Executive Director

Leading the Institute is Executive Director Helen McNeal who brings a wealth of experience working directly in palliative care settings and with some of the leading edge providers of palliative care programs and services. 

Helen B. McNeal

Headshot of Helen B. McNealHelen McNeal is the Executive Director of the California State University Institute for Palliative Care at CSUSM. She is an executive with experience in non-profit and for-profit leadership whose career has woven together her dual passions, facilitating working relationships that enhance individual/organizational performance and advancing the field of palliative care.

Prior to joining CSUSM, Helen served as Vice President of San Diego Hospice and The Institute for Palliative Medicine (SDHIPM) where she was responsible for all of the operations of The Institute for Palliative Medicine (IPM).

Prior to joining SDHIPM in 2007, Helen was Founder and President of Naria LLC as well as Vice President of Strategic Partners, Inc. where she was responsible for consulting with clients on a variety of organizational development, leadership and strategic relationship facilitation solutions.  During the 1990s, Helen was the National Director of Training & Development for the American Diabetes Association in Washington, D.C.; President, Managing Partner and co-founder of Bridgepoint: The Centre for Human Resource Development in Toronto, Canada; and early in her career focused on technology-oriented marketing and communications.

In parallel with her business career, Helen has also been instrumental, both in the United States and Canada in helping to advance the field of palliative and end of life care.  The founder, former Board Chair and Board member of Evergreen Hospice in Markham, Ontario, Helen has consulted with both U.S. and Canadian government agencies on palliative care strategies.  She is also the co-author of Module IV: Palliative Care of A Comprehensive Guide to the Care of Persons Living with HIV/AIDS. She has consulted with the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization on state hospice organization initiatives and led a national project to look at end of life care in the American prison system.

In addition to a degree in Business Administration from the University of Michigan, she has done post-graduate study in business, psychology and organizational development.

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