Anne-Marie Malek is the President and CEO of West Park Healthcare Centre, a specialized rehabilitative and complex care hospital that helps patients get their lives back after a life-altering illness or injury such as respiratory disease, amputation, stroke, and brain injuries.
Driven by West Park’s vision of exemplary care inspired by innovation and exceptional performance, Anne-Marie has provided executive leadership to numerous transformational changes including the current construction of a six-storied, approximately 730,000 square foot new hospital. Opening in late 2023, the new facility will increase the hospital’s bed capacity to 314 beds, expand outpatient services, and incorporate advanced technologies to enable the delivery of patient services and future models of care.
West Park is a major employer in York South-Weston and located within one of the city’s designated Neighbourhood Improvement Area. As a certified health executive with the Canadian College of Health Leaders, Anne-Marie understands that providing good employment opportunities and meaningful work results in the improved health of communities and equitable access to healthcare services.
Since the initial concept of the new hospital within a campus of care was formed in 2005, Anne-Marie advocated with local politicians, government stakeholders and community partners that West Park’s capital renewal project must benefit the lives of the surrounding community. As a result of her leadership and commitment, in 2018, West Park Healthcare Centre became the first Ontario hospital to include a Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) in its capital project.
Together with EllisDon, the contractor building West Park’s new hospital and fulfilling the CBA, the hospital has jointly made significant headway in promoting and laying the groundwork for successful pathways for apprentices and journey persons. West Park is proud of several initiatives that have laid the groundwork for achieving the community benefits target and meaningfully impacting the lives of individuals.
Firstly, the CBA opened doors for TCBN to encourage apprenticeships among subcontractors with introductions made by EllisDon. Since EllisDon does not direct hire for the West Park construction site, it relies on subcontractors to employ apprentices. By opening doors for TCBN, this has strengthened the relationship between builders, subcontractors and the community, which resulted in apprentices onsite and paving the way for future opportunities. Watch TCBN’s video of change on the West Park site here.
One of the signatories of the West Park Community Benefits and Apprenticeship Declaration is the Central Ontario Building Trades (COBT). The COBT’s Hammer Heads Program has been an integral part of fulfilling West Park’s vision to bring equitable opportunities and meaningful change to disadvantaged communities. A video was produced by Infrastructure Ontario as a recruitment tool to encourage subcontractors to hire apprentices. View the video here.
Lastly, EllisDon has now joined as one of the developers of the Toronto District School Board’s Specialized Trades Exploration (STEP) to Construction Program and welcomed its first co-op student on the West Park site. EllisDon’s first student is a newcomer from Jamaica, who enrolled at his local TDSB adult high school to complete his high school diploma. After enrolling in the STEP program and completing his EllisDon placement on the West Park construction site, the student was accepted by Local 27 as a first-year apprentice. Read the full story here.
Anne-Marie believes West Park has more to contribute beyond construction. The new hospital will have new and expanded healthcare services, resulting in additional employment opportunities. West Park is connecting with TCBN to recruit employees for the new building and providing meaningful job opportunities to local residents.
From her work as a nurse to her work as a healthcare executive, Anne-Marie has devoted her life to improving the lives of people. She hopes her advocacy and West Park’s capital redevelopment will inspire and lay the groundwork for future community benefits agreements with Ontario hospital projects, creating a legacy of healthy and equitable communities.