It is with deep sadness that we share the news of the passing of Heather Johnson.
For the past 15 years, Heather was Director of Programs with The Kidney Foundation of Canada - BC & Yukon Branch, and during that time she made many contributions to the BC Renal provincial network.
In particular, she shared her knowledge and expertise over the years with a range of provincial committees, working groups and initiatives. These include the Kidney Care, Glomerulonephritis (GN), Home Hemodialysis, Peritoneal Dialysis, Palliative Care, BC Kidney Days Planning and Patient and Family Engagement committees, as well as the Social Workers Professional Practice Council, Kidney Health Month, and more.
Our sense of loss is profound as Heather was highly regarded as an individual and also for her dedication to people living with kidney disease.
Here, we offer a few thoughts gathered from some who had the privilege of working with Heather:
“When I think of Heather, I think of her continual, helpful, solution-oriented presence in so many different meetings and events, and how that was a terrific incentive for all of us.” - Dr. Adeera Levin, Executive Director, BC Renal
“For me, Heather was synonymous with The Kidney Foundation of Canada - BC and Yukon Branch. It’s honestly hard to imagine The Kidney Foundation without her. While many people use the term “patient-centred,” she truly lived it. And she did so with empathy, kindness and good humour.” - Gloria Freeborn, Director of Strategic Initiatives, Education and Development, BC Renal
“Heather was such an important advocate for people living with kidney disease…She was always there, always engaged and always wanting to look for ways The Kidney Foundation could help patients, and worked closely with local health authorities. She joined the Vancouver Coastal Health/Providence Health Care regional meeting to hear our challenges but also to provide input from the Foundation.” - Dr. Michael Copland, Senior Medical Lead, BC Renal
“Having the privilege of working with Heather both through the Kidney Care Committee and also at The Kidney Foundation, I saw her immense positive impact on the BC kidney community. She was a tireless advocate for kidney patients, always thinking first and foremost of the people she worked so hard to support. Her presence will be dearly missed." - Dr. Mike Bevilacqua, Chair, BC Renal Kidney Care Committee
“Heather was a very active participant with the BC Kidney Care Committee…She was a wonderful lady to work with and very committed to her work with kidney patients. She will be sorely missed.” - Janet Williams, Project Manager, BC Renal Kidney Care Committee
"I knew Heather in a professional capacity since joining the renal program 15 years ago. She did amazing work for The Kidney Foundation - BC & Yukon Branch as their Director of Programs, and was a great resource and advocate for both the provincial renal and transplant programs. I always appreciated the care and compassion she showed for our clients and her willingness to have conversations to improve the services for the renal population. She was so passionate about her work and will be greatly missed by all of us.” - Neelam Mann, Member, BC Renal Social Workers Professional Practice Council
Heather’s presence and contributions will be remembered always, and as with the passing of anyone who has touched our lives, we are reminded of how precious life is and the value of the people who are part of our personal or professional communities.
With great respect,
The BC Renal team