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Dawn Affleck, RN, BScN,CPN(C), MN studentDawn Affleck

Dawn Affleck holds a unique dual role of Clinical Educator at the Brandon Regional Health Center in Brandon, Manitoba as well as an off campus faculty member (Brandon site) at Saskatchewan Polytechnic Perioperative nursing program. Dawn embarked on a career in perioperative nursing and completed the perioperative nursing program from the former Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology in 1997.  Following this, Dawn worked as a general duty staff nurse in the operating room while working on her post-diploma baccalaureate of science in nursing (BScN) and her CPN©.  An opportunity presented to take on the role of clinical educator and clinical instructor of the perioperative program, which Dawn has held since 2006. Her love of learning and continuing education prompted a return to academia and Dawn will be graduating with a Masters of Nursing in Leadership and Education from the University of Saskatchewan in June of this year.  The focus of her graduate program has been on quality perioperative nursing education, the novice perioperative nurse, and advancing the role and identity of the perioperative nurse. Dawn is a member and hospital rep for the Manitoba Operating Room Nurses Association (MORNA) and enjoys contributing to the promotion and awareness of quality perioperative nursing practice. With immense pride and joy, Dawn was able to watch her daughter convocate with a BScN in June 2016.

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Allie Akers, BSc, MHA
Allie Akers

Allie is the Business Leader for Surgery, Perioperative Services, Regional Trauma Unit, and the Bariatric Centre of Excellence. She is a graduate of the Master of Health Administration (MHA) program at the University of Ottawa and has been with The Ottawa Hospital since September 2014, starting as a MHA resident. Previous roles at TOH include being a Statistical Analyst assisting with a Quality Based Procedure (QBP) Implementation proposal and a Project Analyst for the Safety Office assisting and leading staff safety initiatives.



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Isabelle André,
Isabelle Andre

Isabelle André est née à Montréal. En 1985 elle obtient un diplôme d’études collégiales (DEC) au CEGEP de Maisonneuve à Montréal en technique de soins infirmiers. Après avoir pratiqué une année comme infirmière en salle d’urgence à l’Hôpital Saint-Luc, à Montréal, elle quitte pour le nord du Québec, à Dolbeau, au lac Saint-Jean.  En 1990, de retour vers la région de Montréal, elle s’installe sur la rive sud et obtient un poste à l’hôpital Pierre-Boucher. Elle poursuit sa carrière en soins critiques.

Elle entreprend des études pour obtenir un baccalauréat en soins infirmiers à l’Université de Montréal, en 2000. Après quelques années, elle débute une maitrise en recherche à l’Université de Sherbrooke.

Après plusieurs années en soins critiques, elle dirige sa profession vers les soins opératoires. Impliquée et passionnée, elle gravie les échelons et obtient un poste d’assistante clinique. La formation du nouveau personnel, l’application des normes, la rigueur dans la qualité des soins aux patients représente bien les valeurs qui la guide dans sa profession.

Elle s’implique depuis quelques années au niveau de la Corporation de infirmières en salle d’opération du Québec. D’abord sur le comité de formation Montréal et par la suite elle devient présidente élue de 2014-2016 afin d'accéder au poste de présidente de le CIISOQ 2016-2018.

Aujourd’hui, après 31 ans d’expérience comme infirmière, Isabelle souhaite transmettre sa passion et ses acquis aux nouvelles infirmières. Elle souhaite pouvoir pratiquer cette profession encore plusieurs années.

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Celina Baker, RN, BScN, CPN(C)
Celina Baker

Celina graduated with Honours from the University of Ottawa in 2007 with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. The operating room peaked her interest early on in her nursing career. In 2009, she decided to take the RN Perioperative Nursing course at Algonquin College. Celina fell in love with the OR and knew that she had finally found her niche. She achieved certification in Perioperative Nursing in 2011, and maintains that certification to this day. Since 2014, Celina has been the Care Facilitator for General Surgery in the Main OR of the Civic Campus at The Ottawa Hospital (TOH). Celina is very excited to be presenting at the 25th ORNAC National Conference and to be able to share the successes of her team at TOH, which has been recognized as a Bariatric Centre of Excellence.




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Sylvie Beauregard,
Sylvie Beauregard

Sylvie Beauregard was born in Montreal. En 1983, she graduated from CEGEP Bois de Boulogne in Montréal in nursing program. She graduated from the University of Montreal in 2012.

She has gained over 33 years of experience as a nurse at the CHUM (Centre hospitalier universitaire de Montréal. and has been working as an operating room nurse since 1989. She has been a team leader for 14 years. Since 2009, she has obtained the nursing consultant position in the following sectors: operating room, day surgery, recovery room and pre-operative clinic.  Her work experiences have enabled her to develop an expertise in her domain of work. She is recognized for her implication within the Corporation of Operating Room Nurses of Quebec and her passion for perioperative care, more specifically risk management, prevention of infection, standards and education. She has also participated in the translation of the Standards of Practice for the years 2011-2012 and is currently doing so for the Standards of Practice for 2017. In 2009, she became in charge of the Quebec’s Perioperative educator discussion.

She was a consultant for the OIIQ concerning the strategic orientation document related to the succession and retention plan as well as the guidelines for the activities of auxiliary nurses in the operating room. She is presently secretary for the administrative committee of the Corporation of Operating Room Nurses of Quebec.

Fields of interest : surgical care safety and patient security, standards, infection prevention, and documentation

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Rhonda Beck, RN, CPN(C)
Rhonda Beck

Rhonda is the Perioperative Clinical Informatics Specialist at The Ottawa Hospital (TOH). She has over 27 years of perioperative clinical and informatics experience in a variety of tertiary care settings. In 1995, Rhonda received, and continues to maintain, her Perioperative Certification. She is proud to have spent many years volunteering at a regional (ORORNA), provincial (ORNAO), and national (ORNAC) level, including participation in ORNAC National Conference planning as the Syllabus chair. Rhonda is focused on providing clinical leadership for the continuing development and maintenance of perioperative electronic documentation at TOH, dedicated to enhancing efficiency and developing better data collection processes – aimed at improving patient care.




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Nichole Bentley, BScN BSc

Nichole Bentley is an LGBTQ activist in her community and works as a Perioperative RN at Women’s College Hospital in downtown Toronto.

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Mark Black, CSP
Speaker, Author, Coach and Patient
Mark Black

Mark Black is a Heart and Double-Lung Transplant Recipient – turned – 4-Time Marathon Runner. A resilience expert and life strategy coach, Mark helps people “Stop Complaining and Start Celebrating”. His program, “The Resilience Roadmap”, provides the tools to transform your adversity into your competitive advantage.

Mark is a Certified Speaking Professional, a designation earned by less than 10% of all professional speakers. He has inspired more than 100,000 people in more than 350 presentations, and his book “Live Life from the Heart” has touched the lives of thousands more.

Mark’s online training program “Live Today” is helping people to reduce stress and worry, and focus on their priorities in life. It is an excellent way to extend the impact of his message and help you to apply the strategies he shares. You can learn more about the program at:

Mark doesn’t just teach resilience, he embodies it. Born with a life-threatening heart defect, Mark underwent two open-heart surgeries before the age of one. He battled his condition and it’s limitations for twenty-two years quite successfully, but at 23 yrs old, Mark was suddenly faced with the biggest challenge of his life. His doctor informed him that his heart was failing badly and that without a rare and dangerous heart and double-lung transplant, he would not likely see his 25th birthday.

At 23 Mark found himself living in a hospital, waiting for a life-saving transplant. Three years later, after receiving his second chance at life, he was running marathons.

Since receiving his second chance at life Mark hasn’t wasted a moment. Mark lives in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada where he spends as much time as possible with the most important people in his life; his wife Marise and their children Emma and Matteo.


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Laurie Boyer, RN, BScN, MEd, CIC, CPN(C)Laurie Boyer

Laurie Dawn Boyer, RN BScN MEd CIC CPN(C) is a Patient Safety Improvement Lead at Canadian Patient Safety Institute who holds Certification as a Patient Safety Officer, Perioperative Registered Nurse (Canada) and additional Certification in Infection Control and Epidemiology. Laurie has also holds and has experience as a Lean Green Belt (Healthcare) and is a Certified Simplexity Creative Problem Solving facilitator.

She has over 30 years of clinical, educator and leadership experience in the areas of Surgical Care, Operating Room and Perioperative Services, Infection Prevention and Control, Education, Informatics, Quality improvement and Patient Safety.

Laurie currently serves in volunteer capacities on the Canadian Operating Room Leaders (CORL) executive committee, and the Operating Room Nurses Association of Canada’s (ORNAC) Board of Directors in the Leadership seat.

Within her current role at CPSI, Laurie has responsibility for designing and launching a teamwork, communication and leadership program, “TeamSTEPPS®”, at a National level, as a component of CPSI’s SHIFT to Safety initiative.


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Bernadette Chiu, RN, BSN, M.Ed, CPN(C)
Bernadette Chiu

Bernadette (Bernie) Chiu is the Nurse Educator of Southlake Regional Health Centre in Newmarket, Ontario.  Her responsibilities include the Main OR, Ambulatory Care, Endoscopy and the Eye Institute.  Previous to this, Bernie worked as the Nurse Educator and staff nurse in Mackenzie Health, previously know as York Central Hospital, the Scarborough Hospital, General Campus and Saint Michael’s Hospital.

Bernie completed the Perioperative Program in Centennial College and is a Certified Perioperative Nurse with the Canadian Nurses Association.  She completed her baccalaureate program in nursing in Ryerson University and Masters of Education in Athabasca University.  

Bernie has served as executive member in local ORNAO chapter from 2004 to 2012. She is one of the co-founders and a current executive member of the Perioperative Nurse Educator of Canada.  In her leadership with other active PNEC members, PNEC is recognized as an affiliated professional group with in 2010.


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Debra Clendinneng, BScN, MEd, PhD
Debra Clendinneng

Deb Clendinneng started her career as a perioperative nurse and is currently an educator and coordinator. She has extensive experience in educational programming and curriculum development using the college’s digital capacity for hybrid delivery and facilities for simulation and experiential learning.

She received a BScN and MEd from the University of Ottawa. In 2006 she received a Dean’s Scholarship and was awarded a PhD in Education in 2011. Her research focus is on simulation and debriefing as an educational strategy and inter-professional learning in healthcare education.

Deb loves to write and has published research papers and edited theses and textbook chapters. She currently serves as Subject Editor for Nursing / Health Education for the online scientific journal FACETS as well as being Editorial Co-chair for the ORNAC Journal.




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Julia Cristobal, BSc

Julia Cristobal

Julia Cristobal is the National Product Manager at AMT Surgical. Upon completion of her Bachelor of Science in Chemistry in 2003, Julia has been working in the healthcare industry in different clinical sales and marketing roles. She initially worked for two manufacturing companies of spinal and neurosurgical medical devices in Madrid, Spain until 2005 when she moved to Toronto. She then worked as an O.R. Territory Manager for Trudell Medical Marketing Ltd., prior to joining AMT Surgical Inc. in November 2012.

Julia is passionate about her work in medical sales. She has been able to experience the lifesaving impacts her products bring. Julia is also interested in continuing education, and she is currently involved in a Leadership program at University of Toronto. She also values industry relations, and is involved with provincial healthcare groups Operating Room Nurses Association of Ontario (ORNAO) and Medical Device Reprocessing Association of Ontario (MDRAO).


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Tara Curnoe,
Tara Curnoe

Tara Curnoe has a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from Ryerson University and has been working with Steripro Canada since 2013.  Initially working at the Steripro Mississauga production facility, she has gone on to work in six MDRC departments at GTA hospitals, as well as overseeing several independent clinics.  Passionate about patient care, infection control and a commitment to continuous quality improvements.  With extensive customer service and management experience, Tara draws on these skills to approach Medical Device Reprocessing from a fresh perspective.   Customer satisfaction and patient safety drives her to take initiative to exceed standards and to be accountable for the quality of service we offer.  To achieve this Tara takes initiative to create and provide training to front line technicians, communicates to all stakeholders and improves employee engagement by demonstrating how their hard work makes a difference in the OR and ultimately the patients they serve.



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Chris Downey, RN, BScN, CPN(C), MSc, RNFA

Chris Downey has been a Registered Nurse for over 40 years. She graduated from the St. Lawrence College diploma nursing program in Kingston, Ontario in 1976. Chris began her perioperative career in 1978, and obtained a diploma in Critical Care in 1985. She graduated Magna Cum Laude in the BScN program from the University of Ottawa in 1995 and became a CPN(C) in 1998. Chris obtained a Masters of Science degree (Nursing) from Queen’s University in 2002 and in 2007 became a Registered Nurse First Assistant through the BCIT-RNFA program. Chris’ career has spanned the full scope of a perioperative nurse. She has been a front line perioperative professional, manager of an 11 room acute care trauma suite, a clinical educator, and an RNFA. Chris is a Past President of ORNAO, and served on the ORNAC board of directors from 2003-2007. Chris returned to the ORNAC board in 2009 as the Chair of the Registered Nurse First Assistant Network of Canada. Each term of service on the ORNAC board has seen Chris as a member of the Standards Committee. Chris is currently the Pillar Chair for Research and Nursing Informatics and the co-chair of the 2017 ORNAC Standards committee.

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Matthew Dubuc, MScN NP RNFAMatthew Dubuc

Matt Dubuc is a Nurse practitioner and RNFA in Thoracic Surgery at St. Mary’s General Hospital in Kitchener, Ontario. He has worked in a variety of surgical specialties as an RNFA including thoracics, cardiac and general surgery. Matt also manages the in-patient care of the thoracic surgery service, and cares for patients in out-patient clinics. He also has experience as a primary health care nurse practitioner in a family health care team.

In 2009, Matt was the recipient of a Cancer Care Ontario award for Innovation for the combined role or Nurse Practitioner and RNFA in thoracic surgery.

Matt earned a BScN from Mcmaster University, an MSN Family Nurse Practitioner from D’Youville College, Buffalo NY and an RNFA certificate from Delaware County Community College, Pennsylvania.


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Shaindel Egit RN, BScN, MN, CPNC(C)Shaindel Egit

Shaindel Egit has been working at North York General Hospital as a Clinical Nursing Educator for the Operating Room, Endoscopy Unit and Eye Care Centre since June 2015. She is the Treasurer of the Operating Room Nurses Association of Greater Toronto, and part of the Operating Room Nursing Association of Canada’s Standards Committee, working to change the current OR nursing standards to Evidence Based Guidelines. She is involved with Operating Room Nursing Association of Canada and the Canadian Nurses Association, working towards a National Position statement on Safe Nursing Staffing Models in the Operating Room. Shaindel is a member of the RNAO, Sigma Theta Tau International, and an Adjunct Lecturer at the Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing, University of Toronto. She received her Master of Nursing, with a focus in leadership, education and policy development in 2015, and has presented at both National and Provincial conferences in the area of operating room nursing advancement.


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Karen Espersen, RN , CPN(C)

Born and raised in Dryden Ontario, Karen obtained her nursing diploma at Confederation College in Thunder Bay.  Following graduation she went on to work in Terrace, BC  on Pediatrics and in the Operating Room.  This is where she first discovered her love for O.R nursing.  Karen has worked in northern and rural hospitals in Ontario in the O.R and Emergency for all of her career both as a staff nurse, Team Leader  and Director of Surgery.  In 2010  she moved to Fort McMurray with her husband and is in the role of Manager of Surgical Services at the Northern Lights Regional Hospital.  She has obtained her CPC C as well as completing the “ Rotman’s Advanced Healthcare Leadership Program” at the University of Toronto.  Interests include running, yoga, reading, travelling and enjoying the fine wines from the Okanagan!


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Anita Esson, RN, BScN, RNFA, CPN(C) Anita Esson







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Margaret Farley, RN, BScN, RNFA, CPN(C) Margaret Farley

Margaret Farley has been a continuous member of ORNAC since inception 1983-to date.  She was SK Board representative in 1983, 1995-2008.  In 2015-17, she acted as a SK  Board rep, and or Executive Board member. and She has served on the Standards Committee member, past and present.

Margaret had continuous CNA Perioperative Certification since inception in 1995, and has served on the Perioperative Certification Exam Committee.
In 2008 she received the CNA centennial award Order of Merit for Clinical Excellence.  She has also received that CNA centennial award for 100 exceptional nurses from across Canada-nomination by ORNAC and the Lorne Flower Award for service to the ORNAC Board in 2005 (the first year award was given).

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Sandra Foard, BBM, SBA, SETP (CCO)

Sandra Foard has thirty years of experience working with information technology, data analysis and process improvement.  For the past 12 years she has worked within the Ontario healthcare sector on a number of provincial improvement initiatives such as implementation of common assessment tools for Community Mental Health and Community Support Services to improve assessment processes and access to services.  The last four years have been spent working in the Surgical Efficiency Targets Program, working closely with hospitals to use data to help improve Operating Room efficiency, access to surgical services and sharing of best practices.


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Xiaoling FU,
Xiaoling FU

Xiaoling FU is the head nurse of the operating theater at Shenzhen Children’s Hospital, China. She has a long experience in the management of operating theater. She was invited to have a training program at Hamburg Altona Children’s Hospital in the operating department in 2015. She is recently interested in patient safety in the operating room and non-pharmacological interventions for alleviating preoperative anxiety in children, and is responsible for several research projects in these fields.





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Janelle Gavin,

Janelle was born in Toronto, Ontario and then grew up in beautiful La Scie Newfoundland. She moved to Fort McMurray with her family in 2019 and her nursing degree was obtained at Munn University in Corner Brook Newfoundland in June 2013. She completed her final clinical preceptor ship at Northern Lights Hospital in the Day Surgery Unit and Recovery Room, and started her full time position in the Operating Room at NLRH in June 2013. Janelle is very passionate about O.R Nursing and successfully completed her CPN C in October 2016. She continues to demonstrate her enthusiasm and leadership by mentoring new staff to the O.R and taking on new challenges for learning. Her interests include sports, running, travelling, and enjoying the outdoors with her finance and her mini dash hound - Bruno.


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Heather-Lynne Goody, MScN, NP-PHC, RNFAHeather-Lynne Goody

Heather-Lynne Goody is the Surgical Services Nurse Practitioner and a Registered Nurse First Assist (RNFA) for St. Mary’s General Hospital in Kitchener, Ontario. Heather has a diverse surgical background, including: general surgery, urology, otolaryngology, orthopedics, and trauma to name a few. She has worked in a variety of roles from bedside nursing, wound care and enterostomal therapy, nursing education for hospital and university settings, and most recently as a NP/RNFA.

In 2012, Heather joined St. Mary’s with the goal of creating an innovative role within the general surgery program. Heather’s unique role allows her to interact and engage with patients and staff throughout the surgical program, including: the pre-surgical clinic, day surgery program, operating room, and in-patient surgery unit.

Heather earned a BScN from McMaster University, a MSN from the University of British Columbia, a Primary Health Care Nurse Practitioner Certificate from McMaster University, and a Registered Nurse First Assist Certificate from Mohawk College.


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Jocelyne Granger, RN, CPN(C)Jocelyne Granger

Jocelyne Granger is faculty in the Perioperative Nursing Program (PONP) at the Registered Nurses Professional Development Center (RNPDC) in Nova Scotia. She is a 30 plus year veteran of nursing with specialization in critical care, perianesthesia, and perioperative nursing from across Canada. Jocelyne’s certificate in Adult Education from Dalhousie University has greatly enhanced her knowledge and skills related to teaching and learning, as well as promoting lifelong learning.

Jocelyne is passionate about perioperative nursing and the role we play in providing excellent patient care while working with new perioperative learners.




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Grace Groetzsch, RN, BScN, MEd, CPN(C), CRNFAGrace Groetzsch

Grace obtained her Bachelor of Nursing Sciences from McMaster University and her Master of Education from the University of Toronto. During her nursing career she has been an ICU nurse, perioperative nurse and educator, independent consultant and since 1997 a Registered Nurse First Assistant (RNFA). Grace obtained her RNFA certificate from Delaware County Community College, PA, her CRNFA certification in 1999 and has the distinction of being the first formally trained RNFA in Canada to be employed. Currently she is working at Sunnybrook’s Holland Orthopaedic & Arthritic Institute, as a RNFA.




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Gillian Kernaghan, MD, CCFP, FCFP, CCPEGillian Kernaghan

Dr. Kernaghan was appointed the President and Chief Executive Officer of St. Joseph's Health Care London in 2010.  St. Joseph’s is a multi-sited academic health care organization serving London and region.  Prior to assuming this role, she served for 17 years as the Vice President, Medical Affairs for various hospitals in London.   In 1984, Gillian joined the medical staff of St. Joseph's, Parkwood Hospital and LHSC as a family physician.  She completed her residency at St. Joseph’s Hospital in 1984 upon graduation from University of Western Ontario and was awarded her Fellowship in 2000.  She is an Associate Professor at Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry and an Adjunct Professor at the Arthur Labatt Family School of Nursing at Western University. Gillian currently serves on the OHA Board and the CAHO Council. Gillian was the   President of the Canadian Society of Physician Executives from 2010-2012 and is a past Board Member of CaRMS. She is the Co-Chair of the Canadian Health Leadership Network (CHLNet). She has served on numerous provincial and national committees.   She is also a faculty member of the Physician Leadership Institute of Canadian Medical Association and is a Canadian Certified Physician Executive.  In May 2015, Dr. Kernaghan received the YMCA Women of Excellence Award in the Health, Science and Technology..

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Carol Kirkwood, RN
Carol Kirkwood

Carol Kirkwood, RN has been the Clinical Manager of the OR at Health Sciences North, Sudbury, Ontario for the past 10 years. The OR has 17 suites and is a Regional Referral Center serving a population base of approximately 500,000.

Carol has held a number of positions in Acute Care Teaching Hospitals in Toronto, On, as well as in Sudbury. She also holds a Masters Certificate in Health Care Management from the Schulich School of Business as well as Legal Nurse Consultant Certification.

Prior to returning to acute care, Carol worked in the private sector and became National Operations Manager for a large Personal Injury Disability Management Company, with offices across this country.

As a Legal Nurse Consultant concurrent to her OR Administrative position, she reviews files where nurses have been named in a malpractice lawsuit, providing recommendations to the Legal community regarding whether or not a standard of care has been breached.

Carol will share today the experiences at HSN of implementing a debrief in the OR immediately following a critical event, the outcomes, benefits and impact to culture.


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Jane Kusler-Jensen, BSN, RN, MBA, CNORJane Kusler-Jensen

Jane A. Kusler-Jensen, BSN, RN, MBA, CNOR, is Specialist Master with Deloitte Consulting.  Previously, she was executive director of the Orthopedic Hospital of Wisconsin; director of perioperative services for River Woods Outpatient Center and Ozaukee Campus, part of Columbia St. Mary's Healthcare System. Other prior positions were: director of surgical services for Aurora Bay Care, administrator of Physicians Plus Surgery Center, nurse manager at SurgiCenter of Greater Milwaukee, head nurse at Waukesha Memorial Hospital, patient care coordinator at St. Joseph's Hospital, and the OR head nurse at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin. Ms. Kusler-Jensen earned her diploma in nursing from Deaconess School of Nursing, her BSN from Carroll College, a BS in Management from Cardinal Stritch College and her MBA from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. She received an AORN writer's award in 1997.  She has presented at multiple Perioperative Conferences since 1997.  She has served on the AORN Board of Directors.


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Chantal Léonard, LLB

Chantal Léonard is a highly respected bilingual lawyer with a wealth of knowledge and experience through many years of advising clients on health law and all aspects of professional liability, and through liaising with government, professional associations and regulatory bodies on health-related issues. She has lectured at many professional conferences and at the University of Ottawa at the Faculty of Law and in the Masters in Health Administration program. She holds a Bachelor in Social Sciences with a major in sociology, a Bachelor of Sciences with a major in biochemistry and an L.L.B. from the University of Ottawa.




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Heather Lithgow, RN MN CPN(C)Heather Lithgow

Heather Lithgow RN MN CPN(C) joined Lakeridge Health in 2016 as the Patient Care Specialist in the Operating Room and PACU. Previously she has held both leadership and clinical roles in the Toronto area within perioperative services. Heather is a graduate of the Masters of Nursing program at Ryerson University with a course focus in leadership, health policy and education. Previously receiving her BScN also from Ryerson in 2007 and obtaining CPN(C) in 2011. She is actively involved in the perioperative community as an ORNAC national standards committee member, current member and past executive member/Program Convener of the Operating Room Registered Nurses' Association of Greater Toronto (ORNGT), and previous speaker at national/provincial conferences in 2013, 2015, 2016.




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David Loukras, P.Log, MBADavid Loukras

David Loukras is the Provincial Director, Supply Chain Performance for British Columbia Clinical & Support Services (BCCSS). In 2009, the BCCSS became the sole provider of Supply Chain Services for all six Health Authorities in British Columbia with a total managed spend of $1.9B per year. David’s work is focused on improving the efficiency and effectiveness and reducing risks of the supply chain services provided to the BC Health Authorities.

David is the Lead for the HSCN Board subcommittee on Vendor Credentialing. The Healthcare Supply Chain Network is an industry association of supplier and provider professionals with the goal of improving the effectiveness of Canada’s healthcare supply chain. In 2014, HSCN introduced the National Standard for Vendor Credentialing as the outcome of a collaborative process which addressed the apparent risks to healthcare providers while respecting the privacy, employment and human rights of the supplier community.

David is also a board member for CareNET, GS1 Canada’s Healthcare Sector Board. He has an MBA from the University of British Columbia and also holds the professional designation, P.Log.

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Kathy MacDonald, RN, BScN, CPN(C)Kathy MacDonald

Kathy is the Clinical Educator, Children’s Perioperative Care Team at the IWK Health Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia.  She is a graduate of the Victoria General School of Nursing (1984) and obtained a BScN from ST.F.X. University in 2001.  Kathy’s 30 plus year nursing career has included staff nurse on a surgical floor, staff nurse in the OR and an educator in the OR. Kathy is married and the mother of a teenage son.


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Melissa Mackie, RN, BN, IBCLCMelissa Mackie

Melissa Mackie is an educator and leader in an obstetrical OR. In 2012, while on maternity leave and breastfeeding her second son, Melissa began to pursue becoming a lactation consultant. Now as an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC), she has blended a perioperative nursing career with a passion for working with breastfeeding families. Melissa has worked at the IWK Health Centre since 2002. She lives in Middle Sackville, NS with her husband and two sons.





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Kathy McGhie, RN, BScN, CICKathy McGhie

Kathy is a clinical and technical specialist for the Infection Prevention portfolio of 3M Canada’s Healthcare business. Kathy has 28 years of infection prevention experience and previously worked as the infection prevention and control educator for a multi-site tertiary care academic centre. Prior to her work in infection prevention and control, Kathy’s clinical experience included Delivery Room, Orthopedic Surgery and Vascular Access nursing.

Kathy served as the Canadian Director on the Certification Board of Infection Control and Epidemiology from 2009-2016 and was the President of this board in 2015. She is a long time member of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) and Infection Prevention and Control Canada (IPAC-Canada). She is a past president of the Infection Prevention and Control Canada, Southwestern Ontario Chapter and a recipient of their Award of Excellence. In 2006, Kathy chaired the Abstract Committee and was a member of the Scientific Committee for the national IPAC-Canada infection prevention scientific conference. In 2014 she was a member of the IPAC-Canada Chapter Task Force and the APIC Professional Development Committee. Kathy is a former faculty member of the Canadian Patient Safety Institute’s Hand Hygiene and Stop Infections Now Collaboratives.

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Bonnie McLeod, RN, BScN, MScN, CPN(C)Bonnie McLeod

Bonnie has over 30 years of experience as a perioperative registered nurse and has spent the past decade focused on nursing education in the clinical setting. She is a committed environmentalist, passionate advocate for patient and staff safety, and represents perioperative nurses nationally as a voting delegate at the Canadian Patient Safety Institute’s Board meetings.
Bonnie recently attended the 3rd Congress of OASIS Global in Nanjing, China for the announcement of the ‘WHO Guideline for the Prevention of Surgical Site Infections’. She presented ‘Perspectives on Interdisciplinary Collaboration’ at this meeting.  
Bonnie is a former President of the Operating Room Nurses Association of Canada (ORNAC), and former Secretary of the International Federation of Perioperative Nurses (IFPN). She is currently Chair for the Stakeholder collaboration and Political action component of the ORNAC Advocacy Pillar, Clinical Advisor for the International Council on Smoke Plume Inc. (ICSP), Advisor for ‘PeriopSim’ and a Consultant for Perioperative Practice.


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Kim McLennan-Robbins, RN, CPN(C)

Kim McLennan-RobbinsKim is a Clinical Nurse Educator in the main Surgical Suite, at the University of Alberta Hospital, and a Sessional Faculty/Instructor in the Perioperative Program at MacEwan University in Edmonton. She has worked in all areas of Perioperative nursing over her 32 year nursing career. Kim received and continues to maintain her Canadian Nurse's Perioperative Certification and sits as a current member of the CNA Perioperative Examination committee. She has spent many years being involved in all aspects of ORNAC - sitting on her regional, provincial and the national ORNAC board. She represented ORNAC on the International Federation of Perioperative Nurse's (IFPN) board, 2002-2003. As the chairperson for the ORNAC Editorial Advisory committee, she was involved in organizing the transition from the old CORNJ journal to the new journal - through Clockwork Communications, in 2002. She has worked on many provincial OR conferences in a variety of roles including chairing two of them. She co-chaired the ORNAC national conference in Banff in 2001, was the Co-chair for the ORNAC Conference in Edmonton in 2015 and is the National Pillar Chair for this conference in Niagara in 2017. Kim is pleased to share, along with her fellow Clinical Nurse Educator colleague, Laura Smith, their experience of how the process went when staff set up a recycling program in their Operating Room. Both the successes and the challenges will be touched upon in this presentation.


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Sarah McVanel, MSC, CHRL, PCC, CSODP, CSP(C) 

Sarah McVanelSarah McVanel helps leaders leverage the power of recognition to retain top talent and sustain healthy bottom line results. She speaks nationally on the topic, leads workshops, coaches leaders, and conducts organizational recognition program reviews. She is a Certified Senior Organizational Development Professional (CSODP), Professional Certified Coach (PCC), Certified Human Resources Leader (CHRL), and member of the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers (CAPS) on the Toronto Chapter Board of Directors and CAPS National Communication Committee. She has a BA in Psychology, Masters in Family Relations and Diplomas in Human Resources and Healthcare Administration. She has over 15 years experience including at a senior leadership level and now owns boutique consulting firm Greatness Magnified. She is an author of peer-reviewed journals, articles, and two books, “Forever Recognize Others’ Greatness: Solution Focused Strategies for Satisfied Staff, High Performing Teams and Healthy Bottom Lines” (2015) and “The FROG Effect: Tools and Strategies to Forever Recognize Others’ Greatness” (2016).



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Rachel Meagher

Rachel MeagherRachel Meagher is a Senior Manager for Health in Emergencies at the Canadian Red Cross, where she oversees the readiness of field hospital assets and health personnel for deployment in disasters and other crises. With a background in emergency and trauma care and advanced nursing practice in remote indigenous communities, the challenges and opportunities of health care delivery in low-resource and austere environments continue to drive her work with the Red Cross. Rachel has been working with the Red Cross since 2008, and has been involved in over 15 emergency operations during that time.





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Paula Mendes-Baldinelli, R.N., CPN(C)
Paula Mendes-Baldinelli

Paula is a Perioperative Clinical Nurse Specialist for the Infection Prevention Division of 3M Canada’s Healthcare business. She made the transition to her current role at 3M in 2008 bringing over 12 years of perioperative experience from London Health Sciences Center, University Hospital. Since her transition to 3M, Paula continues to maintain a casual position in the operating room at University Hospital, enabling her to stay current within her role. Paula is an active member of ORNAC and is CNA certified in Perioperative Nursing. She is a current member of the Technical Committee where she provides clinical expertise in the development of CSA standards on perioperative safety. Paula provides education, evidence based knowledge and clinical expertise to promote patient safety and improve surgical outcomes at the clinical level.


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Ally Murji, MD MPH FRCS(C)
Ally Murji

Dr Murji graduated from the OB/GYN residency program at University of Toronto. He then completed a two-year fellowship in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery at McMaster University. His training focused on advanced laparoscopy/ hysteroscopy, endometriosis and outpatient procedures. He also completed a Masters in Public Health from Harvard University. He has a keen interest in outcomes research and quality improvement. Dr Murji is assistant professor of Obstetrics & Gynecology at University of Toronto. He is part of the Generalist Division at Mt Sinai Hospital, Toronto.




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Phuong Nguyen, BscN, RN, CPN(C)Phuong Nguyen

Phuong Nguyen is currently working as an operating room registered nurse at the Halifax Infirmary, Nova Scotia. Originally from Vietnam, she has personally experienced the extremely limited access to healthcare in the developing nation. From this experience, she has a greater appreciation for the benefits living in Canada provides. A graduate of Dalhousie University, she’s focused on supporting new graduates in the nursing workforce. She is a key player in developing the first ever “Nursing The Future” (Atlantic Canada chapter). Over the past six years, she has worked in general, plastics, and vascular services. Phuong also works as a relief charge nurse along with anaesthesia leader and surgical coordinator overseeing 19 operating rooms. She believes in the future of perioperative nursing and currently serves as the presiding officer of ORNANS of the Halifax Chapter.  Phuong has also assisted with organizing the 2016 Atlantic Operating Room Nurses’ Conference. Health education and promotion of patients and nursing staff continues to be the primary focus throughout her career.  


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Peter Papadakos, MD FCCP FCCM FAARC

Peter Papadakos

Dr Papadakos is Director of the Division of Critical Care Medicine, Professor of Anesthesiology, Surgery, Neurology and Neurosurgery at the University of Rochester. He also is professor of Respiratory Care at Genesee College and serves as medical director for the program.  Peter graduated the Mt Sinai School of Medicine. He started his training in Surgery at the Roosevelt Hospital in NYC. He completed an Anesthesiology Residency and a fellowship in Surgical Critical at the Mt Sinai Hospital in NYC.   Dr Papadakos was one of the founders of the practice of surgical critical care in the City of Rochester. He is associate Director of the Strong Regional Trauma Center. He has edited five textbooks in the field of Critical Care Medicine and Trauma and authored over 120 chapters and articles in the field of Critical Care of the surgical and trauma patient. H Dr Papadakos is an internationally recognized expert in Critical Care, Trauma , Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome and Mechanical Ventilation. In 2011 he was recognized by the New York Times and the international media for identifying a major safety issue  of electronic distraction in health care. He has worked to develop electronic etiquette guidelines to prevent electronic distraction for a number of hospitals and national agencies.  He has edited the Study Guide for the New York Times bestseller A Deadly Wandering by Matt Richtel. He also has edited with Dr Bertman  the first text on medicine in the digital age Distracting Doctoring Returning to Patient-Centered Care by Springer.  He has served as an invited speaker throughout the US, Europe and Asia.   He serves on several National and International advisory boards including the NIH, FDA,Swiss national science foundation and is on the Board of Professions for the State of New York and also serves as a Surgeon for the New York State Police.

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Bhavna Pooni, RN, BSNBhavna Pooni

Bhavna Pooni, RN, BSN, facilitates Perioperative Nursing Programs with in the Nursing Division at Saskatchewan Polytechnic . She directly impacts the future perioperative nurses fostering ORNAC Standards and Guidelines.

Bhavna Pooni’s educational background consists of a Bachelor of Science in Nursing with distinction from Langara College, an Advanced Certificate in Perioperative Nursing from SIAST in 2010, and looks forward to completing her Masters in Educational Technology through the University of Saskatchewan.

Stemming from her work experience, she has developed research interests in perioperative nursing; specifically technology with in the perioperative environment and patient advocacy.

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Corenia Price, RN, CPN(c), CMDRTCorenia Price

Corenia began her career in perioperative nursing in 1990; in 1994 she became the In-Charge Nurse for the Operating Room and Reprocessing Department at the Labrador Health Centre. She completed her Perioperative Certification in 1995 and has served on CNA’s Perioperative Certification Exam Committee. In 2007 Corenia took on the role of Regional Nurse Specialist for Perioperative & Instrument Reprocessing in the Labrador-Grenfell Health Region. In 2009 Corenia completed her Medical Device Reprocessing Certification. She is actively involved with the Newfoundland and Labrador Operating Room Nurses Association and has fulfilled the positions of Secretary Treasurer, VP Education, and President. Corenia is a past ORNAC Board member (2006-2010), (2014 -2016) and has been a member of ORNAC’s Standards Committee with each term. She currently co-chairs the 2017 ORNAC Standards committee.



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Jane Radey, RN, RNFA, CPN(C)Jane Radey

Jane is employed as a full time Registered Nurse First Assistant at Muskoka Algonquin Health Services – Huntsville Hospital in Ontario. She graduated from the Canadore College School of Nursing in 1989 and after working for a year on a medical ward, she took her OR and PACU courses and has worked in Surgical Services at her hospital ever since. She became an RNFA in 1999 and started working full time in this position in 2012. Jane has been involved extensively in her regional perioperative group, ORNASCO as President and as Secretary, in the Ontario provincial perioperative group, ORNAO as a Board Member and as Secretary, in the Ontario RNFA group as Secretary, and in the national RNFA group, RNFANC as Newsletter Editor. She looks forward to serving as the Secretary of ORNAC and learning about the issues facing perioperative nurses across Canada..



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Morgan Richard, RN, BScNMorgan Richard

Morgan graduated from Saint Frances Xavier University with Nursing in 2002. She began working at the IWK Health Centre in June 2002 in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Morgan’s passion was to be an OR Nurse. Morgan joined the Pediatric Operating Room team in January 2004. She was previously charge nurse for ENT Surgery and at present is the charge nurse for Plastic Surgery. Morgan is married with two wonderful children.



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Erin Robertson, RN, CPN(C), BScN, MN Erin Robertson

Erin Robertson, RN, CPN(C),BScN (Hons), MN , is a Perioperative Registered Nurse working as the Clinical Nurse Specialist in Perioperative Services at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto. Erin worked in the Surgical Suites at Kingston General Hospital prior to moving to Toronto. In Toronto Erin has spent nine years as a staff nurse in the operating room and one year as the hospital Patient Flow Coordinator prior to entering her current role. Erin has completed her post RN BScN (with honours) and her Masters of Nursing: Leadership in Education and Health Policy. Erin is president of the Operating Room Nurses of Greater Toronto (ORNGT) Erin is also a member of the ORNAC Standards Committee. Erin has presented at a number of provincial and national conferences. Erin is passionate about ensuring that perioperative Registered Nurses remain patient and family focused and that Registered Nurses continue to practice in the operating room..



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Jennifer Rodgers, MSW, MHSCJennifer Rodgers

Jennifer Rodgers is a Patient Safety Improvement Lead at CPSI with a main focus on providing project management support to the National Surgical Safety Strategy.

Jennifer has over 20 years of experience in healthcare with 10 years of leadership experience in two large Ontario community hospitals in a director role with responsibility for patient safety, quality, risk management and special projects. Jennifer has a passion for patient safety and based on her education and experience, she understands the challenges and opportunities from all perspectives within the healthcare system.

Jennifer holds a Masters degree in Social Work from Wilfrid Laurier University as well as a Masters degree in Health Sciences from the University of Toronto.


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Angela Russell, Angela Russell

Bachelors of Nursing from University of New Brunswick 1999
George Brown College Perioperative Diploma 1999
Canadian Perioperative Certification 2006
ORNHAD executive member 2010-present, currently President.
Vascular Service Resource Nurse, Perioperative Services Hamilton General Hospital, Hamilton, ON. 2013- present.
General staff nurse, Perioperative Services Hamilton General Hospital, Hamilton, ON. 2000-2013
General Staff nurse, Perioperative Services Dr. Everett Chalmers Hospital, Fredericton, NB. 1999-2000
(Owner and baker of Angela's Sweet Temptations!! ? since 2015).


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Candace Samudio, MBA, BSN, RN, CNORCandace Samudio

Candace comes to Zimmer Biomet Surgical with more than 38 years of clinical experience in Perioperative Services, Healthcare Administration and consulting. During that time she held direct and leadership roles in patient care, sales, marketing and business development.  
Prior to her role here, she held positions in healthcare administration most recently at Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System as Senior Administrative Director. During her time there she chaired and developed Perioperative Care Practice Council, Countywide Universal Protocol Team, Sedation Task Force and the Surgical Care Improvement Project. Candace was awarded fellowships to The Advisory Board-Washington DC 2010, Moss-Adams Advanced Leadership 2009 and served as a member of strategic leadership for the O’Rourke Professional Role development.

At Stanford Hospital and Clinics she was the Director of Perioperative Materials Management and Sterile Processing including responsibility for Stanford Hospital, Clinics, School of Medicine and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. Her highlights there include guest speaker for AHRMM National Conference, instituted “Own The Core” OR support model, designed the sterile processing departments for LPCH and Stanford ambulatory surgery center. As a multi-disciplinary team member she participated in creating a perioperative case study for the Stanford School of Business that is still used today. A Graduate of Indiana University and Indiana Wesleyan University, Candace holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing and Masters of Arts Degree in Business Administration. She holds certification for the Professional Achievement in Perioperative Nursing Practice (CNOR).

Susan M. Scott, BSN, MSN, RN, WOCSusan M. Scott

Susan "Suzy" Scott, MSN, RN, WOCN, is currently the patient safety/quality improvement educator with the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, Office of Graduate Medical Education in Memphis, Tennessee.

Susan has published and presented both nationally and internationally on the prevention of pressure ulcers in the operating room. Susan was recognized by the American Academy of Nurses in the Raise the Voice Campaign.




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Muriel Shewchuk, RN, BScN,CPN(C)Muriel Shewchuk

Muriel Shewchuk was a nursing graduate of the University of Alberta Hospital and University of Alberta. Her decades of experience and commitment to Surgical Suite nursing began as an obsession as a student nurse. Many roles as Head Nurse Educator, Director and Consultant facilitated many outstanding years of service and awards. Muriel was instrumental in facilitating formation of the Alberta and Canadian Operating Room Associations. She was an original team member of the first ORNAC Standards documents. Muriel chaired the first official ORNAC Conference in Jasper, Alberta and a subsequent one in Banff. She has published many articles in the OR Journal. Recently she coordinated and taught an Alberta Health Certified Health Care Aide program with advanced course teaching.



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Marian Simonffy, RNMarian Simonffy

Marian Simonffy received her diploma in Nursing from Mohawk College in 1986. A career rich in pediatric perioperative care has brought about an interest in providing exemplary care for autistic children.  Providing front line care for children on the spectrum has proven to be a challenge throughout her career both at St Joseph's Hospital and currently at McMaster Childrens Hospital in Same Day Surgery.






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Lyanne Faucher Sinclair, RN,MN, CPN (C)Lyanne Faucher Sinclair

Lyanne's nursing career began in 1984 when she graduated from Kelsey Institute of Applied Arts and Sciences with a Diploma in Nursing. Her perioperative career began in 1989 following completion of a certificate in Operating Room Techniques from Wascana Institute, now known as Saskatchewan Polytechnic. The fall of 2006, she facilitated her first clinical group with the Perioperative Nursing Program with Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology (SIAST).

In 2007 Lyanne joined the SIAST team of educators and became a full time faculty member. Lyanne is a dedicated lifelong learner, she successfully wrote the Canadian Nurses' Association Certification in Perioperative Nursing in 2008. She has certificate in adult education and a bachelor of nursing. In the spring of 2016 Lyanne convocated from University of Saskatchewan with a Masters in Nursing. In 2009 and 2012, Lyanne participated in item writing sessions with The Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) and Assessment Strategies Inc. with the development of the Perioperative Nursing Certification Exam. Lyanne is the Program Head of the Perioperative Nursing and Medical Device Reprocessing programs at Saskatchewan Polytechnic. Over the past 23 years she has held fulltime and part time positions in the operating room at the Regina General Hospital, and continues to enjoy working there on casual basis.

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Laura Ann Smith, RN, CPN(C)

Laura Ann Smith

Laura is one of the Clinical Nurse Educators in the University of Alberta Hospital, Level 3 (Adult) O.R.   When Laura began her career in perioperative nursing, tape sponges were washed and resterilized.  Surgical bleeding was controlled by using silk and chromic ties.  Patients did not have pulse oximetry monitoring. There were no lasers or robots.  That was 40 years ago!

Following the completion of University of Alberta Nursing Program, she completed an Operating Room Post Graduated Course and CNA certification in Perioperative Nursing, and gained a variety of experiences in many roles within perioperative nursing.  She is passionate about the education of our new nurses and other healthcare students, about providing the best evidence-based care for our surgical patients, and about being kind to our environment through initiatives like surgical plume evacuation and waste management.

Away from the duties of work, Laura enjoys teaching piano lessons to young musicians and sharing time with her husband and large family.


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Opening Keynote: Meg Soper,

Meg Soper

Meg Soper can motivate the room! Over the past three decades Meg has worked as a Registered Nurse, humourist, professional keynote speaker and raised a family. She has taken the life lessons learned while traveling this unique path to inspire her audiences to shift their perspective. Meg blends her unique insights with unforgettable humour to help people develop practical strategies for work and life.



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Dina St. Aubin RN, BScN, CPN(C), Elizabeth Stec RN, BScN, CPN(C), Jennifer Pettit RN, BScN, CPN(C)

Dina St. Aubin RN, BScN, CPN(C),Elizabeth Stec RN, BScN, CPN(C) , Jennifer Pettit RN, BScN, CPN(C) are the Education and Development Clinician team for Perioperative Services at Hamilton Health Sciences. HHS encompasses diverse surgical programs such as Cardiac, Vascular, Trauma, Neuro, Burns, Spine, Oncology, Women’s Health, Orthopedics , and Pediatrics performing over 25000 surgeries annually.



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Catherine Steel, MN, Grad Cert Periop, BHSc, RN, FACORNCatherine Steel

Catherine is the Clinical Nurse Consultant in the Operating Theatres at the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane Queensland Australia, the first Magnet® credentialed hospital in the southern hemisphere. In this role, Catherine focuses on patient safety, quality and education. Catherine was originally from the Niagara Peninsula and has travelled, studied and worked internationally. She commenced her nursing training at Niagara College; Mack School of Nursing and completed her Bachelor of Nursing while living in New Zealand. Following many years of working in the Operating Room, Catherine gained a Graduate Certificate in Perioperative Nursing and more recently completed her Masters in Nursing. 

Throughout her career, Catherine has actively participated in State and National professional organisations and currently is a committee member for the Australian College of Perioperative Room Nurses (ACORN) Standards Committee. Catherine’s publications focus on patient and staff safety; technical and non-technical skills that substantiate reliability in translation of knowledge, which effects outcomes. 



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Victoria M. Steelman, PhD,RN,CNOR,FAAN
Victoria M. Steelman

Dr. Steelman has been a perioperative nurse for over 25 years. As a clinical nurse specialist at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, she focused on implementing evidence-based practice changes for 20 years. In July, 2009, she joined the Department of Veterans' Affairs as a Quality Scholar focusing on perioperative safety and quality. She is Associate Professor in the College of Nursing at the University of Iowa, where she focuses her teaching on evidence-based practice and her research on perioperative quality and safety. She has extensively published and presented about issues related safe patient care in the operating room. She is well recognized for these activities and received two Outstanding Achievement awards and AORN’s highest award, the Award for Excellence, in recognition of her contributions to perioperative nursing. In 2007, she was inducted into the American Academy of Nursing in recognition of the national and global impact of her work. She is ipast president of AORN.


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Gloria L. Stephens
Gloria Stephens

Graduate of Victoria General, Halifax and UBC, Adult Education, retired. Nurse experience;  member of first neurosurgery team, VGH, Halifax and team member of the first Open Heart surgery, St. Paul’s, Vancouver, plus surgical ward, VON and Public Health nursing.  Developed and taught the 6 month RN Operating Room Program, St. Paul’s Hospital, Vancouver. Founding member and President BCORNG, now PRNABC and founding member and President of ORNAC and member of several committees including the original member of the Standards. Recipient of the first Isabel Adams Award (1988) plus RNABC Innovative Nurse award for writing the first OR Standards, 1972, as President of BCORNG; RNABC Excellence in Nursing Practice (1987) and also Excellence in Nursing Education (1990); Women of Distinction award, Vancouver 1994; and the Drake Thompson Editorial award (1994).  Since returning to NS from BC, 2001; founded & President of the Nursing History NS Society and the Association of Health Sciences Archives and Museum of NS; President VG Hospital Alumni Association and Member-at-Large Canadian Association History of Nursing (CAHN).



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Duane Stockley, RN

Maryann Towns, BNSc RN CPN(C)Maryann Towns

Clinical Care Leader, Surgical Suites, Civic Campus, The Ottawa Hospital.

Maryann received her baccalaureate degree from Queens's University in 2006. Maryann quickly transitioned into the perioperative setting by completing a post graduate Perioperative Nursing diploma in 2007.  Maryann was able to build upon her perioperative skills by working in a community hospital setting in Nanaimo, BC and then at a Level 1Trauma centre at The Ottawa Hospital. She was successful in obtaining her CPN(c) in 2013. Maryann became the first Clinical Care Leader in the surgical suites at the civic campus of TOH in 2013, and has since directed her focus on quality measure initiatives and performance management. Maryann is continuing her education having enrolled in a Masters in Health Service Management program.


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Alexander Villafranca, B.E.S.S., M.Sc., Ph.D. CandidateAlexander Villafranca

Alexander is a Research Associate in the Department of Anesthesiology at the University of Manitoba and a PhD Candidate in the Department of Community Health Sciences. Previously, he completed a Bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology and an MSc in medical rehabilitation. Alexander’s research interests include inter-personal dynamics, health literacy, biomedical ethics, and perioperative medicine. He has received much acclaim for his research, including a number of provincial, national, and international awards. His research has been also been featured by a variety of media outlets such as CBC news, ABC news, CJOB radio and the LA Times.




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Patrick Voight, RN, MSA, BSN, CNORPatrick Voight

Patrick E. Voight RN, MSA, BSN, CNOR, is a Managing Director with Deloitte Consulting and serves as a Perioperative and Interventional Services Consulting leader for the United States market.  As a registered nurse with 30 years of experience, he has supported clients in all settings across the US, Canada and Australia including: Acute Care Hospitals; Academic Medical Centers; Private and State Health Systems; and the Military Healthcare and Veterans Administration.  As an experienced consultant, Patrick has provided services to over 400 hospitals focusing on Perioperative and Interventional services to improve performance, reduce cost, while focused on quality and safety. 

While working at Deloitte Consulting, Patrick served as Chief of Staff to former Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson at the Center for Health Solutions in Washington, DC.  While at the Center he focused on the quality delivery of healthcare and healthcare reform in the United States. 

Patrick is recognized both nationally and internationally through his service to perioperative practice by serving as a past National President of the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN) and currently serving as the Treasurer for the International Federation of Perioperative Registered Nurses (IFPN).


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Thanh Vu, RN, BScNThanh Vu

Thanh graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Ryerson University in 2010. Thanh joined Women's College Hospital in 2012 as a post-graduate student in the Operating Room. Since coming to Women's College Hospital, Thanh has actively taken part in leadership roles such as acting nurse liaison for Accreditation, Surgical Services Supervisor and presently as the Operating Room Clinical Manager. With her deepest commitment to patients and her keen interest in ambulatory care, she has been a vital member to the success and continued growth of our evolving Perioperative Services Department.



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Sharon Wandzura, RN, BSN, RNFA, CPN(C)Sharon Wandzura

Sharon is a registered nurse with over 35 years’ experience in perioperative nursing.  She completed the RNFA program at British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) in 2001.  The following year she accepted a RNFA position in cardiac surgery at the Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.  Initially the RNFA position consisted of intra-operative assisting and scheduled call.  In 2012, the RNFA role expanded to include pre-operative and post-operative patient care and research.

Over the years, Sharon has been involved in the Saskatchewan periOperative Registered Nurses’ Group (SORNG).  Presently, she is treasurer for the Registered Nurse First Assist Network of Canada (RNFANC). 

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Donna S. Watson, PhD, RN, CNOR, FNPDonna S. Watson

Donna S. Watson, PhD, RN, CNOR, FNP is a Professional Affairs & Clinical Education Director for the Medtronic Minimally Invasive Therapies Group (MITG).  Dr. Watson partners to develop sustainable programs with key professional societies and patient advocacy programs that are aligned with MITG mission, vison, and strategic initiatives. 

Dr. Watson is a recognized international perioperative thought leader with featured interviews in the AORN Journal, OR Today, and OR Manager.  She has presented numerous professional presentations for nurse and physician audiences on perioperative topics in the United States, Canada, China, Europe, Japan, New Zealand, Australia, and India.   She has authored numerous articles, chapters, and books; her publication, Practical Guide to Moderate Sedation/Analgesia, 2nd edition received the American Journal of Nursing Book of the Year Award.   She served on the AORN Board of Directors from 1999-2003, national AORN President from 2002-2003.   In 2014, Dr. Watson received the Award for Excellence, the highest honor bestowed by the AORN for her work and accomplishments on global perioperative nursing practice.  She is currently on the Board of Directors for the AORN Journal and the Association for Surgical Education.

Dr. Watson received her PhD in Nursing from Washington State University; ADN from the West Virginia Institute of Technology; BSN and MSN from the University of Evansville; and certificate in family practice from the University of Washington.

Ms. Watson resides in Washington State with her husband.


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Kevin Woo, RN BScN MSc PhDKevin Woo

Dr. Kevin Woo is an Assistant Professor at Queen’s University, School of Nursing and School of Rehabilitation in Kingston, Canada. He teaches in the Master of Science in Healthcare Quality program, Master of Aging and Health program, as well as the Master and Bachelor of Nursing Science programs. Kevin is an adjunct research professor at the Western University teaching for their Masters of Clinical Science in Wound Healing program. He is the Early Researcher Award recipient 2014-2019 from the Ministry of Research and Innovation. He is the co-editor of Chronic Wound Care 5, a clinical source book for health care professionals. He had served on expert panels to develop Best Practice Guidelines (BPG) in collaboration with Registered Nurses Association in Ontario for the Assessment and Management of Pressure Injuries for the Interprofessional Team. Kevin maintains his clinical expertise and functions as an Advanced Wound Consultant at the West Park Health Center, a specialized chronic care and rehabilitation hospital in Toronto. Additionally, he is the Web Editor for Advances in Skin and Wound Care journal web site and he is a member of several editorial boards including World Council of Enterostomal therapy Journal, International Wound Journal, and International Journal of Lower Extremity Wounds.


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Valerie Zellermeyer RN, BAS, MHSc.Valerie Zellermeyer

Ms. Valerie Zellermeyer is an RN and holds an undergraduate degree in Administrative Studies and a Masters in Health Sciences. She gained her CNA Perioperative Nursing Certificate at the course’s inaugural sitting in 1995. She is Treasurer of the Canadian Operating Rooms Leaders network and a long-standing member of ORNAC and AORN.

Ms. Zellermeyer was born and educated in New Zealand, and practiced in NZ, Australia and England prior to developing her career in Perioperative nursing and leadership in Toronto. She has enjoyed over 30 years of Perioperative and Critical Care experience, as a staff-nurse and in a variety of leadership roles. She was the Program Director, Perioperative Services at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto from 1996-2012. In this role she was responsible for the multi-disciplinary professional teams and their care within Perioperative Services, Pain Management Services and Respiratory Therapy Services.

Ms. Zellermeyer is the Co-Chair of the SETP Advisory Committee, chaired the Surgical Process Analysis & Improvement Expert Panel and was a lead member for the Perioperative Expert Coaching Teams: Ontario’s Wait Time Strategy, Ministry of Health and Long Term Care. She has also been an advisor for Ontario Buys/OHA OR Supply Chain projects and enjoys sharing her broad knowledge as a clinical consultant for other healthcare facilities. She is a frequent speaker at Perioperative related venues.

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