By Angela Long
Published July 12 2016
With unanimous approval of the Haliburton Highlands Health Services board of directors Carolyn Plummer has been appointed president and chief executive officer of the HHHS. The announcement came on the evening of July 7 after several months of reviewing more than 40 applications.
“We are confident that Carolyn is the best candidate and is well positioned to lead HHHS going forward to fulfill our strategic mandate and our vision for the future of health care in Haliburton County” board chairman Dave Bonham stated in a press release.
Plummer couldn’t be happier. Even though she’s originally from Cookstown and has owned a home in Toronto since the ’90s Plummer “feels more at home in Haliburton than anywhere else” she said in a phone interview.
Plummer said she fell in love with Haliburton the moment she “walked out the deck and looked across the lake” while visiting her boyfriend’s family cottage on Silver Beach. She was 19. More than 20 years later ever since HHHS hired Plummer as director of patient care and chief nursing executive at the end of September 2015 the now-married couple have been renting a house on that very same beach.
For the past seven months Plummer has served as interim president and CEO. The news makes Plummer feel excited about building more permanent foundations for both a new home and the HHHS team.
“What I love most about working for HHHS is our collaborative approach” she said. “I have the ability to drive change that involves everybody.”
Bonham gave Plummer the news in person just as she was leaving the hospital to go to Toronto. Her mother-in-law underwent surgery for breast cancer and Plummer stayed in Toronto for the next few days.
“I haven’t even seen anyone at HHHS in person yet – the staff the other directors. I just walked out the door knowing I’d been appointed.”
Plummer intends to celebrate both her mother-in-law’s recovery and her new appointment as soon as possible. Then she’ll get back to work.
“We’re starting fresh with a great plan and a great team” she said. “First thing on the list? Ensuring there’s sufficient coverage in emergency coverage immediately.”
But for now Plummer is still adjusting to her new title.
“I’m very happy” she said. “I’m very excited the board made the decision it did. I’m looking forward to the years to come.”