About the Board

Carol McKenna


Carol McKenna is a retired health care leader who resides in Hamilton with her family.  Carol retired from Hamilton Health Sciences (HHS) in 2021 after a 35-year career in healthcare.  She received her Bachelor of Social Work Degree from King’s College at Western University in London in 1985 and her Master of Social Work Degree from the University of Toronto in 1988.

In the early part of her career, Carol worked as a Clinical Social Worker in healthcare, working with adult populations such as:  physical rehabilitation (stroke, rheumatic diseases, head injuries, etc.), geriatric patients with chronic diseases, dementia patients with behavioural challenges and patients receiving palliative care. As a clinician, Carol was very dedicated to evidence-based approaches to practice and care.

In 1990, Carol accepted her first formal leadership role as the Manager of Social Work at what was then, St. Peter’s Hospital (SPH) in Hamilton.  In 1997, she was recruited to the role of Clinical Manager of the Palliative Care Program at SPH.  Carol was a pioneer in the development of Palliative Care services at SPH and in the Communities of Hamilton.  Through Carol’s leadership, she grew the Palliative Care Program from a very small 15-bed program into a 60-bed program, within her first 5 years as leader, to match the ever-increasing demand for services. Over her 20 years leading this program, Carol was always a strong advocate for system integration and collaboration of hospice palliative care services across the continuum care.  She played pivotal roles as an active member and eventual Chair of our regional Hospice Palliative Care Network over many years to this end.

Carol spent the last 4 years of her career as the Clinical Manager of Specialized Geriatric Services at HHS. She ran all outpatient Geriatric Clinics for HHS at several sites as well as managing the in-patient Geriatric Rehabilitation Unit, the acute care Geriatric Consultation Teams, the Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP) for delirium prevention and was administrator for the HHS Seniors and Rehabilitation Database. In her last year, she also assumed many special roles within the HHS pandemic response plan.