William May, new Hawaii State Psychiatric Hospital Administrator

Federal safety inspectors investigating violence at Hawaii State Hospital
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Federal safety inspectors investigating violence at Hawaii State Hospital
Hawaii State Hospital

REPORT FROM THE STATE DOH – HONOLULU – The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) has selected William J. May to head the Hawaii State Hospital. As administrator, Mr. May will oversee the 202-bed psychiatric facility in Kaneohe, effective July 7, 2014.

“The department evaluated a number of candidates during an intensive nationwide recruitment process which began last summer,” said health director Linda Rosen. “Mr. May has the level of experience needed to manage the complex operations of the only psychiatric hospital in the state.”


May is leaving his current position as the superintendent of the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo, a 451-bed psychiatric hospital, which provides treatment for both forensic and civil patients. As superintendent, May was responsible for all aspects of hospital operations, including inpatient and outpatient competency and sanity evaluations, restoration to competency services, sex offender therapy, and providing services for forensic or court-committed cases.

May also served in chief executive officer positions in New Jersey at Trenton Psychiatric Hospital, Ewing Residential Treatment Center, and the Woodbridge Developmental Center.

His recent accomplishments at the Pueblo Institute include: reducing the wait time for hospital services and admission, reducing the use of seclusion and restraint, adoption of trauma-informed care, improving the civil patient discharge process, and redesigning clinical operations to focus on patient needs. Under his leadership, the Pueblo Institute was recognized by the Colorado Department of Human Services for significant performance improvement.

May has served in leadership positions at psychiatric centers for more than 12 years and holds a Master of Public Administration from Rutgers University.

The Hawaii State Hospital was established in the 1930s (as the Territorial Hospital) and provides care and treatment for patients with serious and chronic mental illness who are committed by the court system. The hospital operates 24/7 with an annual budget of roughly $52 million and with a staff of more than 600 employees who provide a full range of recovery services for patients including participation in community programs, vocational training, and transitional housing. The hospital is licensed by the DOH Office of Health Care Assurance, accredited by the Joint Commission, and a member of the Western Psychiatric State Hospital Association. Joint Commission accreditation is recognized nationwide as a symbol of quality that reflects an organization’s commitment to meeting performance standards.


Janice Okubo
DOH Communications Office
(808) 586-4445