The Sisters of Charity of Montreal, more commonly known as the Grey Nuns, helped Dr. Paul David turn his dream into reality.
While busy with the construction of the new Hôpital Maisonneuve in Montreal's east end, the Grey Nuns asked Dr. Paul David to direct its cardiology department. They gave him carte blanche to create the space he wanted, and they agreed that his service could be an independent entity. Ten years earlier, the Grey Nuns, which were founded in Montréal in the 18th century, decided to embark on a two-fold mission to establish a hospital in Quebec that would be second to none and that would focus on specialized medicine. At the start of the 1940s, these nuns went off to learn from the best institutions in Canada and the United States. When Dr. David told them about his project for a cardiology institute, he was talking to women who were familiar with the latest advances in medicine and who wanted the community to benefit from them. Sister Rachel Tourigny, a Fellow of the American College of Hospital Administrators, became the Institute's first administrator, while Sister Lucille Ouellet oversaw facility set-up and staff training.