HBA Philadelphia Member Showcase: A 20-year HBA Supporter With a Passion for Connecting Others | HBA

HBA Philadelphia Member Showcase: A 20-year HBA Supporter With a Passion for Connecting Others

HBA Member Showcase
Showcasing members who are part of HBA’s united force for change

by Maureen Seitz

In honor of April being National Volunteer Month, this edition of the Member Showcase is putting the spotlight on Colleen Burns, a 20-year HBA veteran who is currently serving as global chair of mentoring. Throughout the article you’ll see photos highlighting her volunteering efforts with the HBA and beyond. Click here to learn more about the HBA’s mentoring program.

Colleen Burns has over 20 years of career experience leading companies of all sizes through tremendous change and growth, and she has also been a dedicated HBA member for the same span. Though business today looks quite different than it did 20 years ago, Colleen remains quite passionate about the importance and continuing value of impactful mentoring relationships. In fact, one of Colleen’s favorite quotes as related to mentorship illustrates this powerful point:

“The mediocre mentor tells, the good mentor explains, the superior mentor demonstrates, the greatest mentor inspires.” – Unknown

HBA Board Leadership Event, Dallas, Texas

Colleen’s deep interest in connecting others has been a consistent theme in her illustrious career in healthcare management consulting, advertising, sales and marketing, which began with earning her master’s degree in organizational psychology at Columbia University. This program led Colleen to commercial leadership positions at Guidant, Abbott, Boston Scientific and IMS Health and she has since launched upwards of 30 global brands to healthcare professionals, businesses and consumers.

HBA Global Mentoring Chair Colleen Burns’ professional experience includes healthcare management consulting, advertising, sales and marketing.

Colleen has a particular appreciation for guiding companies and brands to resonate with their customers in meaningful ways, all while building high-performing teams that operate in alignment with an organization’s mission. A self-starter, Colleen ran her own consulting practice for three years which she says, “helped her to reflect on what she excels in and likes the most – helping people”. This experience led Colleen to begin her current role at Syneos Health leading business and market development efforts for their 10+ communications agencies across the US and Europe.  

Outside of the office, Colleen’s enthusiasm for mentorship has led her to serve as global chair of mentoring for the HBA, developing strategy and programming for the more than 1,000 women and men who participate in HBA’s flagship mentoring offering. The HBA mentoring program is one-of-a-kind, bringing together two mentors and four mentees in a mentoring circle. This unique program allows participants the opportunity to get exposed to diverse points of view and build their networks, leaving all with learnings to last a lifetime.

For those who might be interested in pursuing a mentoring relationship but don’t know where to begin, Colleen offers great advice:

“It starts with you. Spend time on self-reflection: Who do you admire personally and professionally? Why do you admire them? What traits do they have or embody that you want to develop and/or incorporate into your life? Once you know what you’re looking to develop, then you can identify and proactively seek out the right person or groups for a purposeful mentor relationship.” Colleen Burns

Colleen has personally had wonderful experiences with mentors and it’s helped her career reach new heights. From mentors, she’s learned that professional advancement is not a ladder but rather it’s about getting diverse skills and experiences. Colleen is proud to have designed a life and career both full of joy and meaning that allow her to be genuinely excited to get out of bed everyday. When she’s not in the office or supporting the HBA, Colleen likes to spend time at the beach in Avalon, NJ and she is an avid bike rider and lover of travel and yoga.

“Reach Out and Read” Event, CHOP South Philadelphia


Maureen Seitz is a new HBA Philadelphia member and a patient-focused marketer. She is currently a consumer marketing associate for oncology at GSK and is dedicated to transforming the patient experience by improving the way brands interact with audiences through content.

Outside of her work at GSK, Maureen carries through her deep interest and passion for patients in her efforts as a community volunteer and a marathon runner.

Connect with Maureen on LinkedIn to follow her early career journey.