Jasmin Kiernan, RN
Director of Innovation and Transformation
West Hawaii Community Health Center

Jasmin Kiernan previously was the Director of Nursing and currently is the Director of Innovations and Transformation at West Hawaii Community Health Center (WHCHC). As one of the first WHCHC employees in 2005, she has devoted her energy and passion to achieving the vision and mission of the first Federally Qualified Health Center in Kailua-Kona. She played a key role in building WHCHC’s basic infrastructure, including the development of clinical process flows and the establishment of policies. Her efforts in promoting the patient-centered healthcare home model of care subsequently led to WHCHC achieving Level III recognition for patient-centered care by the National Committee for Quality Assurance.

Ms. Kiernan has worked in health-related fields since graduating from San Francisco State University with a BS in clinical sciences in 1975 and an RN in 1986. As a nurse for the past 30 years, she has worked in critical care and other hospital settings, such as St. Anthony’s Hospital in Denver and Lutheran Exempla Medical Center in Colorado. She also worked as a home hospice nurse for one year. Nursing has provided her with an opportunity to diversify her medical skills and gain exposure to health and social issues in diverse communities.

Ms. Kiernan worked in Africa as a Peace Corps volunteer immediately after college and was assigned to creating a school health program for the Lubombo District in Swaziland, South Africa from 1975-1977. Her Peace Corps work and travel through Africa profoundly affected her view of the world. She served as a board member and medical volunteer for Uplift Internationale (UI) from 1989-2004, a nonprofit organization that provides free cleft lip and palate surgery repair to indigent children in the Philippines. She received the UI Humanitarian Award in 2002.

Ms. Kiernan worked as a volunteer to HIV/AIDS clients for 14 years and served as a board member for the Boulder County AIDS Project. She received the Richard Pedersen Award in 2003 that was named in honor of a hemophiliac client and HIV activist who died of AIDS from a contaminated blood transfusion. She had a close working relationship with Mr. Pedersen prior to his death.

Ms. Kiernan’s professional and volunteer careers reflect her strong interest in front-line, community-level work. Her direct work and experiences with individuals devastated by illness, disfigurement, and social stigma have made a deep impact on her life. She continues to conduct outreach to specific target populations to learn about their specific needs, issues, and challenges as well as to engage these communities in devising solutions and interventions for their identified needs.