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Clara Evans Joins Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego as Vice President of Government Affairs

Evans brings decades of experience in health care finance, technology, privacy and justice policy to the Southern California care system serving more than 90 percent of the region’s children

(SAN DIEGO — Nov. 1, 2021) —Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego, a leading provider of pediatric health care and San Diego’s only designated pediatric trauma center, today announced it has selected Clara Evans as its new vice president of government affairs after a comprehensive nationwide search. In her role, Evans will oversee Rady Children’s involvement and rapport with government, political and legislative entities on local, state and national levels; serve as the key connection between Rady Children’s, political consultants, and representatives from advocacy and other health care institutions; and partner with fellow senior leaders, staff leaders and physicians to establish Rady Children’s public policy and political agendas.

Prior to joining Rady Children’s, Evans led advocacy efforts in California and served on the national public policy and advocacy team for CommonSpirit Health, a health care system with a footprint across 21 states and more than 140 hospitals, including 32 in California. With more than two decades of experience in public policy, Evans has deep experience in government relations strategy and advancing public policy priorities through Congress and the California Legislature, and has significant knowledge of the regulatory environment. She also has a keen understanding of California’s Medicaid system, known as Medi-Cal, and has a special focus on health care financing, health information technology, and privacy and security.  She is committed to advancing a more equitable and just health care system. 

“Rady Children’s expansive health system cares for more than 90 percent of the children and families in our community,” said Patrick A. Frias, MD, President and CEO of Rady Children’s. “With a covenant to such a large, important and diverse population, our organization is committed to ensuring we are continually pursuing positive change and equity for children seeking care, and to extending our advocacy and policy efforts to help children everywhere. We are thrilled to have Clara as a part of our executive team. Given her vast experience managing policies that affect some of our most vulnerable populations, I am certain Clara will bring an immense wealth of knowledge to her role and improve health care access, guidelines and equity for children across San Diego, the state and even the country.” 

 “I couldn’t be more excited to join the Rady Children’s team and take on this new role,” said Evans. “From day one I have been impressed by Rady Children’s commitment and drive to delivering comprehensive care to children in the San Diego region and nationally. Transforming health care and making it more accessible and equitable for everyone is key for our future and something I am very passionate about. I am looking forward to working with the executive team to elevate Rady Children’s as a leading voice on health care through advocacy efforts across the federal, state and local level to create change in our communities.”

Evans spent the early part of her career in the legislature, working for two members of Congress in the United States House of Representatives on Capitol Hill and three years in the California State Legislature as a committee consultant for the Assembly Health Committee. She is a graduate of Loyola Marymount University with a degree in political science and Spanish and a master’s in health administration from the University of Arizona Global Campus.

Evans began her role this month assuming the responsibilities of Barbara Ryan, who recently retired after decades with the Hospital. In addition, Stephanie Gioia-Beckman will also join the team as director of government affairs. Gioia-Beckman brings more than 20 years of experience with federal, state and county policy development and management to the role and will partner with Evans in driving Rady Children’s public policy agenda. These two hires are the latest additions to a growing external affairs team tasked with elevating Rady Children’s message and mission outside the organization. 

About Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego

Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego is a 505-bed pediatric care facility providing the largest source of comprehensive pediatric medical services in San Diego, southern Riverside and Imperial counties. Rady Children’s is the only health system in the San Diego area dedicated exclusively to pediatric healthcare and is the region’s only designated pediatric trauma center. In June 2021, U.S. News & World Report ranked Rady Children’s among the best children’s hospitals in the nation in all ten pediatric specialties the magazine surveyed. Rady Children’s is a nonprofit organization that relies on donations to support its mission. For more information, visit and find us on FacebookTwitter and Vimeo.