Board of Directors

Current as of 2017

Tanya Denys BScPN RPN
Tanya graduated from Brandon University in 1998 and has been practicing for 19yrs in and around Brandon since her graduation. She has worked predominantly in the area of crisis and trauma having worked for Westman Crisis Services since 1998 and for The Department of National Defense as The Mental Health Nurse from 2008-2014, having moved into Academia at Brandon University in The Department of Psychiatric Nursing in 2014. Tanya has worked casual and or short term in many other areas as well over the past years including Centre for Adult Psychiatry, Child and Adolescent Treatment Center and as a Mental Health Nurse in Killarney. Tanya has been involved with the RPNF in previous years from 2004-2009 as Chair of Scholarships and for the past 2 years as Chair of Awards of Excellence. In April 2017 Tanya, worked with other Brandon board members to facilitate/host a successful SudSpud Fundraiser @ Houston’s Roadhouse on April 21, 2017.

Linda Earl PN
I am a retired psychiatric nurse who feels very fortunate to have had a long, enjoyable career – I could never find another career that appealed to me or gave me as broad a scope as the one I had. In my career life, I have worked in many areas of health from acute psychiatry to geriatrics, from general duty to managing health facilities including supervising a small rural hospital and personal care homes. I have served on many boards – including the College of Registered Psychiatric Nurses (CRPNM), church council, and municipal council serving as Deputy Reeve. After a move and a bit of self-renewal, I am again becoming involved in the broader community. I was raised with my folks setting the example that one gives back to one’s community at every age and any level one can. I would be honoured to serve my professional community by sitting on the Registered Psychiatric Nurses Foundation Board.

Bev Gradidge BScMH RPN
Bev graduated from BMHC in 1982, and completed her BScMH (post diploma degree) in 2001. Bev worked in acute services inpatient at BMHC until 1992, then in Community Mental Health (Portage) from 1992 – 2005; and as Regional Manager, Community Mental Health from 2005 – 2016. Currently Bev is the Crisis Response Centre Manager; WRHA from June 2016 – 2017.Bev is an avid learner and visionary. Her experiences working collaboratively with other community groups will be an asset. Bev was a recipient of the Kay Armstrong Scholarship while completing her BScMH. Bev states that “this board has assisted me in the past, and I believe that it is a good way for nurses to support up and coming nurses as we expand our scope and psychiatric nursing knowledge base”.

Ryan Greenham, BScPN, RPN
Ryan graduated with honors from Brandon University as an RPN in 2015. He currently works at the Selkirk Mental Health Centre as an Acting Coordinator of Patient Services in the Psychosocial Rehabilitation Program. His experiences in mental health are many and varied since his first employment in 2007, including work as a Psychiatric Nursing Assistant, with the PACT program in Winnipeg and with groups at SMHC. Ryan is an avid learner, as is evidenced by his long list of educational sessions attended and his various roles as an educational trainer. Ryan has been the recipient of many awards including the RPNF John Kellie and Kay Armstrong Scholarships. Ryan felt fortunate to receive the scholarships from the RPNF and believes that by volunteering with the RPNF it will allow him the chance to give back.

Darlene Henry PN
Darlene Henry graduated from Brandon Mental Health Center in 1978 and retired in 2014 following 35 years of working within the Mental Health Services of BMHC/Brandon RHA/Prairie Mountain Health Region. Darlene’s main area of expertise is 25 years in the field of psychogeriatrics, with experience working with the elderly in urban and rural settings. Involvements have included development of the Psycho-Geriatric Assessment unit (1986) and transition of the Unit from BMHC to the Brandon Regional Health Center (1988); evolution of community based Seniors Mental Health services for assessment and treatment, psychogeriatric day program and initiation of the Mental Health Resource Nurse positions in rural facilities. She was also involved with conferences and initiatives through the Manitoba Network of Psychogeriatric Program Specialists, Canadian Coalition for Seniors Mental Health, and the steering committee for the development of the National Seniors Mental Health Policy Lens and Service Providers Guide. In 2015 Darlene and her family initiated the national McCormick /Henry Scholarship for Seniors Mental Health for graduate students. The first scholarship was granted in 2016. Darlene has been an RPNF board member since 2015 and is currently secretary/ treasurer and has assumed responsibility for the RPNF Facebook page and RPNF newsletter.

Dr. Beverley Hicks PN,BN, MEd, PhD
Dr. Beverley Hicks graduated as a psychiatric nurse in New Zealand immigrating to Manitoba in 1967. The majority of Beverley’s practice was as an educator at Brandon Mental Health Center. She completed her career as faculty at Brandon University in the Department of Psychiatric Nursing. In 2008, Beverley earned her PhD with her research entitled “From Barnyards to Books and Beyond”. She is currently writing the history of psychiatric nursing at Brandon University. Beverley is very supportive of the RPNF having served on the board since 2009, and as chair of the Scholarship Committee since 2010. In this position she has worked with RPN’s in Manitoba and nationally to annually receive, evaluate and recommend the seven Manitoba and National scholarship winners to the board. Beverley continues to support the evolution of psychiatric nursing in Canada through her writing and sharing her knowledge and expertise with the RPNF board.

Amy Martyniuk BScPN RPN MHS
Amy Martyniuk has been working with the Correctional Service Canada’s Community Mental Health program since May 2007. She graduated from Brandon University in 2002, with a Bachelor of Science in Psychiatric Nursing. Amy’s experience include: working in the field of community mental health; addiction, including methadone maintenance; crisis stabilization; and working on inpatient psychiatry units. She is currently responsible for the coordination of mental health services and supports for offenders with mental disorders on conditional release from federal institutions and for facilitating continuity of care in community. Amy also provides training to parole officers, police officers and other professional and non-professional groups in the areas of mental health, FASD, addictions, employment and intervention strategies. In 2016 Amy received the Alf Barnett and John Crawford Scholarships for her master’s work related to “Effective intervention strategies for working with adults with FASD and co-occurring mental health challenges: A teaching manual”. Amy previously served on the Board of the CRPNM and the RPNF 2013-2015. She volunteered with the RPNF Scholarship Committee in 2017. “I enjoy volunteering and public education in the areas of mental health, Women’s issues and FASD, and I hope to continue in this capacity in part through my role as a board member.” Adapted from the internet 2011.

Mallory Schmitz RPN BScPN
Mallory completed her B.Sc.P.N. from Brandon University in 2005. Since that time she has worked at Selkirk Mental Health Centre as an RPN in both the Geriatric and Rehabilitation Programs. In 2007 she became a Psychosocial Rehabilitation (PSR) Resource Nurse facilitating education sessions for patients, staff, family members and community partners and supporting SMHC in its ongoing redevelopment. Currently she is the Co-Chair of the PSR Manitoba Board and sits on the Recovery Champions Committee.

Mallory is as a Mental Health Nurse Educator working to support the 240 nurses currently working at SMHC. She coordinates the placement of student nurses completing their mental health clinical rotations, is a Mental Health First Aid trainer as well as facilitates the Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) program.

Karen Street RPN
Karen graduated in 1991 from Brandon Psychiatric Nursing Program. Since graduation she has worked various areas as an RPN including at the Manitoba Developmental Center, Portage, at the Mobile Crisis Unit in Winnipeg, at Eden Mental Health Center, and as an Intensive Case Manager and Child and Adolescent CMHW. She is currently working two part time jobs; as a Mental Health Liaison Nurse and Community Mental Health Worker in the Emergency Department at Boundary Trails Health Center, Winkler and at Pathways Community Mental Health as an Assessment Clinician. In these roles she provides support and education to patients, families and staff as indicated. She works collaboratively with other community organizations to promote mental health and health initiatives to the broader community. Karen has been an RPNF board member since 2015. In this role she appreciates working with RPN’s to promote the overall goals and objectives of the Foundation. Karen looks forward to her continued involvement with the RPNF and sees her role as director as a way to broaden her knowledge of psychiatric nursing in Manitoba.

Richard Stefanyshyn LLB
Richard Stefanyshyn was called to the bar in 1976. With almost 40 years of experience, Richard has built a thriving practice based on the principles of hard work and integrity. Our clients appreciate that Richard is approachable and straightforward. Richard has been involved with the board of the RPNF since its inception in 1980. The Foundation is grateful for “the many pro-bono services he has provided over the years.”

Marg Synyshyn RPN BHS ( Psych. Nsg.), MA.
Marg Synyshyn has been working in the area of child and adolescent mental health as a clinician, manager and director for over 30 years. Marg is currently the CEO of the Manitoba Adolescent Treatment Centre (MATC), a position that she has held since 2014 and Director, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services, WRHA Mental Health Program. Marg has done many presentations, locally, nationally and internationally, on the topics of child and adolescent mental health, mental health service delivery and gender issues in the area of mental health. From 2007 to 2012, Marg had an appointment to the Child and Youth Advisory Committee for the Mental Health Commission of Canada. Marg currently is a member of the mental health working group for The Sandbox Project, a national group, funded by Telus, that looks at different aspects of child and youth development and health. As well, Marg is a knowledge user on a number of CIHR funded research projects provincially. She is sought out by for commentary and advice on the topic of child and youth mental health by other service providers, government departments and the media. Marg has held the position of President of the College of Registered Psychiatric Nurses of Manitoba, as well as National President of the Registered Psychiatric Nurses of Canada. She was the 2008 Manitoba recipient of the Registered Psychiatric Nurses of Canada award for Professional Leadership. Marg currently serves as a member of the RPNF Scholarship Committee. In 2010, Marg received the Marlene Fitzsimmons Scholarship for her presentation overseas.

Bonny Wynnobel RPN
Bonny Wynnobel is the A/Director of Operations at the Selkirk Mental Health Centre (SMHC) with the unique opportunity of assisting the Centre to implement new initiatives such as the electronic patient record (and all of its components) and SMHC’s Consultation Strategy and Environmental Scan. Bonny is a Registered Psychiatric Nurse with Certificates in Quality Management, Health Services Management and PRINCE2 Foundation. With over 35 years of experience in the field of Mental Health, Bonny focuses on the big picture and finds ways to assist the staff in providing services that are aligned with best practices in mental health and acquired brain injury. Bonny has been an RPNF Director since 2015.

Annette Thorimbert Osted, PN, LL.D. (Hons) (Past President)
Annette held the position of Executive Director/Registrar of the College of Registered Psychiatric Nurses of Manitoba for almost 35 years. During that time, the organization evolved from being an association with the members’ interests to that of a regulatory body that provides supports to its registrants to ensure safety and quality services for the public. Annette believes in volunteerism and demonstrated that throughout her career; volunteering with several organizations, especially those working for the welfare of persons with a mental illness. She has presented papers nationally and internationally on mental illness issues, psychiatric nursing and the roles of staff and boards in volunteer-based organizations.