Our Team

Our collaborative team approach empowers consumers and healthcare providers to engage in meaningful planning conversations, so every adult can make a personal care plan and get good care today and everyday  in their community.


Ellen DiPaola

Ellen M. DiPaola, JD, President & CEO

Kathy Hankel RN MSN, Co-Founder

Ellen M. DiPaola, JD, is the President and CEO of Honoring Choices Massachusetts. Ms. DiPaola had a former law practice with a focus in Guardianship and Conservatorship. Ms. DiPaola oversees all aspects of the organization, and convenes the New England Healthy Living Collective and the Consumer Health Equity Advisory Group. She chairs the Guardianship-Serious Illness Advisory Group, co-sponsored by Massachusetts Health and Hospital Association,  and is co-chair of the MOLST to POLST Advisory Group, MA Coalition for Serious Illness Care. Ellen is a state representative to the National POLST Plenary Assembly, leading the Patient-Consumer Education Workgroup.

Kathy Hankel is retired and serves on the HCM Board of Directors

Our Partners

The Honoring Choices MA (HCM) Partners are a dynamic collaborative network of thousands of care providers and community members using the HCM programs and tools to help standardize health care planning and drive person-centered care. Our 5 Partner groups below each contribute to our shared mission in innovative ways. Everyone is welcome.  Here's how it works.

Honoring Choices Community Partners

Partner Region map

Over 1000 Community Partners, who are health care & community organizations in seven regions of the state, use the Honoring Choices programs and tools to offer hands-on help to adults and families. As Community Partners, they help adults make a health care plan, and provide or refer adults to needed care in their local community.

Meet the Community Partners here.

Honoring Choices Alliance Partners


Over 40 Alliance Partners, who are state, membership, and health care and advocacy organizations, distribute the HCM programs and tools to hundreds of their care provider and consumer members. We collaborate on exciting joint projects to align our programs and create systematic change.

Meet the Alliance Partners here.

Honoring Choices Health Care Planning Ambassadors

Over 3500 Ambassadors, who are our Community and Alliance Partners care providers and staff, receive webinar training in the Honoring Choices "Getting Started Tool Kit", to confidently start powerful planning conversations with adults & families. Here are just a few committed Ambassadors working in communities across the Commonwealth.

Meet more Ambassadors here.

photo of Elida Baez


photo of 3 ambassadors: Lynne, Wesmyne and Jessie

Lynne, Wesmyne and Jessie

photo of Catherine Whitaker


Photo of Candy, Lauren and Kaye from Gloucester

Candy, Lauren, and Kaye

New England Healthy Living Collective

Honoring Choices convenes leaders from 6 New England States  to increase access to free state specific planning information and to share resources to live well in age- dementia friendly communities. We are flexing our collective NE muscle to ensure all adults living and traveling in New England receive high quality care that honors their choices.

Read more here.

Map of New England States


Planning Documents & Resources


Planning Documents & Resources


Planning Documents & Resources


Planning Documents & Resources


Planning Documents & Resources


Planning Documents & Resources

Age- and Dementia Friendly Partners

Honoring Choices is collaborating with the Age- and Dementia Friendly MA (ADFM) towns and cities to create more livable and healthier communities. ADFM members become Ambassadors to start planning conversations and collect vital consumer feedback on the barriers to care in their community. Working together,  ADFM members are improving to access to multi-lingual planning information and equitable care. Read more here.


Honoring Choices collaborates with national organizations to bring best practices and evidence-based programs to Massachusetts.

Naitonal POLST new logo
Respecting Choices logo
CTAc logo