Photo: Graciela Valdes

March is Women’s History Month so Island Origins has decided to profile some truly remarkable women, like the Executive Director of Children’s Diagnostic & Treatment Center, Ana Calderon Randazzo.

  • Cuba
  • Executive Director of Children’s Diagnostic & Treatment Center (CDTC)

“She believed she could, so she did.” R.S. Grey

Ana Calderon Randazzo, Ph.D., is the Executive Director of Children’s Diagnostic & Treatment Center (CDTC) in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Born in Santiago De Las Vegas, Cuba, her family came to the U.S. in 1969. “We were a family of refugees and share the same story as many other Cuban families,” Ana Calderon Randazzo said. She was the first person in her family to earn a doctoral degree and was a proud recipient of the National Science Foundation Minority Fellowship. 

Affiliated with Broward Health, CDTC provides medical care, dental care, case management and early intervention services to over 10,000 medically fragile infants, children, adolescents and women with disabilities and chronic illnesses in Broward County. Calderon has risen through the ranks there, starting three decades ago as a data coordinator and assuming her current leadership role in 2014.

Her awards and accolades include recognition as one of the 100 Outstanding Women of Broward County by the Boys & Girls Club and Susan B. Anthony Recovery Center, Healthcare Administrator of the Year by the American Business Women’s Association and one of 12 Hispanic Women of Distinction by Latina Magazine, among others. 


Women’s History Month Words of Wisdom

Greatest accomplishment:

The honor of leading Children’s Diagnostic & Treatment Center at Broward Health as Executive Director for the past nine years. This year, we plan to open our first satellite medical exam room, provide medical services to local foster care youth, and expand our dental services to any child with special needs living in Broward County.

Most influential women in her life:

Celebrating Women's History Month with Ana Calderon Randazzo
Photo courtesy of Ana Calderon Randazzo

My mother had one rule: be nice, because when you come with good intentions, the rest is easy. My mentor Dr. Susan M. Widmayer, founder and former executive director at CDTC, taught me to demonstrate kindness to our staff and clients by being a servant leader, to be laser focused on CDTC’s mission, and to demonstrate a relentless pursuit of excellence, because our patients deserve nothing less. 

Advice for her younger self:

Never use self-limiting words. There is nothing that you can’t do, because when you have passion for your work it transcends age. 

A pivotal moment:

I recall being told that I could never improve on my GRE scores because English was my second language. That was all I needed to motivate me and prove that I COULD, which I did, resulting in many offers for full scholarships to the best graduate schools. In my life, when someone says it can’t be done, I ask “why not?”  

Advice for younger women:

Find your purpose because purpose breeds passion and confidence. Be a lifelong learner. Find your tribe of supportive women who will guide you and cheer you on as you accomplish your goals.

Experience with gender power structures:

Most of our senior leadership at CDTC is female led. In addition, all our program directors and physicians are women. 

Message to women:   

Never underestimate the effect you can have on others just being kind. Find your purpose and run with it. 

Intended legacy:

I want my work to be known for creating health equity and access to care for the special needs population. 

Recommended reading:

“The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz and “Hardwiring Excellence” by Quint Studer.


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