April 1936 - December 30, 2020 Ellen Skillen Bogen Alkon, M.D, 84, former resident of Rolling Hills Estates, died December 30, 2020 of kidney failure in Fort Worth, Texas. She is survived by her brother David Bogen and daughters Cynthia Alkon and Margaret Alkon (Jonathan Marshall) and was preceded in death by her husband Paul Alkon, eldest daughter Kathy Alkon, and sister Elizabeth Bogen Tanner. Born in Los Angeles, she attended San Fernando High School, Stanford (BA 1955), University of Chicago Medical School (MD 1961) and UC Berkeley (MPH 1968). She was an enthusiastic traveler, shared in her husband's sailing and intellectual pursuits, and loved being "Aunt Ellen," keeping in touch with family and friends. Her family stories intertwined with the history of public health in Southern California, starting with her childhood at Olive View Hospital, then a turberculosis sanatorium, where her mother Jane Skillen Bogen Rost was a surgeon and her father Emil Bogen ran the laboratories and did medical research (and had been an early responder to the 1924 outbreak of the plague in Los Angeles).A pediatrician with a lifeline passion for public health, Dr. Alkon worked at Highland Alameda County Hospital in Oakland, California and at the Minneapolis Health Department, where she became Director of Maternal and Child Health in 1973 and served as Commissioner of Health (1975-1980). At the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health from 1980 until her retirement, she held various positions including Medical Director for Public Health, and Director of Public Health Education for Physicians. A huge believer in education, Dr. Alkon returned to work with young doctors after her retirement because she was so enthusiastic about educating doctors about public health. She was also Adjunct Professor Emeritus at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. Dr. Alkon was a strong believer in doing the organizing work that turns good ideas into reality. In 1975, she was working long hours, had three children and two jobs and still found time to testify before Congress on the positive impact and importance of the then-novel WIC Program on the health of mothers and young children. Memorial contributions can be made to the Southern California Public Health Association (https://www.scpha.org
) and the American Association of Public Health Physicians (https://www.aaphp.org
Published by Los Angeles Times from Jan. 5 to Jan. 10, 2021.