Victor Garcia


Victor Garcia


i am a practicing pediatric surgeon with an uncompromising belief in the power of systems thinking and stakeholder engagement to solve society’s most intractable problems. My driving desire to improve lives of all children, especially the marginalized and disenfranchised guides my daily living and work, where I creates improbable collaborations, new insights, awareness and sensibilities and therebt inspire others to join the journey. I am the founding Director of Cincinnati’s Children’s Hospital Medical Center’s Level 1Trauma Center and led the effort to establish the country’s first Children’s Hospital-based Pediatric Comprehensive Weight Loss Surgery Center, influencing the work of many others to address the epidemic of childhood obesity. For this ongoing work to eliminate childhood health and social disparities, I received the Martin Luther King Humanitarian Award and the National Jefferson Award. I graduated from West Point, the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, studied pediatric surgery under C Everett Koop, and was Walter Reed’s Chief of General/Pediatric Surgery.


cincinnati, ohio, usa

What draws you to the STIA conference?

to share and to learn…it has been said, 'these are the best of times and the worst of times'. From the operating room of one of the nation's largest children's hospital, it is more the worse of times and getting worse. Increasing gaps in inequality, disturbing trends in childhood poverty, high infant mortality rates, adults dying sicker and poorer are more than disturbing trends that threaten the future of this and future generations. These trends threatened not only the very fabric of society at large but the future of this planet. The imperatives are clear – we need to embrace the power and potential of systems thinking and leverage the new insights stemming from that skill to engage in dialogue, and new ways of thinking, interacting, and doing.

What are you hoping to experience?

new and better ways of engaging both believers and skeptics into the world of systems thinking in action …. beyond theory and concepts to assimilation, practice, and embodiement.

What are you most passionate about?

leaving this world not just incrementally better but transformed…beginning with cincinnati and then the world.

How do you see transformation occurring from this conference?

seeing what we is emerging in cincinnati, refining it, making it better and then applying it in your sphere of influence and concern

What’s your bigger vision?

to bring health peace prosperity to all children of all species for all generations

What needs to happen for you to evaluate this STIA+ experience as a success?

shamelessly and unabashedly …..that i leave with new partners/collaborators in doing my work in cincinnati and then continue with me on the journey to continue the work in other urban settings or anyplace where there are health and social inequities.