An aboriginal from Kingcome Inlet, Tania has survived racism and discrimination to become a specialist in Emergency and Aboriginal Health. She has been a RN in BC for 12 years and received a Masters degree in the Nurse Practitioner program at UBC in 2010 and is active in the ARNBC, becoming president elect in 2015 and president 2017-2019. Her goal is to empower nurses to use their voice, and work together to benefit both the nursing family and the health of all British Columbians. She has played a key role in advancing the Association’s work around aboriginal health nursing. She currently works full time as a general duty nurse in her father’s rural village Alert Bay BC.
Jackie graduated from the Vancouver General Hospital SON in 1957.After obtaining her BSN from UBC in 1958, Jacquie worked on a surgical ward at VGH, advancing to the position of head nurse. She later moved on to head nursing roles in the ICU at Royal Columbia Hospital and was an instructor at UBC from 1962 to 1965. She received her Masters from Case Western in 1967 and her doctorate from New York University in 1975.
As a researcher Jacquie blazed a trail for many later nurses. She was influential in research that led to improved care in neonatal nurseries, including the importance of premature babies having opportunities for bonding with their parents and the effects of auditory stimulation on their development.
“Fran” is best known as becoming, in 1972, the first woman to swim the 21-mile Georgia Strait connecting Vancouver Island with the Lower Mainland. A plaque honoring this achievement is erected on Granville Island on the Trans Canada Trail.
She graduated from Vancouver General Hospital SON in 1963, winning the award for the highest standing in bedside nursing in a class of more than 170. She worked in Public Health in both BC and Ontario and taught Maternity Child Health at a Toronto Hospital.
Rob Calnan was president of the RNABC from 1997-1999, and subsequently served for a number of years as President of the Canadian Nurses Association. He graduated from BCITs nursing program and later received a BSN in 1987 and a M.Ed. in 1990 from the University of Victoria. He has worked as a nurse in Haiti and is a strong advocate for the values of equity and justice. He has worked at Camosun College as a member of the University of Victoria Collaborative Partnership and also maintained a clinical practice in the Intensive Care Unit at Victoria General Hospital. In 2018 is Coordinator of Site Operations for Victoria General & Cowichan District Hospital.
Gertrude was born in Australia where she trained as a nurse to help ease her family’s financial burden occasioned by her father’s death., graduating from Sydney Hospital in 1902. She travelled to Canada where she worked at the Vancouver City Hospital. Later she moved to New Zealand with her husband, then back to Canada in 1921. She raised a total of seven children.
From 1998, Stephanie was employed as a professor in the Bachelor of Science in the Nursing program at Vancouver Island University. She had graduated from the Royal Jubilee School of Nursing in 1973, and completed a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master of Arts and Leadership and Training. She also spent 27 years as a Nursing Officer with the Naval Reserve, culminating with being interim Commanding Officer of HMCS Carleton in Ottawa.
Muriel graduated from Toronto’s Wellesley Hospital in 1941. Until 1943 she did industrial nursing at General Electric, and in 1946 was sent to India as a missionary nurse for the United Church. She remained nursing in India for most of the time until her retirement in 1975. Following her return to Canada, from 1977 to 1983 she worked at UBC Hospital’s Purdy Pavilion.
Nicknamed “Torchy” because of her red hair and outgoing personality, Grace Adamson graduated from Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing in 1950 and received her BSN from UBC in 1951. She taught at Vancouver General Hospital and worked as a VON in Vancouver’s downtown east side in the 1950s. After her marriage she left active nursing, but worked as editor and then co-editor of the VGH Alumnae newsletter from 1952 to 1992.
Her daughter remembers that her mother taught her “to care in ways that advocate for social justice, change, and transformation.” After her death the Grace Torchy Stewart Adamson Memorial Scholarship was established to honour her dedication to nursing education.
Beryl Albee was born and raised in Edmonton, graduating in nursing from the Vancouver General Hospital in 1944. She was an active volunteer in her Nanaimo community, serving for two years as president of each of the Chemainus chapter of RNABC and the Nanaimo chapter. She became Governor of the Nanaimo Regional Hospital Board and a member of the Building Committee for a new hospital. She was also Chair of the Health Division for the National Council of Women.
She served from 1972 to 1987 on the Board of Malaspina College, and ten years on the BC Association of Colleges. She was the first administrator and Director of Care for the long term care facility Kiwanis Lodge. Malaspina University College awarded her an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree by in May 2000.
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. Biographical information
3. Transcript of conversation with Rose Murakami, July 12, 1993.
4. 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 Undergraduate 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.
Cawston graduated from Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing in 1939 and took a diploma course in Clinical Supervision at UBC in 1954-55, receiving her BSN from UBC in 1960. In 1965 she received her Masters in Nursing from the University of Washington in Seattle.
From 1940 she worked in various positions at VGH—staff nurse, assistant head nurse, assistant night supervisor, head nurse, building supervisor and special service nurse in the division of VD control. She became a nursing instructor at UBC from 1953, and was appointed to the UBC faculty in 1960, becoming Assistant Professor in 1966.
1. Biographical notes
2. Employment reviews, 1960-1979
3. Dinner for Cawston on the occasion of her retirement.
4. 2 photographs, one original, one photocopied.
Anna Krapp grew up on a farm in northern Alberta’s Peace country. She received her RN from the St. Eugene School of Nursing in Cranbrook, her BSN from Seattle University in Seattle, and her MSW from St. Patrick’s College at the University of Ottawa. She worked as a nurse at St. Paul’s Hospital, and was administrator of the Father Lacombe Nursing Home in Calgary, Superior of Providence Creche in Calgary, and Director of Catholic Social Services in Edmonton.
The highlight of her career was six months as a pediatric nurse in the Albert Schweitzer Hospital at Deschapelles in Haiti. She was a member of the Sisters of Providence of Montreal throughout her adult life, being Provincial Superior in the Canadian West from 1976 to 1982.
1. Biographical Information Profile.
2. Letter to Helen Shore, March 7, 1994.
3. In Memoriam. From B.C. Catholic, November 19, 1995.
Christine Charter obtained her academic education in England and New Brunswick. Graduated from the Saint John General Hospital School of Nursing. Took a post graduate course in obstetrics at the Royal Victoria Hospital, Montreal and received a diploma in public health nursing at the School of Nursing, Toronto University. She moved to Vancouver and was director of the Vancouver branch of the Victorian Order of Nurses. During World War II in Nova Scotia she helped set up emergency treatment in the basement of a school for injured crew attacked by German U-boats. She was transferred to Toronto in 1942 and Vancouver in 1944.
She introduced many innovative home nursing programs, hiring the Order’s first male nurse to enable eleven male quadriplegic patients to move from hospital to a home setting. She added physio and occupational therapy services, and also set up Vancouver’s Meals on Wheels program.
Elizabeth trained as a nurse at the Swift Current Hospital, moving with her husband John Clark to Vancouver in the 1940s where she worked at the Hospital for Sick and Crippled Children. In 1948 she wrote the song that made her famous, “There’s a Bluebird on Your Windowsill” for a young patient who noticed a sparrow hopping on the windowsill by his bed.
The song was recorded by CKNW’s Rhythm Pals, Don Murphy and then by Wilf Carter, Doris Day, Tex Williams, Bing Crosby and numerous others. It became the first Canadian song to sell a million copies, with all royalties donated to children’s hospitals. In 1950 it was used as the theme song for the March of Dimes national fund-raising campaign, and in 1986 in the Canadian feature My American Cousin. She died of a stroke in 1960 when only 49.
Elizabeth Clarke wrote the song “There’s Bluebird on My Windowsill” while working as a nurse at the Children’s Hospital in Vancouver. She generously gave royalties to the hospital.
Alice Hamer was born in England. Though an Anglican, in 1911 she converted to Catholicism and entered the Sisters of Providence at the Novitiate in Vancouver. She graduated from the St. Paul’s Hospital School of Nursing in 1919 and also received a Diploma as a Laboratory Technician in 1925 and a Bachelor of Science degree from Seattle University in 1937. She served as Director of St. Paul’s Hospital School of Nursing for fifteen years, and President of RNABC from 1949 to 1951.
In 1953 she left to take up various administrative positions at hospitals in Saskatchewan and Alberta, retiring in 1962. She was known for her “kindness and sensitivity, her ability to overlook faults and failings, and her adeptness at stressing the finer points in people’s characters and personalities”
A member of the Victorian Order of Nurses, Crane graduated from the Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing in 1950 and with a BSN from UBC in 1951. She received her Masters degree in public health from the University of Michigan and in 1961 was appointed consultant with the division in Victoria, given special responsibility for developing the BC home care program. She became director of nursing for the BC Health Department in 1975, initiating many research projects.
Dr. Lyle Creelman helped countries around the world build their health care systems. She joined the UN Relief and Rehabilitation Administration in England in 1944, and in 1954 became Chief Nursing Officer of the World Health Organization. On her retirement ICN described her as having “achieved more for nursing through the world than any other nurse of her time”. As Glennis Zilm says “There’s a little story of nurses standing at the bottom of a river pulling bodies out. Lyle went up the river to find out who was throwing them in”.
Lyle was born in Nova Scotia, but moved to British Columbia to attend Vancouver Normal School. She graduated from Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing in 1936 and obtained her BASc (N) from UBC in 1936. In 1939 she graduated with a Masters’ degree in Nursing from Teachers College at Columbia University in New York, which she attended on a Rockefeller Fellowship. In the late 1930s and 1940s she worked for the Metropolitan Health Department of Vancouver.
After her retirement, the WHO commissioned her and a medical officer of health to participate in a study of maternal and child health services in selected countries in southeast Asia. Her many awards include an Honorary Doctor of Laws from UNB (1963), the Canada Centennial Medal (1967), Order of Canada (1971) and Honorary Doctor of Science Degree from UBC (1992).
“Critch” moved with her family from Prince Albert to Vancouver in 1921. She graduated from Vancouver General Hospital in 1933 and worked at various hospitals in towns throughout BC. In 1963 she became head nurse receptionist at Britannia Beach, where she has been active with First Aid teams.
Following Shirley’s graduation from VGH in 1955, she began work as a staff nurse at Surrey Memorial Hospital. She was promoted to Head Nurse and worked to develop standards of care and quality assurance programs. When she died of cancer at the age of 45, the newly purchased King George Private Hospital was named the Shirley Dean Pavilion in her honour.
1. Article from History of Nursing News, June 2004.
2. Graduation photograph, 1955.
3. Photograph of the Shirley Dean Pavilion at the Surrey Memorial Hospital.
See Oral History files, Fonds 18, Series 3, Subseries 8, AUOH25
In 1993 Joan established the Mabel and Henry Doree Family Memorial Bursary in honour of her parents. She credits them with enabling her to become a nurse by giving her the financial support she needed to enter St. Paul’s Hospital School of Nursing in Saskatoon in 1937. She later received her BA from UBC and a Masters in Public Health from the University of California in Berkeley.
After graduation she worked as a staff nurse in Prelate, Lethbridge, and VGH. During the war she served with the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps at the Basingstoke Neurological and Plastic Surgery Hospital in Hampshire, England. After the war she worked in Vancouver at Shaughnessy Hospital, St. Paul’s, the Vancouver Health Department, and for the Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children. Joan is a founding member of the Registered Nurses Foundation of British Columbia and served two terms as Director on the RNABC. After her retirement she spent ten years as a volunteer tutor at the Carnegie Community Center.
See Oral History Files, fonds 18, Series 3, Subseries 8, AUOH25
Jean Dorgan was born in New Westminster and graduated from Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing in 1934 and with a BASc(N) from UBC also in 1934. After several years working in Vancouver’s East End, Jean enlisted in the Royal Canadian Medical Corps leaving in 1943 as a member of the staff of a 200-bed casualty clearing hospital. After serving in Italy, they were transferred to Holland until the end of the war.
After the war she attended the University of Toronto School of Social Work, from which she graduated with a Masters in Social Work in 1949. Following graduation she was employed as a field work supervisor in the Toronto Welfare Department. From 1956 until her retirement in 1975 she worked in various departments as a vocational rehabilitation consultant.
See Oral History files, Fonds 18, Series 3, Subseries 8
Florence Dougherty grew up in Roblin, Manitoba, graduating from the St. Boniface Hospital School of Nursing in 1938. She subsequently worked as a general duty nurse at St. Luke’s Hospital in St. Paul, Minnesota and the Good Samaritan Hospital in Portland, Oregon. From 1943 to 1946 she was a nursing sister in the RCMC, an experience she describes as the most interesting and satisfying of her nursing career. After the war, she moved to Vancouver where she was Educational Director at Shaughnessy Hospital from 1947 to 1968 and Assistant Secretary of Nursing from 1968 to 1973.
Contents of Biographical File
Mildred graduated from Calgary General Hospital in 1952. After brief times nursing at the Children’s Hospital in Calgary and Mt. Joseph’s Hospital in London Ontario, she moved to Germany with her RCAF husband. Here she set up the first maternity ward and nursery at the Canadian base hospital.
After returning to Canada she worked in a French Hospital in Ottawa, but left nursing in 1959 to raise her four children. In 1977 she returned to nursing, working in the Cartier House Care Centre in Coquitlam, becoming head nurse. She retired from full-time nursing at the age of 69, but continued pursuing her interest as a seamstress.
Biographical information profile
Signed biographical agreement form
Obituary, The Province, August 26, 2016.
2 photographs (coloured)
Letter from Ethel Warbinek to Wendy Hawkins (daughter) and from Hawkins to Warbinek (November 2, 2016)
See also artifact collection
Mary was born in Victoria, graduating from the Royal Jubilee Hospital School of Nursing in 1951. In 1961 she completed her post Grad course in Psychiatric Nursing at Allen Memorial Institute in Montreal, where she served as a Staff Nurse, Head Nurse and Assistant Supervisor.. From 1966-1973 she was Assistant Supervisor at the Centennial Pavilion, Vancouver General Hospital, and from 1975-1978 Building Supervisor at the Heather Pavilion, then Director of Nursing Administration at the Vancouver General Hospital. She was 24th President of RNABC.
After her retirement she moved to Shawinigan Lake, BC, where she devoted her energies to raising Dalmatians, becoming active in promoting sensible breeding.
Beverly Witter DuGas was born in Vancouver, receiving her B.A. from UBC in 1944 and her Diploma from the Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing in 1945. She continued her studies at the University of Washington in Seattle, receiving aMaster of Science Degree in 1947.
Her work as a staff nurse and instructor at Seattle, San Francisco and Vancouver led to her becoming Director of the School of Nursing at Vancouver General Hospital in 1960. In 1965 she accepted a request from the World Health Organization to set up a post-basic baccalaureate program for graduate nurses in India. After receiving her Doctor of Education from UBC in 1969, she joined Health and Welfare Canada as a nursing consultant. She later took numerous assignments as a consultant in Surinam, Manila, Ghana, Korea, Tonga and other countries. In 1972 she was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Windsor.
In 1982 she joined the faculty of the School of Nursing at the University of Ottawa. After retirement from being Director of Ottawa’s School of Nursing in 1989, she acted as a consultant in Fiji, China and the Philippines.
Her extensive publications include her textbook Introduction to Patient Care used in forty countries and the co-authored nursing text, Promoting Healthy Aging. Two books recount her travels and work in India, and she has numerous professional publications. She was a founding President of the BC History of Nursing group of the RNABC.
She has raised four children, mostly as a single parent. She was made a member of the Order of BC in 1999, and a member of the Order of Canada in 2001.
After her early education in Ireland, Margaret went to South Africa where she graduated from the Kimberly School of Nursing in Kimberley in 1908. She returned to England where she became staff nurse at St. Bartholomew’s Hospital and Queen’s Hospital in London, England.
She emigrated to Canada in 1913 where she joined the CAMC, receiving the Royal Red Cross medal for outstanding service. On her return to Canada she spent the next 25 years in nursing leadership positions across Canada. She completed the University of Toronto’s public health nursing program in 1923, and after five years as Superintendent of the VON London office assumed the same position in Vancouver.
She advocated that all racial groups receive the same treatment, lobbying BC Schools of Nursing to admit Japanese and Chinese women. These graduates operated clinics and made home visits in the Japanese and Chinese communities, effectively limiting tuberculosis cases and providing better care for babies and preschoolers.
She was also active in professional organizations, becoming president of the Vancouver Registered Nurses’ Association in 1928-1929, and President of the RNABC from 1938-1943.
See Oral History files, Fonds 18, Series 3, Subseries 8
Deidre grew up in Montreal where she attended McGill University and took nursing at the Royal Victoria Hospital School of Nursing. She worked as a nurse/stewardess for Canadian Pacific Airlines from 1954-1957, and remained actively involved in her community after her marriage in 1957 and move to Vancouver. She raised six children.
See also Pages of History, Fonds 18, Series 3, Subseries 9, File 2
Born in Revelstoke, Margaret graduated from VGH in 1946 and the next year received BA and BScN degrees from UBC. She served on the UBC faculty from 1950-1963, and received a Kellogg Foundation Fellowship to attend the University of Chicago. She attended the University of Berkeley for her doctoral studies, and from 1964 to 1983 taught at San Jose State University.
Her extensive publications on maternity and family nursing include Maternity Care for Nurse and Family, which won eight book of the year awards from the American Journal of Nursing, and was used in nursing schools throughout the world. In 1978 she was the first UBC graduate to give the Marion Woodward Lecture at UBC. She was named “Nurse of the Year” by March of Dimes in 1978-1979. In 2000 a Scholarship fund was established in her name at UBC.
Born in England, Nancy came to Canada in 1909. She graduated from the Hamilton City Hospital in 1909 and worked in Ottawa during a typhoid epidemic that year. She enlisted during WW I, serving in various locations for the Queen Alexandria Nursing Service.
After graduating from the Public Health program at UBC, Dunn became the first Public Health nurse in the Peace River country. Here she travelled by horseback in summer and cutter in winter to provide medical care. In 1934 she was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire in recognition of her outstanding contribution to nursing services. Later she worked in Fort Nelson and Telegraph Creek, where dog teams were often her mode of transportation.
Rachel Dwyer graduated in nursing from St. Eugene’s Mission in Cranbrook in 1941. She married three months after her graduation, but apart from a year in the Claresholm Hospital while her husband was doing army duty overseas, did not work actively as a nurse. She tutored a number of students.