McNeff Named New CEO of MEO
By Wendy Osher
Maui Economic Opportunity today announced the selection of Programs Chief Lyn McNeff as the organization’s new Chief Executive Officer.
McNeff first joined MEO in 1993 as a Head Start Education/Disabilities Coordinator, and most recently was serving as the interim CEO. She fills the vacancy created by the departure of Sandy K. Baz, who accepted a position as Budget Director for the incoming county administration under Mayor-Elect Alan Arakawa.
“Personally I always knew that Lyn would take that natural step as a leader,” Baz said in an agency news release. “She has all the knowledge required to be sitting in the CEO’s chair. I’d like to thank her for all her help over the years and look forward to seeing her lead MEO to new heights,” said Baz.
The selection of McNeff was made in a unanimous vote by the MEO Board of Directors. Board President Scott Sakakihara commended McNeff saying, “She is a proven leader who understands MEO’s programs and culture.”
Within two years of joining the organization, McNeff was promoted to Head Start Director in 1995. The news release credited McNeff with leading the department through three federal monitoring reviews during under her directorship. During her tenure, the MEO Head Start program earned accreditation through the National Education Association for the Education of Young Children, a first for the state of Hawaii.
In 2005 McNeff was promoted to MEO Chief Programs Officer. As CPO, McNeff oversaw MEO programs focusing on program and fund development. McNeff is also a federal reviewer and has been a lead consultant for training and technical assistance in the areas of program design, management and management systems.
She earned her Bachelor’s degree from Oregon State University in Elementary Education. McNeff currently serves as a board member of the Maui United Way and Maui Non-Profit Director’s Association, as well as the County of Maui Grants Review Committee.
“I’d like to thank the board for the opportunity to continue the good work that Sandy has done and to build upon his accomplishments,” McNeff said. “These are tough times because of the economy and more people than ever need MEO’s help, and we will be there to help them,” she said.
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