American Heart Association, Inc. HQ

aka AHA   |   Dallas, TX   |


The American Heart Association's mission is to be a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. Founded in 1924, our organization now includes more than 40 million volunteers and supporters. We fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide critical tools and information to save and improve lives.

Ruling year info


Chief Executive Officer

Nancy A. Brown

Main address

7272 Greenville Avenue

Dallas, TX 75231 USA

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NTEE code info

Heart and Circulatory System (G43)

Professional Societies & Associations (E03)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Science and Technology

The American Heart Association funds scientific studies seeking new discoveries related to causes, prevention and treatment of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases. Since our founding in 1924, we’ve invested more than $4.5 billion in research, making us the largest private, not-for-profit funder of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular research.

With 1 in 3 women dying of heart disease, the American Heart Association launched Research Goes Red with Project Baseline by Verily to ensure women are equitably represented in heart research.

Our Strategically Focused Research Networks now total 10, including prevention, hypertension, disparities, Go Red for Women®, heart failure, obesity, children’s health, vascular disease, atrial fibrillation, arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death. Research awards for networks focused on cardiometabolic care and health technology, including apps and wearables, will be awarded in 2020.

The AHA-Allen Initiative in Brain Health and Cognitive Impairment awarded its first research grants to three principal investigators: Fred “Rusty” Gage, Ph.D., the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, $19,200,000; Tony Wyss-Coray, Ph.D., Stanford University, $9,600,000; and Mukesh K. Jain, M.D., University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, $9,600,000.

One Brave Idea, co-funded by the AHA and Verily, with support from AstraZeneca, welcomed Quest Diagnostics as a pillar supporter to help identify early-stage coronary heart disease. Quest committed $10 million for biomarker implementation, population health analytics and a national lab platform.

Under a collaboration with the American Heart Association’s Center for Health Technology & Innovation, Google Fit users now earn points for both movement and intensity. Tracking is based on the AHA’s recommendations of at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise weekly and at least 75 minutes of vigorous exercise weekly.

Connected Pulse, a collaboration between Royal Philips and the American Heart Association introduced technology to improve sudden cardiac arrest survival in densely populated cities. Components include GPS positioning, command center application, analytics, telephone CPR training, EMS training, training kiosks, CPR in Schools training kits and more.

Inside the sapphire crystal crown of the Apple Watch Series 4 is a sensor that measures the heart’s electrical activity, sends alerts, and stores data in real time. AHA President Ivor Benjamin, M.D., joined Apple COO Jeff Williams for the big announcement during the tech giant’s annual product launch.

The 2018-19 expenses for this program were $198,322,000

Population(s) Served

The Public Health Education category represents a broad spectrum of ways we inform the public and help people embrace healthy behavior.
The Go Red for Women campaign marked 15 years of making women aware that heart disease is their greatest health threat and expanded to Bahrain, Brazil, India, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Rwanda and Saudi Arabia.

More than 270,000 people visited the AHA’s Hands-Only CPR kiosks nationwide, and more than 130,000 completed the tutorial, practiced compressions, and passed the test. By year’s end, 31 kiosks had been installed across the country.

To address increasing rates of hypertension, diabetes and other chronic conditions in Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) communities, the AHA established the AANHPI Health Initiative.

Kids Heart Challenge awarded the first of up to $400,000 in annual grants to support physical activity and emotional well-being programs for students and teachers.

Our 40-member CEO Roundtable tackled the mental health crisis by engaging employers to de-stigmatize mental health disorders, train leaders, provide comprehensive benefits, and foster dialogue.

As part of our investment in addressing social determinants of health, we debuted the AHA Office of Health Equity to champion elimination of health disparities.

The Social Impact Fund, established with $5 million from Stevie and David Spina, awarded the first round of investments in Boston, Massachusetts, and Flint Michigan. This was followed by a $1 million contribution from Health Care Service Corporation to expand investments to Chicago, Illinois.

We engaged young people in shattering social barriers to health, awarding $200,000 to winners of the inaugural HBCU Healthy Community Challenge Showcase. HBCU coeds at 30-plus campuses participated in the 8-month contest to develop innovative, effective, scalable solutions to social determinants of health.

In our continuing quest to reduce health disparities, the EmPOWERED to Serve Business Accelerator competition awarded $90,000 in prize money to two finalists and eight qualifiers chosen among contestants from across the country. The top prize of $50,000 went to Leah Lizarondo, founder of 412 Food Rescue, and $25,000 was awarded to Francoise Marvel, M.D., founder of Corrie Health. Each of the remaining six qualifiers received $2,500.

In 2018-2019, expenses for this program were $295,084,000

Population(s) Served

The Professional Education and Training category represents activities, projects, scientific conferences, training courses or programs designed to improve knowledge, skills and critical judgment of healthcare providers.
We hosted more than a dozen scientific conferences, including Scientific Sessions and the International Stroke Conference, as well as meetings focused on specialty areas including hypertension, prevention and quality of care. Attendees at all meetings are eligible for Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits. We also hosted a suite of online learning programs which offered CME credits.

As an industry thought leader, the Association published scientific statements and clinical treatment guidelines for medical professionals on heart disease and stroke prevention, and cholesterol management. We also endorsed the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, which reinforce the importance of moving more and sitting less over exercising in 10-minute intervals.

Taking aim at the opioid crisis, we:
Pledged employer solutions led by the AHA CEO Roundtable
Introduced opioid education courses for laypeople and clinical providers via the AHA’s Emergency Cardiovascular Care Division
Joined the Action Collaborative on Countering the U.S. Opioid Epidemic to advance knowledge, align ongoing initiatives and expand collective, multisector solutions to the opioid crisis

The Association also addressed global infant mortality via Saving Children’s Lives, training over 1,000 doctors, nurses and other providers and grooming over 80 in-country instructors.

Established to help hospitals provide evidence-based care and improve outcomes, Get with the Guidelines grew globally to 3,100 hospitals in 5 countries, impacting 7 million patients.

Fiscal year 2018-19 was an exciting time for Professional Membership, with the Strategic Value Proposition advancing council modernization work. Over 36,000 members support the Association’s mission through contributions of time, talent and treasure. Of those members, 29% are from non-U.S. countries and more than 5,200 are Fellows of the American Heart Association (FAHAs). Professional Members’ dues and donations support more than $450,000 in Council awards to over 400 recipients.

The 2018-19 expenses for this program were $162,936,000

Population(s) Served

The Community Services category represents activities such as detection of cardiovascular diseases or stroke-related problems; planning and improving community health practices; conducting rehabilitative and similar projects and programs; supporting special clinical studies; other costs for the community’s benefit.
The American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association announced Know Diabetes by Heart to raise awareness of the Type 2 diabetes-cardiovascular disease link. Powered by $30 million from inaugural sponsors Boehringer Ingelheim, Eli Lilly and Company and Novo Nordisk, we began educating patients, training health care providers, and implementing quality improvement measures for diabetes treatment facilities.

The Association and the Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy formed the Value in Healthcare Initiative to increase access to, and affordability of, cardiovascular care. Participants — including researchers, regulators and health innovators — convene to identify barriers to care and develop solutions.

Teaming with the AHA for the 3rd year on Healthy for Life® 20 by 20, Aramark’s dining operations increased fruits, veggies and whole grains by 9% and slashed saturated fat by 19%, sodium by 14% and calories by 11%.

The American Heart Association teamed with emergency technology company, RapidSOS, to promote a voluntary registry for people to submit their health profile through a secure database for access by authorized 9-1-1 agencies and first responders. Called the RapidSOS Clearinghouse, the database includes medical history, allergies, medications, medical devices and emergency contacts. By giving first responders access to these important details during a 9-1-1 call, RapidSOS aims to reduce the time from arrival to diagnosis and treatment.

Nearly 800 health care organizations participated in Target: BP, our blood pressure control program. Of those, 340 achieved blood pressure control rates at or above 70%. In support, 1,050 CVS stores in the Stroke Belt displayed our public service announcements on Storeboard security panels.

The 2018-19 expenses for this program were $63,264,000

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of votes for or against specific policies

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served


Related Program

Community Services

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Context Notes

Includes implementation of policy changes at the state and local levels. Some of these include smoke-free ordinances, CPR in schools legislation, and additional taxes on sugar-sweetened beverages.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

The American Heart Association's mission is to be a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives.
Heart disease and stroke are the #1 and #2 killers in the world. Each year, these diseases kill more than 800,000 Americans. Some form of cardiovascular disease affects more than one in every three adult Americans.
The organization has already made a dramatic impact over time in reducing heart disease and stroke death rates through improved, evidence-based treatment and increased awareness. But we are going further by embarking on groundbreaking research initiatives to prevent, reverse and end coronary heart disease and its consequences, bringing together diverse teams of the world's best and brightest minds to solve one of the world's greatest health challenges so that we can live longer, healthier lives.
Our 2020 Impact Goal is to improve the cardiovascular health of ALL Americans by 20 percent, while reducing deaths from heart diseases and stroke, all by the year 2020.

The causes of disease and health inequity are bigger than any one organization or sector can solve. That is why AHA is a catalyst, connecting across sectors, communities, and countries to drive toward an equitable and healthy world.
AHA’s foundation is accelerating heart and brain science. We have invested $3.9 billion in cardiovascular research, more than any organization outside the federal government. In addition, we partner with the world’s leading technology companies to fuel the next breakthroughs in health.
AHA then translates this science and advocates to see it applied in the healthcare system, in public policies, and in communities. We provide science-based treatment guidelines to healthcare professionals to help them provide quality care to their patients. We're the nation's leader in CPR education and training. We educate lawmakers, policymakers and the public as we advocate for changes to protect and improve the health of our schools, worksites, and communities.

As one of the leading cardiovascular organizations in the world, the AHA is uniquely positioned to bring the best and the brightest together to achieve its goals.
Founded in 1924, our organization now includes 156 local offices, more than 3,200 employees and more than 30 million volunteers and supporters. The American Heart Association is recognized as one of America's most trusted brands.
The AHA is the leading funder of cardiovascular and stroke research outside of the federal government, investing $3.9 billion in research funding since 1949, and we translate that science into evidenced-based guidelines and programs, and better outcomes.
Our volunteers include some of the world's best scientists, doctors and health experts, many of the nation's top CEOs, Fortune 500 companies, educational institutions, healthcare providers and technology leaders, as well as communities, lawmakers and grassroots advocates, all fighting with us for a healthier world.

The American Heart Association has contributed greatly to major advances in the fight against heart disease and stroke. Deaths have declined over the past four decades, significant new treatments have been developed, and many new laws are in place to protect the public health.
Since 2007, cardiovascular death rates have declined by 15%, resulting in thousands of lives saved every year. In addition, AHA has helped fuel the decline in smoking rates and improve the control of high blood pressure. Unfortunately, some of these improvements have been offset by worsening rates of obesity and unhealthy diets in adults and children. For this reason, AHA and our partners are working relentlessly toward a world where healthy food is affordable and accessible, where safe places to be active are abundant, and where everyone has access to the quality healthcare they need.
There is much to accomplish. With more resources and with your voice, we can do more to combat these problems.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    As the nation's oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to a world of equitable heart and brain health for all, our mission serves a wide variety of people and organizations. We provide consumers and patients with lifesaving health information, programs to control blood pressure, CPR training and advocacy for healthy public policies in communities across the nation. We support scientists, researchers and medical teams through science-based treatment guidelines, research funding, professional education and scientific publishing. We serve hospitals through CPR instruction and evidence-based programs that improve the quality of health care. We serve businesses through workplace health information, and we serve educators and students through health-focused fundraising events.

  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    SMS text surveys, Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Case management notes, Community meetings/Town halls, Constituent (client or resident, etc.) advisory committees, Suggestion box/email,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    Our work within communities, in the science world and with women’s programs offer key examples of how we respond to feedback. Local teams seek local feedback about health needs regularly – and shift our work as merited. For instance, we increased our focus on nutrition security after receiving community feedback. The COVID-19 pandemic propelled our scientific conferences to shift to a virtual platform – while still providing best-in-class educational content and engagement. We improved these experiences after feedback from attendees. In our work for heart and brain health among women, we regularly seek feedback to shape our work and priorities. For example, we responded to a recent survey exploring women’s top health concerns by launching a research study focused on weight change in.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners, researchers and scientists,

  • How has asking for feedback from the people you serve changed your relationship?

    People within communities are often in the best position to understand and address community problems. That’s why we invest in community ownership and solutions. The Social Impact Fund, Bernard J. Tyson Fund and the EmPOWERED To Serve™ Business Accelerator are examples of our support for community-led solutions. We also use feedback to develop content and platforms to reach women, as well as new areas of women’s health research. We’re investing in research focusing on increasing awareness among women in under-represented racial and ethnic groups, and the health impact of weight gain during menopause. We routinely adjust professional education offerings and scientific meetings based on feedback from participants, shaping the content as well as virtual and in-person options.

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback, We ask the people who gave us feedback how well they think we responded,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, It can be difficult to understand the needs of those we have not served already. ,


American Heart Association, Inc.

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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.


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American Heart Association, Inc.

Board of directors
as of 10/20/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Bertram Scott

James Postl

No Affiliation

John Warner

University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

Raymond Vara

Hawaii Pacific Health

Mary Bauman

Integris Health, Inc.

Ivor Benjamin

Medical College of Wisconsin

Mitchell Elkind

Columbia University

Linda Gooden

Gooden LLC

Ron Haddock

AEI Services, LLC

Robert Harrington

Stanford University School of Medicine

Marsha Jones

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.

David Spina

No Affiliation

Bernard Tyson

Kaiser Permanente

Lee Shapiro

7wire Ventures

Bertram Scott

Novant Healthcare

Douglas Boyle

No Affiliation

Thomas Windsor

SysLogic, Inc.

Joseph Wu

Stanford University School of Medicine

Joseph Loscalzo

Harvard Medial School

Keith Churchwell

Yale New Haven Health

Lee Schwamm

Harvard Medical School

Regina Benjamin

Gulf State Health Policy Center

Shawn Dennis

No Affiliation

Ileana Pina

No Affiliation

Marcella Roberts

M. Roberts & Associates, LLC

Svati Shah

Duke Molecular Physiology Institute

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 10/01/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data


No data

Sexual orientation

No data


No data