Honourary Life Membership is given to honour an individual who has made a significant contribution to the Foundation’s work over a period of time.  Bev Simpson was presented with this award at the Annual RNFOO Gala in May 2008, in recognition of her tireless commitment to RNFOO in multiple roles.

Bev’s extensive involvement and leadership provided a strong anchor for the Foundation as it has grown and flourished following its 1997 rejuvenation.  Bev joined the Foundation Board in 1998 and quickly assumed leadership of our first major fundraiser – the 1999 Gala at the Granite Club.  There the presence of the renewed Foundation was created and strengthened the Nursing Community within the Greater Toronto Area.  Bev then did a repeat performance by leading the 2000 Gala.  Ten years later she remains an avid supporter of the Gala and promotes its growth beyond the GTA.

Bev was instrumental in leading and establishing strong strategic planning processes early on in the rejuvenation of the Foundation.  She ensured that realistic goals were established, outcomes monitored and infrastructure such as administrative resources were in place to support the needs of the Directors.  Essential documentation processes (i.e. strategic plans, annual reports, awards and scholarship records, donor recognition mechanisms) were established and expanded.  All these processes increased the stability of the organization, therefore enabling the planning to be operationalized efficiently and effectively.

Bev assumed the President’s role from 2000-2002 when she continued to develop and strengthen the infrastructure, ensure coordination of the evolving projects and expand the linkages with external agencies.  All the time she attended to opportunities for growth and development of RNFOO.  In 2002, the 30th Anniversary of the Foundation, Bev influenced the granting of the first Honourary Life Membership to Laura Barr.

Bev not only enacted the role of the Foundation’s Past President from 2002-2004, but she also graciously assumed the role of Chair of Nominations until 2006 when the Past Presidency position remained vacant.  She looked to her own extensive network and that of others to ensure a full complement of the Board.  Her recruitment of Board members was always very purposeful, reaching out to prospective Directors based on the skills required to move the Foundation ahead.

Inherent in all of Bev’s work is her caring and supportive approach to people.  She gives great value to people’s skills and abilities, and is often found encouraging, coaching and mentoring current and future leaders.  She is a sophisticated nursing leader herself and one who always exemplifies nurses helping nurses, nurses investing in nurses and nurses celebrating nurses.

Bev is a well deserving recipient of an RNFOO Honourary Life Membership.