Healthcare leaders from across the community gathered to unveil a plaque in Providence Care Hospital’s Heritage 2 unit on August 12 in honour of Sue Creasy, a great business leader, healthcare advocate, tireless volunteer and community philanthropist.
“Sue has been a friend and advocate for healthcare in our community, championing the cause, without pause, for more than three decades,” said Karen Humphreys Blake, Acting President and CEO, University Hospitals Kingston Foundation (UHKF). “The event recognized Sue’s most recent $100,000 pledge to Providence Care for Capital Campaign projects with the naming of this beautiful sunroom.”
In addition to Sue’s many volunteer roles—including the KGH Black Tie Evening Gala committee, the Rose of Hope Tournament committee, the Women’s Giving Circle and the KGH Board of Directors—she has made financial contributions to UHKF in excess of $300,000. Most recently, Sue chaired the Extraordinary People Innovative Health Care Campaign
, leading UHKF to achieve the $65 million goal, just two and a half years after the public launch in 2015.
For her part Sue Creasy says the roots of giving and volunteering run deep in her family. Among her family’s many volunteer commitments, Sue’s grandfather was chair of a major capital campaign to build CNIB Lake Joe during the 1960s, and her mother read university textbooks onto audio cassettes, for the visually impaired. “Giving to make life better for others,” she says, “was a way of life.”
Sue’s introduction to volunteering for healthcare came with her involvement in the KGH Black Tie Gala in the late 1980s. “Again, it was a family thing,” she explains, “my late husband, David, and our children, everyone, got involved.” When Sue’s first husband died of an artery blockage it reaffirmed her commitment to healthcare. “I went for an angiogram and there was a sign on the door recognizing the lab had been renovated as a result of proceeds from the Black Tie Gala. It was one of the projects we’d done when I’d chaired the event. I thought, ‘I did that.’” The impact of that full-circle moment has never diminished, “I feel privileged to have been able to do what I do financially, as well as voluntarily.”
Today Sue is motivated to continue giving and volunteering based on the needs she sees and what it means to a community, like Kingston, to have “the best of the best.” With pride she says, “There aren’t many communities in Canada that will have the kind of medical facilities we will have in the next seven years, especially when you think of the Providence Care Hospital, the new Providence Manor development, and the phase two redevelopment at KHSC. I feel empowered and committed to getting the job done and to helping people.”
Liz Wilson, Chair of UHKF’s Board of Directors, closed the unveiling ceremony by applauding Sue’s capacity to “motivate people to give to healthcare, all while listening, with compassion and empathy, as donors share their own stories of illness and loss.” She thanked Sue for “opening up every part of [her] life to help UHKF succeed, giving often, giving generously, and—as this plaque demonstrates—allowing us to tell the story of [her] giving as a source of inspiration for others.”