Futurist & Lead Arch @ Kaiser Permanente
Mrs. Karen Hurst is a member of Virtual Rehab’s Advisory Board.
Mrs. Karen Hurst is a 20 year experienced technologists whose work has disrupted industries and changed the world as well as lives. She is currently assuming the role of a futurist and lead arch in TRO’s Innovation & Transformation (Healthcare, Research, and Medical Devices) at Kaiser Permanente.
Early in her career, Mrs. Hurst worked at the US Oak Ridge National Labs (ORNL) in Oak Ridge TN. In addition, Mrs. Hurst was one of the youngest and few female US Department of Energy’s Computer Scientists Level 3. While working at ORNL, Mrs. Hurst and her team developed and continued to enhance some of the US government’s most sophisticated laboratory systems. Much of her work required close partnerships with many of the physicists and chemists at ORNL; and some of these same physicists were even the interns of some of the world’s most iconic physicists of the 40s and 50s. These same scientists relied heavily on the laboratory systems, Mrs. Hurst and her team developed to prove theories, conduct research, and analyze field samples from all over the world.
Since many of these laboratory systems were leveraged as the foundation for much of the US Department of Energy’s experiments; the systems often were secured by cryptology code and often written in complex physic related algorithms. Mrs. Hurst’s work at ORNL provided exposure and development opportunities with the world-wide-web (prior to its release to the public) and to the X-10 Supercomputer research.
Upon leaving ORNL, Mrs. Hurst was provided opportunities to architect and deliver some of the world’s largest digital transformations in companies such as Coca-Cola, Great American Financial Group, NCR Teradata, NDCHealth, Warner Brothers, Clorox, HP, Allergan, BMS, and Stewart Title. In parallel to these large scale transformations, Mrs. Hurst delivered AVL-Scientific’s first Mobile Blood Gas Analyzers that was later acquired by Roche, and she delivered one of the first mobile P&C mobile architectures and applications. In 2010, Mrs. Hurst’s team and organization (Stewart Title) won InformationWeek’s Best In Industry Award for their organizational and digital transformation work.
In 2010, Mrs. Hurst joined Microsoft Corporation where she became part of the leadership in the Office of the CTO that reported to Tony Scott (Microsoft’s CIO) at the time. Mrs. Hurst and her team’s primary responsibilities to Microsoft was to transform Microsoft IT into Services, Devices, Cloud and Mobility 1st, “real-time” IT organization. Mrs. Hurst’s second key responsibility was to define a 10-year future state strategy and roadmap for Microsoft’s key Business Platforms that defined which platforms would be in the cloud as well as mobile; and what did the next generation platforms and services looked like beyond cloud and mobility. Mrs. Hurst’s next major task was to onboard Microsoft internally onto cloud and mobility which her team did successfully through services such as the Enterprise Portfolio Management and Connected CRM.
Three and a half years later, Mrs. Hurst’s team changed the corporate wide IT operating model through rationalizing and standardizing the corporate core capabilities, processes, and technology investments. Her team restructured and aligned all corporate functions to be aligned first by business then by product lines to promote scale and real time responsiveness. Finally, with Mrs. Hurst and her team’s achievements in their work on the 10-platform future state strategy and roadmap work; Mrs. Hurst was able to provide enriched technical insights to the various product teams and IT on where the commercial products and services needed to transform as well as insights on the types of technologies that Microsoft should consider to invest in to remain relevant or change the industry. Today, Microsoft is in the top 3 in the world for Cloud; and in the top 2 for product innovation. During Mrs. Hurst’s time at Microsoft, she has won numerous awards for her work including Innovation Excellence Award, Connect the Dots Award, User Experience Award, Security and Innovation Award, etc.
As a result of her innovation and delivery work over the years, Mrs. Hurst was asked to join NextGen Moonshot Programs which was a joint venture company focused on experimental and cutting edge technologies that disrupts and enables tech companies a competitive edge on some of the world’s most challenging and experimental technologies such as an Openstack Security interface for enterprise security traceability and monitoring of IoT; Quantum Computing and Security, and BCI research and technologies.
Not only has Mrs. Hurst led many of the efforts listed above; but she has also dedicated her free time to numerous medical research efforts and foundations by helping them to locate new technologies to assist them in their efforts to identify cures or new treatments to assist patients. Some of the foundations that Mrs. Hurst has been involved in include DMRF, ECAA, PHG International, and the Colon Cancer Network. In addition, Mrs. Hurst and her family have been engaged in many cancer research studies including those at UCLA, Vanderbilt, Duke, OH State, University of NY, and Oak Ridge Associates Universities.