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Maureen's many hats

Inuvik woman juggles three jobs and family, too

Catalyna Correa
Northern News Services

Yellowknife (Aug 02/02) - As a coroner, justice of the peace and admissions clerk for the hospital, Maureen Gowans has created an intriguing and diversified career path for herself.

Maureen Gowans works as admissions clerk at Inuvik Regional Hospital. She is also a justice of the peace and a coroner. - Catalyna Correa/NNSL photo

Gowans works full time as an admissions clerk for Inuvik Regional Hospital. She also works part time as a justice of the peace and as a coroner for the GNWT.

Gowans started at the hospital in 1985, when her husband, Bill, was transferred to teach at Samuel Hearne senior secondary school.

The couple had previously resided in Regina, where Maureen worked as an operating room technician.

Her first job at the Inuvik hospital was regional accommodations clerk. She worked in that position for three years. Later, she became supervisor of housekeeping and laundry for two years.

Since 1990, Maureen has worked as admissions clerk. She chose to work at the hospital because of her nursing background.

Gowans previously worked outside of the hospital environment.

However, she decided to return to the work she liked best.

"When you're a nurse it never leaves you," Gowans said.

She became a justice of the peace in 1992. She said her favourite part of her duties is performing marriage ceremonies.

"People are so overwhelmed when they can get you, because they've known me for quite a while."

At a recent ceremony, Gowans not only knew the couple she was marrying, but the guests include several other couples she had previously married.

Gowans also became a coroner in 1992. She said that the only time she finds that job somewhat stressful is if a young child is involved.

She said she finds it to be a sometimes difficult, but always rewarding, job.

"The rewards are being able to reach out to people," she said.

"It's the most I can give; because I'm a caring person."

She credits her faith for giving her the ability to be such a strong person.

Maureen also keeps busy with the Catholic Women's League that she has been involved with for numerous years. She has also helped fundraising for her church and has devoted many hours to the soup kitchen.

While at home, she loves to bake and is a frequent supplier of bread and cinnamon buns to her friends and family.