David Lawrence is a native of the Pacific Northwest, where he was raised and attended high school. He attended Amherst College in Massachusetts as an undergraduate and then medical school at the University of Kentucky, graduating in 1966. At Kentucky, he took advantage of that medical school’s then-unique program in community medicine, which eventually led to assignments in Bolivia and the Dominican Republic with the Peace Corps. Lawrence then advised the Chilean government on public health for two years before returning to the United States where soon earned his MPH from the University of Washington. After serving as Medical Director for the Multnomah County, Oregon, Department of Human Services, Lawrence joined the Northwest Permanente Medical Group in 1981. Moving from the medical group to the health plan side of Kaiser Permanente in 1985, Lawrence served as Regional Manager for the Colorado and then Northern California Regions. He eventually became CEO and Chairman of the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals in 1992 until retiring from that position in 2002. This interview explores Lawrence’s career, with a particular focus on how he responded to challenges faced by the organization in the 1990s. Approximately 9 hours, 30 minutes; video interview conducted by Martin Meeker.




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