Michael Kaplan joined the Melanoma Research Alliance as President and CEO in 2016. Building on more than 25 years of executive non-profit and public health leadership experience, Kaplan has a proven record as a passionate supporter of health research and policy. Kaplan is responsible for strategic direction, overall management and raising capital to achieve MRA’s mission of ending suffering and death due to melanoma and to foster collaboration with all stakeholders to accelerate powerful research, advance cures, and prevent more melanomas.
Kaplan has headed nonprofits and patient advocacy groups across the United States and internationally. He has managed international and domestic grant-making portfolios focused on disease surveillance, prevention and treatment. Prior to joining MRA, he served as the President and CEO of Washington, DC-based AIDS United. Additional leadership positions have included Executive Director of Cascade AIDS Project in Portland, Ore., Vice President at the Academy for Educational Development, and Deputy Director roles at both the Futures Group International and the National Youth Advocacy Coalition in Washington, DC. He has served on the boards of several organizations focusing on everything from health issues to grant-making, and behavior health to healthy youth development.
Kaplan has been touched in his personal family orbit by both melanoma as well as another cancer, mesothelioma, and holds a passion for finding better treatments and cures to reduce the suffering brought about by Melanoma. Kaplan holds a B.A. in Child Psychology and an M.A. in Adult & Community Education from the University of Minnesota.