New Jersey Physician Named President-Elect of the American Heart Association’s Eastern States Region Board of Directors

Leonard Y. Lee, MD, has assumed the role of president-elect of the board of directors for the Eastern States region of the American Heart Association (AHA), the world’s leading voluntary health organization dedicated to building longer, healthier lives free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke. Lee will serve as president-elect through June 30, 2023, at which point he will assume a two-year term as president of the Eastern States Board of Directors.

Dr. Lee is the chair for the Department of Surgery at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. Dr. Lee has served as a member of the Northern New Jersey Division of the American Heart Association Board of Directors, chair of the Northern New Jersey Heart Ball and member of the Heart Ball Executive Leadership Team. He previously served as a member of the former Founders Affiliate Board of Directors for the AHA. In 2018, Dr. Lee was the recipient of the American Heart Association’s Harvey E. Nussbaum, MD Distinguished Service Award.

Dr. Leonard Lee

“It will be my honor to serve as the president of the board in 2023 and support the lifesaving work of the American Heart Association,” said Dr. Lee. “Through research, medical advancements, public education, CPR training and so much more, I’m excited to continue the progress in making sure everyone has the opportunity for a full and healthy life.”

American Heart Association – Eastern States volunteers and staff serve more than 75 million people who live on the eastern seaboard of the United States. The Eastern States region includes 13 states and Washington, D.C., and five of the top 25 metropolitan areas in the U.S. In support of the AHA’s mission to be a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives, the Eastern States region raises revenue to transform the health and well-being of local communities by providing science-based information, health resources, community programs and patient support. As the second-largest funder of cardiovascular research next to the federal government, the AHA is also a driver of change through its advocacy efforts, public and professional education and community services like CPR training and COVID-19 research and programming.

In his role as president-elect, Lee will work alongside Board President Dr. Reginald L. Robinson and other volunteer leaders to advance critical mission and fundraising priorities for the AHA, including its 2024 Impact Goal to advance cardiovascular health for all. Areas of focus will build on existing efforts around removing barriers to health care access and quality, addressing issues of nutrition and food security, hypertension reduction and more.

“Dr. Lee’s experience as a researcher, scientist, mentor and teacher, along with his extraordinary communications skills and ability to make meaningful connections, is so impactful and will directly advance the health and well-being of those who live, work and pray in our communities,” said Nicole Aiello Sapio, Ed.D., executive vice president of the American Heart Association’s Eastern States Region.

Lee received his medical degree from UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School at Camden and cardiothoracic surgery training at Weill Medical College of Cornell University in New York City.