- Nursing vintage equipment
- War medals / badges
Dorothy Ladner graduated from VGH in 1942 and with a Bachelor of Applied Science in nursing from UBC in 1944. After serving in WW II as a medical nurse in the RCAF, she joined the BC Public Health Service. She received a Masters’ in Public Health from the University of Pittsburgh in 1965 and then returned to administrative positions, becoming stationed in Prince George as supervisor in the Northern Interior Unit.
Keenly interested in the welfare of children, she became Executive Director of the Variety Club’s Children’s Treatment Centre in Surrey, but serious head injuries in 1987 from a car accident necessitated her continued care for the remainder of her life. After her death, her sister Edna Ladner endowed the UBC Faculty of Medicine with a memorial fellowship in her name for a graduate student doing research on the treatment of traumatic brain injury.
From 2003 to 2013 Marjorie Laisnes worked as a home care nurse in Arviat (Eskimo Point), which gave her unique insights into the Inuit culture. She recounts the rigours of life in the north, but also the immense personal satisfaction she drew from her work. “The experience taught me patience, to slow down and enjoy the moment, the sunset, the kid’s games. I have learned to be less of a consumer”.
Anna Lam was likely the first Chinese nurse registered in BC. She was the daughter of the Fong-Dickmans, leaders of the Chinese community, and a talented pianist who retained a keen interest in music throughout her life. Her application for nurse training was rejected by four area hospitals; she was finally accepted by King’s Daughters Hospital in Duncan. She graduated in 1929, but her Chinese background made finding employment difficult. In the 1930s she was a pianist for the YWCA aerobics classes, and later took up painting. She was also an enthusiastic fan of the BC Lions.
While she and her family experienced great discrimination in her early life, her family became prominent among the social elite of British Columbia. Her home was a center for dinner parties and musical evenings.
After graduating from the VGH School of Nursing in 1931 and with a BASc(N) from UBC in 1931. Geraldine worked as a public health nurse in Chilliwack. She recalls that “You were on your own and you had to make decisions.” In 1934 she was promoted to supervisor at the Cowichan Health Center on Vancouver Island, and in 1936 joined the newly formed Metropolitan Health Committee in Vancouver. She took a Masters’ of Arts at George Peabody College for Teachers in Nashville, and taught at UBC from 1939 to 1943.
She left nursing in 1943, perhaps to get married, but returned to nursing in 1964 as a public health nurse in Abbotsford and later Haney. She worked extensively with former residents of Riverview (psychiatric) Hospital, helping them to lead more productive and fulfilling lives.
Joan graduated from VGH in 1957 and from UBC with a BSN in 1958. On completion of nursing at UBC, she commenced work at Vernon Jubilee Hospital. Her subsequent postings include the Central Vancouver Island Health Unit, Dawson Creek, Squamish, the Boundary Health Unit, South Okanagan Health Unit and Penticton. Highlights of her career include developing a new prenatal program for BC Public Health nurses, making a movie of birth and breast feeding, and giving each nurse a special area to develop as she saw the need.
Geraldine was born in Thunder Bay, where she graduated from McKellar General Hospital School of Nursing. She was science instructor at this school for two years, then later at the Kamloops RIH School of Nursing, becoming Director of Nursing Education from 1960 to 1974. She became Planning Director in 1975, and worked in administration until her retirement in 1991.
Geraldine was President of RNABC from 1973-1975, and known as an exemplary nursing educator, administrator, and practitioner who made many contributions to the development of nursing in the province. Her numerous awards included the Woman of the Year Award from Kamloops and a commemorative medal from the Queen, both in 1977.
Hilda graduated From St. Paul’s in 1945. She was assigned to the St. Paul’s premature nursery ward, and was one of the first nurses from St. Paul’s to accompany airlift rescues by the RCAF in remote areas of BC. She recalls the work, though often hindered by primitive conditions, as immensely satisfying.
Jessie graduated from VGH in 1941, and later received a BSc from Simmons College in Boston. In 1945 she went as to Mexico a missionary nurse, where she assisted in the opening and operations of a school for Mexican women to be trained as nurses. She spent seventeen years there, often travelling by burro to assist poor Mexican women in giving birth. She also spent two years in Haiti, but most of her latter life was spent nursing in Vancouver. She travelled extensively and contributed to many charitable organizations.
Eleanor Lawson is known as a pioneer of health education in BC, graduating from the Royal Jubilee Hospital in 1946. After a number of positions, mostly in BC, she commenced work at Lions Gate Hospital in 1961, became Director of Education Services until her retirement in 1988. In 1966 she spearheaded the first centralized hospital education department in BC, and advocated the importance of learning and training.
Born in England, Nancy arrived in Canada at the age of fourteen months. After graduating in nursing from VGH in 1932, she took further training in England in midwifery and pediatric care. During WW II she joined the South African Military Nursing Service, serving in both South Africa and Italy.
In 1946 she received a diploma in Public Health and worked in that field for the rest of her career. She also received a Bachelor of Nursing from McGill in 1960 and held a number of supervisory public health positions, the last being Director of Nursing for Greater Victoria. She loved to travel, and was an active volunteer.
Edith Lees received her RN from Vegreville General Hospital in Alberta, a BSc from Incarnate Word College in Texas, and an MSc from Russell Sage College in New York. During and after World War II she served as a military nurse; from 1957 to 1977 she was instructor, supervisor, chief nurse, and educational co-ordinator for the US Army Corps. Along with the editing and publication of 3 books on The Military Nurses of Canada, she regards her military service as the highlight of her nursing career.
Chris received his Nursing Diploma from Vancouver City College in 1972, his Bachelor of Nursing from Dalhousie in 1979, and his Masters’ of Education from UBC in 1984. He has worked extensively with First Nations people, planning, implementing and evaluating a broad range of community health services. Much of this work has been on the West Coast, but he has also provided planning, coordination, and facilitation of formal nursing clinical education and professional development for nurses practicing in Alberta.
Mary Lewis graduated from the Royal Jubilee Hospital in Victoria in 1950, and worked there until 1976 as general duty and then head nurse in the Emergency Dept. A highlight of her career was working as a hostess for the first annual emergency care seminar for nurses. She has been an active member of the alumnae since graduation, and has also volunteered with the Meals on Wheels program.
Clara was born in Revelstoke BC, and in 1939, the third student of Chinese origin to enter VGH; she graduated in 1941, at the top of her class and came first in the provincial RN examinations. Her older sister graduated from the Royal Columbian Hospital School of Nursing and was the first Chinese nurse to graduate from a BC School of Nursing. Clara became supervisor of the Private Ward Pavilion at VGH, and sat on the committee planning Centennial Pavilion. She was put in charge of Medical-Surgical and Emergency nursing and was instrumental in opening the Intensive Care and Coronary units, the first in BC.
Clara was a member of the Board of Trustees of the Richmond Lions Manor, Governor of BC Addiction Research & Rehabilitation Association and member of the Board of RNABC foundation. She was recognized for her outstanding contributions to the Chinese Benevolent Association. Her many awards have included the Queen’s 25th Anniversary Commemorative Medal, the Order of Canada and the Governor General’s Medal. She loved dancing and playing mahjong.
Dorothy Logan was born in New Brunswick, but her family moved to Vancouver, where Dorothy enrolled in the Nursing Program at UBC, graduating from VGH in 1949 and from UBC in 1950. Subsequently, she returned to teach at St. John General Hospital in New Brunswick. In 1956 she married Gordon Logan, and returned to Vancouver to teach at Vancouver General Hospital. She became the Director of Nursing in 1973, a position she held until her retirement in 1986.
Dorothy was active on many committees, including those related to alumnae and scholarship matters. Her awards include a Life Membership in the VGH School of Nursing Alumnae Association, an Honorary Member of the RNABC, and the UBC Nursing Division Award of Distinction. Her integrity and compassion were widely admired; she served as a mentor and role model for many.
Marjory graduated from St Paul’s Hospital School of Nursing in 1926 and married in 1929. She resumed her nursing career in 1948, when the Victorian Order of Nurses was first organized in Richmond. Marjorie started making rounds for the VON in the community and worked either full or part time until her retirement in 1964. She recalls experiences she had in this work from then until 1964 as “the best and happiest in my life”.
Lillian Lum graduated from VGH in 1939 and ran the Venereal Disease Clinic at the Royal Jubilee Hospital in Victoria from 1941 to 1965. She took Public Health Nursing at UBC in 1966 and went on to work at the Saanich Health Department until her retirement in 1980. She was active in the Girl Guide and Boy Scout movements and in many sports. She also travelled extensively, both locally and internationally.
Newspaper obituary from The Province
Also known as “North” (last name).
Margaret was born in Toronto and raised on a ranch in the East Kootenays. She attended the VGH School of Nursing, from which she graduated in 1933. After two years spent working in Port Alice, she joined the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps in 1941 and nursed in military hospitals in England, North Africa and Italy. She was one of the first nurses to administer penicillin, which she recalls as ”brown coloured and it smelled a bit like horse manure”.
After the war she worked at the Vancouver Military Hospital, and in Montreal and Hawaii. She lived briefly in Wells, where she met her husband, and in Quesnel, before they bought a home in Ladner in 1957. With her husband she established and operated three long-term care nursing homes in the Lower Mainland. After her husband died, she moved to White Rock, where she married Mainwaring, who died six months later. In her retirement she curled, lawn bowled, attended dinner dances and enjoyed the occasional glass of sherry. She is a loyal member of the VGH SON Alumnae and attended annual lunches until 2014. She continues to live in her apartment with assistance.
Following Ethel Johns and Mabel Gray, Evelyn Mallory was the third director of UBC’s School of Nursing. She graduated from Winnipeg General in 1925, and obtained a degree in science in 1930, later followed by a Master of Arts degree in 1950. She became Registrar and Educational Advisor to Schools of Nursing for RNABC in 1941, and in 1943 was offered the position of associate professor and head of the nursing department at UBC, a position she held until her retirement in 1967.
Under her direction UBC separated from the Vancouver General Hospital in 1958 to become an independent school. In 1968 she was successful in implementing a Masters’ degree in nursing. She wrote the first extensive history of the UBC School of Nursing.
Evelyn chaired a number of committees, on which she became known for her intelligence and extensive knowledge of nursing. She served as both second and first vice-president of CNA, and as president of RNABC. After her retirement she moved to Vernon to be near her family. The Harriet Evelyn Mallory Memorial Scholarship was established in recognition of her remarkable contribution to nursing.
Agnes Wallace was born and grew up in Scotland, where she received her training at Glasgow Royal Infirmary School of Nursing from 1955 to 1958. She also took a six-month course in midwifery. She immigrated to Canada where she was registered in Ontario in 1961 and in BC in 1969.
Balancing short term positions in gerontological nursing, while raising her three children, Nan later became a Head Nurse at Shaughnessy’s Brock Fahrni Pavilion from 1982 to 1986. She was also Head Nurse at the Lions Gate Hospital (Evergreen House–Extended Care) from 1987 to 1997. She regarded helping residents and family adjusting to extended care as a highlight of her career, and spent much of her time advocating for improved staffing levels. Nan was actively involved in the RNABC and CNA Gerontological Professional Practice Groups and received the RNABC Award of Excellence in Nursing Practice.
Jean Matheson epitomizes the dedicated career nurse of the early twentieth century, especially with her work caring for tuberculosis patients. She graduated from Winnipeg General Hospital in 1899. From 1901 to 1906 she was Matron of the Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops, and in 1907 became the first matron of the new tuberculosis Sanatorium at Tranquille, which she helped make one of the premier provincial tuberculosis hospitals in Canada.
She signed on as a Nursing Sister during World War I with the No. 5 Canadian General Hospital at Salonika (Greece), and later England. For her wartime service she received the Mons Medal, the Victory Medal, the Royal Red Cross and the King George Jubilee Medal. She became Matron of Shaughnessy Military Hospital after the war; many of the returning veterans suffered from tuberculosis and respiratory disorders related to gas warfare. She worked there until her retirement in 1938.
In 1946 a new building at Shaughnessy, built to house veterans returning from WW II with tuberculosis, was named the Jean Matheson Pavilion in her honour.
Kathryn Matusiak’s deeply felt Christian beliefs infuse her nursing. After receiving her BSN from Queens University in 1976, she worked as a staff nurse at Greenland Hospital in Auckland, New Zealand and Children’s Hospital in Ottawa. From 1979 to 1996 she worked as a Community Health Nurse in prevention programs. She has found that Public Health Nursing changed from the very wide general prevention focus in the 1980s to a specialized acute care focus.
She took a Parish Nursing Diploma from Trinity Western in 2000, and Lay Volunteer Chaplain Training in 2002. From 2000 she has been the parish nurse for the First United Church, in White Rock BC, responsible for pastoral care, including hospital and home visiting, coordinating the prayer tree and the Seniors Tea, and taking part in funerals with support for family members. She finds that her training and work has deepened her “understanding of God’s presence in the healing process of body, mind and spirit”.
Katharyn May received her BSN from Duke University, and her MS and DNSc from the University of California, San Francisco. Her varied career includes teaching at the University of California from 1979 to 1987 and Vanderbilt University in Nashville from 1987 to 1994. She was Director of the School of Nursing at UBC from 1994-2000. She left to take the position of Dean of the School of Nursing at Madison, Wisconsin, from which she retired in 2015.
Her publications include Maternal and Neonatal Nursing, and two editions of Comprehensive Maternity Nursing. She has also published numerous articles and chapters in books, as well as presenting papers at conferences. Much of her research relates to issues surrounding childbirth.
After her training at the Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster, Jessie Lee joined the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps and nursed in England. She regarded this work as “the greatest privilege for me”. “The friendships formed a camaraderie over the years [that] has enriched my life greatly”.
While she took a year’s training in obstetrical nursing at McGill after World War II, marriage and living far from any hospitals prevented her from working as a nurse. She has volunteered with hospital auxiliaries in Abbotsford and the Hospice Society, and also visited in hospitals and care homes.
Naomi Allsebrook grew up in the West Kootenays and completed nursing at VGH (1950) and her BScN at UBC (1951). From 1951 to 1953 she was Head Nurse at the TB Willow Chest Centre. After her marriage she moved frequently, and did little nursing. She worked extensively with Girl Guides, and became increasingly involved with East Kootenay local history. From 1968 to 1974 she worked to build and organize the Golden Museum, becoming curator there from 1974 to 1983.
Naomi brought to light nursing history from outside the Lower Mainland and Capital District. She published two books of local history, and was winner of the British Columbia Heritage Award in 1999. She was an active volunteer with Fort Steele, and from 2003 she has been Secretary of the Fort Steele Cemetery Society. In 2010 she was awarded an honorary life membership in the BC History of Nursing Society.
Maria Sorenson was born in Hakkebo, Norway; hard times led her family to immigrate to Prince Rupert so her father could continue life as a fisherman. She completed nursing at VGH in 1944 where she went to work on the children’s ward. Working as superintendent of TB control at Willow Chest led her in 1949 to move to the West Coast Sanatorium in Newfoundland where she became superintendent of nurses.
She returned to Vancouver to work at the children’s hospital and get married, but retired from nursing in the late 1950s. In 1961 she and her husband moved to Sechelt, where her active community volunteer involvement earned her the Good Citizen of Sechelt award in 1978. She died of cancer in 2003.
Biographical information. Author unidentified.
Kari Moore grew up on a farm southwest of Edmonton. She took her nursing training at the University of Alberta Hospital, and years later, in 1981, received her BA from SFU. She worked at a number of different hospitals, mostly in British Columbia, with time out to raise a family. She states that she especially enjoyed work in the OR.
Among her many other hats were terms as Surrey Councillor and President of the Surrey Arts Society. In her later life she reconnected with her Ukrainian roots, and became an active fundraiser and ardent advocate on Ukrainian issues, especially the internment of Ukrainians as enemy aliens during WW I. In 2004 she was awarded the Taras Shevchenko medal by the national Canadian Ukrainian Congress. A poem of hers commemorating the great famine in the Ukraine imposed by Stalin was placed on a plaque on a cairn at the National Memorial Park in Dauphin, Manitoba.
Ruth Morrison was a newspaper reporter in Halifax before entering the Toronto General Hospital; School of Nursing. After a number of jobs in Saskatchewan and the Maritimes, she took her BSN and MPH in nursing at the University of Minnesota. In her subsequent position at UBC, she played a major role in promoting public health nursing in BC by introducing public health nursing into each year of the baccalaureate program. This helped meet the need for more qualified public health nurses, especially in the remoter regions of the province.
Ruth was energetically active on both national and provincial health committees. She was president of the Canadian Association of University Schools of Nursing in the 1950s, and a member of the World Health Organization’s Expert Panel on Nursing in 1951.
Although born on Salt Spring Island BC, in 1942, Rose and her family were interned as Japanese nationals during World War II, and removed to New Denver in BC’s West Kootenays and later to Alberta . In 1954, the family returned to Salt Spring where they faced continuing racism. However, the family survived and established a successful market business, growing vegetables and berries. Rose graduated from VGH School of Nursing in 1959 and obtained a BSN from UBC and Masters’ of Science degrees from McGill University and Boston University. She had a long career at the UBC School of Nursing as an Associate Professor, where she was a highly respected and a successful career as Vice President of Nursing at UBC Health Sciences Centre. In 1994, she became RNABC’s first Consumer Relations Representative. On retirement, Rose returned to Salt Spring.
In 2006 fire destroyed their home, with the loss of many irreplaceable photographs and memorabilia. In 2009 they donated a half acre of their land on Salt Spring Island, valued at $1.2 million, to build the 27-unit Murakami Gardens, Salt Springs’ first affordable housing project. Shortly after, she and her brother had the privilege of meeting with Japan’s Emperor Akhito and Empress Michiko during their historic visit to BC.
Kathy Murphy was born in Trail BC and graduated from VGH in 1965 and received a Bachelor of Nursing from McGill in 1968. After graduating from VGH, she worked there in Surgical Nursing and in 1967 at the Montreal General Hospital. She took a number of courses at UBC and received a Master of Health Sciences from McMaster University in 1978. Kathy worked at St. Paul’s as a surgical instructor and clinical coordinator, and at Richmond General from 1979-1989, as Director of Nursing. She was also a lobbyist for RNABC on the Royal Commission on Health Care in 1990. Kathy married Gordon Murphy in 1982 and was widowed in 1995.
Her many professional and community involvements include the RNABC Chapter and Board, President of the Nurse Administrators’ Association of BC, Board member and Capital Campaign Chair for the RNFBC, VGH School of Nursing Alumnae Association, University Women’s Club of Vancouver, and St. Andrews Wesley United Church. In 1990 she received the RNABC Award of Excellence in Nurse Administration.
Britain’s Royal College of Nursing cited Dr. Mussallem as “Canada’s most distinguished nurse in her time and generation”. She was born to a pioneer family in Prince Rupert and graduated from VGH School of Nursing in 1937. Educated at McGill University and Columbia, she was the first Canadian nurse to earn a doctoral degree in nursing education. From 1962 to 1981 she was executive director of the Canadian Nurses Association. Among her many awards are honorary doctorates from six Canadian universities and appointment as a Companion of the Order of Canada.
During World War II Mussallem served with the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps. After the war she taught and directed the nursing program at the Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing and directed the Pilot Project for Evaluation of Schools of Nursing in Canada which led to major reforms in nursing education. Some of her major publications were crucial in influencing the transfer of nursing education to the mainstream of general post-secondary education.
She was active on over thirty international assignments and missions to improve nursing in third world countries, and served as Board or Committee member or adviser to many national and international organizations. She was a member of the Economic Council of Canada from 1971 to 1980.
Photograph shows Dr. Mussallem (right) on her 90th birthday with Dr. Sally Thorne.
Gwen was born in Saskatoon but took her nurses training at the Royal Columbian School of Nursing in New Westminster. She was one of the first nurses in the Intensive Care Nursery at VGH. In 1972 she moved to Kelowna General Hospital and subsequently to Kamloops, where she worked for 22 years at the Royal Inland Hospital. She completed her nursing degree at the University College of the Cariboo in 1992. Active in her profession, she served as RNABC Member-at-Large and Director .Gwen battled multiple sclerosis for the last ten years of her life, using her illness as a tool for influencing change in the ways that people with this disability were treated. Her interests included photography, camping, and skiing.
Ellen Wheeler was born in Sedley, Sask. and took her nursing training at St. Boniface School of Nursing in Manitoba. She later received a Public Health Nursing certificate from UBC in 1946, and an advanced certificate from UofT in 1966. She served in the South African military from 1941 to 1944, spending some time with them in the Middle East. Most of her later career, from 1959 until her retirement in 1980, was spent in a senior level position with the Boundary Health Unit, where she championed community nursing programs.
Catharine graduated from the Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital in Campbelton, New Brunswick, later receiving a Bachelor of Nursing from McGill University and a Master of Science and Certificate in nurse-midwifery from Columbia University. After a number of nursing positions in Eastern Canada, she worked for the federal Indian Health Service from 1950 to 1976, mostly in isolated northern regions. She describes her Quebec postings in Barochois and Fort George as most significant “in terms of my own professional growth, confidence and spirituality”.
Shirley Kelly took her nursing training at Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital in Orillia and did post-graduate training in operating room techniques and management at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto. She was a military nurse from 1951 to 1961 and an Operating Room supervisor from 1967 to 1973; she worked as an operating room staff nurse and supervisor at South Muskoka Memorial Hospital in Bracebridge, Ontario from 1973 until her retirement in 1988. She describes the highlight of her career as ten years as a military nurse, with ten months in Japan and Korea.
Nan received her RN from VGH in 1933, and spent the next nine years as a general and private duty nurse. After receiving a diploma in public health from UBC ,she spent the next eight years as a public health nurse in Rossland, the Upper Fraser Valley and the Lower Mainland. She received her BSN from UBC in 1954 and spent four years with WHO as a public health nursing consultant in East Pakistan and Iran.
She returned to study for her Masters’ in Nursing at the University of Washington in Seattle. In 1959 she joined the RNABC as Director of Education services and became Executive Director in 1970. For the next eight years she managed the dramatic change that growth and changing concepts in nursing education brought to the profession. Her work was recognized in 1978 with her being awarded the RNABC Award of Merit and an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Victoria.
A well-known educator with a varied career, Dorothy Kergin graduated from the VGH School of Nursing in 1951 and with a BSN from UBC in 1952. She became a public health nurse with the BC government from 1952 – 1963. She received both her MPH and PhD from Ann Arbor Michigan. She was Associate Dean of Health Sciences at McMaster University from 1970-1979, and Director of the School of Nursing at the University of Victoria from 1980-1988. During her tenure there, distance education programs for registered nurses expanded using the newly established Knowledge Network.
Dr. Kergin showed leadership in developing the following: joint appointments between nursing faculty and heath care agencies; the nurse practitioner program; and a collaborative arrangement between the university and the Aga Khan foundation for the establishment of a school of nursing in Pakistan. She received the RNABC Award of Merit in 1986, the Jeanne Mance Award, and the Ethel johns Award.
Margaret Kerr was born in Amherst, Ontario; after qualifying as a teacher in Vancouver she taught two years in Kaslo. She graduated from VGH in 1925 was one of the early graduates (in 1926) from the UBC nursing program. She was a school nurse for 2 years and with the support of a Rockefeller Foundation Scholarship she graduated with a Master of Arts from Columbia University in 1929. Subsequently she taught public health nursing for fourteen years at UBC. During these years, she was active in professional organizations.
In 1944 she was elected President of the RNABC, and in the same year joined the staff of The Canadian Nurse. In her more than twenty years as editor she made this journal a leader in its field; by the time of her retirement it reached 113 countries outside Canada. Margaret’s objective was to further the cause of her profession, to develop a body of well-informed nurses and to encourage them to write so that others might benefit from their experiences.
Contents of Biographical File
Mary Parkinson was born in Blackburn, England, and migrated to Canada in 1911, where her family settled in Esquimalt. She entered nursing school at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Victoria in 1927, initially receiving $5 a month. On graduation she worked privately for various people, marrying in 1935. After marriage she remained active in nursing organizations, and when her children left home, a refresher course in 1965 helped her resume active nursing. She worked in the offices of various doctors and also at the Royal Jubilee Hospital on private duty and at private homes.
Dolores’ education included an RN from Marymount School of Nursing in Sudbury in 1960, followed in 1973 by a BA in Sociology from Laurentian University in the same city. She received her MA in Adult Education from Central Michigan University in 1980, and a further MA from the University of Calgary in 1988. From 1974 she raised her three children as a single parent.
After working as a staff nurse in different hospitals, she became a nurse educator at Oilfields Hospital in Black Diamond, Alberta. From 1990 until her retirement in 2002 she was the Director of the Wellness Hospital at the Peace Arch Hospital. Her many achievements here include the Diabetes Education Program, osteoporosis and breast cancer groups, and a seniors’ substance awareness group. She was nominated for the YWCA Woman of Distinction award.
Born in Revelstoke, Heather moved to Vancouver with her family in 1923. She graduated from UBC with her BA in 1928, and from VGH in nursing in 1930. The next year she received her BASc in nursing and the BC Government Award in Public Health Nursing. Following graduation, she was staff nurse, later supervisor at the Cowichan Health Centre. From 1937 to 1939 she attended the University of Toronto, where she was awarded a Masters in Public Health Nursing.
As BC’s first Director of Public Health Nursing, she enhanced public health through such activities as preschool immunization programs and well-baby clinics. Her monthly newsletter, Public Health Nursing, fostered collegiality and communication among nurses.
In 1945 she joined the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration and was stationed in Greece. On her return the next year she was appointed nurse-in-charge of the Outpatient Department at Shaughnessy Hospital 1946-1971. In her retirement she continued her love of sewing, creating treasured handicrafts for family members and supported many charities.
Born in Middlesex, England, where she received her early education, Helen King came to Canada after World War I, providing escort for a group of orphaned children under the auspices of Dr. Bernardo. She graduated from the VGH School of Nursing in 1927, and worked at the Williams Lake War Memorial Hospital for several years.
In 1935 she became head nurse in maternity at VGH, and then in 1942-1943 enrolled in the teaching and supervision course at the McGill School for Graduate Nurses. She returned to VGH was appointed clinical instructor and then Assistant Director of Nursing in 1945 and Director of Nursing in 1952, where she served until her retirement in 1964. Her interest in and concern for nurses, nursing practice and nursing education was a lifetime commitment. She was an active member of the VGH SON Alumnae Association and served on RNABC committees. A Helen Margaret King Memorial Bursary was established at the Registered Nurses Foundation of BC.
Elinor was born in Copenhagen, and emigrated to Canada where she took nursing at UBC. She nursed at the Royal Columbian Hospital in 1968-1969, for a UBC Family Practice unit from 1969-1972, and as a Public Health Nurse from 1972 to 1980 in Maple Ridge. While she retired from nursing when her first daughter was born, she remained active as a volunteer,
Although she suffered severe discrimination because of her Japanese ancestry, May’s Christian faith and personal values provided a basis for her positive vision of life. While her internment during WW II forced her to leave her nursing training at VGH, she was eventually one of two oriental girls accepted for training at Guelph General Hospital, graduating in 1946. She worked in the Public Health system in Toronto, and received a diploma in Public Health nursing (UofT) and, later, a BSN (UBC) in 1976 She retired from Holy Family Hospital in 1984 as the Assistant Director of Nursing. Her sister, Yasuko Yamazaki, graduated from VGH in 1938., received a diploma in PHN from UBC in 1939 and was the first Japanese public health nurse in Vancouver.
Married to the Reverend Takashi Komiyama, she was also active in the United Church, raising concerns about the acceptance and recognition of all visible minorities. In 1991 she received an honorary Doctor of Divinity from the Vancouver School of Theology at UBC.
Eleanor took her initial nursing training at St. Paul’s Hospital, graduating in 1944 and later received her BSc from UBC and her MA from Columbia University. She worked mainly as an educator, first at St. Paul’s Hospital, and later for the RNABC, the Division of TB Control (Canada) and the New York Medical College (US).
In 1959 she started the first of many contracts with WHO, establishing the first nursing school in Iran. She also continued her role as educator with WHO projects in Sri Lanka, India, Nepal and Burma.
Margaret Johnstone was active in the Canadian National Association of Trained Nurses, serving on numerous committees and championing the elevation of standards for nurses and hospitals. She was a founding member of the BC Hospital Association in 1918, and active in the early days of the Canadian Hospital Association. She helped lay the foundations for the Survey of Nursing Education in Canada.
Born in Nova Scotian, she graduated from Boston City Hospital School of Nursing in 1899. After a decade working in private nursing in the US, she came to Vancouver, where she owned and operated a highly successful 22-bed private Butte Street hospital from 1912 to 1928. From 1925-1927, she was President of the Graduate Nurses Association of BC.
Rose was registered as a BC nurse in 1924 and was a member in good standing of the California State Nurses’ Association for 1926-27
Because of her community activism, Catherine Jensen was known by many as the unofficial mayor of the West End (Vancouver). She opposed development proposals and rezoning, and was a key figure in removing the prostitute trade from the West End. Her efforts helped create the West End Community Centre and Gordon Neighbourhood House. She frequently expressed her views in the West End Times.
In 1937 she graduated from the Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing, and subsequently studied Operating Room Technology in New York. She worked at VGH from 1937-1940 and 1948-1971, where she set up a post-anesthetic room and participated in the major post WW II advances in modern medicine. She was particularly moved by her time at Haro Park Children’s Hospital.
Ethel Johns spent her early life in North Wales, as an adolescent accompanying her parents to the Wabigoon Indian reserve in northern Ontario. She attended the Winnipeg General Hospital Training School for Nurses, and worked at various nursing positions before becoming superintendent of The Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg in 1915.
Attendance at Columbia University in 1914 had convinced her that the goal for nursing education should be affiliation with a university. In 1919, Ethel Johns received a joint appointment as Superintendent of Nurses at VGH and the first Director of the Department of Nursing at UBC, where she implemented a strong, science-based liberal education. Under her guidance, the five year program leading to the Bachelor of Science in Nursing was established. She resigned in 1925 and after some years in the US, she returned to Canada in 1933, where she became editor and business manager of The Canadian Nurse until her retirement in 1944. She received the Agnes Snively Memorial Medal in 1940 and an honorary Doctor of Laws from Mount Allison University in 1948. Her writings include three books, sixteen pamphlets, and more than one hundred articles and editorials. In 2009 she was designated a National Historic Person of Canada.
As a student nurse at VGH, Esther recalls separate buildings for each of several infectious diseases in which both nurses and patients were isolated. Tuberculosis occurred frequently among many she knew. Wards had thirty beds, with a separate ward for “Orientals”. She graduated in nursing from UBC in 1924, and went to work as a public health nurse in Saanich in the School Health program, also doing home nursing. When she married, she ceased nursing. Her nephew Garde Gardom became 26th Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia.
Helen Gemeroy was a leader in developing and expanding the specialty of psychiatric nursing for registered nurses in Canada. After six years of teaching she took general and psychiatric nursing at Ponoka, Alberta. She went on to further education at the Toronto Psychiatric Hospital, McGill University and Sir George Williams, with a Masters’ of Arts from Columbia.
After administrative positions at institutions including the Allen Memorial Institute in Montreal and the Provincial Hospital in Dartmouth, she joined the nursing faculty at McGill in 1954. She moved to Vancouver in 1968 to become Assistant Director of the UBC Health Sciences Center Hospital, where she worked to provide exemplary psychiatric care in an academic environment supportive of the educational needs of students. She received World Health Organization Fellowship Awards in 1966, and completed two WHO consultation contracts in 1967-1968. She was promoted to a professorship at UBC in June 1976.
Janet was a long time member of the HoN group, serving on the Biographical and Archives Committees, and a strong advocate for a permanent archival home. Janet first studied and nursed in pediatrics at St. Joseph’s School of Nursing in Syracuse, NY. She opened the first psychiatric daycare unit in North America at this hospital, where she served as Head Nurse and Supervisor.
She completed a Masters’ of Nursing at UCLA in 1971 as a Psychiatric Clinical Nurse Specialist, and was invited by Dr. Muriel Uprichard to teach at UBC where she remained for 26 years. Here she was involved in the development of a model for nursing, theory development and curriculum building, as well as clinical practice in psychiatry. She was a member of the planning group for the Bladder Care Centre and Regional Programs for the Vancouver Coast Health Region. The Janet Gormick Memorial Scholarship at UBC has been established.
After her graduation from UBC and the Vancouver School of Nursing in 1936, Eleanor worked in various locations in BC, establishing the first public health service in Powell River. In 1945 she obtained a Masters’ of Science in Supervision and Administration from the University of Chicago.
Following her Masters Degree she became second assistant to the Victorian Order of Nurses in Canada, and a nursing instructor at the Metropolitan School of Nursing in Windsor. She returned to BC to become Director of Nursing at the Royal Columbia Hospital from 1949 to 1953.
From 1953 to 1958 she was regional nursing advisor for WHO in Southeast Asia. After her retirement she accepted a commission from WHO in the Maldives. She was also executive director of RNABC from 1960 to 1970. And in this capacity, visited chapters, hospitals and public health centres throughout the province. She supervised construction of a new RNABC building on 12th Avenue in the -1970s, – and saw a growth in membership from 7,700-13,000.
Born in Bulgaria, Stephany studied philosophy and history at the Sorbonne in 1949. She immigrated to the US, and from there to Canada in 1961. She graduated with a BSc from Louisiana State University in 1953, and from UBC in Public Health Nursing in 1968. Her many positions have included adolescent counselling, instructor in nursing, and district nurse for the VON. She has also been a nurse practitioner and Public Health nurse. She regards her internship in the Palliative Care Hospice at Victoria General Hospital in Montreal as a highlight in her career.
In the latter part of her career, especially, she was involved in work, research and teaching in the psychiatric field, especially at UBC and BCIT. From 1977-1985 she instructed in the Psychiatric Nursing program at BCIT, during which time she also lectured in UBC’s SON and other institutions. In 1985-1986 she consulted in Psychiatric and Geriatric Nursing for the WHO in Barbados. From 1989 she instructed in Acute Psychiatric Nursing in BCIT’s RN diploma program. She was also President of RNABC in 1980-1981.
Mabel Gray was born near Brampton and taught school before entering nursing. She enrolled at the Training School for Nurses of the Winnipeg General Hospital in 1902, remaining on staff after graduation. In 1914 she became superintendent and principal of the School of Nursing at Winnipeg General Hospital.
Mabel went on to become Assistant Professor and Head of Nursing at UBC from 1925-1941. With Margaret Kerr she enabled the school to survive during the Depression; for several years the two of them carried the entire teaching load. She was also active in professional organizations, serving as president of the CNA for one year, and of the RNABC from 1933 to 1939.
Known for her contributions in the field of Public Health, Monica Green followed her RN from Vancouver General Hospital in 1939 with a BASc(N) in Public Health Nursing from UBC in 1940. In 1945 she received her Masters’ in Public Health from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor on a Commonwealth Fund of New York scholarship. She was Director of the Public Health Nursing Division for BC’s Provincial Health Dept. from 1948-1976, introducing one of the first post-hospitalization programs in Canada.
Her active involvement in professional and community organizations includes serving on the RNABC Education Committee and on the editorial board of the Canadian Public Health Association. Being appointed Honorary Vice-President of the American Public Health Association was, she states, a highlight of her career. Following her retirement she wrote Through the Years with Public Health Nursing: A History of Public Health Nursing in the Provincial Government Jurisdiction of British Columbia.
Helen Grice received her RN from Toronto East General Hospital in 1944, a gold medalist in her class. She worked in various hospitals in Ontario before coming to Vancouver in 1959. She was assistant registrar and registrar for RNABC from 1963 to 1986. She states that while she is impressed with the knowledge that RNs must now have, they command less respect because of their casual attire.
Jean Griffith was awarded the Agnew Gold Medal in Obstetrical Nursing when she graduated from the Vancouver General Hospital in 1944 and in 1945 received a BASc(N) from UBC. She married and worked as a Public Health Nurse in Saanich from 1945 to 1947. She moved back t6o Vancouver, raised a family, and assisted her forestry professor husband, who had lost his sight from complications related to Diabetes. He died in 1956 and she returned to nursing at VGH School of Nursing as the Student Health Clinic Nurses and later as an instructor teaching gynecology, public health, pediatrics and psychology until her retirement in 1982.
She remained busy in retirement and in 1966 wrote The Religious Aspects of Nursing Care, which assists nurses in providing culturally safe care to those of different religious faiths.
Sheila’s hospitalization for major trauma and post accidental trauma when she was six motivated her to be a nurse. She majored in Teaching and Supervision at the University of Saskatchewan, receiving her RN in 1968 and her BScN with distinction in Teaching and Supervision in 1969. Through her work in three Emergency Departments she became a highly skilled ER nurse.
She became a BC resident in 1988, co-developing the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner Program in Vancouver. She also developed the first SANE program in BC in response to patient care for those who presented in ER as the victim of a sexual assault.
She has held several positions in RNABC. From 1995 she was a member of the International Association of Forensic Nurses.
Cathy’s main specialty is the concerns of postpartum women who have experienced a high risk pregnancy. She graduated from the UBC School of Nursing in 1975 and completed her MSN in 1999. From 1978 until 1998 she taught at the VGH School of Nursing, and subsequently at the UBC School of Nursing. She received the RNABC Award of Excellence in 2000, and has played a major role in establishing a drop in clinic for pregnant women living in UBC housing. Cathy is committed to the UBC School and believes it is important to build connections among Alumni. She successfully networks and socializes with new and older gradates. Because these efforts, in 2005 she was awarded the UBC Alumni Association’s Blyth Eagles Volunteer Leadership Award.
Born in Penticton, Ellis graduated from Baltimore’s John Hopkins School of Nursing in 1915. During WW1, she was matron of the Vancouver Island Military Hospital in Victoria. After positions in Detroit and Toronto, she returned to Vancouver to become Superintendent of Nurses at the Vancouver General Hospital and Principal of the School from 1921 to 1929. In collaboration with Ethel Johns, she helped develop the five-year baccalaureate nursing course at UBC and VGH. She was the 6th president of the Graduate Nurses Association of BC. From 1931 – 1936, she was Director of Nursing at the Winnipeg General Hospital. During WW II she was secretary-treasurer and national emergency adviser for CNA. In 1937 she received a BS from Columbia University, New York and from 1930-1932, was First Vice-President of CNA. For 13 years, she was registrar for the Saskatchewan Registered Nurses Association.
In 1938 she opened the University of Saskatchewan School Of Nursing and was Director of Education. From 1946-1950, she was Professor and Director of the School where she remained until her retirement to Penticton in 1950. She received an honorary degree from the University of Saskatchewan in 1955 and a Centennial Medal in 1967. In 1956 the new nurses’ residence at the University Hospital in Saskatoon, was named Ellis Hall” in her honour.
Grace Fairley was born in 1881 in Scotland, where she was trained as a nurse at Swansea General Hospital before coming to Canada in 1912. After working in Montreal at the Alexandra Hospital, as superintendant of nurses at the Hamilton General Hospital and in 1924, in London Ontario, she came to Vancouver to be Director of Nursing and Principal of the School at Vancouver General Hospital from 1929 until her retirement in 1943. She raised the pre-requisite standards, helped close small training schools, ended menial labour, improved working conditions by introducing the 8-hour shift and increased hours of classroom instruction. She also lobbied for a new School of Nursing Student Residence
Her many administrative positions include vice-president of the American Hospital Association from 1916-1917, president of the RNABC, third vice-president of the International Council of Nurses from 1941-1953, and president of the CNA from 1938-1943. She received the Agnes Snively memorial medal in 1943 and a Centennial Medal in 1949.
Dr. Helen Mussallen, one of her former students, comments that she “saw the nurse’s role extending beyond the hospital, and introduced into her nursing education program many types of clinical experiences that were real innovations at that time”.
Helen Faulkner received her RN in 1937. Most of her work was centered on St. Eugene’s Hospital in Cranbrook, mostly in maternity. From 1968-1981 she worked in the ECU of Cranbrook and District Hospital. For twenty years she was deeply involved with the Saint Eugene’s Hospital alumnae annual dinner.
Margaret graduated from the Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing in 1918. She recalls twelve hour shifts that started at 7 am after the daily service. Student nurses were paid from $6 to $10 a month. One room was kept for Orientals, and in the basement Ward X housed the isolation cases and mental patients. She left to raise a family but returned after WW II. For thirty years she was executive secretary for the over 6,000 member alumnae.
Margaret grew up in Invermere and graduated from St. Eugene’s Hospital in Cranbrook in 1945. She worked at a number of hospitals, including as supervisor of St. Joseph’s Hospital in California. She regrets that nursing has become more technical, with nurses now organizers and managers.
Jean was born in Scotland and in 1935 Jean began her nurses training in infectious diseases at Knightswood Infectious Diseases Hospital in Glasgow and in 1938 started her 3-year General Nursing Training at Glasgow Western Infirmary. She immigrated to Canada in 1951 and began and began her 27 year career at the Vancouver General Hospital mainly as an infectious disease specialist. She had three sisters and two brothers, one of whom was killed in action in WW II. Her awards include a Certificate of Honour from the British Red Cross for her work in smallpox, and the Van Dusen award for her hospice work. She was a life member of the Hospice and the VGH SON Alumnae Association, and a Paul Harris Fellow for the Rotary Club.
During WW II Norma was a Nursing Sister with the Air Force in Europe. After the war she attended UBC, earning her Diploma in Public Health Nursing in 1947. She also earned a certificate in Teaching and Supervision from St. Paul’s, a bachelor’s degree in history (her first love), and a Masters in nursing from Columbia.
Norma initiated a program in nursing at a community college in Kitchener, and a community clinic in Toronto. She was head nurse at Toronto Western Hospital for a year following the war, and later worked in Public Health in North and West Vancouver.
Beth graduated from UBC with a BSN in 1955, and later attended Yale University School of Nursing, where she received an MSN and certification in Nurse Midwifery. She worked as a staff nurse for VON from 1955-1957, and taught at UBC SON from 1957-1965. Most of her later career was in the US, where she worked in various positions, culminating with an Associate Professorship at the Southern Connecticut State University school of Nursing.
In the late 80s she moved back to BC, working in obstetrics at the Richmond General Hospital. She also worked briefly as a Clinical Assistant in Community Health at the UBC School of Nursing and in the Diploma Nursing Program at Kwantlen College. She has been involved with many professional organizations and was a founder and co-ordinator of the East Haven Community Food Bank. She received the BC Historical Society Website Award.
Barbara immigrated from Denmark to Quebec in 1920. From 1937 to 1939 she took a children’s nursing course at Ottawa Children’s Hospital, where she subsequently worked as a nurse. She served in the Canadian Air Force from 1942 to 1945. Her nursing career included nursing care at an Indian reservation near Whitehorse and work in Victoria and Vancouver. From 1966 to 1989 she lived in Burnaby where she taught chair exercises and did massage therapy.
Hazel graduated from nursing at Vancouver General Hospital in 1939. She worked at Vernon Hospital and G.R. Baker. She says I was “just a good bedside nurse [who] loved what I was doing”.
Maude Anderson received her Diploma in Nursing from the Royal Victoria Hospital in Montreal in 1944 and a Bachelor of Nursing from McGill in 1947. From 1947-1953 she taught at the Vancouver General School of Nursing. From 1953 to 1959 she worked with the World Health Organization to modernize health delivery systems and establish schools of nursing in Dacca, Pakistan and Mauritius. She obtained her Masters of Nursing degree from the University of Seattle and from 1961-1966 was Director of Nursing at Nanaimo General Hospital.
She was Director of Nursing at Maple Ridge Hospital from 1973-1980 and active on numerous RNABC committees. In 1989 she was awarded the RNABC Award of Excellence in Nursing Administration for her work as an administrator, consultant, educator, lecturer and conference leader.
Monica Angus practiced as a clinical psychologist from 1981, particularly in forensic psychology. Prior to this she received her RN from St. Paul’s Hospital, M.A.s in Education and psychology, and a Ph.d. from Simon Fraser University in 1978. While she initially worked in pediatrics, she found that after she had children nursing was incompatible with a family life.
Her many activities have included being on the Department of Labour Board of Inquiry, and consultancies including Riverview Mental Hospital, Worker’s Compensation Board, Canada EAP Services Ltd., Corporate Health Consultants. Manulife, and the RCMP. Her committee service has included being both Vice-President and President of RNABC. She has numerous publications and has received a number of awards, including two Alice E. Wilson awards from the Canadian Federation of University Women.
Carolyn Attridge received degrees in nursing, pediatrics, and a Ph.d. in Curriculum and Instruction. She taught nursing at Ryerson Polytechnic, one of three offering the first educational program without any direct link to the traditional practice field of hospital nursing. She joined the School of Nursing program at the University of Victoria in 1981, offering programs that allowed nurses to complete their B.A.s in their own communities. Later on, she became Director of the School of Nursing
Her research included pioneering studies of the quality of nursing working life, and as the principal investigator on the evaluation team that examined the Comox Valley Nursing Center. She was a past president of WRCAUSN and received an Award of Distinction from the RNABC in 1999. She was known for her novel ideas and as a tireless educational innovator.
Patricia Barff was born in Shanghai and was sent to Victoria BC for her schooling. She graduated from the Vancouver General HospitalSchool of Nursing in1931. On graduation she worked first as a pediatric head nurse and then as a night supervisor until 1959. Subsequently she worked for a few years at Cedarhurst, a small private hospital in Surrey BC, although her activity was limited by herRheumatoid Arthritis.
Alice Baumgart graduated from the Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing in 1957 and from University of British Columbia School of Nursing in 1958 and later received a Masters degree from McGill and a Ph.d. from The University of Toronto. She was Dean of Nursing at Queens University from 1977 to 1988 and 1994 to 1997. From 1988 to 1993 she served as Vice-Principal (Human Services), the first woman appointed Vice-Principal in the history of Queens. After retirement she became professor emeritus at Queens.
Baumgart is an internationally known nursing leader who has been a frequent keynote speaker at many conferences. She has published widely on nursing, including the co-editing of Canadian Nursing Faces the Future.She was known as an able and fair administrator with exemplary leadership skills. She received an honorary doctorate from UBC in 1999.
Olga Belecky was born in Hosmer, BC, near Fernie, the daughter of an immigrant couple from Russia. She was initially trained as a teacher, but soon decided to enter nursing. After receiving her training at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver, she became a nursing instructor at St. Eugene’s Hospital in Cranbrook. In 1943 she entered the Poor Claires in Victoria and became Sister Claire, known throughout her life for her deep compassion for the troubled, and dedication to her faith.
Frances Benedict graduated from UBC in 1923 with a B.A. She taught at various schools in BC, also pursuing graduate studies. When her mother died, she studied at St. Paul’s Hospital, achieving the highest marks in the provincial nursing examinations. She stayed on at St. Paul’s as a teacher, later becoming Educational Director.
After nine years she left for nursing positions in Montreal and later Manitoba before returning to British Columbia, where she joined the teaching staff at the Royal Columbian School of Nursing. Here she became Educational Director until her retirement. Students and others remember her for her kindness and understanding.
CD includes two large files on Angela containing scanned material prepared by her husband Ken Berg. These include one file primarily of her high school years. The other is mainly of her St. Paul’s years, including numerous photographs from her St. Paul’s nursing class, poems, photographs of her wedding (1958) and various pamphlets, including Nina Rumen’s “Vancouver’s Monuments to Nursing Sisters”.
Angela Berg was born in Fernie and attended Lord Byng High School, from which she graduated in 1951. She trained at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver and married in 1958. She later worked at the Tom Uphill Memorial Home in Fernie, and also as a staff nurse in China.
Phyllis Bernez trained at the Calgary General Hospital School of Nursing and later received a Certificate in Teaching and Supervision from UBC and a Certificate in Polio Nursing from the Children’s Medical Centre in Boston. She spent much of her early working life in Calgary, but moved to Vancouver in 1978. She was an instructor in Medical Nursing for two years at Vancouver General HospitalSchool of Nursing, Co-ordinator of Rehabilitation Nursing at Holy Family Hospital, and nurse at the A.S.K. Friendship Centre.
She worked at different times in Bermuda and St. Lucia, which she described as among her most memorable working experiences.
Lois Blais was born in North Bay, Ontario. She received her RN Diploma from St. Michael’s Hospital School of Nursing in Toronto in 1959, and in 1967 completed her BA in English and philosophy at UBC. In 1993 she returned to university to enroll in the Masters inNursing program at UBC. Lois worked at St. Paul’s Hospital, Vancouver for most of her career, from 1969 occupying a number of senior administrative positions. She was also Head Nurse for the Cancer Control Agency of British Columbia from 1977-1981.
She was also active on many RNABC nursing committees, including Public Relations, Programs, and Philosophy and Nursing Practice; she was also Director-at-Large for the Board of the RNABC from 1976-1979. She chaired the British Columbia Institute of Technology Med/Surg Advisory Committee from 1986-1988, and later was a member of the same committee. From 1987-1989 she was President of the Vancouver Metropolitan chapter of the RNABC, and later chaired Langara College’s Holistic Health Program Advisory Committee. . She was recognized with an Award of Honour from RNABC in 1994.
During the 80s Blais took a break from her nursing career to assist in building a 36 ft. Wharram Catamaran. From 1981 to 1983 she sailed 15,000 miles off shore, including to Mexico, Hawaii and Micronesia. When she retired in 1999 she joined the History of Nursing group, where she became successively treasurer, vice-president and president, and also chaired the Archives Committee. She also studied energy alternative therapies and was an Integrative Energy Healing Practitioner.
Vivian Blake graduated from Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing in 1950. She was an Assistant Head Nurse in Pediatrics after her graduation from UBC School of Nursing in 1952. From 1953 to 1958 she was an instructor in Anatomy/Physiology at the VGH School of Nursing. She received a life membership in VGH SON Alumnae in 1974. After her marriage in 1958 she retired to be a homemaker. She is active on numerous committees with the VGH SON Alumnae Association.
Marion Boyle grew up in Prince George and graduated fromVancouver General Hospital School of Nursing in 1949 and attended UBC receiving a BSc(N) in 1950. After her graduation she worked for several years in overseas jobs. She worked as a staff nurse from 1959-1976 on a community health nurse pilot project and from 1976 to 1996 for the Vancouver Board of Health.
Breeze graduated from the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto; she received additional training in affiliated schools and Roosevelt Hospital in New York. In 1910 she initiated the school nursing service in Vancouver and in 1923 became Director of Nursing for the Metropolitan Health Committee of Greater Vancouver, a position she held until her death.
She was a charter member of the Graduate Nurses’ Association of BC, becoming elected president in 1921, and president of RNABC from 1921 to 1925. In 1923 she was elected president of the Public Health Nursing Section of the Canadian National Association of Trained Nurses. In 1936, when the Metropolitan Heath Committee of Greater Vancouver was formed, she was named Director of Public Health Nursing.
With J. Mace Andress she was co-author of Health Care for Canadian Schools, which was in use for more than twenty years after her death. In 1925 she introduced a course on health for school children at UBC’s summer school for teachers.
Mrs. Bryce Brown (Sharley P. Wright) was born in Toronto and attended the Farrand Training School for Nurses in Harbor Hospital, Detroit, from which she graduated in 1904. When her roommate Nellie McComb contracted smallpox in the course of her duties,Sharley accompanied her to the “pest house” where she nursed her to recovery.
She moved to New Westminster in 1908 and became that city’s first school nurse. In 1912 she was instrumental in bringing together 68 nurses from Vancouver, Victoria, New Westminster and Kamloops to organize the Graduate Nurses Association of British Columbia, forerunner of the RNABC. She became third president of the Canadian Nurses Association (1914-1917), but retired from active nursing following her marriage in 1915.
James Bullen was the first male nurse to graduate from a BC hospital (St. Paul’s). He states that he developed an interest in medicine during the three years he spent as a corporal in the Canadian Army Medical Corps during the war. He believes that being invalided out of the army has given him more sympathy and understanding of his patients. He was the great grandson of BC’s first doctor, Dr. J.S. Helmcken.
Helen Campbell was born in Medicine Hat. After four years of teaching in one-room schools, she commenced nursing study in 1926 at Vancouver General Hospital. Subsequently she worked at Wrinch Memorial Hospital in Hazelton for five years. From 1937 to 1942 she did private nursing in Vancouver, followed by brief periods at Britannia Beach and Fort Rupert. She returned to Grand Forks in 1943 to nurse her parents and do some work in the local hospital. In 1963 a new hospital was built here, where she became Director of Nursing until her retirement in 1968.
Joyce took her nursing at Vancouver General Hospital, receiving her nursing registration in 1944, ranking second in the Provincial exams. In 1945 she received a diploma in teaching and supervision and in 1967 a diploma in public health nursing, both from UBC. In 1975 she received an Award of Merit for achieving the highest standing in a course in business economics in a diploma in business management.
After various positions at VGH, Joyce became a nursing supervisor at Lions Gate Hospital in 1967, Nursing Director in 1975 and Vice-president of Nursing in 1985. She retired in 1987, but remained active in nursing for some years. Colleagues describe her as empathetic, compassionate, dependable and supportive.
Margaret Campbell graduated from the UBC School of Nursing in 1948. She received her M.S. from Western Reserve University in 1955 and her Phd from Columbia University in 1970, the first UBC graduate on the faculty to receive a doctorate. From 1955 she taught at UBC, and was the most senior faculty member throughout the Muriel Uprichard years.
She chaired a committee to develop a nursing model based on a behavioural systems model which was first introduced in 1973, and was subsequently adopted by the Psychiatric Unit of the UBC Health Sciences Centre Hospital and the G.F. Strong Rehabilitation Centre. From 1978 to 1986 she was coordinator of the MSN program and graduate advisor. In 1987 she received the RNABC’s Award of Excellence in Nursing Education, the same year she completed The UBC Model for Nursing: Directions for Practice, commonly referred to as “the blue book”.
In 1990 she received one of the 75 UBC Alumni Association 75th Anniversary Award Certificates of Merit “for distinction to the University throughout her professional career and professional dedication and exceptional contribution to the community”. Six months following her retirement she was diagnosed with lung cancer, and died of the disease in January 1992.
Mary was born in Scotland, graduating from the Royal Infirmary and Fever Hospital and St. Mary’s Hospital in Greenock, also studying midwifery. In 1911 she emigrated with her mother and two nurse sisters to Canada, living first in Toronto then Vancouver.
She became a school nurse for the Vancouver School Board in 1918 and joined the Metropolitan Health Board in 1936. Other activities included service as president of the RNABC from 1929 to 1933. She provided support for the Seafarers’ depot and was active in the life of the Holy Trinity Anglican Church.
Graduating from VGH in 1947, Joyce went on to VGH OR post graduate work at VGH, a diploma from McGill University in clinical teaching and supervision, and a BSN from UBC in 1972. She worked mostly at VGH in gynecology, OR, SON clinical instructor, and orthopedics.
She describes her greatest career satisfaction “sensing and observing the sense of trust (student learner or patient) to one another and the growth of students’, patients’ readiness to participate in supervised teaching of students.
UBC pin is in envelope in artifact collection.
Following her graduation from UBC with a BA and BASC(N), Pauline became a nursing supervisor with the BC Division of Venereal Disease Control. In 1944 she was appointed an instructor and supervisor of public health nursing field work at UBC. She took her Masters, majoring in pediatrics.
She writes in 1955-56: “Nursing students and educators recognize that the nurse of today needs knowledge and skills that will prepare her for nursing in a world where the key words are change and adjustment.”
1. Letter from niece, Pauline Hodgos, to Rose Murikami, August 9, 1993 with biographical information
2. Transcript of conversation with Rose Murakami, July 12, 1993.
3. Three articles by Capelle:
a. “Why I Chose Nursing”, The Canadian Nurse, October 1947, pp. 777-778
b. “The Nurse and Venereal Disease Control,” The Canadian Nurse, July 1944, pp. 487-489.
c. “Nursing for our Times”, The Slipstick (Engineering Undergraduat Society of UBC), 1956, p. 86.
4. “Interesting people.” Pauline Capelle, The Canadian Nurse, October 1944, p. 793.
Barbara Carroll worked in a number of hospitals throughout BC and Ontario. Her ten years in the Hospital Information Systems Department Kelowna General Hospital led to her designing training programs for every department. She felt inefficiency was causing a lot of wastage, especially because of the lack of shared, integrated health information networks between care-providers between health regions and provincial/federal agencies. “The challenge today is to have the automation and tools available to them to reduce duplication, improve timely communication, and documentation”.
1. Biographical Information Profile
2. Transcript of Oral History interview, October 21, 2005.
3. Paper on Health Care Issues presented to BC’s Health Ministry, January 27, 2007.
Joan Carruthers grew up in Ontario and British Columbia, taking her nursing at the Royal Columbian Hospital from 1943 to 1947. She worked in Grand Forks, at the Women’s College Hospital in Toronto, the Powell River General Hospital, and Weekend Home Nursing for Public Health. She was also involved with Meals on Wheels for thirty years.
After graduating from Normal School in Calgary, Anne spent many of her early years teaching, becoming acting principal of the Armstrong school in 1914. She entered Vancouver General Hospital’s School of Nursing in 1924, graduating in 1927 and receiving the Alison Cummings medal for the highest standard in medical nursing. She became a teacher in the school immediately on graduation, known for her “devotion to duty and unflagging energy”. In 1931 a scholarship allowed her to attend McGill University. After her retirement in 1947 she wrote a history of the VGH School of Nursing, and continued to work part-time at the RNABC office.
Students recall her tremendous sense of humour, the kindly twinkle in her eyes. The Anne Cavers Memorial Scholarship was created in her name.