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Karen L. Bowling

Executive VP of Government Affairs for WVU Health System and President & CEO of Princeton Community Hospital

West Virginia University Health System

Karen L. Bowling currently serves as Executive Vice President Government Affairs for West Virginia University Health System (WVU Medicine) and as the President and CEO for Princeton Community Hospital.  Until just recently she was the President and CEO for both Summersville Regional Medical Center and Braxton County Memorial Hospital.

Prior to these positions, Karen was Cabinet Secretary of the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) under Governor Earl Ray Tomblin from 2013 until January of 2017.

Before taking the helm of DHHR, Bowling held a variety of direct care and leadership positions in the health care and education arena. Her career started as an emergency room nurse in a small rural hospital in Wyoming County. She continued to work in acute care and hospital supervision until 1983, when she joined the Wyoming County Board of Education to develop the School Health Program.

Bowling served in a number of management capacities in both the hospital setting and higher education until 1990 when she began working in hospital administration. In 2001, Bowling became the CEO of Raleigh General Hospital in Beckley, West Virginia.

She has served in various leadership roles at the West Virginia Hospital Association, including Chairperson. She was a board member of many not-for-profit organizations, which included the Raleigh County Community Action Association, YMCA of Beckley, and the Beckley Healthright Clinic. She also served as the Chairperson of the Raleigh County Chamber of Commerce.

A native of Mullens, West Virginia, Bowling graduated from Bluefield State College with an Associate Degree in Nursing.  She continued her education at West Virginia University, where she received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master of Science in Primary Healthcare Nursing.  She also earned an MS in Higher Education from Capella University.

Bowling has two grown children and two beautiful granddaughters.

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