Skip to Content

Ellen M. Duffield, FAHM, MBA, CHIE

President & CEO, Highmark Wholecare (formerly Gateway Health Plan)

Ellen Duffield is the President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Highmark Wholecare (formerly Gateway Health Plan). As President and CEO, Ellen provides both operational oversight and strategic direction for one of Pennsylvania’s leading managed care organizations. Highmark Wholecare (formerly Gateway Health Plan) is a mission-driven organization that serves more than 360,000 members through its high-quality Medicaid and Medicare health plans focused on delivering whole person care.

Prior to being named President and CEO in the fall of 2021, Ellen served as Highmark Wholecare's Senior Vice President and Chief Operations Officer. In this role, Ellen led an enterprise-wide technology transformation to help Highmark Wholecare scale up for growth. She was responsible for overseeing core operations, including Member Services, Claims, Operational Excellence, Data and Analytics, and Information Technology.

Ellen led Highmark Wholecare’s COVID-19 incident response team efforts, ensuring that the organization was seamlessly prepared to safely support members in a remote work environment. She was also a key figure in the planning and execution of the company’s support for the state’s vaccine rollout.

Ellen has been an advocate for community service, having previously served as the chair for what was a record-breaking year for the 2019 Highmark Wholecare United Way campaign. In addition, she regularly attends associate volunteer events, such as Habitat for Humanity.

Ellen first joined Highmark Wholecare in the spring of 2019 and brought with her more than 30 years of strategic planning and implementation experience from a wide variety of operational roles in health plan and technology solutions. Ellen previously worked at DST Health Solutions, where she served as President. Prior to DST, Ellen held senior leadership positions at Visiant Health Solutions, OptumRx, UnitedHealth Group and Anthem.

Ellen earned her MBA from Penn State University and received her bachelor’s degree from Temple University.