June 12th, 2015
KITCHENER, ON (June 12, 2015) – St. Mary’s General Hospital yesterday recognized seven local people who have contributed in an exceptional manner to the healthcare ministry of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Hamilton, St. Mary’s General Hospital and the St. Mary’s General Hospital Foundation.
St. Mary’s was founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Hamilton and opened its doors in 1924. Since that time, the hospital’s staff, physicians and volunteers have proudly carried on the legacy of compassionate, excellent care delivered by the Sisters. “Dignity, compassion and respect are the hallmarks of care at St. Mary’s,” said President, Don Shilton. “We are proud to celebrate the outstanding individuals who help bring these characteristics to life.”
An award presentation and reception was held yesterday at St. Mary’s to recognize the recipients, who were chosen by a selection committee comprised of St. Mary’s Board members, volunteers, Foundation representatives and staff.
Nominations are accepted internally, as well as from members of the community at large. More information about the Mission Legacy Awards, including how to submit a nomination, can be found at www.smgh.ca/about-us/who-we-are/recognition-programs.
More on Our Distinguished Recipients:
Thomas McCauley was Chair of the Board of Trustees from 1978-1980 and Chair of the Finance Committee from 1975-1984. He was truly dedicated to St. Mary’s and was a strong spokesman during a time when the Hospital was attempting to expand and retain services. Thomas was known for treating everyone with dignity and respect. He included others in decision making and was able to bring out the best in people.
Donna Goss, a Medical Radiation Technologist in Nuclear Medicine, cared about every patient, every minute during their visit. Patients would often request to have her as their technician, and those who sent letters of thanks to the department most often mentioned the great care Donna provided. Donna’s beaming smile and congenial tone drew staff together into the close-knit team that remains today.
Janis Heuchert, a Registered Nurse in the Surgical Department, has worked in several departments at St. Mary’s since 1977. She provides holistic care and ensures a positive patient experience. She always has the best interest of patients in mind, demonstrates empathy and has excellent listening and interpersonal skills. Janis is respectful to patients, families and colleagues and is always willing to offer a helping hand.
Bob Robbins, Manager of Labour Relations, has a long list of contributions from his 42 years at St. Mary’s. He started in 1973 as a porter and joined the Human Resources department in 1984. As a leader, Bob is a reliable problem solver, mentor and advocate, who has a strong sense of justice. Bob conducts difficult conversations with respect for both parties, offering opinions with rationale and advice with encouragement.
Rose Lorentz, a volunteer at St. Mary’s since 1988, greets patients and visitors to the hospital like she is welcoming an old friend. She has volunteered in many areas of the hospital and continues today as a team lead volunteer at the main greeter desk. Rose has helped the Volunteer Association reach many fundraising goals with her willingness, expertise and strong leadership. She truly lives the mission of St. Mary’s.
Dr. Richard Upenieks
Dr. Richard Upenieks is a committed and dedicated physician who started his career in the Emergency Department and now serves our community as a Hospitalist and Coroner. He puts his patients and colleagues at ease with his pleasant personality and warm sense of humour. Dr. Upenieks is empathetic and always strives to provide the highest level of care. His focus is on the whole patient, not just the medical diagnosis.
Rob Doneslon served as Executive Director of the St. Mary’s Foundation from 1994-2003 and worked tirelessly to raise funds and support the Hospital’s mission. He greatly enhanced the Foundation’s profile within the community. Among his many contributions to St. Mary’s was to acquire the Ethical Fund Raising Designation for the Foundation. Rob also shared his talents with other executive directors of the St. Joseph’s Health System Foundations.
Interim Manager of Communications
519-749-6578, ext. 1501