Jen McKeown, Director of Communications, Avera Health
Jen McKeown serves Avera Health as Director of Communications and Patient Education in Sioux Falls, S.D., overseeing a team that handles patient education, as well as internal communications for physicians, the insurance division, philanthropy, and home health. She is currently surviving crisis communications for the COVID-19 pandemic and is finding new ways to use mobile and intranet during the pandemic. McKeown hails from Carson, Iowa, and graduated summa cum laude from the University of South Dakota with a Bachelor’s degree in Mass Communication and earned a Master’s degree in Strategic Communication from the University of Iowa. She worked in Sioux City, I.A. and Sioux Falls, S.D. as an award-winning television news anchor and reporter before directing communications for the American Heart Association. McKeown’s team at Avera has been awarded two Silver Quills and one Gold Quill by the International Association of Business Communicators, including Silver Quill Best of Show for COVID-19 Communications. At Avera, McKeown directed events and continuing education before returning to communications. She and her husband, Chris, have one son, two cats and a giant puppy.