Please join us in celebrating the amazing Certified Health Executive (CHE) members who are at the heart of the College, through monthly ‘CHE Spotlights’. Learn more about what makes these exceptional leaders tick. From leaders in mental health and wellness, equity, diversity, and inclusiveness (EDI), to mentors and emerging leaders, our CHE members are dedicated to life-long learning and leadership in healthcare.
In honour of International Women’s Day, which was celebrated earlier this month, we are pleased to highlight Dr. Jackie Schleifer Taylor who has recently been appointed as London Health Sciences Centre’s (LHSC) Interim President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Dr. Schleifer Taylor joined the Canadian College of Health Leaders in 2012 and received her CHE designation in 2019.
“Commitment to evidence-based thought leadership and ongoing professional growth and development are the key ingredients for progress and change.”
Jackie has been deliberate in seeking experiences and roles that created opportunities from which she could contribute to informing and shaping our health system. The lens that she has carried into her career is one of lived experience, and her objective has been to advance a system more cognizant of the impacts of issues of health equity, quality of care, and social determinants disparities among the population she serves.
Along Jackie’s career path, she recognized the benefits of securing a breadth of experiences across various sectors of our system at the policy, organization, and persons levels. The completion of both her master’s and doctoral studies were part of that preparation, as was the acquisition of the Certified Health Executive (CHE) designation. Jackie is proud to have been appointed to lead on policy agendas that have had direct impacts on how providers engage with patients, and/or enabled standards setting among provider groups and agencies. According to Jackie, her biggest accomplishments have been every time the next generation of leaders have reached out to her for mentorship…it has been in those moments that she has felt the certainty of change on the horizon.
“As a black woman, leadership within the health system has meant leading among few faces that look like mine, and being very aware of the need to create the space for dialogue about how equity, diversity, and inclusion are more than just words. Sometimes, in those leadership opportunities, I have been able to bring voice and tangible awareness to how those issues matter and impact differently those we are here to serve.”
CCHL and the CHE Credential
Jackie’s advice to aspiring health leaders and to new College members is to seek out every opportunity that membership has to offer. “I have found access to all of the platforms that enable shared ideas, healthy debate, research, and literature is outstanding!” She appreciates the College’s Canadian content, often set in a context of international lessons learned from health systems worldwide and recommends new College members to view membership as a commitment to standard setting for our health system leadership.
Jackie will be engaging in the College’s inaugural session of the 2021 – 2022 Advanced Leadership Program’s Campfire Chat on April 1, 2021 to discuss her perspectives on women’s leadership, EDI, and leading through various stages of the pandemic. This event is hosted by Dr. Jaason Geerts, Director of Research and Leadership Development, at the College.
When asked about the CHE designation, Jackie appreciates the pan-Canadian universally recognized “union card” that the CHE designation has become across the health system and believes that achieving the designation is an affirmation of having achieved a level of expertise in current health system understanding.
To conclude this month’s CHE Spotlight, we would like to share Jackie’s notion that “hard is never easy, and easy should not be hard”, which is a truth that she grew up with. The truth drives her. Over time, Jackie has learned that discerning between what is truly hard, and what ought to be easy, is key in leadership. With that in mind, she is thoughtful in placing her efforts accordingly. This is coupled with always being diligent about holding hope exceptionally close. After all, hope is free and in abundance and makes the hard easier.
On behalf of the College, we would like to thank Jackie for taking time out of her extremely busy schedule to share her experience and perspectives with the Canadian College of Health Leaders’ members.