An honourary membership to Ted Langford was presented at the 2011 CLPNA Spring Conference at the Celebration and Awards Dinner by Linda Stanger, Executive Director/Registrar of the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta (CLPNA).
The following is Ms. Stanger’s speech at that event:
The Council of the CLPNA accepts nominations for Honorary Membership in our profession and reserves this honor for people external to the CLPNA, who have rendered distinguished service or valuable assistance to the profession or to the College resulting in positive recognition for the profession. Honorary members have the rights and privileges of membership in the College, do not pay any fees, and do not hold office as an LPN or vote.
Tonight, I have the privilege of recognizing one of those special people. Someone who has been part of the fabric of both our profession and our College for nearly 20 years and, although now external, will always be part of us. This is a person of exemplary ethic and integrity whose belief in and support for the LPN Profession in Alberta has significantly impacted our evolution. Ladies and Gentlemen, that very special person is Mr. Ted Langford.
Ted was educated as a teacher and spent the majority of his career in education administration within Alberta’s community colleges. Ted regularly consults for the Department of Advanced Education now and is particularly adept in managing mergers and transitions.
It was in his role as President of NorQuest College where Ted’s path first crossed with the Licensed Practical Nurse.
In the early 90’s, the CLPNA completed an extensive evaluation of the Practical Nurse Program attempting to bring the program to a standard that would ensure graduates could meet the needs of employers. But no action was taken by educators to implement the recommendations, that is until Ted, a relatively new president at Norquest, met with our then Executive Director and heard of the situation. As a man of action, he quickly confirmed the facts, moved to secure funding, acquire necessary human resources, and a new curriculum was developed and implemented in 1995.
This was a defining moment in the evolution of LPN education in Alberta. Other colleges followed suit, but Ted led the way.
With his knowledge of the post-secondary education system, his calm, easy manner and his ability to get things done Ted quickly became a valuable resource to the College.
Ted was invited to become a public member on the CLPNA Council and was appointed by Government in July 2002.
During his time on Council, we have benefited from his wisdom, his “call it like it is attitude” and his sage advice. Several times, he led the Council in their annual strategic planning sessions encouraging out of the box thinking always focused on ensuring the LPN becomes a “nurse of choice”. He set a standard for Council, of professionalism and participation, with an attitude that went beyond simple collaboration to meaningful inclusion. He encouraged everyone to share their own wisdom and actively engage in Council deliberations. He was a trusted mentor for practicing LPNs who were first time board members.
Ted actively participated in the development of the College Council Handbook, maintaining his English teacher focus on excellence. His goal was to ensure quality content, clarity, proper grammar and proper punctuation. All we could say was thank God for computer programs that allow you to cut and paste, not that he used the computer; his feedback was always handwritten and the legibility of it made you wonder if he was a teacher or a doctor. In his pursuit of perfection, we went through many iterations of the Handbook and finally had to say, “This is good, let’s see how it works in practice”. The Handbook was approved by Council and, to honor his suggestion for continuous quality improvement, a regular schedule for review was set up for each section the handbook would always be current. That was over 5 years ago. Our Handbook remains current today.
Over the years, Ted has been a valuable resource to the Executive Directors to brainstorm ideas, review documents, provide suggestions and as a confidante. His extended term on Council has been through the change in Executive Directors of the College. Ted played a major role on the Succession Planning Committee and his insight into organizational behavior and particularly the needs of CLPNA helped to ensure the success of that transition.
Ted has been active in the Fredrickson-McGregor Education Foundation for LPNs as well. Again, providing sage advice, “elbow to the wheel” support in terms of developing our handbook, formalizing the work of the Foundation and providing valuable support as we develop and build the fundraising arm of the profession.
Life with Ted wasn’t always about business. With his wonderful sense of humor, you were well-entertained. Often when the work was done, Ted would begin one of his “did I ever tell you the story about” sessions and off he would go. His stories, while entertaining and usually humorous, always contained a life lesson!
Ted is an accomplished pianist and we benefited from that, too. For many of our Christmas parties, if we had access to a piano, Ted would play the sounds of the season.
Ted never stops and he makes a difference wherever he goes. In his home community of Lac La Biche, he has been extensively involved in a wide range of community activities and organizations including chair of the Regional Economic Development Council, serving on Town Council and for a period as Acting Mayor along with a host of other community boards and committees. He currently serves as chair of the condo board where he and his wife Fran live when in Edmonton.
Ted completed his term as a Public Member on the CLPNA Council in December 2010 and the relationship has not ended – it has just changed.
Ted, we are truly thankful for the many contributions you have made in support of the Licensed Practical Nurse profession. It is indeed our privilege to present you with Honorary Membership in the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta.