Second-annual Nursing Now Ontario Awards honours contributions of nurses during challenging year

May 7, 2021

In what has been a most difficult year for nurses in all roles and sectors, Ontario’s nursing organizations are partnering once again to recognize the outstanding contributions of three nurses during a celebration of the second-annual Nursing Now Ontario Awards.

During a virtual ceremony on Wednesday, May 12 via Zoom at 2 p.m. ET, the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO), the Ontario Nurses’ Association (ONA) and the Registered Practical Nurses Association of Ontario (WeRPN) will be honouring one nurse practitioner (NP), one registered nurse (RN) and one registered practical nurse (RPN) who have contributed to the nursing profession and improved Ontarians’ quality of life and health outcomes.

These organizations recognize that this past year has been stressful for all, especially nurses on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic. RNAO, ONA and WeRPN are proud to recognize these three exemplary nursing leaders. Each winner has made an incredible impact on nursing in this province, which benefits all Ontarians.

This year, the awards program received 213 nominations from across the province. The winners of this year’s Nursing Now Ontario Awards are Aric Rankin, an NP at De dwa da dehs nye>s Aboriginal Health Centre; Mahoganie Hines, an RN at Hospice Niagara and Sheri Bruder, an RPN at Brantford General Hospital.

“The pandemic has shone a spotlight on the centrality of nurses to save lives, ameliorate suffering and advance people’s health. The Nursing Now Ontario Awards is an important way to honour the stellar practice of nurses and recognize the monumental contributions of the nursing profession always, and in particular during these long and hard 15 months. RNAO salutes this year’s winners and all nurses in Ontario and beyond for their expertise, compassion and courage,” says RNAO President Morgan Hoffarth.

“Nurses have gone way above and beyond for their patients, residents and clients this year. In fact, all nurses in Ontario should be honoured with an award. ONA is proud of the tireless work that all nurses have undertaken, including strong advocacy work for safe care, improved workplace conditions and access to personal protective equipment. On behalf of the Ontario Nurses’ Association, I congratulate all Ontario nurses,” says ONA President Vicki McKenna.

“Nurses have continued to display exceptional dedication and commitment to caring for Ontarians over the past year, amidst the pandemic. Across the province, they have done everything possible to deliver the best care to patients, residents and clients, often under extremely stressful conditions and WeRPN is honoured to recognize the contributions of three amazing nurses through this year’s Nursing Now Ontario Awards,” says WeRPN CEO Dianne Martin.

What: Nursing Now Ontario Awards presentation                                                                     

When: Wednesday, May 12 at 2 – 3 p.m. (ET), during Nursing Week 2021

Who: Award recipients

  • Aric Rankin, NP – De dwa da dehs nye>s Aboriginal Health Centre, Hamilton
  • Mahoganie Hines, RN – Hospice Niagara, Niagara
  • Sheri Bruder, RPN – Brantford General Hospital, Brantford


  • Dr. Doris Grinspun, RNAO CEO (moderator)
  • Morgan Hoffarth, RNAO President
  • Vicki McKenna, ONA President
  • Dianne Martin, WeRPN CEO

Where/How: Please register online. Once you have registered, you will receive the Zoom details in an email. Media are welcome to attend.

The Nursing Now Ontario Awards is part of Nursing Now, a global campaign to improve health by raising the status and profile of nursing. The ceremony falls on the same day as the anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth. Nightingale is considered the founder of modern nursing.

The Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO) is the professional association representing registered nurses, nurse practitioners, and nursing students in Ontario. Since 1925, RNAO has advocated for healthy public policy, promoted excellence in nursing practice, increased nurses’ contribution to shaping the health system, and influenced decisions that affect nurses and the public they serve. For more information about RNAO, visit our website at or follow us on Facebook  and Twitter.

ONA is the union representing more than 68,000 registered nurses and health-care professionals, as well as 18,000 nursing student affiliates, providing care in hospitals, long-term care facilities, public health, the community, clinics and industry.

The Registered Practical Nurses Association (WeRPN) is the professional voice of Ontario’s 45,000 Registered Practical Nurses (RPNs). WeRPN builds the profile and professional capacity of RPNS so we can better care for our patients and better support our fellow health-care workers.


Contact info
Alicia Saunders
Communications Assistant
Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario (RNAO)
Katherine Russo
Ontario Nurses’ Association (ONA)
Tiff Blair
Registered Practical Nurses Association of Ontario (WeRPN)