New Leadership at Kempe Center

February 22, 2019

After a comprehensive national search to replace the retiring Dr. Desmond Runyan, Dr. Kathryn Wells has emerged as the ideal candidate to fill the top leadership position at the Kempe Center. Effective February 1, 2019, Dr. Wells became the executive director of the Kempe Center for the Prevention and Treatment of Child Abuse and Neglect and the Section Head for Child Abuse and Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. 

Dr. Wells joins the organization from Denver Health where she has been the Medical Director and Team Lead for the Denver Health Clinic at the Family Crisis Center since 2003. She is well known to the Kempe Center extended family having served as a member of the Child Protection Team at Children’s Hospital Colorado since 2003 and as a Clinical Researcher in the Kempe Center for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect since 2013.

Dr. Wells received her medical degree from Creighton University School of Medicine in 1993 where she was recognized with the Outstanding Pediatric Student Award and served as class Vice President. She completed her residency in pediatrics at Creighton–Nebraska Universities Health Foundation Joint Pediatric Residency Program in 1996. From 2001 to 2003, Dr. Wells received fellowship training in Child Abuse and Neglect at the Kempe Center.

Dr. Wells has an ambitious agenda for leading the Kempe Center into the next decade with a focus on building the Center’s international reputation for impactful multidisciplinary, clinically-based research in child abuse prevention and protection. As the new Section Head, Dr. Wells has been entrusted with a support package that will enable targeted growth and further development of the Section’s clinical, research, and academic programs.

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