Dr. Tomas Magana: Bringing young minority FACES into healthcare


Dr. Tomas Magana is a board-certified pediatrician who co-founded FACES for the Future, a program that helps young people enrich their lives through education and career training while addressing the lack of diversity in health professions. As a Latino physician, he has dedicated his professional career to improving the health of California’s most vulnerable population- children.

The original FACES program was located in the Oakland Children’s Hospital before it moved to its current location at the Public Health Institute where he is a Principal Investigator.  Through his work with the FACES program, Dr. Magana has become a leading expert in the design of health workforce pipeline programs.

Like many Latinos, Dr. Magana is a first generation college graduate. He was born in LA and raised by a single mother who was a clerical worker. She moved the family to San Francisco by the time he turned 13. Dr. Magana would go on to win a scholarship to University High School, where he was encouraged to pursue science.

He received his bachelors degree from Cornell University, and his masters degree from U.C. Berkeley.  Dr. Magana went to medical school at the University of California, San Francisco where he was awarded his medical degree. He completed pediatric residency at Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland. While a resident, he received the Kerry Spooner-Dean Memorial Award for his tireless community work.

Dr. Magana believes there is a disproportionate number of minority healthcare workers.  He wants to see his students become the future faces of healthcare and community leaders.

“If you’re poor, uneducated and don’t have a diploma, you’re more likely to suffer from health problems or disparities,” said Dr. Tomás Magaña in an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle, “Faces addresses that by providing opportunities for academic success and professional.”

Awards include the Jefferson Award for Public Service, the California Wellness Foundation’s Champion of Health Professions Diversity Award, Medalla al Mérito from Univision, UCSF’s Gold-Headed Cane Award and Bank of America’s Local Hero Award.




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