NAPW Inducts Karen O’Bannon, Executive Director, Dpt. Manager, Family Support Network of Oak Valley Hospital District, Into its VIP Professional Woman of the Year Circle

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Karen O'Bannon is selected for her outstanding leadership and commitment within her profession

I know the power of helping one person. I was helped.

The National Association of Professional Women (NAPW) honors Karen O’Bannon as a 2017-2018 inductee into its VIP Woman of the Year Circle. She is recognized with this prestigious distinction for leadership in healthcare. NAPW is the nation’s leading networking organization exclusively for professional women, boasting more than 850,000 members, a thriving eChapter and over 200 operating Local Chapters.

“I’m pleased to welcome Karen into this exceptional group of professional women,” said NAPW President Star Jones. “Her knowledge and experience in her industry are valuable assets to her company and community.”

Karen O’Bannon has more than 40 years of experience in the healthcare eld and has worked in numerous departments/areas, including out-patient clinic, emergency room, patient registration and physical therapy clinic. But it is the real-life event of dealing with the devastating spinal cord and head injury sustained in a tragic car accident by her first husband that best prepared her for her job as Executive Director, Department Manager of Family Support Network of Oak Valley Hospital District.

What helped Ms. O’Bannon through that difficult period in her life was largely the help, support and compassion of strangers who read about the accident in the paper. “Those cards, those words, the kind gestures all meant a great deal to me and helped me through some desperate times,” she said in a speech she delivered a few years ago to the Oakdale Rotary Group. “I know the power of helping one person. I was helped. And because I chose to turn that devastating event in my life into a positive experience, I know that others can do the same.”

Ms. O’Bannon began as a volunteer at the Family Support Network of Oak Valley Hospital District, a multi-function family resource center that provides outreach to the rural community of Oakdale, CA. She became a part-time Coordinator in 1996 and eventually was named Director of the program in 1999. In her role, she is involved in all aspects of the programs, which include parent support and education, classes in health education, English and citizenship, prenatal education and community outreach. Her responsibilities also include development, grant funding, budget administration, overseeing staff, mentoring and much more.

A few weeks ago, Ms. O’Bannon received her 20-year pin for her work with the Family Support Network. She has received other awards in recognition of her selfless work and is involved in numerous community organizations. Ms. O’Bannon is looking forward to retirement and perhaps consulting so she can share with others the vast expertise and knowledge she has gained throughout her career.

Awards & Accomplishments: Play Park Core Committee-Service Club of the Year, 1994; Soroptimist Woman of Distinction in Health, 1999; Oakdale Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year, 2000; Stanislaus County Outstanding Woman, 2001; Oak Valley Hospital District Employee of the Year, 2002; Family Support Network– Service Group of the Year, 2002; Oakdale Sunrise Rotary–Rotarian of the Year, 2003; United Way Volunteer of the Year Nominee, 2004; Blue Cross of California Community Service Award, 2005; Oakdale Joint Uni ed School District Community Award, 2006 Oakdale Baseball Association Community Service Award, 2006

About NAPW
NAPW’s mission is to provide an exclusive, highly advanced networking forum to successful women executives, professionals and entrepreneurs where they can aspire, connect and achieve. Through innovative resources, unique tools and progressive benefits, professional women interact, exchange ideas, advance their knowledge and empower each other.

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Lisa Mancuso
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