Thomas Lee named chairperson of American Heart Association’s Boston Board of Directors

Thomas Lee, a marketing and public relations executive from North Andover, has been named chairperson of the American Heart Association’s Board of Directors in Boston, the nonprofit organization announced Monday.

Lee is a senior partner at Zozimus, a digital marketing agency based in Boston. He has volunteered for the American Heart Association since 2018, serving on the Boston Board of Directors and chairing the Executives with Heart fundraising campaign.

“I am honored to be named as the next chair of the American Heart Association’s Boston Board of Directors,” said Lee. “I have been lucky to work with an extremely talented group of people on the board and within the Association for the past five years and look forward to continuing the critical mission of being a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. I am confident that the all-star team we’ve assembled in Boston will continue to be that force for change in Greater Boston and beyond.”

As chairperson, Lee will work closely with Dr. Ami Bhatt, board president, and Karen A. Whitefield, the American Heart Association’s executive director in Boston. Together with the board, they will guide the organization toward achieving its local fundraising and mission impact goals.

“Tom brings the perfect combination of skills, experience and passion to this role. He’s a champion of health equity and recognizes the urgent need to address the evolving needs of our increasingly diverse communities,” said Whitefield. “Under Tom’s volunteer leadership, I’m sure we will continue making great strides in our fight against heart disease and stroke.”

The American Heart Association has deep roots in Boston. It was established in 1924 by six cardiologists who sought to create a professional society for doctors. Notably, one of its founders, Dr. Paul Dudley White, was born in Roxbury and practiced medicine in the city.

White described the Association’s early years as a time of “almost unbelievable ignorance” about heart disease. Today, the organization has invested more than $5 billion in research, making it the largest nonprofit funding source for cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease research next to the federal government. In 2022, it awarded $13 million in funding to 16 research institutions in Massachusetts alone, while working to identify and remove local barriers to health care access and quality.

Lee will serve in this role for a two-year term, which ends in June of 2025. He succeeds former chairperson Mark Kane, who will remain on the board.

The Association also announced three newly appointed members to the Boston Board of Directors. They are Jaime Butler, founder and CEO of Brand 21; Olivia Lew, chief operating officer at Casana; and Allison McClain Joyce, chief communications officer at Nixon Peabody LLP.