The application deadline for 2021 has passed.  Applications received are being reviewed.  

An entrepreneur CCsurfsmis: “one who organizes, manages and assumes the risks of a business or enterprise.” (Merriam-Webster)

The Connie Clerici Nurse Entrepreneur Award (CCNEA) was conceived and funded by Connie Clerici, Founder and Executive Chair of the Board of Closing the Gap, a home care agency in Ontario and a nurse entrepreneur herself.

This $25,000.00 award will be given to a nurse or nurses who is/are either:
• aspiring entrepreneurs who have applied for support to enable them to establish their business OR
• career entrepreneurs who need support to expand their products or services
in an existing business

Both categories of applicants must be nurses in a business that directly or indirectly delivers or improves health services and health care to Ontarians. Applications from groups will be accepted.

In addition to the financial award, the winner will be offered the opportunity to work with a nurse entrepreneur mentor.

Applicants for the CCNEA must be an RN, RPN, or NP currently registered in good standing with the College of Nurses of Ontario (CNO) and living or working in Ontario. Applicant(s) may be an aspiring or established entrepreneur(s) whose business is focused on providing or supporting quality health care to Ontarians. Applicant(s) cannot be an employee or consultant in a business managed or owned by others.

The Application Process

The application system opened on March 22nd and closed on May 29th, 2021.
Applicants will be notified about the next step over the next few weeks.



For Longwoods Link Final The story of the Nurse Innovator Award is featured in the recently released issue of Longwood's Nursing Leadership.  In the article "Developing a Culture of Support to Advance and Accelerate Nursing Innovation", three successful examples of Canadian nursing leadership in the development of innovataion culture at the national, provincial, and local levels are highlighted.  The goal is to cultivate innovation as a way of being, thinking, and doing, ensuring that it is inherent in nursing culture and visible in nursing practice, education, and research.
Written by a team of NIA donors (pictured, top: Mary Lou Ackerman, Lianne Jeffs, bottom: Bev Simpson, Sue Williams), the article is further testament to the forward-thinking leadership in the nursing profession that RNFOO is supporting.  Subscribers to Nursing Leadership can read the article here.


The Globe and Mail newspaper recently recognized Gail Donner, Mary Wheeler, and the other Honorary Life Members of RNFOO for their amazing work that created the RNFOO Nurse Innovator Award for the Ontario nursing community.

Paul Waldie's feature 'Pitching In' provided the perfect forum to highlight this leading edge enterprise. The article has helped raise awareness of the critically important role that nurses fill in leading health care inOntario.  An unexpected, but very welcome response to the article has been further donations to the Nurse Innovator Award fund. Click here to read the article.

For Whats New Globe Article cropped

NIA Founding Donors, Friends & Supporters, Award Winners and other friends of RNFOO gathered virtually for the 2020 Nurse Innovator Award Reception on November 18.  The evening was a terrific success.  Host Mary Ito, Producer and Journalist with CBC, created an engaging tone.  The 2019 NIA winners shared updates on their progress, and the 2020 winners held viewers' attention as they shared their passion for their projects.  The lively Q&A session helped everyone better understand the crucial role that innovation plays in nursing.  

Celebrate with the winners again, by watching the event here:

Here are just a few of the attendee comments:

"The celebration was very well done. Having Mary Ito host it was brilliant. Her graciousness and sincerity were perfect for the event."

"The winners all had interesting projects and the sharing of the info gave me a great understanding of the projects."

"It was a great option given the pandemic. I continue to be amazed at the wonderful innovations we are supporting."

 Thanks are extended to everyone who helped to make the Reception happen. 

Special mention goes to Cecktor Ltd, for organizing and operating the technology platform.
  Cecktor Logo

YotN Friends

Soon after the RNFOO Year of the Nurse Bracelet Campaign launched, we received an order for two bracelets: one of each of the styles available.  Through follow-up correspondence with Monica, we learned that this was a special order.   

As a retired nurse, who was supposed to celebrate my 50th reunion this month, and a fan of glamjulz and with a desire to support nurses, it was a no brainer to order these bracelets.  One will be for a dear friend and classmate who should have been celebrating with me and one for me!

 The 50th anniversary reunion of the Ottawa Civic Hospital School of Nursing, Class of 1970, originally scheduled for June 6, was one of the thousands of special events that have fallen victim to the COVID19 lockdown. 

YotN Bracelette

With COVID19 restrictions easing Monica and Sharon were able to meet recently:
Tonight I presented Sharon with her bracelet. It was an emotional moment for the two of us.”
They were together in Ottawa at school, but family and careers took them to Edmonton, Ottawa, and Calgary, so it was difficult to stay in touch.   Fortunately, Sharon and Monica both live in Burlington now, and are able to get together (when global pandemics don’t interfere!)

We are grateful to Monica for her commitment to supporting nursing scholarships through RNFOO, and for sharing this story.  

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