From CNA to a Leadership Role, Karen Crook Creates Her Path

As we continue to celebrate North Shore’s incredible nurses this week, we want to highlight Karen Crook, Director of Clinical Services for North Shore Healthcare and how she created her path in healthcare. Karen’s path to becoming a Director of Clinical Services started as a CNA in long-term care in 1998 while she was in high school. Once she graduated high school, we went straight into nursing school. Her goal was to be a nurse practitioner but she fell in love with long-term care because of the residents and their stories.

During nursing school Karen worked the night shift as a CNA and LPN. After nursing school, Karen continued her night shift PRN as an RN and then took a full time position on an OB unit. During this time, she would frequently float to ED or ICU. In 2008, Karen took a full time position in an emergency room and also worked part-time in the ICU and PRN at a local nursing home. In 2010, Karen took a job as a floor nurse at Manor Care East in Green Bay, WI and after a year she was promoted to Assistant Director of Nursing which ended up moving her family with a job transfer with the company in 2012.

In taking the this role, Karen found her passion was not only in long-term care but with quality assurance and process improvement. She became the Director of Nursing at Florence Health Services and enjoyed working with teamwork on process improvement. When the Director of Clinical Services role opened, Karen was honored to not only be considered for it, but that it was still within the North Shore Healthcare family.

“North Shore Healthcare has been an amazing company to work for and has given me great opportunities in the two and half years I have been with them. If you do what you love as your career, you will never work a day of your life. There are so many advancement opportunities within long-term care. If you are truly looking at long-term care, volunteer at a center. The residents will share their stories and it will warm your heart. Remember it is their home and we are their guests.” – Karen Crook