Peoria, Ill.,
15:20 PM

OSF names new colleges of nursing president

Dr. Charlene Aaron begins July 5

Charlene Aaron, PhD, RN, has been named president for Saint Francis Medical Center College of Nursing and Saint Anthony College of Nursing. Her new position begins July 5. 

Dr. Aaron will lead Saint Francis Medical Center College of Nursing in Peoria and Saint Anthony College of Nursing in Rockford. She most recently served as chancellor and professor at HSHS St. John’s College of Nursing in Springfield, Illinois. Dr. Aaron previously worked as an assistant professor at the Mennonite College of Nursing at Illinois State University. She has served in both clinical and educational capacities throughout her career. Dr. Aaron is passionate about nursing care, education, leadership and especially the practice of supporting caregivers of persons with dementia.

“I am looking forward to joining OSF HealthCare, and growing more nurses throughout central and northern Illinois,” said Dr. Aaron. “My passion and experience in nursing care, education and innovation will assist me in meeting this goal, while positively impacting the health care of the people living in these communities. I’m excited to work with all OSF Mission Partners, and interacting with stakeholders within the communities. It’s an exciting time in nursing education to develop the next generation of health care leaders.”

Dr. Aaron earned a Bachelor of Science in nursing from Illinois Wesleyan University. She then earned a Master of Science in Nursing from the Mennonite College of Nursing at Illinois State University. Dr. Aaron went on to earn a PhD in nursing in aging from the University of Iowa.


OSF HealthCare is an integrated health system owned and operated by The Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis, headquartered in Peoria, Illinois. OSF HealthCare employs nearly 24,000 Mission Partners in 150 locations, including 15 hospitals – 10 acute care, five critical access – with 2,098 licensed beds, and two colleges of nursing throughout Illinois and Michigan. The OSF HealthCare physician network employs more than 1,500 primary care, specialist and advanced practice providers. OSF HealthCare, through OSF Home Care Services, operates an extensive network of home health and hospice services. It also owns Pointcore, Inc., comprised of health care-related businesses; OSF HealthCare Foundation, the philanthropic arm for the organization; and OSF Ventures, which provides investment capital for promising health care innovation startups. More at