Carmel Valley resident Sonia Rhodes joins Planned Parenthood board


Carmel Valley resident Sonia Rhodes, a leader in experience design in the healthcare industry, recently joined the board of Planned Parenthood of the Pacific Southwest. She will be serving a three-year term on the 27-member board.

Rhodes is the founder and CEO (Chief Executive and Experience Officer) of Sonia Rhodes Experience Design, a consultancy created to guide organizations through the intentional design of meaningful employee and customer experiences. Prior to that she served as the vice president of Customer Strategy, The Sharp Experience & The Sharp University for Sharp HealthCare. Rhodes launched and led The Sharp Experience—an organizational performance improvement initiative designed to transform the healthcare experience for staff, physicians and customers.

As a result of this focused organizational improvement effort, President George W. Bush and Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez awarded Sharp HealthCare as one of five organizations to receive the 2007 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, the nation’s highest Presidential honor for quality and organizational performance excellence.

Planned Parenthood Experience Essentials are based on the successful tenets of The Sharp Experience.

Rhodes’ commitment to women’s reproductive health is longstanding. “I have been an advocate, educator and supporter of reproductive education and rights since college,” says Rhodes. “For the past 25 years I have served in various leadership roles in the not-for-profit health care sector and know the importance of easy access to comprehensive health education and services for women. I am especially eager to support the mission of Planned Parenthood at a time when women’s health care is in the political balance.”

Rhodes is the co-author of “The Complete* Guide to Transforming the Patient Experience” (HCPro, 2009) and an acclaimed national speaker. She is an Emmy Award-winning producer of Sharp HealthCare’s television documentary series, Stories of the Sharp Experience. In 2005 she was one of the first in the nation to be recognized for her individual achievement in the emerging Experience Economy, receiving the Experience Management Achievement (EMA) award.

“I believe my comprehensive knowledge of the healthcare industry — and unique skill set in health care experience design — will support Planned Parenthood of the Pacific Southwest in not only upholding the mission, but also in innovating for the future,” says Rhodes. “My background and experience will lend important insight in how to inspire and hardwire change at Planned Parenthood.”

In addition to her work to transform organizations and experiences, Rhodes serves on the board of Outside the Lens, a unique non-profit devoted to helping youth find their vision and voice through the visual and literary arts. She is also a member of the TED community and is the licensee and curator for TEDxYouth@SanDiego, bringing together 400 high school students to learn from some of the world’s biggest thinkers and doers—all in the spirits of ideas worth sharing.