Our Leadership

Cástulo de la Rocha

President and CEO

Cástulo de la Rocha

President and CEO

As President and CEO of AltaMed Health Services Corporation, Cástulo de la Rocha is an enduring trailblazer in community health. Under his visionary leadership, AltaMed has transformed from a storefront barrio clinic in East Los Angeles, into the largest nonprofit Federally Qualified Health Center in California, and among the top five in the nation.

Mr. de la Rocha has always understood that a community’s health is indivisible from its prosperity. In 1969, he saw a need: people in low-income neighborhoods throughout the Southland were significantly underserved by essential health resources—in fact, the Barrio Free Clinic in his neighborhood often had a line of people that wound around the block. By meeting this one fundamental requirement, he changed the face of one community…then another, until AltaMed became one of the area’s largest health care systems, with approximately 50 medical, dental and PACE sites staffed by 2,700 employees, providing compassionate care to nearly 300,000 patients a year. 

Over the years, Mr. de La Rocha succeeded in building an essential resource for millions of underserved residents throughout Southern California, and, in the process, created a model of excellence for health centers and communities everywhere. This innovative, “whole community” approach to healthcare has earned him national recognition in the fields of public health (US Surgeon Generals Gold Medallion for Public Health), business (Los Angeles Business Journal Lifetime Achievement award), and, in 2016, he received the Leader in Action award from the PRIME Program at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He’s also been honored alongside Congressman Henry Waxman with a UCLA Center for Health Policy Research Impact Award.

AltaMed’s standard of care and consistently strong financial performance has made it an exemplar of what a community-focused health center can be. AltaMed is accredited by the Joint Commission as a Patient Centered Medical Home, and the facility has been recognized as #1 in the Hispanic Business Journal’s “Top 25 Nonprofits” for seven consecutive years. 

Mr. de la Rocha frequently lends his expertise in aligning best practices in healthcare, public policy, and social advocacy. Currently, he serves on the board of the California Association of Physician Groups (CAPG) and as a Senior Fellow at the UCLA School of Public Affairs. 

An avid believer in the healing power of art, Mr. de la Rocha has spent 30 years assembling the AltaMed Art Collection. It champions the works of emerging and established artists who reflect the history, achievements, and struggles of underserved communities, and it lives on rotating display across AltaMed's entire clinic network. Mr. de la Rocha has been recognized by the Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA), and is also a member of the Getty Pacific Standard Time Business Leaders Council.

Education: 
J.D. Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California, Berkeley
B.A. Political Science, University of California, Santa Barbara
Certificate in Management, Stanford University

Zoila D. Escobar

Sr. Vice President of Strategic Development & Community Support and President of the AltaMed Foundation

Zoila D. Escobar

Sr. Vice President of Strategic Development & Community Support and President of the AltaMed Foundation

In her role as Sr. Vice President of Strategic Development & Community Support and President of the AltaMed Foundation, Zoila D. Escobar is dedicated to leveling disparities in health care by combining her own personal insight into the Latino experience with comprehensive care. For more than 35 years, she’s played an instrumental role in community health leadership, spearheading everything from grassroots initiatives to leading major policy changes at national institutions.

At AltaMed, Ms. Escobar oversees corporate communications, branding, patient experience, culture and language, the office of strategic planning and execution, and the analytics department. In this multifaceted, 360° role, she shapes nearly every dimension of the AltaMed experience, ranging from where people get care, to innovative programs and services for patients, to ensuring that everyone whom AltaMed serves receives patient-centered care in a way that honors their cultural preferences.

A prolific fundraiser, Ms. Escobar has consistently raised $40-46 million annually for AltaMed. She currently oversees AltaMed’s development and fundraising departments, and her fund development experience dates back to 1984 at the American Cancer Society (ACS), as Director of Development for Special Populations. While at ACS, Ms. Escobar also helped develop national policy in the area of uterine and breast cancer screening, smoking cessation, and HIV/AIDS for Spanish-speaking populations. In addition to leading conferences and fundraising galas, some of Ms. Escobar’s most important contributions include helping change attitudes around philanthropic giving in the Latino community, as well as steering an employee-giving effort to engage 100% of the AltaMed workforce. 

Ms. Escobar’s professional accomplishments demonstrate a commitment to forward-thinking advocacy on behalf of underserved populations. She’s had a long and illustrious history focusing on AIDS awareness and prevention, with positions including Program Director of the first Latinas and AIDS Program in Los Angeles County, with AIDS Project Los Angeles; and Clinic Administrator for HIV Services at the UCLA Family Planning Clinic. Ms. Escobar led the pilot Hemophelia and AIDS program, a joint project between the World Health Organization and World Hemophelia Federation. Ms. Escobar was also involved in policy work that led to the development of the Ryan White Act legislation, and played a role in the inclusion of HIV/AIDS in the American with Disabilities Act legislation. Additionally, she’s served as Director of Education and Government Affairs for the Arthritis Foundation.

Empowerment is one of the pillars of the AltaMed mission, and it’s also the focus of Ms. Escobar’s other professional engagements and memberships. In her role as Treasurer for the American Nurses Foundation Board of Directors, she advocates to advance the careers, well-being, and public image of nurses. As a member of the University of La Verne Board of Trustees, she works to promote equal opportunities for all students. She also serves as a board member for California State University Monterey Bay-External Leadership Council and the NCLR/CSULB Center for Latino Culture and Health. For nearly 15 years, Ms. Escobar was a member of the international Health Initiative of the Americas.

 

Education

MBA, University of La Verne

B.S. Health Services Administration, University of La Verne
 

 

 

José U. Esparza

Senior Vice President of Finance & Chief Financial Officer

José U. Esparza

Senior Vice President of Finance & Chief Financial Officer

José U. Esparza serves as Senior Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer for AltaMed, overseeing close to 100 professionals in departments ranging from Finance and Accounting to Government and Risk Management. Both directly and indirectly, he touches nearly every single financial transaction spanning from revenue and accounts receivable to payables, claims and all expenses in addition to AltaMed’s portfolio of investments.

In 1994, Mr. Esparza joined AltaMed, where he has been essential to the system’s success – both by negotiating reimbursement for its major programs and by ensuring day-to-day operational resources are well utilized for the delivery of services.  He has maintained a robust fiscal outlook for large scale projects, such as the recent opening of new community health centers in Westlake and the City of Commerce.

Mr. Esparza plays a strategic role by helping determine corporate direction and leading the implementation of key business plans and initiatives. Thanks to Mr. Esparza’s oversight, one of AltaMed’s biggest successes has been the Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE). Over the years, the organization took well-planned steps to enhance the program, adding even more health care and social services that improve the health of its participants, thereby preventing the need for institutionalization. PACE has since become the most robust program of its kind in Southern California.

Previously, Mr. Esparza held positions in public accounting, where he managed independent audits and issued certified financial statements for both for-profit and nonprofit organizations. Early in his career, Mr. Esparza worked as a controller at Northeast Valley Health Corporation, one of Los Angeles’ largest Federally Qualified Health Centers. Here he found a sense of professional satisfaction that had been missing from his work in other industries, and he came to personally embrace the mission of eliminating health care disparities. As a Southern California resident who spent the last three decades living in Los Angeles, he has a true affinity for how diverse cultures enrich local communities.

Education:

MBA, University of Phoenix

B.A. Accounting, California State University, Los Angeles

 

Angela D. Roberts

Senior Vice President of Facility Development & Management

Angela D. Roberts

Senior Vice President of Facility Development & Management

Angela D. Roberts serves as Senior Vice President of Facility Development & Management for AltaMed. Ms. Roberts joined AltaMed in 1997, she currently oversees facility development projects, including property acquisitions, construction and renovations efforts, and leasing opportunities. For more than a decade, she was responsible for strategic design and direction of technology and electronic information management. 

Ms. Roberts has more than 29 years of experience in information technology, has held senior management positions with UCLA and the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles, and served as an advisor to several information technology trade associations. She also participates in the State of California e-Health Technical Advisory Committee.

For her work, she’s been recognized with multiple awards, including the Outstanding Career Service Award from the City of Los Angeles; the Innovations in Technology Award from the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO); and the Career Service Award from the Housing and Urban Development Department (HUD).

Education:
B.A. California State University, Dominguez Hills 

Marie S. Torres, PhD, LCSW

Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Community Research Initiatives

Marie S. Torres, PhD, LCSW

Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Community Research Initiatives

Marie S. Torres is Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Community Research Initiatives at AltaMed. She has more than 35 years of leadership experience in gerontology, health services administration, legislative advocacy, overall health and social welfare.

In 1991, Dr. Torres founded AltaMed’s Government Relations Department and oversees advocacy, public policy and research initiatives. She has been instrumental in advocating and securing funding for patient services in Federal and State Legislative forums, and helped lead the development of public policies that affect the medically underserved, disabled and elderly populations.  

Dr. Torres has received multiple awards for her work, including the Cástulo de la Rocha Visionary Award; the Los Angeles Aging and Advocacy Coalition Champion Award; the Woman of the Year Award from the Volunteers of East Los Angeles (VELA); the 64th Assembly District Women in Leadership Award from Assembly member Mike Gipson; the Betsey K. Cooke Grassroots Advocacy Most Valuable Player Award from the National Association of Community Health Centers; and the Latino Heritage Month Award from Assembly member Mike Eng, among others.
 
Dr. Torres is also active in several professional associations including the CalPACE Association, California Primary Care Association, the Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County, the National Association of Community Health Centers and National PACE Association.

Education: 
M.A. University of Southern California School of Social Work
Ph.D. University of Southern California School of Social Work

Henry A. Holguin

Senior Vice President and General Counsel

Henry A. Holguin

Senior Vice President and General Counsel

Henry A. Holguin serves as AltaMed’s General Counsel.

Before joining AltaMed, Mr. Holguin was a co-founder of the firm of Miller & Holguin, Attorneys at Law, for over 20 years. Subsequently, he was a partner of Kelly, Lytton & Williams, LLP, a boutique law firm dealing with business, health care, real estate, land use and governmental relations. Formerly, Mr. Holguin was Senior Staff Counsel of the Enforcement Division of the California Department of Corporations, which regulates the health care and securities and industries in California.

He has been a member of the State Bar of California since 1976, and is admitted to practice before the United States Central District Court of California and the United States Tax Court.

Mr. Holguin has served on the California State Bar Franchise Legislation Committee, and was previously involved with the formation of the United States/Mexico Commercial Arbitration Committee under NAFTA. He has been a member of the Latin Business Association, California Association of Dental Plans, and California Society of Health Care Attorneys. Since 2007, he’s also served on the Board of Trustees of AltaMed Foundation, a charitable non-profit entity. 

Education:
J.D. University of California at Davis 
B.S. Business Administration, University of Southern California
Certificate in International Economics, Cambridge University, England 
 
 

Robert Gomez

Vice President of Business Development

Robert Gomez

Vice President of Business Development

Robert Gomez is AltaMed’s Vice President of Business Development. Mr. Gomez has more than 30years of experience in health care, and has previously served as the Chief Executive Officer for El Rio Health Center in Tucson, Arizona, where he built a nationally recognized community health center program. Previously, he was a senior consultant for Medicus Systems, a national health care consulting and software products company.

During his long career in community health programs and development, he has been active at the state and national levels, including service on the Board of Directors and as former President of the National Association of Community Health Centers.

Education: 
B.A. History, Texas A&M International University 
 

Anna Tran

Senior Strategy Executive

Anna Tran

Senior Strategy Executive

Ms. Anna Tran joined AltaMed’s senior leadership team in 2017 as Senior Strategy Executive. She oversees AltaMed’s Managed Care as well as the Sales and Marketing team, focusing on membership growth. She also supports our President & CEO in planning the long-term strategic growth of the organization. 

Ms. Tran comes to AltaMed with an extensive history in health care leadership. While she previously served as CFO at Pacific Alliance Medical Center, she later spent a total of 18 years on the leadership team of Care1st, where she held the roles of CFO, COO, CEO, President, and Strategic Advisor, eventually facilitating the sale of Care1st and the transition of more than 500,000 members to Blue Shield of California. From 2011 to 2014, Ms. Tran was a member of AltaMed’s Board of Trustees.

Education
M.S., Accounting, California State University, Los Angeles
B.S., Biology, California State University, Los Angeles

Mary Ann Barnes

Executive Vice President & Chief Operations Officer

Mary Ann Barnes

Executive Vice President & Chief Operations Officer

Ms. Mary Ann Barnes is the Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Officer of AltaMed Health Services Corporation. In this role, she touches nearly every aspect of day-to-day care, and helps shape the AltaMed experience across the entire health care delivery system — patients, physicians and care practitioners, and employees.

Ms. Barnes joined AltaMed in 2017 and oversees the health care system. Services under her purview include Senior Care Services (including eight PACE sites and the MSSP/SSP grant programs), Health Care Services (including 30 clinics), Information Technology Services, Operational Excellence, Pharmacy, Aging Services, and IPA network management. 

Having started her career as a nurse, Ms. Barnes has always been focused on seeing things from the patient’s perspective—to ensure they experience the best possible care. This persistent belief in always making a bigger difference in the lives of patients is what fueled Ms. Barnes’ rise and 36-year tenure at health giant Kaiser Permanente. From her start as an ICU nurse on the nightshift in San Diego, to growing Kaiser Permanente San Diego membership by 528,000, and then being instrumental in the planning of a new $900 million tertiary hospital, she has earned a profound 360-degree insight into the relationship between the health of individuals and their community.

As the President of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals Hawaii Region, one of Ms. Barnes’ biggest challenges was taking a large, state-owned hospital system and working with government officials and existing staff to turn the system into true private community hospitals for Maui County. Over the course of this complex initiative, she demonstrated prowess in strategic business planning, clinical and financial operations, government and community relations, and organizational development.

While serving as President of Kaiser Permanente’s Hawaii region, Ms. Barnes served on the Board of Directors for the American Heart Association (Western States Affiliate, Hawaii Division), Healthcare Association of Hawaii, and Catholic Charities Hawaii. Prior, she also served on the Board of Trustees for the California Hospital Association, and as President of Board of Directors for the San Diego Chamber of Commerce and the Hospital Association of San Diego and Imperial counties.

Ms. Barnes has a deep affinity for Southern California, where she has worked for more than 30 years. An additional point of pride for Ms. Barnes is having spent her entire career working with nonprofits and organizations with bona fide records of improving access, affordability, and outcomes for their service communities.

Education
M.S., Nursing, California State University, San Diego
B.S., Nursing, Arizona State University
Executive Leadership Program, Harvard Business School
Executive Leadership Program, Stanford University

Louis Gutierrez

Vice President of Human Resources

Louis Gutierrez

Vice President of Human Resources

Louis Gutierrez is Vice President of Human Resources with AltaMed. He joined the organization in 2017, and oversees employee compensation, benefits, human resource information systems, talent acquisition, and talent management which includes learning and development and workforce planning in a growing and diverse organization.

Mr. Gutierrez is an accomplished executive who has served in senior human resources and legal roles for global organizations such as Cox Enterprises Automotive Group, Paramount Pictures, Time Warner Cable, Turner Broadcasting, and The Walt Disney Company. Mr. Gutierrez has spent more than 20 years building and delivering enterprise-wide human capital and organizational effectiveness initiatives, creating cultures with high employee engagement levels. He has also served as an advisor and coach to leaders at all levels of an organization. 

Mr. Gutierrez is a member of the State Bar of California and the Society for Human Resources Management. Previously, he was a member of the Corporate Board of Advisors for the National Council of La Raza, and was named one of Hispanic Business Magazine’s List of 100 Hispanic Influentials in 2011.

Education 
J.D., UCLA School of Law
B.A., Communication Studies, University of California, Los Angeles