Richard J. Pollack

President & CEO, American Hospital Association

Richard J. Pollack, President and CEO, American Hospital Association
Rick Pollack is president and CEO of the American Hospital Association (AHA), the nation’s largest hospital and health care system membership organization with nearly 5,000 member hospitals, health care systems, networks, and other providers of care.

Serving as the AHA’s top leader since 2015, Rick is widely recognized for his strong, effective advocacy and leadership on behalf of our nation’s hospitals, the patients and communities they serve, and the health care professionals those organizations support. During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Rick built a coalition including the American Medical Association, the American Nurses Association, state and regional hospital associations, and other leading health organizations to support efforts in following public health guidelines, promoting vaccination, with a focus on vulnerable communities, and successfully obtaining the financial resources and regulatory flexibility to keep our hospitals open to care for their patients and communities during the most challenging public health crisis of our time.

As hospitals begin to recover and rebuild from the pandemic, Rick is an influential leader in securing the field’s financial stability, as well as redefining the “H” to care for patients in more efficient and convenient ways. Under his leadership, the association launched a comprehensive effort to address historic workforce challenges. Through targeted investments, the AHA is helping historically marginalized entrepreneurs spark bold innovation to improve health care access and affordability in underserved communities.

Rick has shaped and grown what is widely regarded as one of the nation's most respected and effective advocacy organizations. This includes both a sophisticated political and grassroots network in every congressional district in the country, as well as a political action committee, AHAPAC, that is one of the largest in health care.

Rick has also guided AHA’s efforts to improve quality and patient safety, eliminate disparities in care, and promote diversity in the health care field. Through its Health Equity Roadmap, the AHA is leading a national initiative to drive improvement in health care outcomes, health equity, and diversity and inclusion. As an early leader committed to addressing the growing and evolving threats cyber crimes pose to patients and our health care system, Rick launched a partnership with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other government agencies to help provide hospitals greater support and resources in this area.

A recognized advocate in expanding health care access, Rick is a leader in many broad-based national coalitions that have led to improved health care coverage for patients. The AHA is a founding member of the Coalition to Protect America’s Health Care, a media arm of the hospital field that leads an online community of more than two million activists dedicated to ensuring access to high-quality care for every American.

In addition to serving on the AHA Board of Trustees and the Board of Directors of the Coalition to Protect America’s Health Care, Rick is a member of steering committees for the National Academy of Medicine Action Collaborative on Clinician Well-Being and Resilience and the Action Collaborative on Decarbonizing the U.S. Health Sector. In addition, he serves on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Committee of 100, and the Special Medical Advisory Group to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs.

Rick began his career in Washington, D.C. as a legislative assistant to Rep. David Obey of Wisconsin, followed by serving as a legislative representative for the American Nurses Association. Rick joined the AHA in 1982, a tenure which has included more than 20 years as its executive vice president for advocacy and public policy prior to becoming president and CEO. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and communications from the State University of New York at Cortland and a master’s degree in public administration from American University. A proud father and grandfather, Rick and his wife Diane live in Arlington, Virginia.