Nursing Matters

RNU’s Ovation Award Winners

March 14, 2023

The Ovation Awards for 2021 and 2022 were presented at RNU’s 28th Biennial Convention in October.

The Ovation Awards recognize exceptional leadership by RNU members.

The award is given annually to a registered nurse or nurse practitioner who is willing to stand up and advocate for fellow nurses and patients, who has worked to advance nursing unionism at the local and/or provincial level, and who upholds the objectives of RNU.

At their core, Ovation Award recipients are leaders for registered nurses, nurse practitioners, and their union.

Congratulations to Rosalie Gillis and Karen Noseworthy on receiving RNU Ovation Awards!

2021 Ovation Award – Rosalie Gillis, Branch 5

Rosalie was recognized by her colleagues as a registered nurse who many strive to become.

She dedicated a significant part of her life to registered nursing and was involved with the union since she graduated in 1986.

With care and compassion, Rosalie has advocated for her patients and colleagues at the branch and provincial level for many years.

A strong leader, Rosalie became a shop steward in the late nineties. She served as branch vice president, and then president, a role she served for a decade. She rounded off her impressive volunteer work with two terms on the RNU Board of Directors before retiring.

Rosalie’s nominators say Leadership is a character trait she exemplifies effortlessly with a calmness felt by anyone in her presence. Her steady voice of wisdom was greatly valued around the boardroom table, especially when debating important issues and making key decision for our union.

Even in retirement she remained vocal, active, and a source of inspiration, support, and guidance to members in volunteer positions.

During COVID-19, she joined the fight to keep Newfoundlanders and Labradorians healthy and safe. Coming back to work to swab patients and working on Bell Island when they were critically short.

Engaged throughout her entire career, Rosalie always voiced her concerns and collaboratively looked for solutions. She mentored many coworkers and encouraged others to find their voice.

Rosalie is an advocate, a professional, an outstanding registered nurse, and a union leader who symbolizes what the Ovation Award is all about.

Congratulations, Rosalie!

2022 Ovation Award – Karen Noseworthy, Branch 5, Recovery Room – St. Clare’s

Karen has a long history with RNU and is a fearless, committed volunteer for our union.

She’s been a shop steward, vice president and spent the past three years as branch president.

Karen is not afraid to stand up for what’s right – for her colleagues, her patients, and the health care system.

If you need a union representative, Karen is who you want by your side.

Karen tries her absolute best, and you can be sure she will get to the bottom of any problem – whether it’s union or nursing related.

During the first COVID-19 outbreak, Karen listened to her coworkers’ fears and frustrations. She worked with the branch executive and RNU team to push the regional health authorities for appropriate and safe treatment. Without this support, the situation that unfolded would have been much more traumatizing and debilitating for staff and patients alike.

Karen was instrumental in ensuring members obtained their appropriate classification and compensation with the Job Evaluation System (JES). Even though this process was long and dragged out, she never gave up and has continued to push forward for her members, winning multiple achievements along the way.

In the beginning of 2022, Branch 5 was in danger of folding. But Karen would not let that happen. She knew that this was a pivotal time for RNs and NPs across the province and despite the personal time and toll it was taking on her, she stepped up again to keep the branch alive, ensuring all voices on the ground would be heard during this crisis time in our profession.

Karen is strong, smart, compassionate, and a mentor who has inspired and supported so many people in her branch.

Congratulations, Karen!