Crowder College Foundation announces 2021 Crowder Alumnus of the Year

Joplin, MO – Jeanee’ Kennedy, Chief Nursing Officer at Freeman Health System in Joplin, has been named the 2021 Crowder College Alumnus of the Year by the Crowder College Foundation.

Kennedy graduated from Crowder with her associate’s degree in nursing in 2009. She has since earned her Bachelor of Science and Master of Business Administration degrees from American Sentinel University in Aurora, Colo.


“After a year in which our area, the nation and the world has been struggling to overcome a pandemic, the Foundation Board looked to recognize one of our nursing students,” said Laurie Delano, Foundation Board president. “Our committee was impressed with Jeanee’ and what she has accomplished.”


Paula Baker, Freeman President and Chief Executive Officer, said this about Jeanee’:

“Jeanee’ has done a wonderful job in helping Freeman manage a global pandemic that hit our local communities very hard. She has been instrumental in the vaccine program as well as managing nursing services for our COVID patients. Her commitment to taking care of patients never wavered, even in spite of difficult circumstances and exhausting hours that she invested.”

Kennedy started at Freeman as a Staff Registered Nurse in December 2009. She is currently the Chief Nursing Officer at Freeman and previously served as Vice President of Nursing Services. Prior to becoming Vice President of Nursing Services, she was an Administrative Director of Regulatory Compliance for Freeman.


Kennedy received her Associate’s Degree in nursing from Crowder College and is certified as a Registered Nurse. She attended American Sentinel University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing along with a Master of Business Administration with an emphasis in health care.


Jeanee’ served as CNO at Premier Surgical Institute in Galena, Kan., from 2016 to 2018.


Recently, Kennedy was appointed by the governor to the Missouri State Board of Nursing. In 2016, Jeanee’ was named one of 15 Under 40 in the Joplin Regional Business Journal.

The award is presented annually to a Crowder alumnus who has demonstrated success in their professional career.