Grace Cheng Braun, MSPH
Grace Cheng Braun recently completed 17 years as president and CEO of WISE & Healthy Aging, a community-based, nonprofit social services organization headquartered in Santa Monica, Calif., with a 50-year mission to advance the dignity and quality of life of older adults and caregivers. The organization administers the City & County of Los Angeles Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program and Elder Abuse Prevention Program (adding San Bernardino County in 2022), including services on Los Angeles’ westside for case management, congregate meals, transportation and senior enrichment and lifelong learning programs. Under her leadership, WISE & Healthy Aging earned consecutive national certifications as a “Great Place to Work” from independent surveys of its employees and the highest Platinum level of transparency designation by Candid while growing the organization’s assets from $4M to $18M during her tenure.
Grace’s career also includes 26 years of nonprofit, healthcare strategic planning, business development and marketing communications experience. Prior to WISE & Healthy Aging, she was with Cedars-Sinai Health System in Los Angeles for six years as Vice President for Marketing and Public Relations, serving as its primary communications spokesperson. She has also worked with UCLA Health as Associate Director of Business and Organizational Development at Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center. Her operational experience includes being a member of the executive team that took Santa Monica Hospital through the successful merger acquisition by UCLA. While Santa Monica Hospital was part of the UniHealth System, her areas of responsibility were rated as “best practice” departments and awarded the highest scores of any other areas within the organization in management surveys that evaluated overall satisfaction, technical expertise, reliability, timeliness, service orientation, courtesy and responsiveness.
An executive business coach certified through the Hudson Institute of Coaching, Grace works with professionals in setting measurable goals that lead to stronger business performance, leadership and communication skills. She has also been retained by organizations for strategic planning. Grace volunteered her training and development expertise to several organizations, including LEAP (Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics), a Los Angeles-based nonprofit organization established to enhance and develop community and corporate leadership skills in the Asian Pacific community. Through LEAP, she conducted workshops across the U.S. for Microsoft, Xerox and Corning, focusing on valuing diversity in leadership. While a board member of NCCJ (formerly National Coalition for Christians and Jews, changed in 1990 to National Conference for Community and Justice), Grace was trained as a “community dialogue” facilitator and led workshop discussions on fighting bias, bigotry and racism to build more inclusive communities.
For the past 26 years, Grace has also been an adjunct faculty professor at USC’s Sol Price School of Public Policy where she teaches graduate-level management and leadership courses in the International Public Policy and Management Program (IPPAM). She holds a master’s degree (MSPH) in health planning and policy from UCLA’s School of Public Health and a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a cooperative major in Health & Society, from UC Riverside.