Pastor Karen was born in Boston, Massachusetts, sharing her early years with four brothers. She has had two great passions in life: Medicine and the Church. Her first passion motivated her to attend the nursing program at the University of Indianapolis. She worked as a nurse in Appalachia, Boston Children's HospitalMedicalCenter, Methadone Maintenance, and college triage. In preparation for medical school, she received a chemistry degree from the University of Massachusetts. She later decided to remain in the field of chemistry, working first as the chemist for the Cambridge Water Department and then later as an environmental manager in the field of Hazardous Waste.
After coming to California, she was deeply moved by the healing ministries of her local parish church. She had a deep conversion experience and decided that she wanted to spend her primary time and energy building up Christian communities of faith. In 1992, she graduated with a Master of Divinity degree from the ChurchDivinitySchool of the Pacific in Berkeley and was ordained to the Sacred Order of Priests in 1993. She has served several Episcopal congregations including Holy Innocents, St. Bartholomew's, St. Luke's, and St. Jude’s. Her passion in ministry is to deepen the faith commitment of a welcoming congregation using her preaching, teaching, pastoral, and cheerleading skills. Her posture is one of inclusivity: "Whoever you are, wherever you are on your journey of faith, you are welcome here!"