Bertram Lubin, M.D.

Associate Dean of Children’s Health, UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals

“Ensuring that everyone has the opportunity to succeed means starting early and supporting children and families from infancy onward. We need to continue to develop programs that put children on the path to success, and the Opportunity Institute has the perspective and the ability to support the policy change that will make this a reality.”
—Bertram Lubin

Bert Lubin, MD, joined Children’s Hospital in 1973 as Chief of Hematology/Oncology. He was attracted by the opportunity to work in a medical center devoted to children, for the diverse patient population the hospital served and for the opportunity to create an academic, non-university based medical center that excelled in primary, secondary, and tertiary care, commitment to its community, teaching residents and sub-specialists, and conducting nationally and internationally recognized medical research.

Dr. Lubin graduated from the University of Pittsburgh Medical School, completed a residency in pediatrics at the Philadelphia Children’s Hospital, subspecialty training at Boston Children’s Hospital and was on the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania as an Associate Professor for six years prior to his move to Children’s Hospital Oakland. 

He has served on numerous National Institutes of Health (NIH) committees, community based health consortia, and university panels across the United States. He has secured and directed NIH grants for 36 years in a variety of areas. His basic research has focused on studies of red cell membrane structure in normal and pathologic states, clinical and basic research related to sickle cell anemia, public health initiatives related to newborn screening for hemoglobin disorders and national cord blood banking programs. Children’s Hematology/Oncology department has dramatically grown under his leadership and is recognized nationally and internationally for its outstanding care of children with malignancies, sickle cell anemia and thalassemia, and hemophilia. 

Dr. Lubin was appointed Director of Medical Research at Children’s Hospital Oakland in 1984. Under his leadership, basic, clinical, social, and translational research activities in the medical center expanded exponentially, transforming a $500,000 operation into a $50 million-a-year enterprise called Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute.  He worked with community, national and international groups to promote advancements in stem cell research and became a member of the State of California Stem Cell Committee of the Board of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine. He used this setting to establish a Summer Internship Program that offered mentored biomedical clinical and basic research opportunities for more than 1,000 minority high school, college, and post-baccalaureate students.  

Dr. Lubin was asked to serve as President and CEO of Children’s Hospital Oakland In 2009.  He was the first pediatrician to serve as a CEO of a children’s hospital in the State of California. He became a driving force in the affiliation that has been established between Children’s Hospital Oakland and the University of California San Francisco. This affiliation brings the strengths of two major children’s hospitals together under the umbrella of UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals. 

As part of his commitment to the East Bay community and its health needs,  he founded the Center for Community Health and Engagement (CCHE) which provide leadership, service, and research to address social justice and the impact of social determinants and poverty on children. The TEDX talk he gave on “Poverty is a Disease of Children” reflects his passion for the need to address the impact that poverty has on the health of children. His leadership has resulted in collaborative programs with the University of California Berkeley School of Engineering, School of Public Health, and Department of Cell and Molecular Biology. In addition to research, Dr. Lubin has been a strong and active advocate of policies and programs that promote the well-being of children. 

He has been a member of multiple national advocacy and professional organizations representing broad areas of interest related to child health.  He is active in many community service organizations and serves on several boards, including the Oakland Mayor’s Health Task Force, the Berkeley Mayor’s Health Task Force, and the Alameda Alliance for Health.