Montecito Journal features “A Talk with Leonie H. Mattison, PGI’s CEO and President”

Dr. Leonie H. Mattison’s remarkable journey and achievements are highlighted in an inspiring article from the Montecito Journal. Born in Jamaica and raised in New York City, she now proudly calls Santa Barbara home. In October 2022, she made history by becoming the first Black woman to assume the leadership role at Pacifica Graduate Institute. Dr. Mattison’s vision aims to expand the traditions and advancements of depth psychology, transform lives, and foster diversity and inclusion through education, learning, and training.

A recipient of the 2018 Pacific Coast Business Times 40 under 40she wears her well-deserved awards with the dignity of a leader true to her values. With a strong educational background and her groundbreaking book “The Thread: Six Steps to Intentional Transformation After Trauma or Crisis,” Dr. Mattison integrates Jungian psychology, pedagogy, and spiritual practices to help individuals and communities overcome challenges and achieve positive outcomes. She emphasizes the importance of women’s presence in leadership roles, recognizing the valuable contributions they bring to organizations and society.

Dr. Mattison’s tenure at Pacifica is marked by her commitment to diversity and inclusion, as she expands the executive leadership team with more women and aims to establish a task force for workforce engagement. Despite the challenges of balancing career and family, she advocates for self-care, building supportive communities, and seeking help when needed.

Take a look at the article “A Talk with Leonie H. Mattison, PGI’s CEO and President” from the Montecito Journal:


Dr. Leonie H. Mattison, Ed.D.
President and CEO of Pacifica Graduate Institute

Dr. Leonie H. Mattison, Ed.D, the fourth President, and Chief Executive Officer of Pacifica Graduate Institute, ushers in a new chapter as the first black female to assume leadership of the 45-year-old institution, with her term beginning in October 2022.

Dr. Mattison brought her extensive experience as a transformational, people-first philosophy to increase the impact of Pacifica. She will ensure Pacifica becomes a world-class institution that improves lives and communities through collaboration among students, alums, faculty, and staff. This starts with listening to the Pacifica community to ensure she can provide the highest-quality education to students and equip them with the tools to better the world. Since taking office, President Mattison has focused on engaging diverse voices on and off campus in conversation about Pacifica’s past, present, and future.

Born in Jamaica, West Indies, Dr. Mattison grew up learning from her mother, who taught her how to interpret dreams, and her grandmother, who taught her the power of turning imagination into reality through quilting. Moving to New York City in her teen years, she witnessed the potency of education to elevate people out of poverty and change lives, including her own. She earned a Master’s in Business from Georgian Court University and a Doctorate of Education in Organizational Leadership from Argosy University. Prior to Pacifica, she served as Chief Operating Officer of a community agency that provides education and support services for vulnerable Santa Barbara residents. Other leadership positions include adjunct professor and lecturer at Antioch University and Santa Barbara City College School of Extended Learning and Chief of Organizational and Talent Development at the County of Santa Barbara, where she was instrumental in developing the Employees University, an open-source university created through a partnership between the county and Santa Barbara City College that has provided high-quality training and cutting-edge leadership development for over 4,700 county employees.

She is the proud mother to her three daughters and a grandmother to one granddaughter. In 2018 she was recognized by the Pacific Coast Business Times as a 40 Under 40