Award rescinded for former Halifax hospital CEO mired in expense scandal


HALIFAX — An award naming the former head of Atlantic Canada’s largest children’s hospital one of Canada’s most powerful women has been rescinded because of her role in an expense scandal.

In an emailed statement sent to media outlets late Wednesday, a spokesperson for PhaseNyne Inc. said Tracy Kitch, former CEO of the Izaak Walton Killam Health Centre, would not be honoured by the Women’s Executive Network.

"An Award Winner was nominated and selected prior to an outstanding investigation and her (Kitch’s) subsequent resignation. We have determined she will not be a recipient of the 2017 Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award. Once the investigation is concluded we will evaluate our next steps."

Kitch stepped down in August amid an expenses controversy after an independent review said she owed tens of thousands of dollars for "potentially personal" expenses charged to her corporate credit card.

Kitch came under fire after CBC News reported she had used a corporate credit card to pay personal expenses.

The executive’s corporate credit card statements included thousands of dollars charged by the Bay last November, multiple charges from iTunes and Netflix and more than $2,000 for a limousine service.

Kitch joined the IWK in August 2014 and was earning an annual salary of $296,289 at the time of her departure.

Before joining the Halifax hospital, Kitch was executive vice-president of patient care and chief nursing executive at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto.

The annual Canada’s Most Powerful Women list pays tribute to the women who have advocated for diversity in the workforce, and who serve as an inspiration for the next generation of leaders, Sherri Stevens, president and CEO of PhaseNyne, said in a news release Wednesday.

"Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Awards showcases the leaders that are helping to drive positive change and progress and to remind us of the importance of empowering women in our workforce and in the community," Stevens said.

The awards include women leaders in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors.