Barbara Leonard, MPH
President & CEO
Ms. Leonard is MeHAF’s President and CEO, having taken on the role in October 2016 after a national search. Barbara brings over 25 years of experience and leadership in philanthropic and public health program development, administration, management and evaluation at the state and national level. Ms. Leonard originally joined the MeHAF team October 2007 as a senior program officer, and became Vice President for Programs in May 2008.
At MeHAF, she has played a key role in developing and leading health reform initiatives such as a comprehensive portfolio of grants focused on payment reform, development of community-focused programs such as Thriving in Place and Healthy Community grants, and the multi-year Integrated Care Initiative. She led MeHAF’s work in oral health and served an important coordinating role for the Maine Oral Health Funders and their collaborative grantmaking. She also spearheaded MeHAF’s efforts to develop ongoing data analysis and reporting to illuminate access barriers to health care, particularly for individuals who are uninsured or who face other systemic barriers to care.
Barbara is a past president of the board of the Maine Philanthropy Center and the Maine Women’s Fund. She has served on numerous state and national boards and advisory committees focused on payment reform, healthy communities, and philanthropic innovation. She has spoken and written about philanthropy, health care, leadership, and government.
Barbara was raised in Connecticut and first came to Maine as a student at Colby College in Waterville where she received a BA in Psychology. She has an MPH in Health Policy and Resources from Yale University. In her spare moments, she spends time with her husband, Dan, spoils their Labrador retrievers Cooper and Jessie, cooks for friends, sings as a soprano with the Maine Music Society Chorale, grows perennials and vegetables, and is an enthusiastic amateur at the Belfast Curling Club.