Guest Speaker Bio – Dr. Sergio Aguilar-Gaxiola

Dr. Sergio Aguilar-Gaxiola is a professor of clinical internal medicine, School of Medicine, University of California (UC), Davis. He is the founding director of the Center for Reducing Health Disparities at the UC Davis Health System, the director of the Community Engagement Program of the UC Davis Clinical and Translational Science Center, the co-director of the UC Davis Latino Aging Research and Resource Center, and co-chair of NIH’s Community Engagement Key Function Committee for the NIH-funded Clinical and Translational Science Awards. In 2007, he completed a 4-year term as a member of the National Advisory Mental Health Council of the National Institute of Mental Health. He was the chairman of the Board of Directors of Mental Health America for a 2-year term (2008-2010). He is currently a board member of the Steering Committee and Research Scientist member of the National Hispanic Science Network, a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee of Autism Speaks, a member of the International Advisory Committee of the Carlos Slim Health Institute, a member and treasurer of the Board of the Latino Physicians of California, first vice president of National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) California, and a member of the California Medical Board’s Cultural and Linguistic Competency Program Workgroup. He has held several World Health Organization (WHO) and Pan American Health Organization advisory board and consulting positions and is currently a member of the Executive Committee of the WHO World Mental Health Surveys Consortium and its coordinator for Latin America and the Caribbean.

Dr. Aguilar-Gaxiola’s research includes cross-national comparative epidemiologic research on patterns and correlates of mental disorders and substance abuse in general population samples. His applied research program has focused on identifying unmet mental health needs and associated risk and protective factors to better understand and meet population mental health needs and reduce mental health disparities primarily in underserved populations. He is also very active translating mental health and substance abuse research knowledge into practical information that is of public health value to consumers and their families, service administrators, and policy makers. Dr. Aguilar-Gaxiola is the author of more than 120 scientific publications. He is the recipient of multiple awards including the Vanderbilt University Distinguished Alumnus Award, the Medal of Congress (“Medalla de la Cámara de Diputados”) of Chile for work related to mental health research, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health’s 2005 National Minority Health Community Leader Award (Hispanic Community), the 2009 National Award of Excellence in Blending Research and Practice from the National Hispanic Science Network, and the 2012-2013 UC Davis Chancellor’s Achievement Award for Diversity and Community in the Academic Senate category. Dr. Aguilar-Gaxiola was a member of the U.S. Institute of Medicine/National Research Council (IOM/NRC) Committee on Depression, Parenting Practices, and the Health Development of Young Children (2007-2009) report and the IOM/NRC Women’s Health Research: Progress, Pitfalls, and Promise (2010) report.