Turning Challenges into Leadership Opportunities


The IHF’s Women in Leadership Forum aims to build an international community of women leaders by raising global recognition of their skills and talents, as well as their impact across the healthcare sector. The Forum also aims to support female leaders in achieving their highest potential by offering them practical solutions to overcome issues and challenges that women are facing in the workplace.


We invite all female healthcare leaders and managers working within health systems across the IHF’s membership to join this virtual event on 1 September, co-hosted by Alumni Global, which follows on from the theme of this year’s International Women’s Day: ‘break the bias’. Hear personal stories from successful female leaders on how they have turned challenges in their workplace environments into leadership opportunities.


Chaired by Deborah J. Bowen, IHF President and CEO/President of the American College of Healthcare Executives, this event will feature a mix of live presentations and panel discussion.


Attendees will hear personal stories from female leaders working about their leadership journeys, and gain a better understanding about the actions needed to build a more equitable, inclusive healthcare sector.



Deborah J. Bowen, FACHE, CAE

IHF President and CEO/President of the American College of Healthcare Executives, United States


Deborah is president and CEO of the American College of Healthcare Executives, an international professional society of more than 40,000 healthcare executives who lead hospitals, healthcare systems and other healthcare organizations. Alongside this role, she serves on the board of the Institute for Diversity in Health Management. 


 In November 2015, Ms Bowen was nominated by the American Hospital Association, which is an IHF Full Member, to become their representative on the IHF Governing Council. After a successful mandate,  Ms Bowen was elected as IHF President Designate in 2019 and became IHF President in November 2021. 


Ms Bowen is board certified in healthcare management and a Fellow of both ACHE and the American Society of Association Executives. Additionally, she is a Baldrige Executive Fellow and a Certified Association Executive. An experienced and dedicated healthcare industry leader, Ms Bowen was recognised by Modern Healthcare as one of the Top 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare and one of the Top 25 Women in Healthcare. 

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Dr Jackie Schleifer Taylor

President and CEO, London Health Sciences Centre (Canada)


As President and CEO of London Health Sciences Centre, Dr. Jackie Schleifer Taylor leads one of Canada’s largest research-intensive teaching hospitals. Guided by values of quality, equity and accountability, she has established herself as a globally renowned change agent and system innovator.


Dr. Schleifer Taylor is a registered physiotherapist who is deeply rooted in her clinical and academic background. She has more than 25 years of experience in hospital leadership with a proven track record in strategy execution. As a policy expert, she has provided expert advice to governments on subjects that include pandemic response, maternal and child health, quality, health human resources and interprofessional care.


An active member of the Canadian College of Health Leaders, Dr. Schleifer Taylor holds a Certified Health Executive (CHE) designation from the organization. Recognizing the importance of volunteerism, she has served on the boards of service provider organizations, government advisory committees and international think tanks. She is an active mentor to students and emerging leaders seeking a greater understanding of health sector business and operations management.


Owen Francis

Director, Higher Education & Group Inclusion Lead, Alumni Global


Owen leads the Higher Education division at Alumni Global, delivering executive search, diversity and inclusion and consulting services to universities, research institutes, and other education-related organizations across the public and private sectors, nationally and internationally.


He is also the Group Diversity and Inclusion Lead, developing thought leadership, events and consultancy around diversity and inclusion best practice for clients and candidates across a range of sectors and geographies.


Prior to joining Alumni Global in 2017, Owen was a Consultant in the Charities and Social Enterprise Practice of an award-winning medium sized executive search and interim management firm, and before this was a Head of Research for a boutique executive search and interim consultancy practice based in the City, where he supported the Chief Executive in the search and selection of senior individuals in the financial services, technology and healthcare sectors.


Frank McKenna

Global Managing Director, Healthcare & Higher Education, Alumni Global


Frank is Global Managing Director for Alumni Global’s Healthcare & Higher Education practice, with significant and recent experience in North America, Australia & New Zealand, Europe and the GCC/Middle East regions.


Frank’s career started within government at the UK Department of Education & Science where he worked in policy development for the country’s national examination system. He then held a series of senior management roles over a 10 year period at the British Medical Association ranging from Head of Negotiations & Policy for the UK’s 33,000 GPs to Head of Private Practice & Professional Fees which had responsibility for national negotiations with UK government departments, the legal profession and private sector employers on non-NHS related activities for 100,000 UK doctors.


Frank has been an Executive Director of Human Resources, Communications & Organisational Development at two separate Acute University Hospitals in London within the UK National Health Service before joining Alumni Global in 2006.

With an extensive background in healthcare policy, negotiations and professional services he has significant global experience of appointing CEOs, Chairs and Board level Executive Directors, Pro-Vice Chancellors, Deans, Senior Academics and Senior Medical & Clinical staff in a range of settings and systems.


He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine and, between 2011-2017, was External Governance Advisor to the Royal College of Nursing, Europe’s largest professional membership body.


We at the International Hospital Federation would like to thank our partner, Alumni Global, for their contribution to organizing this event.