Slatkin, the music director of Washington's National Symphony Orchestra, will conduct three weeks of concerts at the outdoor venue this summer, in the first year of a two-year term.
"We envision this new position to be held by a variety of distinguished conductors over the next decade, each bringing their own ideas and viewpoints to the Hollywood Bowl," said Deborah Borda, the Philharmonic's president.
"There is no conductor more fitting than Leonard Slatkin to be the first to hold this appointment," she added. "It is a terrific match, not only because of Leonard's Los Angeles roots"—the conductor was born in L.A.—"and history with the Philharmonic, but also because of the eminent position he holds in the musical life of America."
Slatkin also brings his experience leading the BBC Proms concerts, perhaps the world's most high-profile summer festival, as chief conductor of the BBC Symphony from 2000 through 2004.
This summer at the Bowl, Slatkin will lead Gershwin, Ives, Mahler, Shostakovich, Brahms, and a program of Latin classical favorites, including Falla and Ginastera. His concerts will also include a performance with the Paul Taylor Dance Company, performing to the music of Bach.