Sharon Stapleton was a nurse, leader and an inspiration to the many lives she touched. She was known for her ability to light up any room with her warm smile and unwavering positive attitude. When Sharon became severely ill due to cancer, she did not let it dampen her spirit; instead, she used it as inspiration to ensure her support for people and passion for health care education would continue.

Throughout her career with VGH and UBC Hospital, Sharon always believed that fostering leadership through education was the key to successful health care. To honour Sharon’s memory and continue her legacy of inspiring others to reach their potential, Sharon’s family established the Sharon Stapleton Memorial Leadership Education Fund.

Sacha Arsenault, a Regional Practice Initiatives Lead, Allied Health, VCH, is the first recipient of the Sharon Stapleton Memorial Leadership Education Bursary Award.

For the family, presenting this Award is a truly fitting way to honour Sharon’s memory and legacy. “This will be the first of many Awards from this Fund and we are thrilled to have Sacha as the first recipient whose passion and ambition reminds us so much of Sharon,” says Geoff Davenport, Sharon’s husband.

For Sacha, receiving the bursary is even more special; she is currently enrolled in the Royal Roads University Master of Arts in Leadership (Health) program that Sharon completed. “This experience has been transformational for me and I feel very proud and honoured to follow in Sharon’s footsteps,” says Sacha.

“Sharon embraced the idea of a leadership education fund so that other like-minded individuals who may need some financial support can receive the training they need to influence positive change on health care,” says Geoff.

This is the first education fund that helps support Vancouver Acute nursing or allied health care professionals showing high leadership potential with up to $5,000 of funding for leadership training. With over 100 donations made by Sharon’s family, friends, and colleagues, the support of this Fund totals nearly $100,000.

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