President & CEO
Renata Simril is the President & CEO of the LA84 Foundation, the youth-serving organization committed to transforming the lives of young people across Southern California through ongoing investments in sports and play programs, infrastructure, research and education as the legacy of the 1984 Summer Olympic Games. Since her appointment in 2016, Simril has expanded the mission of the LA84 Foundation in vital ways by focusing its work on supporting childhood health, socio-emotional development and community well-being. By collaborating with corporate partners, sports organizations, civic institutions and philanthropy, Simril has brought new resources to communities to close the gaps in access to sports and play. She has elevated the LA84 Foundation’s national leadership in the role sports and play have in positive youth development, our physical and mental health, as well as creating pathways to success. Inspired by the dedication of the many organizations that are working to improve the social, academic and health outcomes of youth through sport and play, Simril developed the Play Equity Movement to unite those in education, sports, health and the public sector as partners to drive meaningful change. These efforts gave rise to the Play Equity Fund – the charitable partner of the LA84 Foundation with a national focus on Play Equity as a social justice issue. Simril serves as President of the Play Equity Fund. In addition to being an advisor to task forces and commissions, Simril’s writing has appeared in Authority Magazine, Forbes, the Los Angeles Business Journal, the Los Angeles Daily News and The Sacramento Observer. She has also been a featured speaker in panels and an expert source in the media. Simril was recently appointed by Governor Gavin Newsom to the first Governor’s Advisory Council on Physical Fitness and Mental Well-Being, which will provide guidance on the development of physical activity and wellness goals for Californians of all ages. She will also serve as a Regents’ Lecturer in the UCLA Department of Sociology in the spring of 2022. Simril has a commitment to leadership and service with more than 25 years of diverse experience in government, business, pro sports and publishing. Prior to joining the LA84 Foundation, she served as Senior Vice President & Chief of Staff of the Los Angeles Times. She was Senior Vice President of External Affairs for the Los Angeles Dodgers, where she oversaw the team’s community relations and managed the Dodgers Foundation. For over a decade Simril was in mixed-use real estate development with Jones Lang LaSalle, Forest City Development and LCOR, Inc. She worked to expand rental and affordable housing as well as economic policies in Los Angeles as Deputy Mayor for Economic Development and Housing in the Hahn Administration. As a Development Deputy to a LA City Councilman, Simril worked to help rebuild communities in South Los Angeles after the 1992 civil unrest. She began her career in the U.S. Army as a Military Police Officer, serving in Germany and domestically. Simril is actively engaged in civic and community life in a variety of roles, including as a board member of the United Way of Greater Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Sports & Entertainment Commission and the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation. She also serves on the ESPN Return to Play Advisory Council and the PLAY Coalition. These national efforts are focused on closing the Play Equity gap in BIPOC communities by increasing awareness, as well as distributing public and private resources to community-based organizations across the country. She formerly served on the LA 2028 Olympic Bid Committee and was a Governor Brown Appointee to the California Science Center Board, where she co-led negotiations of lease agreements for USC to manage the Coliseum and Sports Arena. She was Chair of the Board of Regents for LMU and a board member of the Lusk Center for Real Estate at USC. Simril earned a bachelor’s degree in Urban Studies from Loyola Marymount University and a Master’s in Real Estate Development from USC. She lives in Studio City with her husband and two sons.