LaVarne A. Burton
President & Chief Executive Officer
LaVarne A. Burton is President and Chief Executive Officer of the American Kidney Fund
(AKF), a national nonprofit organization that helps people fight kidney disease and live healthier lives.
Ms. Burton has led AKF since 2005. As the number of people living with kidney disease has grown, so has the need for the programs and services of the American Kidney Fund, the nation's leading source of charitable assistance to dialysis patients. In 2014, the American Kidney Fund provided treatment-related grant assistance to more than 84,000 dialysis patients nationwide. Millions of people benefit annually from the American Kidney Fund’s efforts to fight kidney disease through health education and prevention efforts.
The American Kidney Fund has significantly enhanced its programs and services during Ms. Burton’s tenure. Her leadership has propelled the organization to notable milestones, including the expansion of AKF’s kidney disease screening program into communities nationwide; the development of public awareness media campaigns; the establishment of a nationwide advocacy network; and the launch of an annual gala, The Hope Affair, which brings together the national renal community.
Before joining AKF, Ms. Burton was a senior partner at Martin & Associates, a consulting firm to the health care industry and to major health information management and technology companies. Previously, she served as President of the Pharmaceutical Care Management Association, the national trade association representing pharmacy benefit managers and their partners.
From 1997 to 2001, Ms. Burton served as Executive Secretary to the United States Department of Health and Human Services, where she managed policy development and regulations and was advisor to the Secretary of the largest domestic agency within the federal government. From 1994 to 1997, she served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Budget Policy at the Department of Health and Human Services. From 1979 to 1994, she was a senior analyst for the U.S. House of Representatives Budget Committee, advising the Committee on funding policy and legislative positions for Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and other health programs.
Ms. Burton is Immediate Past Chair of the National Health Council Board of Directors. The National Health Council (NHC) is the only organization of its kind that brings together all segments of the health community to provide a united voice for the more than 133 million people with chronic diseases and disabilities and their family caregivers.
She received her bachelor’s degree from Howard University and her master’s degree from George Washington University, both in Washington, D.C.