Board Chair’s Monthly Message

Report from Gord Wickham
Chair, Board of Directors
October, 2022

Gord Wickham Head Shot

With children back in school and our communities back from summer vacation, I truly hope the residents of Northwestern Ontario took the opportunity to enjoy our natural surroundings and safely reconnect with friends and loved ones over the past few months.

At the same time, I would like to begin by acknowledging and thanking our frontline health care workers and Hospital staff who had very little downtime the past few months as we continued to face challenges due to the ongoing pandemic. As you know, health care does not take holidays and our staff are working as hard today as they were when this pandemic began. They continue to earn our respect and admiration on a daily basis.

Before the break, our Hospital celebrated another year of success at the Annual Meeting of the Corporation on June 23. Returning to the Board of Directors for three-year terms are Douglas Judson, Matt Simeoni and John Hatton. Continuing their terms of office on the Board are Pat Lang, Joy Wakefield, John Friday, Glen Currie, Monique Rocheleau, Christine Bates, Bonnie Pelletier, Dr. Andrew Dean and Dr. Pamela Wakewich. Returning as Standing Committee Community Members are Pauline Mickelson with Patient Safety and Quality of Care, Michael Pelletier with Governance and Nominating and Christina Brassard with Resource Planning and Audit. Kathleen Sawdo was recognized for serving as a Community Member for the past three years with Resource Planning and Audit.

The Board includes the following ex-officio Directors: Dr. Rhonda Crocker Ellacott, President and CEO, Adam Vinet, Chief Nursing Executive, Dr. Bradley Jacobson, Chief of Staff, Dr. Sarita Verma, Dean, President and CEO, NOSM University, and Dr. Salima Oukachbi, President, Professional Staff Association.

At the Inaugural meeting of the Board of Directors, held immediately following the Annual Meeting, the Officers of the Corporation were elected as follows, including myself continuing as Chair, Pat Lang as 1st Vice Chair, Matt Simeoni as 2nd Vice Chair, and John Hatton as Board Treasurer. Joy Wakefield was elected as Chair of the Patient Safety and Quality of Care Committee. Christine Bates was elected to the new Officer position of Chair of the Human Resources Committee.

I look forward to a productive and meaningful year serving with these dedicated people. Our focus is on achieving the Hospital’s Mission to provide quality care to patients and families supported and advanced by research, innovation, and education that is responsive to the needs of the population of Northwestern Ontario and our Vision to provide Exceptional care for every patient, every time.

Finally, our Hospital joined countless others across Canada last week to recognize National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, also known as Orange Shirt Day, on September 30. Reconciliation begins with acknowledging the truth. As part of our commitment to truth and reconciliation, we will work toward creating an environment at our Hospital that acknowledges the 94 Calls to Action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and to apply them as a lens to every decision we make as an institution. In doing so, we will be assured of delivering the highest levels of compassion, inclusion and health care to every person and patient we see and treat.

Gord Wickham
Chair, Board of Directors, Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre