The former Calgary MP and federal Conservative cabinet minister beat two rivals on the first ballot in delegate voting in Calgary.
Kenney captured 1,113 of the the delgate votes–well ahead of candidates Richard Starke (323) and Byron Nelson (40).
Kenney now plans to meet with the Opposition Wildrose party to work out a process to combine the two parties if members on both sides approve.
Under Alberta rules, parties cannot merge, but must instead surrender their assets and form a new party.
Kenney’s unite-the-right campaign has exposed deep divisions in the PC party, given that just last year members voted overwhelmingly not to merge but to rebuild.
Both of the defeated candidates, Richard Starke and Byron Nelson, ran on promises to keep the PCs going.
The PCs ruled Alberta for four decades prior to their defeat by the NDP in 2015.
With files from the Canadian Press