Helen Drinan ’69, president of Simmons College, has been named to Mount Holyoke College’s Board of Trustees for a term of five years, beginning in May.
Prior to becoming president of Simmons in 2008, Drinan was a highly respected leader in business, health care, and civic circles in Massachusetts. She is known as a strong advocate for women’s education and women’s leadership issues.
In previous roles, Drinan served as senior vice president of human resources at Caritas Christi Health Care, the second largest health care system in New England. Acknowledged for her thoughtful leadership in employee relations, Drinan established innovative programs for employees of Caritas Christi and BankBoston Corporation, where she was executive vice president of human resources from 1993 to 2000. She also served as president of the Society for Human Resource Management from 2000 to 2002.
Drinan serves on a number of boards, including those of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities in Massachusetts, and the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce. In 2012, Drinan received the Pinnacle Award from the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce. In 2007, she received the John D. Erdlen Five Star Award for outstanding accomplishment in the advancement of the human resources profession from the Northeast Human Resources Association. In 2001, Drinan was named a fellow of the National Academy of Human Resources, an organization that recognizes individuals who have distinguished themselves through their leadership in the field.
After earning her bachelor’s degree at Mount Holyoke, Drinan received a master’s degree in library and information science from the Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science and an M.B.A. from the Simmons School of Management. She was a Peace Corps volunteer in the Philippines in the early 1970s.
Drinan is married to David H. Drinan; they have three adult children and six grandchildren.