Lisa’s work involves diagnosing and caring for infants, children and teens with heart disease (both from birth and acquired heart disease), and screening for, diagnosing and assisting in the care and delivery planning of mothers whose pregnancies are complicated by heart disease in the fetus.
Lisa enjoys spending time with her family: her husband, Ian; her three daughters Bella, Jacqui and Becca and their partners; and her dog and cats. In her free time, you can find her practicing hot yoga, gardening, and skiing as well as just relaxing in the sun! Outside of her work at the Stollery, Lisa has been a member of the band “Baby Blue Sound Collective” since 2008. This musical group is made up of pediatric cardiac surgeons, cardiologists, intensivists, anesthesiologists, nurses and other health care practitioners from around the world who are often invited to perform international scientific meetings.
Let’s find out more about Lisa:
What do you like most about your job?
I love engaging with my patients and their families. It helps me stay grounded and committed to what I do. I also enjoy engaging with my colleagues, and I can feel the enthusiasm and passion they have to continue to build our Stollery Cardiac Program clinically and academically. We are on a phenomenal trajectory that will provide the highest standards of care to our children and their families and contribute to our field in years to come with ongoing support from Alberta Health Services, the Stollery, our departments within the University of Alberta and generous donors.
How long have you worked at the Stollery?
Do you have a standout Stollery memory?
One of the most enjoyable memories for me, beyond the successful outcomes of my patients, has been my participation for several years in the Brave Hearts Pediatric Cardiac Team as a part of the Children’s Wish competition. In one event, we supported a child who was truly a miracle, having spent most of his three years in the hospital eventually to survive through cardiac transplant. It was so amazing to see him so excited and energetic with his Brave Hearts Team behind him!
Are you a Foundation donor or volunteer?
I have participated in Corus Radiothon alongside my patients and their families as well as provided tours of our Stollery Cardiac Program, particularly showcasing the Stollery Echocardiography Laboratory and the Fetal & Neonatal Cardiology Program in clinical, educational and research arenas.
I have also participated as a donor as funding ensures we have the critical resources needed for all of the work we do, some of which is otherwise not available when competing for resources against adult services which represent a far larger population. However, healthy children make healthy adults, and thus a focus on ensuring the health of our children is truly paramount.
Have donor funds directly impacted the area you work in?
Donor funds have directly impacted the Stollery Cardiac Program in so many important and impactful areas. Donors have supported the development of our beautiful and state-of-the-art Cardiac and Neonatal Intensive Care Units and the purchase of critical equipment in several clinical areas within the inpatient and outpatient settings.
They have also supported trialing of unique personnel positions to demonstrate their impact on clinical care. This has allowed us to advocate for newly funded positions including nurse practitioners and nurse specialists who are critical to the care we provide to our patients and their parents, even before birth.
Donors have supported our educational programs as well – including funding salaries for highly competitive subspecialty fellows, individuals who both support our services and take what they have learned and build programs outside of the Stollery in Canada and internationally.
Donations also support much of the research we do. Many of our cardiac research initiatives are funded initially through grants awarded from the Women and Children’s Health Research Institute.
Do you have a favourite Stollery event?
The Corus Radiothon is one of my favorite events. I love that patients and their families have an opportunity to speak to the importance of the care provided at the Stollery through their own experiences. Engagement with our families and patients is at the heart of what we do and this event demonstrates this as well.
What is your favourite kids’ book?
I have many favorite kids’ books …but if I really had to choose, there are three: The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein as I love the evolution of the complex and not always perfect relationship between the child and the tree; I’ll Love You Forever by Robert Munsch, which speaks of the love a parent has for their child throughout their life and its impact on the child;, and, silly enough, Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss, a favourite when I was a child (and I have always been a Dr. Seuss fan). This last book my kids enjoyed as well. When they were young and did not want to try something new, we would always remind them of Sam and how in the end he loved the green eggs and ham ..it usually did the trick.
Do you have a favourite Disney princess or superhero?
I personally do not have a favourite Disney princess or superhero, but I have always loved the fact that many of the more recent Disney princesses represent determined young women with strength in their characters. Mulan is a perfect example. She took her father’s place to fight against the Huns, but had to pretend to be a man and was the most determined of her troupe. Ultimately, she led her sorry team of misfits in a successful battle, and in so doing brought honor to her family. All three of my daughters are strong women who are not afraid to stand up for what they feel is right. They have taught me so much.
Thanks to your support, team members of the Stollery Cardiac Program like Lisa are a making a life-changing difference for the kids and families who rely on the Stollery’s world-class care. You can continue to support the purchase of new and innovative equipment by donating today.Donate now