Karen Dunlop to chair new WRHA board

Winnipeg Regional Health Authority
Published Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Provincial Health, Seniors and Active Living Minister Kelvin Goertzen today announced the appointment of a new board for the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority.

The 13-member board will be chaired by Karen Dunlop, who is interim executive director of the Association of Registered Nurses of Manitoba and a consultant for Karen M. Dunlop and Associate. Dunlop, a registered nurse for more than 30 years, is also a former regional director of the WRHA emergency program.

The board unveiled by Goertzen today will consist of nine new members and four returning members. New members are:

  • Derek Johannson, vice-chair (Winnipeg)
  • Raquel Godin (Winnipeg)
  • Brad Klassen (Winnipeg)
  • Kiran Kumedan (Winnipeg)
  • Donald Lepp (Gonor)
  • Dr. Judith Scanlan (Winnipeg)
  • Gord Steeves (Winnipeg)
  • Shannon Stefanson (Winnipeg)

Returning members are:

  • Maj. Joanne Biggs (Winnipeg)
  • Jan Byrd (Winnipeg)
  • Verna Flett (Churchill)
  • Stuart Greenfield (Winnipeg)

Milton Sussman, President & CEO of the WRHA, welcomed the new board members, and singled out Dunlop for her long career in health care.

"Karen is no stranger to health care or to the WRHA having served much of her career in the profession of nursing and as an advocate for patient care," he said.

"I look forward to working with our new board as they begin their terms. This is an exciting time for the Region and one which I know will result in innovations and positive changes to our work."

In addition to her former position with the Region, Dunlop has also served as Registrar of the Manitoba Association of Registered Nurses, President of the College of Registered Nurses of Manitoba, Board member of the Canadian Nurses Association and President of the Canadian Nurses Protective Society.

She is a graduate from the Health Sciences School of Nursing and holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Bachelor of Law from the University of Manitoba. Dunlop graduated from the Health Sciences Centre Intensive Care Nursing program and is a certified change manager with PROSCI.

In addition to naming new board members for the WRHA, Goertzen also announced new appointments to the board of four other regional health authorities today, including Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority; Northern Regional Health Authority; Prairie Mountain Health; and Southern Health – Santé Sud.

In making the announcements, Goertzen said the new boards will play an important role in supporting their respective health authorities.

"Regional health authority boards are responsible for the resources and performance of the health-care system, and I know these knowledgeable and skilled Manitobans will work hard to ensure the future of health care in this province," said Goertzen. "As we focus on improving and ensuring the sustainability of health care, these people will help ensure the best possible care is available right across Manitoba."

As per the Regional Health Authorities Act, the minister of health, seniors and active living appoints directors to each regional health authority board. Board members of regional health authorities must ensure the organization complies with applicable legislation, regulations, provincial policies and ministerial directives.

The WRHA board can have up to 15 board members, while rural and northern regional health authorities can have up to 12 board members.

The selection of board members was based on a range of knowledge and skills, in such areas as governance in public-sector, private-sector or not-for-profit boards, government structures and processes, law, business, finance and accounting, among others, the minister noted.

The minister noted each regional health authority has also created local health involvement groups. These organizations, made up of area residents, provide local advice to regional boards on issues that affect the delivery of local health services.

"As we move forward, I want to thank all those who have given their time and commitment to serve on the boards of the regional health authorities," said Goertzen. "Their hard work and efforts on behalf of Manitobans are very appreciated."

For more information about the regional health authorities, visit

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The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority acknowledges that it provides health services in facilities located in Treaty One and Treaty Five territories, the homelands of the Métis Nation and the original lands of the Inuit people. The WRHA respects and acknowledges harms and mistakes, and we dedicate ourselves to collaborate in partnership with First Nation, Métis and Inuit people in the spirit of reconciliation.
Click here to read more about the WRHA's efforts towards reconciliation

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