Warren McKinney

Former CTSI scholar appointed Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute VP for Equity in Research

Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute (HHRI) announced that Warren McKinney, PhD, has been named HHRI’s VP for Equity in Research. In this role, he also joins the HHRI Board of Directors and the institute’s executive leadership team. Hennepin Healthcare is a UMN CTSA hub partner.

Dr. McKinney completed CTSI’s Translational Research and Career Training (TRACT) program as a postdoctoral fellow and then went on to join the Minnesota Learning Health System Mentored Career Development Program, a K12 scholar training program at the University of Minnesota. To Dr. McKinney, CTSI has played a key role in his career:

"I came to the CTSI TL1 program at a critical juncture in my career and training. I was accepted into the program shortly after completing a PhD in sociology and pivoting away from a career in a traditional academic setting. Having limited familiarity with clinical science, the TL1 program introduced me to translational science and multiple possibilities for applying my background in qualitative methods and race and ethnic studies. The workshops, research retreats, and structured approach to mentoring provided me with the support and resources necessary to find my footing in the health services research arena. Similarly, having access to the array of CTSI resources and support from program leaders was essential to developing my professional identity and motivation to even consider a leadership position."

The VP for Equity in Research is a new position at HHRI created to help Hennepin Healthcare and HHRI best meet their shared goal of improving equity in research by investing in a coordinated approach to reduce barriers and facilitate health equity research by engaging with minority communities in a more in-depth manner.

Dr. McKinney will lead the work across the Hennepin Healthcare System to connect efforts to improve health equity, define and drive strategy, and advocate for resources to build equity-focused, community-engaged research. Additionally, he will develop community relationships and collaborate with other researchers to help cultivate community-engaged research projects with various minority communities.

Dr. McKinney completed a combined Master’s degree in African-American Studies and Sociology from Yale University in 2009 and a PhD in sociology from Columbia University in 2018.

His research interests include race and ethnic studies and, most recently, disparities in kidney transplantation. His current position as a Research Investigator at HHRI and an embedded University of Minnesota Learning Health Scholar focuses on creating culturally sensitive resources to support African American transplant candidates. His project merges qualitative and patient-centered methods to inform the development of tools that can supplement patient education and counseling on the newly available hepatitis c positive donor option at the Hennepin Healthcare Kidney Transplant Program.