A very special year

May/June 2017   Comments

The last 12 months have been very special for CNA and our member organizations. Three of our members — the College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta, the Nurses Association of New Brunswick and the Saskatchewan Registered Nurses’ Association — marked 100th anniversaries. The celebrations included special awards and scholarships, recognition of past presidents and council members, congratulatory wishes from senior government ministers and other officials, and all manner of other joyful events. Underpinning these festivities is the profession’s remarkable history; provincial nursing associations and regulatory colleges have been in existence for a century (and in some cases, even longer), promoting self-regulation, advancing the profession and keeping the public interest at the heart of what they do.

In preparation for attending these celebrations, I did a bit of digging in the Canadian Nurse archives. A constant for each organization was that establishing itself took time, commitment and unerring professionalism on the part of early nurse leaders, as they worked to get the necessary legislation passed and determine mandates.

I have no doubt that the other associations had similar challenges during their birth. As Canadian registered nurses in the 21st century, we have a great deal to be proud of in how our profession was formalized and how our associations and regulatory colleges are positioned to continue to ensure a robust profession for the next 100 years. That doesn’t mean that things are static, of course; these organizations continually work to improve and adapt their respective mandates in the interest of the Canadians they serve.

For the officers and me, attending these celebrations was wonderful. I will soon be retiring from CNA, and it was pleasant to spend time saluting the past, enjoying the present and anticipating a bright future for nurses and nursing. On that note, I would like to give incoming CEO Mike Villeneuve my sincere best wishes for success and fulfilment leading CNA on its next chapter. It’s an exciting time for sure.

Anne Sutherland Boal, RN, BA, MHSA

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