Board of Directors
Chair – Dr. Donna Wilson
Dr. Donna Wilson, Ph.D., is a Registered Nurse, and a Professor in the Faculty of Nursing at the University of Alberta. She teaches undergraduate and graduate nursing students there and does research on aging and end-of-life care. She also has a appointment at the University of Limerick and the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Alberta. Her education started with a 3-year nursing diploma from the Royal Alexandra Hospital School of Nursing, followed by a BScN (University of Alberta), MN focused on management and gerontology, (University of Texas at Austin) and then a PhD (University of Alberta).
Donna has worked as a staff nurse, nursing supervisor, hospital administrator, media commentator, educator, and researcher in Alberta, British Columbia, New Zealand, Texas, Northern Ireland, Ireland, Belgium, and England. She has over 400 published articles, books, book chapters, and other communications in print. Donna is frequently and widely consulted for expert commentary on healthcare trends and issues.
Vice Chair – Elaine Klym
Elaine Klym has been an RN for 30 years. For almost 20 years her career has focused on end-of-life care for clients and their families. Elaine has worked throughout Canada and the US over her nursing career and currently works as a palliative care case manager in Red Deer Alberta. Elaine has been certified in Canada as a palliative care nurse for 10 years and she was previously certified in the US as well. Advocacy for adequate palliative care available across the spectrum has been one of Elaine’s passions as she serves the clients and families of central Alberta. Elaine was previously involved in residential hospice, working to develop programs and obtain sustainable funding for hospice in Ontario.
Outside of work, Elaine enjoys crocheting, her family and involved with church activities.
Treasurer – Leslie Penny
Leslie Penny’s contribution to the AHPCA Board of Directors is her rich nursing experience in rural Alberta. Her career includes the administration of a nursing home, acute care, working with seniors, and a variety of community programs. End-of-life care has been a vital component of Leslie’s work and is one of the reasons she believes in the importance of the Alberta Hospice Palliative Care Association and the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association.
Leslie has recently taken on an additional new role as Town Counsellor in Barrhead where she has been active in the Barrhead United Church and the local Toastmasters club for many years.
Secretary – Kathy Kemmere
“I became passionately interested in hospice palliative care in 1998 after attending a conference in Calgary and immediately after signed up for training as a volunteer for hospice palliative care and pastoral care.”
Kathy Kemmere, trained as a Licensed Practical Nurse, became a founding member of the Olds and District Hospice Society in 2007 and is the current vice-president of this vibrant organization. In her additional roles as a volunteer and a trained Bereavement Facilitator, Kathy co-facilitates grief support groups and provides other bereavement support through additional society based programs.
Members at Large
Past Chair – Pansy Angevine
Pansy Angevine has taken her passion for nursing, palliative care, and volunteering and put them together to direct both her career and her life. As such, she currently works as Zone Manager Specialty Programs with Alberta Health Services in the Central Zone.
Pansy has worked in every sector of health care, including public and private in several locations in Canada. Her volunteer work includes capacities from front line activities to Board Chair at local, provincial and national levels. In 2012, Pansy received the Queen’s Jubilee Medal for contributions to palliative care.
Dr. Robin Casey
Robin is a retired physician who joined the AHPCA Board in late 2017.
Professionally, he was an associate professor in Pediatrics (Medical Genetics) at the University of Calgary. Clinically, he cared for children and adults with inherited biochemical diseases both at the Alberta Children’s Hospital in Calgary and prior to that, at the Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon. At both, Robin worked with children and adults, many of whom had disorders that could or did cause death or disability.
Personally, Robin lives with his wife on an acreage near Water Valley. He has two children and two grandchildren.
Robin’s interest in palliative care is based on past experience with children and their families who were dying. His particular interests for the future include development of support for rural pediatric palliative care programs and supporting indigenous nations to develop culturally appropriate palliative programs in their communities.
Rayne Johnson is a Death Doula, End-of-Life Consultant and founder of Doing Deathcare Differently. She is a graduate of the Contemplative End-of-Life program at Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado. With 30 years as a massage and reiki therapist, she understands the importance of helping to ease the journey for the dying as well as for the family. With this expertise and her strong passion for death and dying matters, Rayne introduces contemplative integrative therapies into hospice palliative care.
Rayne is a public speaker, advocate and educator on alternative options for death care, funerals and green burials, as well as a facilitator for the innovative Death Chats. She also participated in the Pediatrics Integrative Medicine research at the Stollery Children’s Hospital in Edmonton.
Her main work is to help inform and empower families and to makes their decisions from value-based choices.
Michelle Peterson Fraser
Michelle Peterson Fraser, RN BN, is the Senior Consultant for the provincial Palliative and End-of-Life Care (PEOLC) team with Alberta Health Services in Community, Seniors, Addiction and Mental Health. A registered nurse for 34 years, she has worked on the front lines in oncology and PEOLC. She has also held numerous management roles including Director of Resident Care in a hospice setting. As part of the provincial PEOLC team, Michelle helped to facilitate and develop the PEOLC Alberta Provincial Framework and has been actively leading provincial initiatives since 2014. Michelle is most proud of contributing to PEOLC on a provincial level to help Albertans.
Linda Saunders is a retired nurse with 40 years’ experience. For over 30 years, she worked at Westlock Nursing Home, caring for the elderly and frail, where she was Head Nurse for 7 years.
She is the president of the Westlock & District Palliative Care Society where she trains volunteers to better support the physical, spiritual and emotional needs of palliative care patients and their loved ones.
Passionate about palliative care, Linda set up Westlock & District Pastoral Care Committee in 1995. For 15 years, this group of dedicated and committed individuals visited people in homes, lodges and long-term care who were lonely or cut off from loved ones.
“Palliative care has been my passion for the last 14 years, assisting clients and their families through the death and dying journey, one that each of us has to ultimately take.” A staff nurse at the Mel Miller Hospice at the Edmonton General Hospital, Ali has also expanded her commitment to quality hospice palliative care through her involvement on the AHPCA board since 2005. She has found it encouraging seeing the board grow in size and capacity, to its current status. “I look forward to continued growth as the AHPCA gains strength as the voice of palliative care in Alberta.”
Terri Woytkiw brings over 30 years of nursing experience and advanced education in hospice palliative care and gerontology to her current roles: AHPCA Chairperson, Lead, Clinical Support North Zone Seniors Health, Alberta Health Services and Instructor, Grant MacEwan University. Terri’s many credentials include an advanced diploma in palliative care, certifications in hospice palliative care and gerontological nursing with the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA), and a Master of Nursing degree with an interest in palliative care issues and advanced care planning.
Terri is a facilitator for the Learning Essential Approaches to Palliative Care and End of Life Care (LEAP) and a member of the Canadian Nurses Association Hospice Palliative Nursing Certification exam development committee; she is also the western region representative on the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Nurses Group and the President Elect for the Alberta Gerontological Nurses Association.
In 2012, Terri was recognized by Alberta Health Services North Zone with the “North Star Award” for outstanding leadership and commitment to palliative care.
Cindy Young, RN, has volunteered on the AHPCA board since 2007, bringing with her a wide variety of experience in rural nursing Alberta since 1985. Since 2006, Cindy has worked as a palliative care resource nurse in the South Zone with Alberta Health Services. Cindy has been effective networking with other provinces and within Alberta assisting people in their palliative care journeys.
Cindy is very active on a variety of committees in her home community of Brooks and its surrounding areas. Her passion is spreading the word about palliative care and its importance in everyone’s life journey of life because each day matters. Cindy volunteers on the Prairie Rose Hospice Palliative Care Society for Brooks and areas.
Sung Ho Yun
Sung is an occupational therapist who has worked in home care, a rehabilitation hospital, an acute care hospital, and in community health services including palliative care services in Toronto, Vancouver and now in Edson, Alberta. Besides his full time work, Sung is also a graduate student at McMaster University.
Sung recognizes that everyone will have at least one palliative / hospice care experience before they end their journey of life. He’s particularly interested in making this experience positive for both the individual at the end of life and their care givers.