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Sr. Karin Dufault receives Lifetime Achievement Award

Read Sr. Karin's comments (pdf)

Five tables of people from the Providence family were present February 26 to applaud Congregational Leader Karin Dufault, SP, as she accepted a Lifetime Achievement Award from Seattle Business magazine at its Washington Leaders in Health Care awards gala at the Marriott Seattle Waterfront Hotel. Sister Karin was one of 19 honorees identified by the magazine as transforming medicine.

Also honored was Elaine Couture, regional chief executive of Providence Health Care, Spokane, who was named Outstanding Health Care Executive outside the Puget Sound Region.

Seattle Business magazine’s March issue features the awardees.  

Sister Karin has been serving those who are poor and vulnerable in Pacific Northwest communities and nationally for more than 55 years with compassion and wisdom. She has served in pivotal leadership roles for Providence Health System, now Providence Health & Services, including as a nurse, hospital administrator, vice president of mission leadership, chairperson of the board of directors, and acting president and CEO.

Early in her nursing career, Sister Karin recognized that caring for the whole person -- care of the mind, body and spirit -- was essential for those in their most vulnerable stage at the end of life. She has worked tirelessly to raise awareness and understanding of palliative care and to make those resources available to all patients. Palliative care is a critically needed set of services for vulnerable patients and families and is a hallmark of the mission of Catholic health care.

Sister Karin completed her doctoral work in nursing in this field and has been a key figure in advancing the national effort to improve care at this critical time of life. She has provided nationally and globally recognized leadership regarding excellence in palliative and end-of-life care. She has served as executive director of the Supportive Care Coalition: Pursuing Excellence in Palliative Care, in Portland, Oregon. The coalition, sponsored by 20 Catholic health organizations throughout the United States, works to advance excellence in the care of persons with life-threatening illness through knowledge transfer, advocacy and partnerships.

A native of the Yakima Valley, Sister Karin entered the Sisters of Providence congregation in 1959 at 18 years old.

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