Karen Drenkard

Photo of Karen Drenkard




Associate Dean, Clinical Practice and Community Engagement
Associate Professor
GW School of Nursing


Dr. Karen Drenkard is the  Associate Dean, Clinical Practice and Community Engagement at the George Washington University School of Nursing in Washington DC. She leads multiple centers at GW, including Community Partnerships, the Center for Aging and Humanities, the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement and the School of Nursing Global Initiatives work. 

Having come from her role of Chief Nurse at GetWellNetwork, a healthcare technology company addressing patient and family engagement, Dr. Drenkard led the creation of the O’Neil Center, advancing the science of patient and family engagement.  Drenkard is the past Executive Director at the American Nurses Credentialing Center and the Magnet Recognition Program. Prior to her service at ANCC, Drenkard served for 10 years as the chief nurse executive of Inova Health System in Fairfax, Virginia.

She is the immediate Past-President of the Friends of the National Institute for Nursing Research (FNINR); board member of the American Academy of Nursing and serves as the co-chair of the Institute for Nursing Leadership at the American Academy of Nursing. Drenkard serves as an editorial advisor to the Journal of Nursing Administration (JONA) and Nursing Administration Quarterly (NAQ).  She is a member of the Board of Visitors for the University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing, Indiana University School of Nursing, and is a Board of Trustee member for Anne Arundel Medical Center in Annapolis, Maryland.  She is a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing and the National Academies of Practice.

Drenkard received her Ph.D. in nursing administration from George Mason University, a Wharton Nurse Executive Fellow, and a Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellow.