Karren is a long-time Bruin, having graduated from UCLA with a B.A. in History in 1974. She and her husband Howard Welinsky, Senior Vice President of Warner Bros. Distribution who is also a Bruin ('72), were even married on campus. Upon graduation, Karren began a successful career in retail, later becoming an executive in the field before retiring during her own battle with breast cancer. Her personal experience and great compassion have made her a dynamic advocate for women's health and inspired her to participate in a number of organizations.
In addition to serving on the Iris Cantor-Women's Health Executive Advisory Board, Karren is the Co-Chair of the Los Angeles Breast Cancer Alliance. She is a member of Team Survivor which offers exercise and support programs for women with past and present breast cancer diagnoses. Karren was nominated to the post of California Advocate Observer on the Innovative Treatments/ Earlier Detection Committee, which serves the California Breast Cancer Research Program sponsored by the University of California, Office of the President. She is also an advocate for the National Breast Cancer Coalition, including participation in Project LEAD, an extensive four-day program designed to help breast cancer activists influence research and public policy processes.
Karren and her husband are very involved in the Jewish community, including affiliation with the American Technion Society, supporting Technion University in Israel. She is an avid tennis player, enjoys dragon-boat racing, and has run two marathons in Ireland and Italy. She is an active health buff and chocolate lover, which she insists is not an oxymoron. Karren, Howard, and Moishe (their Shar-pei/ Rhodesian puppy) live in Toluca Lake.