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Canadian Nurses Association installs 47th president: Barb Shellian, RN, MN, of Alberta

Saint John, New Brunswick, June 22, 2016Barb Shellian, RN, MN, was officially installed as the 47th president of the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) during today’s closing ceremonies at its highly successful biennial convention in Saint John. As president, she will represent nearly 139,000 registered nurse (RN) members across Canada.

“For me, nursing is the opportunity to make a difference and positively contribute to the health and wellness of all Canadian families across Canada,” said Shellian. “The Canadian Nurses Association plays a vital role in supporting safe, competent and ethical care. Nursing unity is essential to protect the sustainability and universality of our health-care system, and I am ready to lead and contribute to the future of nursing.”

Shellian is a visionary nurse leader whose contributions to the advancement of nursing in the interest of the public span her professional nursing career. She was president of the College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta (1995-1997) and served on numerous committees at the forefront of policy changes affecting nursing. She has also been active in CNA, serving on committees and as a board member. Shellian played a significant leadership role in the establishment of the Canadian Association for Rural and Remote Nursing, serving as its inaugural president (2004-2006). She is co-chair of the International Council of Nurses’ rural and remote nursing network and is acknowledged internationally for the work she has done to raise awareness and improve the practice of nurses working in rural and remote settings.

The change of command came as CNA concluded its biennial convention, which is held in conjunction with its annual meeting. CNA’s presidents are elected to the volunteer position by CNA’s voting membership. Shellian spent the past two years as president-elect and received the chain of office from outgoing president Karima Velji. CNA’s new president-elect is Claire Betker.

CNA is the national professional voice representing nearly 139,000 registered nurses in Canada. CNA advances the practice and profession of nursing to improve health outcomes and strengthen Canada’s publicly funded, not-for-profit health system.


For more information, please contact:

Kevin Ménard
Communications Advisor
Canadian Nurses Association
Tel.: 613-237-2159, ext. 543
E-mail: kmenard@cna-aiic.ca