Jena Abernathy was fast-tracked very early in her career and has over 25 years of senior level executive management experience. Her entrepreneurial and creative spirit — along with seasoned judgment — helped her achieve success in a variety of executive roles in various settings including finance, manufacturing, and distribution. Today she is a nationally recognized leader in human capital management, performance excellence and organizational development, and a passionate advocate for mentoring women and minorities in executive and governing board roles. As a young executive, Jena served as vice president, human resources and administration for a publicly-traded financial institution. She was instrumental in leading the company’s reorganization, resulting in a financial turnaround impacting shareholder value.
Later at General Medical Corporation, Jena held a seat on the supply company’s Executive Operating Board, leading a total reorganization and spearheading quality and customer service initiatives. Jena subsequently held senior level positions at Fisher Scientific International, a manufacturer and distributor of laboratory supplies and services, and Premier, Inc., a national alliance of 2,300 hospitals and health systems. As chief administrative officer, Jena led comprehensive human resources and administrative services, including communications, public relations and marketing. In addition, Jena served as executive lead when Premier received the 2006 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.
Jena is senior partner & managing partner/chair of Board Services. Jena coaches candidates and assists clients in identifying board members, CEOs, presidents and other c-suite leaders for hospitals, health systems, academic medical centers, and foundations, as well as manufacturing, distribution and healthcare corporations. She is a noted leadership expert, author and frequent speaker, and has been quoted in Becker’s Hospital Review, CBS MoneyWatch, CNN.com, Fortune and many other leading media outlets, as well as featured in Warren Bennis’ Leadership Excellence Magazine. She is a member of AccessCircles, a leading business network for women, and has served on the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra board and other not-for-profit organizations. Most recently, Jena is the author of The Inequality Equalizer: Want It, Claim It, Own It - and Maximize Your Career Success, published in June 2016 by Ankerwycke/American Bar Association.
Jena serves on Witt/Kieffer's board of directors.
B.S., Business Administration, University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg, VA