Celebrating our 2023 WOMEN’S Trailblazer Award recipient: Jocelyn Palm! 

At this year’s Women for Women’s, presented by KPMG, Women’s College Hospital Foundation had the pleasure of honouring Jocelyn Palm as the recipient of the 2023 WOMEN’S Trailblazer Award, in recognition of her decades of service championing our mission to make a national impact in women’s health and research.  

The WOMEN’S Trailblazer Award was introduced in 2021 to celebrate a member of the Women’s College Hospital community that has had a measurable impact on the hospital, foundation, and community as a champion for equity. This award recognizes a visionary individual committed to being a champion for others and creating a more inclusive healthcare system and society. Joc embodies all these qualities and more. 

A former high school teacher and current owner and director of Glen Bernard Camp, Joc has spent much of her professional and philanthropic career promoting women’s health and health equity, with a special focus promoting women’s health and health equity, environmental stewardship and encouraging young women to be confident and caring leaders. In 2012, Joc was awarded the Order of Canada for her social service work in women’s health and youth development and for her contributions to water safety and aquatic lifesaving. 

Joc’s history and continued legacy with us is substantial and meaningful. She played an integral role in shaping the Hospital’s legacy of health equity and health system solutions as Canada’s only independent, academically-affiliated, and ambulatory hospital focused on women’s health. Among her many accomplishments at Women’s College Hospital, she has served as President of the Association of Volunteers at Women’s College Hospital and has been a member of the Women’s College Hospital Foundation Advisory Council since it was established in 2013. She has also been on the board of Women’s College Health Research, a charitable organization supporting Women’s College Hospital, since it was established in the 1990s. For almost ten years, Joc ran the Women’s Health Matters Forum & Expo, a 2 day annual event held at the Toronto Convention Centre.

Joc has been involved with Women’s College Hospital for over three decades in many different capacities, including as a founding member of the Friends of Women’s College Hospital, a grassroots organization founded in 1989 in response to an attempt to merge Women’s College Hospital with Toronto General Hospital.

Joc’s impact on our hospital and community was evident when her award announcement was met with resounding applause and a standing ovation from the audience. During her acceptance speech, Joc reminded us all about the importance and impact of empathy – noting that the difference between thought and action comes from caring deeply about the issues at hand and in our society. 

“There’s no question that we need to care deeply, because women’s health does matter – and all those things we tried to push are now here. So, thank you all, because we have done a great job!” 

Jocelyn Palm

We are so very proud to honour Joc with this award, and we thank her immensely for her hard work and dedication to Women’s College Hospital over the years.  

Thank you to all who made a donation in her honour to support the greatest needs of Women’s College Hospital.  

Please watch this tribute video from Joc’s community of friends and supporters which speaks to her incredible legacy:

Women for Women’s 2023 raised more than $620,000 in support of Women’s College Hospital. Read more about the event here.