Dean Palius is the CEO of Santa Ynez Valley People Helping People. He and his wife, Kim Morrison, and their children live in Buellton.
Favorite move: Ground Hog Day
Favorite book/author: Kurt Vonnegut, Cat’s Cradle
Favorite music/musician: Motown, Four Tops
Hobbies: Scuba diving, golf, and travel
Your bio in one paragraph: I was born in New Jersey and attended school there until my senior year. I moved to California in 1968 and had a brief cameo at track stardom at Hollywood High School before attending Humboldt State University (pre-ganja). Subsequently, I attended UCSB, graduated with a. M.A. in political science, served the city of Santa Barbara as risk manager and personnel director, owned and operated a management-consulting firm for 17 years, and have worked as the CEO of People Helping People for the past 23 years.
How you have made an impact on the Santa Ynez Valley: Often, I have said that I have the best job in the SYV. I am paid to “do-good,” at an office only three miles from my home, and in a place where people truly care about others. Every day, the skilled staff at PHP changes lives for the better. From saving seniors from homelessness, helping students reverse a course from failure to graduation, and assisting women and children to escape violence and achieve a loving and safe home, PHP makes a difference and I feel privileged to be part of that process.
Pet Peeves: People who do not embrace inclusion and equality.
Road to the Santa Ynez Valley: Born in Teaneck, N.J., and lived in Bergenfield, N.J., until age 17. Attended Bergenfield High School until mid-senior year and a move to California and attendance at Hollywood High. Attended Humboldt State University upon recommendation of my high school track coach and then attended a doctoral program at U.C.S.B. Subsequent to graduation, worked for the city of Santa Barbara in various capacities and left in 1979 to start a consulting business. Moved to the Santa Ynez Valley in 1988 and started at PHP as CEO in 1995.
Favorite local place: Happy Canyon