Christen grew up in Rhode Island. She received her PhD in epidemiology from Brown University and conducted women’s and children’s health services research. After completing her PhD, she moved to the west coast to attend OHSU’s nurse-midwifery program. During her education and training, she was honored for academic and research achievements with numerous scholarships including the Professional Nurse Training Scholarship and a Medicaid Fellowship.
From a very young age, Christen’s grandmother influenced her perspective on women’s health and her career path. Her grandmother shared stories about the history women’s health care and emphasized the importance of listening to one’s own body. This early experience inspired Christen’s passion for delivering the best possible patient care. She most enjoys the opportunity to connect with families and to use her knowledge of medical research to support women in making evidence-based decisions that make sense for them and their families. Her experience includes the full spectrum of women’s health; areas of special interest include adolescent health, well-woman care, gynecology, contraception, obstetric care and menopause. She is also actively involved in national quality improvement efforts with the American College of Nurse-Midwives.
Christen is married with two step-children, two dogs and four cats. She and her family enjoy spending time together enjoying outdoor adventures in Oregon. She also enjoys running, kayaking, cycling and swimming, as well as reading, cooking and knitting.