Black Dollar Magazine


For Black entrepreneurs, creatives, decision-makers and executives

Sign up for FREE BDM newsletter

NEXT LEVEL: Greg Fergus becomes first Black Canadian to be elected Speaker of the House of Commons; Dr. Everton Gooden named new CEO of North York General Hospital

"Next Level" spotlights prominent Black Canadians who have been promoted, elevated, or honoured with a prestigious position, award, or monument. Check out Part 12 of the series.

NEXT LEVEL: Greg Fergus becomes first Black Canadian to be elected Speaker of the House of Commons; Dr. Everton Gooden named new CEO of North York General Hospital
Conversative leader Pierre Pollievre, newly elected House of Commons Speaker Greg Fergus and prime minister Justin Trudeau Oct. 3. Fergus received a standing ovation for becoming the first Black Speaker in Canada's House of Commons. JORDAN MAXWELL SCREENSHOT/IHEART RADIO

Black Liberal MP Greg Fergus has been elected the new Speaker of the House of Commons — the first Black Canadian to hold the position.

Fergus promised to restore decorum in the House of Commons, which can be subject to partisan fighting between MPs across the aisle.

“Respect and decorum — I’m going to be working hard on this and I need all your help to make this happen,” Fergus said after being elected. “Respect is a fundamental part of what we do here. We need to make sure that we treat each other with respect and show Canadians that example. There can be no dialogue unless there’s a mutual understanding of respect.”

When discussing the possibility of the appointment on Oct. 3., he said, “The historic nature of that is not lost on me. That’s not the reason why I’m asking my colleagues to vote for me. I’m asking them to vote for me because I’m the best candidate and that I’m the person who can apply the rules, fairly, firmly and consistently.”

The appointment follows the recent dismissal of Anthony Rota for honouring Yaroslav Hunka, a man who served in a Nazi World War II unit.

Fergus is a Canadian Member of Parliament (MP) and is a member of the Liberal Party of Canada. Fergus has represented the riding of Hull—Aylmer in the House of Commons since 2015.

In 2007, former Liberal leader Stéphane Dion named him national director — the most senior role in the party’s organizational hierarchy. Fergus has also fought for senior citizens and social housing. He served on the local parish council and the board of directors for the Aylmer Arms, a facility for semi-retired or retired seniors. Furthermore, he was vice-president of a neighbourhood association and was involved with school committees, sports teams and organizations promoting regional interests.

Fergus beat out P.E.I. Liberal MP Sean Casey, Nova Scotia Conservative MP Chris d'Entremont, Ontario NDP MP Carol Hughes, B.C. Green MP Elizabeth May, Quebec Liberal MP Alexandra Mendès and Quebec Liberal MP Peter Schiefke for the job.

The Speaker is responsible for maintaining order during debates in the House of Commons. They ensure that parliamentary rules and procedures are followed and have the authority to call members to order if they engage in unparliamentary language or behaviour.

The role comes with a small apartment in West Block and an official estate in Gatineau Park called The Farm, according to CBC.

Gooden appointed president and CEO of North York General Hospital

Dr. Everton Gooden will take the helm as CEO of North York General Hospital on Dec. 1, 2023. NYGH PHOTO

North York General Hospital (NYGH) has announced a new CEO.

Dr. Everton Gooden will take the helm on Dec. 1, 2023, a statement reads.

“I am deeply honoured for the opportunity to work with the incredible staff, physicians, learners, volunteers, partners and donors of North York General, each of whom has a shared purpose: to ensure compassionate, timely and exceptional care to our patients and their families,” said Dr. Gooden. “Together, we will advance new standards of care in the hospital, in the community, and in people’s homes. I am committed to increased investment in our people, strengthening our clinical, community and academic partnerships, advancing our philanthropy, and building the North York General of the future for all the communities we serve.”

Gooden joined NYGH more than 20 years ago, and over that time, has combined clinical, administrative, and leadership experience, serving as chair of the medical advisory committee, president of the Medical Staff Association, division Chief of head and neck Surgery, and as a member of the NYGH Foundation board.

Noting the importance of his philanthropy, NYGH says Dr. Gooden sits on the Face the Future Foundation board, volunteers with the Kenya Relief Organization, and is a member of the Black Opportunity Fund’s Healthcare Working Group.

He’s also been a trailblazer for DEI initiatives. Gooden co-chaired NYGH’s First Anti-Black Racism Steering Committee and championed the establishment of NYGH’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Office, EDI Framework and action planning to tackle Anti-Black Racism at NYGH and in our communities.

“North York is growing rapidly and is home to one of Toronto’s most culturally diverse and largest seniors’ populations,” Bert Clark, chair of the NYGH Board of Governors, said in a statement. “Dr. Gooden is the ideal person to lead us forward as we transform patient care in North Toronto and undertake the largest capital redevelopment in NYGH’s 50-plus years to meet changing community needs. As a standard-bearer for NYGH’s people-centred culture, Dr. Gooden has earned trust throughout NYGH and with partners locally, across Canada and beyond our borders, for his unwavering commitment to the betterment of our communities and patient care.”

Gooden will take over for CEO Karyn Popovich, who became president and CEO in Oct. 2020 after a nearly 40-year career with the hospital.

“On behalf of the Board of Governors and the North York General Community, I would like to thank Karyn Popovich, who has been our president and CEO since October 2020, following her distinguished 40-year career at NYGH,” said Clark. “It is impossible to do justice to Karyn’s extraordinary contributions. Karyn was a key architect of the organization’s outstanding Quality and Safety, and Patient-Centred Care Programs, which are recognized across Canada and beyond, and reflected in our five-year standing as the country’s top academic community hospital by Newsweek. She has been a highly effective leader and advocate for people-centred care throughout her career and served as our chief nursing executive and vice president for Clinical Programs, Quality, and Long-Term Care, for over a decade.”