Alba DiCenso and Jennifer Skelly have each received a Centennial Award from the Canadian Nurses Association. As part of their celebration of a century of leadership, the CNA called for nominations of nurses who have made an exceptional contribution to health care and the nursing profession and selected 100 nurses from across Canada to receive a Centennial Award. It is a great honour to have two of these nurses as members of our full-time faculty.
The citations for Alba, which refers to her national and international recognition as an expert in evidence based nursing and advanced nursing practice, and for Jennifer, which refers to her national and international recognition as an expert in continence, are noted below.
As well, one of McMaster’s Clinical Faculty, Sue Matthews, Vice-president, Ontario, and chief of practice for Victorian Order or Nurses has received a Centennial Award from the Canadian Nurses Association.
Citations for all 100 Centennial Award winners are available on the Canadian Nurses Association website.
Professor, Nursing and Clinical Epidemiology & Biostatistics, McMaster University;
Canadian Health Services Research Foundation/Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CHSRF/CIHR) Chair in Advanced Practice Nursing; director, Ontario Training Centre in Health Services and Policy Research
Over her 30-year career as nurse educator and researcher, Dr. DiCenso has led a number of significant initiatives. Working closely with the Ontario government, she led a program of research from 1985-95 about neonatal nurse practitioners to determine the level of need, roles, educational program, and effectiveness that resulted in the introduction of a new advanced practice nursing role in tertiary level NICUs in Ontario. In 1993, she prepared a discussion paper for the Ontario government that prompted the announcement of the introduction of NPs in the province of Ontario. She was the founding and lead editor of the Evidence-Based Nursing journal from 1998 to 2003; led the development of the widely used Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario Toolkit for the Implementation of Clinical Practice Guidelines; and is the lead editor of the textbook Evidence-Based Nursing: A Guide to Clinical Practice.
From 2002-03, she led a $1 million study to examine the facilitators and barriers to the full integration of NPs into primary health care in Ontario, a study that is widely cited across Canada. All 29 recommendations were endorsed by the minister of health, who struck a Task Team to oversee their implementation and appointed Dr. DiCenso as co-chair of that team. Dr. DiCenso also chaired the Canadian Nurse Practitioner Initiative Practice & Evaluation Steering Committee, which developed the Implementation and Evaluation Toolkit for NPs in Canada.
As the CHSRF/CIHR Chair in Advanced Practice Nursing (APN), Dr. DiCenso’s mandate is to increase Canada’s capacity of nurse researchers who will conduct applied research related to APNs that serves the needs of managers and policy-makers in the health sector. She works closely with a number of provincial governments to assist with the implementation of APN roles. As director of the Ontario Training Centre in Health Services and Policy Research, Dr. DiCenso leads a consortium of six universities to prepare health services and policy researchers at the graduate level.
Associate Professor, School of Nursing, McMaster University and Director, Continence Program, St. Joseph’s Healthcare Centre for Ambulatory Health Services
Dr. Jennifer Skelly has made significant and substantial contributions to the nursing profession. She exemplifies the CNA mission to provide a national voice and practice support for registered nurses by: establishing the only continence education program in North America for registered nurses that has graduated more than 150 nurse continence advisors (NCA); creating a national network of NCAs by leading the establishment of the Canadian Nurse Continence Advisor Association and subsequently developing it to become a CNA Associate Member; championing the development of NCA standards of practice through a national consensus conference; advocating nationally and internationally for access to conservative nursing interventions for incontinence; mentoring NCA, undergraduate and graduate students; advancing nursing knowledge through her research activities on best practice guideline implementation and community continence care; and, improving the lives of hundreds of persons with incontinence as an expert clinician.
Vice-president, Ontario, and chief of practice for Victorian Order or Nurses
As provincial chief nursing officer (2004-2006), Sue was the voice of nursing in Ontario. She challenged practices and culture, created quality workplaces, stabilized employment for nurses, and established a solid foundation for the future growth of the profession. She led a comprehensive strategy to support all nurses. Her poignant stories describe the essence of nursing. Through mentorship, Sue continuously supports new leaders.Sue continues to influence and advocate for nursing in her current role as VP, Ontario, and chief of practice for the Victorian Order or Nurses. She is a member of the NationalExpert Committee on Interprofessional Education for Collaborative Patient-Centred Practice and a co-investigator of the Canadian Nursing Leadership Study. Awards include the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario Leadership in Nursing Administration (2002) and the Women’s Executive Network’s Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 (2004).
Sue served on the Nursing Leadership Network of Ontario’s board, created an interdisciplinary forum when she founded the Professional Practice Network of Ontario, and advanced patient-centred care as Chief Nursing Officer at Southlake Regional Health Centre.