Special Announcement From Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare

Windsor, ON – Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare announced today that Ken Deane, President and Chief Executive Officer has announced he will be stepping down as of September 7, 2014. Along side this announcement the HDGH Board of Directors announced that Janice Kaffer will succeed Ken as President and CEO.


Ken informed the board in April of this year that he planned to step down in September. In his words “We completed the realignment and transition – we have a new vision and strategic directions – we have a strong team and they are more than ready to lead the organization forward.”
Carol Derbyshire Chair of the Board stated that, “One of the things that impressed me about Ken was his focus on the future of the organization and preparing for when he left. This is evident in how he surrounded himself with talented people and he empowered and developed them. He wanted to ensure that the board could appoint a successor from within.”
Ken returned to Hôtel-Dieu Grace Hospital in January 2011 as the government appointed hospital supervisor. He was previously CEO from 2002 – 2004 during which time he turned the hospital around after years of operating deficits.
As supervisor he was faced with leadership and cultural issues, low staff morale, image problems, and loss of public confidence. Under Ken’s supervision, leadership was revitalized, culture was transformed and morale improved, the hospital was repositioned, and public confidence increased. A tangible illustration of how Ken was viewed by staff and his impact is the petition signed by hundreds to have him stay on as CEO.
Following his role as supervisor, Ken was appointed President and CEO. Soon thereafter the two Windsor hospitals embarked on the historic realignment of sites and roles. The two CEO’s worked closely together to make this realignment happen. Effective October 1, 2013 Windsor Regional assumed responsibility for the Ouellette site and Hôtel-Dieu Grace assumed responsibility for the Prince Road site. Since that time Ken has led the transition to a new location and a new role under a new name – Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare on Prince Road.
Ken put people first and treated others as he wanted to be treated. His legacy will be respect for staff, commitment to staff safety, commitment to patients and families, team building, accountability, and collaboration.
“We will always be grateful for Ken’s leadership, vision and personal desire to not only better the organization but also the community of Windsor-Essex,” expressed board chair Carol Derbyshire. Following Ken’s announcement, Carol announced the appointment of Janice Kaffer as President and CEO effective September 8th, 2014. Janice is known in the Windsor-Essex community for her current role as Vice President Clinical Programs and Chief Nursing Executive.
“Ken and I have been working together to ensure we nurtured internal leadership successors with the goal of appointing from within to ensure leadership and mission continuity, and familiarity with our staff and our culture, our services, and our vision,” explained Carol. “In appointing Janice we are confident that she will provide strong values-based leadership and contribute to the advancement of Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare. Janice brings a solid track record of health care leadership, a deep understanding of our clinical programs and service and our role in the continuum of care, a commitment to family centred care, and a focus on the future of Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare,” stated Carol.
“I am tremendously humbled and deeply honoured to succeed Ken as President and CEO of HDGH. Ken is leaving us having built a healthy organization, a committed team and an inspiring vision for the future. The HDGH family is grateful that we have had the benefit of Ken’s leadership and wish him great happiness and success in whatever life brings him – we will all miss him tremendously,” expressed Janice Kaffer. “I am confident that our team is up to the challenges ahead and that with the support and guidance of our committed Board of Directors we will live our vision to cultivate a healthier community. On a personal note I want to thank my ever patient family – particularly my husband of 34 years Bernie – who continues to cheer me on to follow my passion to make a difference in the lives of our patients and families. I am truly blessed!”
For further information contact: Bill Marra, Sr. Director Partnerships, Planning, Communications and Development at (519) 919-0033.