The UCLA Leaders of Tomorrow is a new leadership series by Eric Esrailian, MD, MPH, chief of the Vatche & Tamar Manoukian Division of Digestive Diseases. The series will emphasize essential leadership skills through the experiences of some of the most influential and successful leaders in our community.
Dr. Esrailian brings together friends and colleagues from his diverse personal and professional life to highlight specific themes for each session. Our goal is to give our scholars, trainees and other UCLA stakeholders a seat at the table with these leaders — enabling them to learn from the examples presented by the best in their respective fields and to leave these sessions inspired to become leaders in their own lives and careers.
Eric Esrailian, MD, MPH
Throughout a uniquely dynamic career, Dr. Esrailian has established himself as a successful leader in multiple fields and has committed himself to helping others. He is a physician and administrator at UCLA, Emmy-nominated social impact film producer and entrepreneur, and he is actively involved in philanthropic efforts connecting health, human rights, education and the arts around the world. In 2017, the university designated Dr. Esrailian as a UCLA Optimist — placing him among notable alumni and faculty dedicated to solving the world’s problems.
Using lessons from team and individual sports, coaching, management, and medicine, Dr. Esrailian led this group in a meaningful conversation on how grit has played a role in their own successes. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar also discussed his focus on STEM education with the Skyhook Foundation and lessons from legendary UCLA basketball coach John Wooden.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the NBA’s all-time leading scorer with 38,387 points, a 6x NBA champion, and the league’s only 6x MVP. Time Magazine dubbed him “History’s Greatest Player” and ESPN and The Pac 12 named him the #1 Collegiate Athlete of the 21st Century. He is one of a handful of influential and respected black men in America who has a national platform as a regular contributing columnist for newspapers and magazines around the world, such as The Guardian, The Los Angeles Times, and The Hollywood Reporter where he shares his thoughts on some of the most socially relevant and politically controversial topics facing our nation today. After 50 years as an athlete and activist, he offers his perspectives as a nationally recognized speaker who regularly appears on the lecture circuit. He is also an award-winning 5x Columnist of the Year by The Southern California Journalism Awards. (2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020)
Currently, Abdul-Jabbar serves as the Chairman of his Skyhook Foundation whose mission is to “Give Kids a Shot That Can’t be Blocked” by bringing educational STEM opportunities to underserved communities through innovative outdoor environmental learning which allows LAUSD 4th and 5th graders to soar above the four walls of the classroom. His goal is to make science, technology, engineering, and math interactive, multi-sensory, relevant, and most importantly – fun. Kareem was named California STEM Ambassador because of his commitment to youth education.
A NY Times best-selling author, he has written 17 books and is currently writing a series of historical graphic novels and his memoirs. His Emmy Award-winning HBO Sports documentary, Kareem: Minority of One, is HBO’s most-watched and highest-rated sports documentary of all time. He was in the writer’s room for Season 5 of Hulu’s Veronica Mars and was Emmy nominated as narrator for Black Patriots; Heroes of the Revolution and is currently in development on a series of shows for The History Channel.
Among his many awards & accomplishments such as The Ford Medal of Freedom, The Rosa Parks Award, and The Double Helix Medal, President Barack Obama awarded Abdul-Jabbar The Presidential Medal of Freedom, which is considered our nation’s highest civilian honor.
Brad Gilbert’s wide-ranging success is unique in the history of tennis: top 10 player for five years including a career high #4 ranking worldwide; elite coach of Grand Slam champions; author of the international best-seller WINNING UGLY: Mental Warfare in Tennis; and highly respected tennis analyst on ESPN.
When he joined forces with Andre Agassi in 1994 it was at a low point in Agassi’s career. Thirteen months later AA was #1 in the world. With Gilbert as coach Agassi won six Grand Slam championships and an Olympic gold medal. According to Agassi, “Brad Gilbert is the greatest coach of all time.” Andy Roddick joined forces with Gilbert in 2003 and quickly rose to a #1 world ranking while winning the US Open Championship. When Andy Murray teamed with Gilbert as his coach he was ranked #55 in the world. Within twelve months Murray had risen to #8. Along the way and because of his spectacular results Brad Gilbert became recognized as perhaps the premier coach in the professional game – the “tennis whisperer”.
Earlier, as a player, he won 20 ATP tournaments and resided in its upper ranks for a decade with a game critics called “ugly” because his strokes were neither elegant nor overpowering. Gilbert’s was a gritty game guided by a brilliant ability to recognize and exploit an opponent’s weaknesses and minimize their strengths – winning ugly.
Additionally, Gilbert captured a bronze medal at the ’88 Seoul Olympics as well as successfully representing the USA in Davis Cup play (10-5).
Brad’s first tennis instructor in Piedmont, CA was his dad, Barry Gilbert, Sr. But Tom Chivington at Foothill College changed everything for Brad: “Coach Chivington gave me the belief I really needed when I was 18. He had such confidence in me from day one and helped me in every way. It made a better player and ultimately a good coach.”
ESPN recognized Gilbert’s special skills in 1999 and soon promoted him to the top ranks as one of their most popular and oft-quoted authorities on tennis.
Clarence H. Braddock III, MD, MPH, MACP, a board certified internist, is vice dean for education in the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles. He has held the Maxine and Eugene Rosenfeld Chair in Medical Education since 2015. In these roles, he oversees all aspects of medical education, including undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate programs. This structure reflects Dr. Braddock’s vision of the medical education continuum, with a seamless connection between competencies and ongoing professional development in different phases of training and practice.
Prior to his appointment as vice dean and chief medical education officer, he served as professor of medicine and associate dean for undergraduate and graduate medical education at Stanford University School of Medicine. He was also director of the Stanford Center for Medical Education Research and Innovation, where he directed the Rathmann Family Foundation Medical Education Research Fellowship.
Dr. Braddock has been a national leader in medical education, particularly in bioethics and doctor-patient communication. He launched the Bioethics Education Project at the University of Washington, an initiative to expand ethics and professionalism education, and the Practice of Medicine Program at Stanford, an initiative to integrate ethics, professionalism, doctor-patient communication and population health into the pre-clerkship medical school curriculum. He also led the development of a model curriculum in bioethics and medical humanities with the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities, and is a founding member of the Academy for Professionalism in Health Care. He was recently named interim director of the UCLA Health Ethics Center.
He has received numerous teaching awards. Dr. Braddock’s research has focused on shared decision-making and patient-physician communication, having developed a widely-used framework for teaching and for evaluation of the quality of shared decision making in practice.
Dr. Braddock has served as chair of the Ethics Committee for the Society of General Internal Medicine and on the Ethics, Professionalism and Human Rights Committee for the American College of Physicians. He was director of the National Consortium for Multicultural Education for Health Professionals, a group of 18 medical schools funded by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute to develop curriculum in cultural competence and health care disparities. He recently served as chair of the board of directors for the American Board of Internal Medicine and currently serves on the board of trustees of the ABIM Foundation.
Dr. Braddock earned his undergraduate degree at Stanford University and medical degree at the University of Chicago. He completed residency training in the U.S. Navy and received his master’s in public health degree in health care ethics from the University of Washington. He is currently professor of medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine.
Antonio Bernardo, PhD, is the 9th dean of UCLA Anderson School of Management, and also holds the John E. Anderson Chair in Management. He became dean on July 1, 2019. Dean Bernardo joined the Anderson faculty in 1994 as a professor of management in the school’s finance area, and has a long history as an active and engaged member of Anderson’s faculty and administration, having served as department chair and senior associate dean for academic affairs from 2006 to 2009, and finance area chair from 2013 to 2015 and again in 2019. During his quarter century at Anderson, it’s estimated that he’s taught more than 5,000 students -- a fact he describes as an honor. His reputation as a teacher is highly distinguished and he has earned numerous teaching and leadership awards. In addition to teaching at UCLA, Dean Bernardo has also taught at Fudan University in Shanghai, China, and the India School of Business in Hyderabad. Dean Bernardo also held a visiting appointment at the University of Chicago. He has published numerous articles in leading finance, economics and law journals, and has served as associate editor of the Review of Financial Studies, the Journal of Financial Research, Critical Finance Review and Financial Management. Born and raised in Canada, he earned his bachelor’s in economics from the University of Western Ontario and a doctorate in economics from Stanford University.