Colin Powell Appoints Scripps CEO Chris Van Gorder to United Nations Commission Advisory Board

SAN DIEGO - Secretary of State Colin Powell has appointed Scripps President and CEO Chris Van Gorder to the United States National Commission for the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

“I am honored to have been selected to serve on the United States National Commission for UNESCO,” Van Gorder said. “I look forward to participating in the good work of this fine international institution, work which has been made all the more important by the tsunami in South Asia, where it is playing a critical role.”

In his letter appointing Van Gorder to the Commission’s Science Committee, Secretary of State Powell said: “I am confident Scripps Health will contribute significantly to the value of the Commission’s work.”

Van Gorder is one of the commission’s representatives of non-governmental organizations (NGO).Other NGO’s on the commission include: National Geographic Society, National Academy of Sciences, and the American Geological Society.Scripps is currently the only health care organization on the commission.

The National Commission provides advice to the U.S. government on matters relating to UNESCO and serves as a liaison with organizations, institutions and individuals interested in working with UNESCO. Members of the commission will provide U.S. Department of State with expert advice on U.S. interests in educational, scientific, cultural and communications issues at UNESCO and assist with the implementation of UNESCO programs in the U.S.

UNESCO promotes international cooperation among 196 nations in the fields of education, science, culture and communication, through activities such as building classrooms in countries devastated by natural disasters, providing the ability to sustain clean drinking water or publishing scientific breakthroughs.

Founded in 1924 by philanthropist Ellen Browning Scripps, Scripps Health is celebrating 80 years as a non-profit, San Diego-based health care system. Scripps treats 478,000 patients annually through the dedication of more than 2,600 affiliated physicians and 10,500 employees spread across five acute care campuses, home health care services, and an ambulatory care network of clinics, physicians’ offices and outpatient centers. More information can be found at