Karen Bankston, PhD, MSN, FACHE is an adjunct professor of the College of Nursing at the University of Cincinnati. She is also the president and chief executive officer of KDB and Associates Consulting Service, LLC, a company she founded. Prior to her role as adjunct professor, Dr. Bankston served as associate dean for clinical practice, partnership and community engagement of the College of Nursing at the University of Cincinnati. In that role, she was responsible for developing and maintaining partnerships with nursing and other disciplines, while engaging in community based research focused on student and parental success in the urban core. Dr. Bankston is a widely respected community leader and nurse advocate, having served as the executive director for the Child Poverty Collaborative, senior vice president and chief executive officer for the Drake Center, Inc., and senior vice president for external affairs with the Health Alliance of Greater Cincinnati. She also served as the external affairs liaison to neighborhood councils, the Uptown Consortium, United Way and other community agencies, and oversaw the Health Alliance departments of community health and diversity.
Prior to that she held positions as vice president of operations/chief operating officer and vice president for patient care/chief nursing officer at the University Hospital in Cincinnati. She served as associate dean of clinical services and clinical assistant professor at the University of Cincinnati College of Nursing and Health. She also held nursing and nurse manager positions at Western Reserve Care System in Youngstown, Ohio. She is currently a member of the boards of the Legal Aid Society of Greater Southwest Ohio, the LiveWell Collaborative and The Children’s Home.
She has been involved in the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber’s Agenda 360, Diverse by Design Committee, having served as its chair. She played a role in getting legislation changed for distribution of medication for the charitable pharmacy established by St. Vincent DePaul, and was a member of its founding board. She is founding chair and former member of the board of the Center for Closing the Health Gap and was responsible for the formation of this organization.
Dr. Bankston earned an associate in applied science (AAS) degree from Youngstown State University, a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) and master of Science in nursing (MSN) from Kent State University, and a doctoral degree (PhD) from the University of Cincinnati with a focus on administration and organizational behavior.