Professor Helen Rees Leahy


Helen Rees Leahy

Helen was diagnosed with Primary Progressive MS in 1997. Being ineligible for any Disease Modifying Treatment (DMT) within the UK National Health Service, she began to explore holistic approaches to managing her condition. She discovered Overcoming MS in 2008 and has followed the programme ever since.

Helen lives in Conwy, a small, medieval town in North Wales. In 2017, she took medical retirement from the University of Manchester where she was a Professor in the Department of Art History and Cultural Practice. As an Emerita Professor, Helen continues to research and teach doctoral students. She also spends time hand-weaving and learning Welsh, the language of her ancestors.

Helen’s specific brief as a trustee of OMS is to be an advocate for people with MS, both within and beyond the OMS organisation. Her aim is to ensure that the knowledge and understanding of people with MS informs every aspect of the work of OMS, and that OMS reflects the diversity of lived experiences within the MS community. In turn, OMS has a role in ensuring that everyone with a diagnosis of MS is supported in learning about the benefits of active self-care in living well with MS.