Maui Economic Opportunity Selects New CEO

Lyn McNeff
article top
Lyn McNeff

MEO’s Board of Directors is pleased to announce the selection of Programs Chief Lyn McNeff as the organization’s new CEO.

McNeff has been with MEO for more a decade and is currently serving as its interim CEO. McNeff takes the place of outgoing director Sandy K. Baz, who accepted a position as Mayor Alan Arakawa’s budget director last month.


“Lyn was selected by a unanimous vote of the directors,” said MEO Board President Scott Sakakihara. “She is a proven leader who understands MEO’s programs and culture. We are very pleased to welcome her as our new CEO.”

McNeff first joined MEO in 1993 as the Head Start Education/Disabilities Coordinator. She was promoted to Head Start Director in 1995 and in 2005 was promoted to MEO Chief Programs Officer.

As Head Start Director, she led the department through three successful federal monitoring reviews and acted as interim grantee, providing oversight for the Kauai

County Head Start program. During her tenure, MEO Head Start was named one of fifteen nationally recognized programs throughout the United States and earned accreditation through the National Education Association for the Education of Young Children.

This was the first and only accredited Head Start program in the state of Hawaii.

“Personally I always knew that Lyn would take that natural step as a leader,” Baz said. “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.”

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.

As CPO, Ms. McNeff had direct oversight for all MEO programs focusing on program and fund development. She formed linkages between programs and fiscal management and fostered a team approach to meeting funding requirements and providing quality services to MEO clients.

She has a Bachelor’s degree from Oregon State University in Elementary Education. Ms. Mc Neff has served as the president of the Head Start Association of Hawaii and Region IX Head Start Association Board. She currently serves as a board member of the Maui United Way and Maui Non-Profit Director’s Association and serves on the County of Maui Grants Review Committee by appointment.

She is a member of the Association of Farmworkers Opportunity Program (AFOP) and is a Rocky Mountain HI board member.

“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.”