Nancy Elizabeth (Lewis) Parsons

August 20, 1956 ~ May 10, 2020 (age 63)


Nancy Elizabeth Parsons

August 20, 1956 – May 10, 2020

It is with profound sadness and heavy hearts we announce the passing of Nancy Parsons on May 10 2020 at home surrounded by her loving family after a long battle with Cancer.  Nancy was the heart and soul of our family and will be sorely missed by her husband Gary, her daughter Samantha Parsons, her son David Parsons and his wife Tara Parsons, her grandchildren Aiden, Olivia and Isabella, her sisters Judy Dykstra and Cathy Buis, her brother Scott Lewis as well as her father David Lewis.

Nancy’s infectious enthusiasm, easy laugh and passion for life impacted everyone she touched and led to many friendships and professional relationships around the world. Her personal and professional accomplishments and many and varied.  In her youth, Nancy was a competitive runner and held Provincial track and field records for years.  At 14 years of age she joined the Canadian Olympic training program.  Not satisfied, Nancy began playing tennis and eventually left track and field and became a ranked Provincial player by the age of 16.  All this “while maintaining a straight-A average through school.

Nancy graduated from Merritton High School, lettering in both sports and academics and received a provincial scholarship to Brock University where she studied science.  Nancy and I met before she was finished her M.Sc. and we married on July 3 1981.  Thus began a 39-year journey which will always be the best years of my life. 

Nancy began her career in research but soon heeded the call of the Pharmaceutical Industry.  Her career in Biotech/Pharmaceuticals went as most things in her life, with total dedication, innovation and inspiration.  Nancy progressed through the industry with creativity and her never-ending passion for patients.  Nancy authored one of the first pharmacoeconomic studies in the industry while with Genentech Inc. and submitting Activase for Canadian approval and reimbursement.  Holding many increasingly senior management positions with companies such as Bristol-Myers, Genentech, Amgen and Elan, Nancy’s career culminated in her last position as Vice President, Commercial Products, North America for Leadiant Biosciences, a Rare Disease specialty pharmaceutical company in Gaithersburg, MD.  Leadiant’s mission to work with Rare Dedication defines Nancy’s life both personally and professionally.

In June, 2019 Nancy became the first Canadian to be inducted into the “Medical, Marketing and Media Hall of Femme” which honours breakthrough women in senior executive positions in the medical field, at a Gala in New York City. 

As in her life, Nancy wants happiness and joy for others in her passing.  As such she did not want a memorial service but instead would like a celebration of her life.  In these difficult times we cannot provide a time and location but will do so as soon as we can.  In lieu of flowers or gifts we ask for a donation to the Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation in her name.  A link is provided here.


              THE ELMS

Along the darkened lane I Strolled,

The naked elms all standing bold.

Their barren limbs all towering high,

To silhouette the sunset sky.


But even though they stand with pride,

They look as if their will has died.

For these tall majestic trees,

Look sad and lost without their leaves.


As I stopped and looked around,

I sort of felt that I had found,

The lifeless state these elms withstand,

Which Mother Nature has command.


And often times when I’m alone

I feel the way the elms have known,

Standing there all winter long,

Through bitter cold and winds so strong.


As I continued down the way,

There is one thing I’d have to say

The coming of spring makes everything bright,

And the elms with their leaves is a beautiful sight.

                                          Nancy Parsons, nee Lewis  March 7, 1969

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Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation - Nancy Parsons

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