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Kimberly Cripe

Kimberly Cripe

Children's Hospital of Orange County (CHOC)

Orange, CA USA

"Stay open-minded and learn from every experience because it’ll make you a better person and a stronger employee. There are lots of disappointments throughout life but the attitude you bring to it is so important."

Career Roadmap

Kimberly's work combines: Non-Profit Organizations, Medicine, and Upholding a Cause and Belief

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Day In The Life

President & CEO

I have the broad-based responsibility for our entire pediatric healthcare enterprise.

Skills & Education

Here's the path I took:

  • High School

  • Bachelor's Degree

    Marketing/Marketing Management, General

    University of Southern California

  • Bachelor's Degree

    Mass Communication/Media Studies

    University of South Florida, St. Petersburg

  • Graduate Degree

    Public Administration

    Golden Gate University

Here's the path I recommend for someone who wants to be a President & CEO:

Bachelor's Degree: Marketing/Marketing Management, General

Bachelor's Degree: Mass Communication/Media Studies

Graduate Degree: Public Administration

Learn more about different paths to this career

Life & Career Milestones

I've taken a lot of twists and turns

  • 1.

    I was fortunate to grow up in a family where both of my parents were college graduates and education was emphasized.

  • 2.

    I loved science and, in college, I was leaning towards going into medicine.

  • 3.

    In undergrad, I changed my major 5 or 6 times and ended up with a degree in mass communications.

  • 4.

    I got married at the end of my junior year, moved to Florida, and graduated from the University of South Florida.

  • 5.

    After graduation, I couldn’t decide between business school or medical school, so I worked for a university community hospital.

  • 6.

    I decided to attend graduate school where I earned my master's degree in public administration. I then got a job at a hospital and worked for the for-profit side of healthcare.

  • 7.

    In that corporate job, I was always traveling, and by then I had started a family, so I wanted to move into a mission-driven organization.

  • 8.

    I got hired at CHOC to help them open their new hospital and I’ve been here since 1991.

Defining Moments

How I responded to discouragement


    Messages from Society in general:

    You are a young woman and a single mother, how are you going to succeed?

  • How I responded:

    I struggled early on to achieve work-life balance and balance being a great family member with time to focus on my career. I’m a career-oriented person and personal development along the way did not come at ideal times. Back in the day, not being taken seriously as a younger woman leader was challenging. If you pick the right kind of profession, it doesn’t feel like work. There’s integrity with what you like to do, and what you're actually getting paid to do.

Experiences and challenges that shaped me

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  • I was divorced, a single parent, and it’s really hard to navigate having a family and having a professional career. I struggled early on to achieve work life balance, and how to be a great family member with time to focus on my career.