working to create a high-performance health system. He has been a member of the Fund’s board of directors since 2008.

Before becoming Ohio State’s 15th president in 2014, Drake was chancellor of the University of California, Irvine where he also served as Distinguished Professor of Ophthalmology (School of Medicine) and Education (School of Education). Prior to that, he served for five years as vice president for health affairs for the University of California system, overseeing academic program policy at the system’s health sciences schools, where he launched the PRIME (Program In Medical Education) initiative to train physicians to care for underserved populations statewide.

Drake’s tenure as chair begins immediately. He succeeds Benjamin K. Chu, M.D., senior advisor at Manatt Health, the Fund’s chair since 2014 and a director since 2003.

“I am proud and delighted to turn the gavel over to Dr. Drake,” said Chu. “Michael’s experience as a physician and a strategic leader in academic health centers and his experience with underserved populations will be invaluable assets to the Commonwealth Fund during this time of transition in health care.”

Drake currently chairs the National Collegiate Athletic Association Board of Governors and is vice chair of the Big Ten Conference Council of Presidents/Chancellors and past chair of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities and the Association of American Universities. He also serves on the board of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He holds additional leadership roles with the American Talent Initiative and the University Innovation Alliance. An alumnus of Stanford University (B.A.) and UC San Francisco (M.D.), Drake is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

“We are extremely fortunate that a leader with Michael Drake’s accomplishments and caliber has agreed to lead our board during this time of health system transformation, as the Commonwealth Fund continues its work to ensure that all Americans can get and afford the health care they need,” said Commonwealth Fund President David Blumenthal, M.D.

Carrie L. Byington, M.D., who joins the Commonwealth Fund board effective immediately, was recently named executive vice president of UC Health, where she will oversee the University of California’s five academic medical centers, a community-based health system, and 19 health professional schools. She earlier served as senior vice president of Texas A&M Health Science Center and dean of the Texas A&M College of Medicine.

Byington is a national leader in pediatrics and infectious disease, a clinician, educator, investigator, and an advocate for inclusion and equity. An elected member of the National Academy of Inventors and the National Academy of Medicine, she has received awards from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Institutes of Health. Byington is the author of more than 200 peer-reviewed publications and is the coinventor of a diagnostic platform for infectious pathogens used worldwide. Prior to joining Texas A&M, Byington spent more than 20 years in academic and leadership positions with the University of Utah, including principal investigator for the Utah Center for Clinical and Translational Sciences.

Alan Jones, who also joins the Commonwealth Fund’s board effective immediately, is a senior managing director at Intermediate Capital Group (ICG), a global alternative asset management firm. Prior to joining ICG, he served as a managing director and vice chair of Private Credit & Equity at Morgan Stanley. Jones held various leadership positions over a 25-year career at Morgan Stanley, including head of Global Private Equity and chairman of Morgan Stanley’s Global Private Equity Committee. He joined Morgan Stanley in 1993 after eight years at First Boston, where he had been a director in the High Yield Finance Group.

Jones, who chairs Physicians for Human Rights, is also a director of Shakespeare’s Globe USA; a director of the International Biomedical Research Alliance; co-chair of the Harvard Business School Fund; and a member of Harvard’s Committee on University Resources, the Harvard Business School Board of Dean’s Advisors, and the Council on Foreign Relations.

“We are delighted to be welcoming Carrie Byington and Alan Jones to the Commonwealth Fund board of directors,” said Blumenthal. “Carrie’s expertise as a health system leader will bring invaluable insights to the Fund’s programmatic work, while Alan’s financial acumen will ensure the foundation is well positioned to continue its work to promote a high-performing health system for years to come.”

Publication Details


Dec 11, 2019


Bethanne Fox, Vice President, Outreach and Strategy, The Commonwealth Fund

[email protected]