Karen S. Barnes, CPNP
BS, UC Berkeley
A true Californian, I was born and raised a few blocks from the ocean in Hermosa Beach before moving to the Bay Area to attend U.C. Berkeley. Combining my love of nature and passion for science, I earned a Bachelor’s degree in Conservation and Resource Studies and worked as an environmental scientist for 10 years. During that time, I had a son, Jackson, and four years later, a little girl, Audrey.
It was then, when I was hesitant to return to work after a brief maternity leave with my daughter, that it hit me – I needed a change. While I loved working, I needed a career that felt more valuable, that was more rewarding, and that made spending my workdays away from my children worth it. Most importantly, I needed a career that involved working with people and still satisfied the scientist in me.
On Thanksgiving Day 2005, while taking a walk with my husband along the Deschutes River in Oregon, he asked me, “If you could do ANYTHING, what would it be?” Perhaps it was the timing, the picturesque setting, or just a true epiphany, but I suddenly knew the answer with absolute certainty – I wanted to be a primary care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner.
With the complete support of my friends and family and inspired by the Nurse Practitioners that had provided care for my family, I set upon my mission immediately and was accepted to UCSF’s Master’s Entry Program in Nursing where I became certified as a registered nurse. I took a position on UCSF Children’s Hospital’s Acute Care Resource Team working as a nurse in all acute care areas of pediatrics including general medicine, surgery, hematology, oncology, and the newborn nursery. While maintaining my position, I completed my master’s degree, earning my certification as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner.
I was thrilled to be offered a position at Bayside Pediatrics and truly feel that I have realized a dream. I am very excited to be part of this wonderful team of clinicians and to provide care to the amazing families that are part of our practice. I look forward to meeting you and your children and together, watching them grow up healthy and happy.