News Release: Wellspring Calgary leadership change
Wellspring Calgary’s Board of Directors announced today its CEO, Patti Morris, will be stepping down to pursue new opportunities after leading the charity from inception in 2006, through to establishment and remarkable growth over the last 14 years. Morris’ last day will be December 11, 2020.
Morris, who has spent decades in the non-profit sector working with youth, people with disabilities, and most recently, people living with cancer, says, “It has been my great honour to lead an organization that is deeply committed to serving individuals, caregivers and families at a time when they truly need it most. Our dedicated staff, volunteers, program leaders, donors and community partners work tirelessly to uphold Wellspring’s mission each and every day, ultimately improving the lives of those living with cancer. I am privileged and proud to have been part of such an impactful organization.”
Effective December 12, Sheena Clifford, Wellspring Calgary’s current Program Director, will succeed Morris as Acting CEO. Clifford joined Wellspring Calgary in 2017 and has stepped up as a dedicated leader, capably overseeing programs and their facilitators, steering Wellspring’s expansion into southern Alberta, and maintaining and forging partnerships within the community.
“On behalf of the entire Wellspring Calgary Board of Directors, I would like to thank Patti Morris for her extraordinary leadership, passion, and many years of dedicated service,” says Bill Gilliland, Wellspring Calgary Board Chair. “To demonstrate the growth we’ve experienced through Patti’s leadership, in 2007, we had 156 new members and operated out of a small office space in Parkdale. In contrast, in 2019, we had 1098 new members, opened a second centre, provided almost 6000 hours of programming which served over 1800 people living with cancer, and successfully completed a capital campaign which raised $13.2 Million.”
“Most extraordinarily is the brilliant leadership through 2020 which launched an ambitious expansion to all of southern Alberta and led a response to Covid that saw the temporary closing of both centres and immediate conversion of programming to phone/online so that within seven months, 1265 people living with cancer had made almost 12,000 visits to online programs. Despite Covid, Wellspring Calgary is on track to serve the same number of people living with cancer in 2020 as we served in 2019 when we had two centres open and fully operational,” says Gilliland. “Our appointment of Sheena Clifford as Acting CEO, who was integral to these activities, reinforces the depth and organizational strength of Wellspring Calgary’s infrastructure. I am confident that under our current leadership, Wellspring will continue to flourish and advance its vision to ensure no one has to face cancer alone.”
Gilliland reports that the Board has struck a Succession Committee that will engage in an extensive strategic review of both internal and external candidates to fill the permanent role. A Transition Committee will also ensure a smooth change management process and ensure the stability in an organization that is at the forefront in providing non-medical cancer care support in southern Alberta.
For more information, please contact:
Suzanne Polyak, Communications Director
Phone: 403.521.5292 ext 1010 | Cell: 403-923-5210 | email: SuzanneP@wellspringcalgary.ca
About Wellspring Calgary
Wellspring Calgary is a charitable organization with a vision to ensure no one has to face cancer alone. Founded in 2007, it offers programs and services that meet the emotional, social and restorative needs of people living with cancer, their caregivers and their families. Wellspring’s programs are all evidence-informed and offered free of charge and without referral. Wellspring Calgary operates two centres in Calgary and offers a full range of programs online and by phone, with a southern Alberta reach spanning Red Deer to the Canadian border. For more information, please visit Wellspringcalgary.ca