Zerr, Sheila

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Zerr, Sheila

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  • Sheila Rankin Zerr

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1936-

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Sheila Zerr was born and raised in Powell River, B.C., and graduated from the Royal Jubilee Hospital in Victoria. She continued her studies with a BSc in Public Health Nursing in 1967 and an MEd in Psychopedagogy in 1971 from the University of Ottawa. As a staff nurse she worked in Vancouver, Fredericton and Ottawa. She taught at the Ottawa General Hospital, the University of Ottawa, the University of Victoria and the University of British Columbia.

Sheila’s many achievements have been recognized in awards including a medal commemorating the Golden Jubilee of Her Majesty’s accession to the throne. She also received an Award of Distinction in 1999 from RNABC for her outstanding contribution to nursing in Canada and a number of honorary life memberships.

Her community and professional involvements include chairing the Planning Committee for the International History of Nursing Conference in 1997, and Committee Chairperson for the Canadian Association of University Schools of Nursing, Learned Societies Conference, in 1989. She has been active as a consultant in the production of films and books.
Her own writing includes co-authoring Pharamacology and the Nursing Process and a chapter in Fundamentals of Nursing. She initiated ASA research to increase people’s awareness of the effects of non-prescription drugs and was active in the St. John’s Ambulance Child Care in the Home program. More recent interests include nursing in the north and a book on the pioneer nurse Gertrude Richards Ladner. Sheila has raised over $15,000 for HoN scholarships by handcrafting a collection of miniature historical nursing figures. Her creation of dolls has been a long time interest, with their costumes used to portray the development of nursing.

Sheila is a founding member of the BCHoN Society and was instrumental in initiating the oral history project. She has remained involved with the Royal Jubilee hospital and the School of Nursing Alumnae, and ensured Begbie Hall, at RJH, was selected as a residence worthy of National Historic significance. Sheila has been an active member of the community, serving on various committees to improve health care, particularly the Delta Health Care Association.

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