Paul Vaden elected President of the Board of Directors

The Board of Directors of JDRF San Diego have elected Paul Vaden by unanimous vote as the next Board President of the chapter. Mr. Vaden, a former light middleweight boxing champion, has been actively involved in JDRF since 2004 and has served on the Board of Directors for the past four years. He is a San Diego native and became the IBF World Boxing Champion in 1995. In 2016, he was inducted into the Breitbard Hall of Fame, along with fellow San Diego athletes Ricky Williams and Dave Roberts. In 2017, he was inducted into the West Coast Boxing Hall of Fame. Known as “The Ultimate”, he has been active in raising critical funds for type 1 diabetes (T1D) research through his support of the JDRF ONE Walk, The Promise Ball as well as his work as a Celebrity Spokesperson for the organization.

“I’m positively floored by this responsibility.” said Vaden. “I’m always looking for the ladder that will challenge my talents and purpose to climb to new heights with helping people win being my endgame. I won’t disappoint.”

JDRF is the leading global organization funding T1D research. Type one diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which a person’s pancreas stops producing insulin, a hormone that enables people to get energy from food. It occurs when the body’s immune system attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas, called beta cells. While its causes are not yet entirely understood, scientists believe that both genetic factors and environmental triggers are involved. Its onset has nothing to do with diet or lifestyle.

Mr. Vaden started his 23-year boxing career at the age of eight. He knew from a young age that he wanted to be a world boxing champion. In his professional boxing career, he held a record of 29 wins, 3 losses, and 16 KOs. He won the 1994 International Boxing Federation Inter-Continental (IBF) Championship, 1995 IBF Jr. Middleweight World Championship, 1999 USBA Jr. Middleweight Championship, and was inducted into the California Boxing Hall of Fame in 2009.

After retiring from boxing, he began commentating for boxing telecasts on TV and served as the Global Health Advisor for Qualcomm, Inc.  He also realized that he could help motivate and encourage others through his own experiences, which led to the start of his training programs, motivational seminars, and corporate wellness programs which are defined by the premise that he has followed his entire life: Answer The Bell. His speaking programs include Answer the Bell Seminars, Answer the Bell Team Building Boxing Adventures, corporate speaking, conference speaking, keynote speaking, and special events.

“When I met Paul it was clear that he could be a champion in the fight against Type One Diabetes.” said Steve Altman, former President and Vice Chairman of Qualcomm Inc. “He graciously accepted my invitation to the JDRF Gala where he met my family and others impacted by the disease. That was 2004 and he has been answering the bell ever since. Paul’s commitment to the cause is second to none.”

The Mission of JDRF is to Create a World Without T1D through the funding of research that is aimed at curing, better treating and preventing this life threatening disease. The organization, headquartered in New York with 85 offices around the country, is the largest charitable funder of T1D research in the world. In San Diego, JDRF partners with industry and research leaders such as Dexcom, The Salk Institute, Scripps Research Institute, ViaCyte, and the UCSD Pediatric Diabetes Research Center, among others.

“We at Dexcom are very excited that Paul Vaden will be taking over as President of JDRF,” said Kevin Sayer, President and CEO of Dexcom. “Paul has the energy, perseverance and determination that we need to push closer to finding a cure for Type One diabetes. We wish him the best of luck and look forward to working with him.”

JDRF is currently providing over $15M in funding to San Diego based research institutions while providing over $80M of T1D research funding worldwide.

“Paul joins an elite group of community leaders who have provided high level dedication and leadership in the role of Board President. The fact that he does not have T1D nor does he have a child or relative with the disease speaks volumes about who he is as a person and as a leader.” said Sean McParland, JDRF Executive Director. “Having grown up in San Diego and having become the only World Champion from our community, Paul has worked with numerous organizations, civic groups, companies and corporations to better our community and we are grateful to have him in this leadership role at JDRF.”

“Paul’s combination of organizational excellence, discipline and enthusiasm makes him the ideal Board President for the JDRF. His sincere and tireless efforts over the past 14 years have helped individuals with T1D and their families live normal lives despite the challenges brought on by this disease.” said Peter Seidler, San Diego Padres lead investor and General Partner. “Both my younger sister Annie and I have TID and know a cure is within sight and we deeply respect the impactful work performed by the JDRF and leaders like Paul.”

“At ViaCyte, with the help of JDRF, we are in a fight and our opponent is type 1 diabetes; we won’t settle for anything less than a knock-out! Paul Vaden, a champion who knows what it means to face and overcome challenges and stay the course, is uniquely qualified to lead the local chapter as we wage this battle,” said Dr. Paul Laikind, President and CEO of ViaCyte.

Mr. Vaden will be introduced to the JDRF constituency as the new Board President at the JDRF Annual Meeting. The meeting will be held at the Sanford Consortium in La Jolla on June 21st 2018. Mr. Vaden’s term will begin July 1st 2018.


About Paul Vaden

Paul “The Ultimate” Vaden was born and raised in San Diego and from a very early age had aspirations to become a champion in the world of boxing. As an amateur, “Kid Ultimate” compiled an outstanding record of 327 – 10 winning the Bronze Medal at the 1990 Goodwill Games. Upon turning pro, he quickly rose in the boxing ranks winning the IBF light middleweight championship in August of 1995. He retired from boxing with a 29-3 record including 16 knockouts.

As a champion, Paul Vaden’s life has been dedicated to the conditioning of his body, mind and spirit to excellence in life. His philosophy of Answer the Bell uplifts, inspires and most of all conditions individuals in every scenario to strive for excellence in business, life and physical health. His book entitled “Answer the Bell – Inventing Your Life as a Champion” which chronicles his life journey and his ATB philosophy can be purchased at and

To learn more about Paul Vaden and ATB please visit