Patrick M. O’Neil is professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Medical University of South Carolina, where he is director of the Weight Management Center. He received his BS in economics from Louisiana State University and his MS and Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Georgia. Dr. O’Neil has been professionally involved in obesity since 1977 in numerous clinical, teaching, research and public education roles. He directs the long-standing multidisciplinary MUSC Weight Management Center. His teaching activities include supervision of psychology interns, lectures to medical students and other trainee groups, and invited continuing medical education lectures. He is and has been principal investigator for a large number of externally funded clinical trials of weight-loss agents and interventions. He is the author of more than 100 professional publications, chapters, and presentations, primarily concerning obesity and its management.
Dr. O’Neil is a longstanding active member of The Obesity Society, having served as councilor, vice president, and president. He is a present or former member of the editorial boards of the journals Eating Behaviors, Korean Journal of Obesity, Obesity (formerly Obesity Research), and International Journal of Obesity, and formerly served as associate editor of the journal Surgery for Obesity and Related Diseases. He is a former member of the Committee on Military Nutrition Research of the Institute of Medicine.
Closer to home, Dr. O’Neil served as a member of the Scientific Council of the South Carolina Nutrition Research Consortium throughout its existence. He is a former member and chair of the South Carolina Board of Examiners in Psychology, and past president of the South Carolina Academy of Professional Psychologists. For over nine years, he wrote the popular “Weighing the Choices” column, which appeared every week in Charleston’s Sunday edition of The Post and Courier. In 2015 he was elected mayor of the Town of Sullivan’s Island, having served as a member of Town Council since 2001 and prior to that, member and chair of the Town’s Planning Commission.