Councillor Canning was born in Happy Valley-Goose Bay. Gertie graduated from High School in Churchill Falls and went back to Goose Bay to attend Community College where she met and married her husband, Derrick Canning.
Gertie moved to Wabush in 1998 after living in Ontario for 12 years. She has always wanted to move back to Labrador West to raise her children Karl, Desiree and Julia and let them experience the kind of childhood that she so enjoyed. Gertie loves being back and says that she will do anything she can to support and help the people of her community. She enjoys the beauty and serenity that Labrador has to offer.
Gertie has two sisters and three brothers: Victoria (Labrador City), Sheila (Ontario), Randy (Churchill Falls), Pat (Goose Bay) and Calvin (Goose Bay). As well as two wonderful grandchildren Kallie and Karter.
Councillor Canning’s parents, Victor and Joan Penney, are residents of Goose Bay who moved there from Churchill Falls after retiring in 2013.
Gertie was elected in a bi-election which was held September 30, 2014.