Re-imagining Health Symposium Speakers

The Re-imaging Health Symposium organizing committee has brought together over 30 award-winning speakers with expertise in diverse topics areas. This event promises to be a must-attend opportunity for those invested in the future of health for individuals and communities.

Meet the keynotes

Dr. Mustafa Hirji

Acting Medical Officer of Health and Commissioner Public Health Niagara Region

Dr. M. Mustafa Hirji is the Acting Medical Officer of Health for Niagara region, appointed to the position in January 2018. In this capacity he is responsible for protecting the health of Niagara’s 450,000 residents and 15 million visitors through Public Health programs such as vaccination, stopping outbreaks, preventing chronic diseases, health inspections, enabling children to get the best start to life, as well as Land Ambulance and ambulance dispatch services, and emergency planning.

Dr. Hirji has a particular focus on the social determinants of health—the socioeconomic conditions in which people live, which determines half of health outcomes.

Dr. Zayna khayat

Future Strategist, SE Health

Dr. Zayna Khayat is the Future Strategist with SE Health (formerly, Saint Elizabeth Health Care). Zayna is on the Faculty of Singularity University’ Exponential Medicine stream since 2016.

In 2017 she was seconded from MaRS Discovery District, an innovation hub in Toronto, Canada to the REshape Health Innovation Centre at Radboud university medical centre in Nijmegan, Netherlands. At MaRS in Toronto, Zayna lead the Health System Innovation platform from 2014 to 2017.


Chief, Hurvitz Brain Sciences Program; Medical Director, Family Navigation Project; Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Psychiatry Department

Dr Levitt graduated from the University of Western Australia and then completed his specialty training in Psychiatry at the University of Toronto in 1989. From 1992-2002 was the head of Mood Disorders Programs first at the Centre for Addictions and Mental Health in Toronto, then McMaster University in Hamilton, and eventually at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto.

In 2002 he became the Chief of the Department of Psychiatry at Sunnybrook and at Women’s College Hospital, and in 2014 became the Chief of the Brain Sciences Program at Sunnybrook. He has published over 160 peer reviewed manuscripts and has served for 4 years as the Chair of the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (formerly MRC) Randomized Controlled Trails committee.

His research has centered on treatment resistant mood disorders with a focus on clinical trials. His clinical work has focused on the treatment of highly treatment resistant mood and anxiety disorders, and also facilitating patient and family access to care in complex mental health and addictions systems. To this end, he recently became the Medical Director of the newly created Family Navigation Project, a not-for-profit program that helps to locate mental health and addictions resources for families with youth 13-26.

Meet the speakers

Adekunle Ajiboye

Adekunle Ajiboye is a Software Architect whose educational and professional background gives him a broad range of domain expertise in the entire eHealthsphere, ICT Tools & Applications for Commerce, IoT + Big Data and Entrepreneurial Consulting. Aside from his leadership roles @ AAJIMATICS and other firms, he serves as a SME @ the GEIA among other institutions.

He is honored with the Nation Builder Award on behalf of the Parliament of Canada. He is a celebrated alumnus of McMaster University Hamilton, Ontario Canada with graduate degrees in Engineering and eHealth and also recognized as one of McMaster University’s 150 outstanding Engineering graduates.

Adekunle is a frequent speaker on eTechnologies to academic and international conference audiences.

Dr. Norm Archer

Dr. Archer is a Professor Emeritus in Information Systems in the DeGroote School of Business at McMaster University.

Along with two colleagues, he initiated, developed and implemented a Master’s program in eHealth, which began operations in 2008. The program is a collaborative effort of three McMaster faculties: Health Sciences, Business and Engineering, and admits over 40 highly qualified students each year.

Dr. Archer continues to be very active in  in eHealth research. At the present time he is directing a two-year research project in health self-management with online support for out-patients with peripheral arterial disease. The project has been implemented and is being tested for efficacy in a randomized controlled trial with 200 outpatients, in collaboration with the vascular surgery team at Hamilton Health Sciences.

Dr. Faisal Beg

Dr. Beg is currently a Professor at the School of Engineering Science at Simon Fraser University.

His main interest is in designing computational algorithms using novel signal processing tools for medical image processing, specifically the quantitative understanding of human brain structure and function. He has focused on developing novel computational biomarkers for the early and reliable diagnosis of dementias such as Alzheimer’s, FTD and Parkinson’s disease from brain MRI images.

He has contributed to designing novel algorithms optical coherence technology (OCT) imaging of the retina, optical imaging of cardiac electrical activity and novel AI algorithms for CT imaging in cancer and aging.

Stephanie Chicoine

With over ten years of experience in Healthcare, Stephanie is dedicated to pushing the boundaries of medical technologies and creating better outcomes for patients. With a background in both Computer Science and Business, Stephanie has had the privilege of working with large EMR vendors such as Telus Health, global pharmaceutical organizations such as Baxter and Merck and currently is a leader in AI and Cloud Technologies for Healthcare at Microsoft.

Her most notable projects include predictive voice coaching for Type 2 Diabetes, the transformation of Machine Learning for Oncology Research, and creating predictive analytics for operational efficiency across hospitals in Canada.

Patrick Clifford

Patrick Clifford is currently the Director of Research and Innovation, at the Research Institute of Southlake Regional Health Centre in Newmarket Ontario and CreateIT Now the Southlake owned and operated on campus health innovation centre.

Patrick’s responsibilities include 1/oversight of research operations and infrastructure (including the REB) and 2/ advancing innovation and commercialization activities along with culture building, through strategic collaborations with industry, academia, funders and other key partners. Currently Patrick is charged with leading the development and implementation of Southlake’s research agenda and advancing the innovation and commercialization strategy which includes growing partnerships and collaborations with private sector ventures wishing to test and/or validate wide ranging health focused technologies with Southlake clinicians in an acute care, large community hospital environment.

Patrick is also engaged in Southlake’s health sector leadership role in innovative, outcome based, procurement practices. Patrick brings 32 years of health care experience in acute care to his current role. He holds an MSW, a BA, BSW and BEd. and continues to practice as a clinician on a periodic basis in an emergency mental health setting.

Dr. Ivo D. Dinov

Dr. Dinov is a professor of Health Behavior and Biological Sciences and Computational Medicine and Bioinformatics at the University of Michigan.

He directs the Statistics Online Computational Resource, the Integrative Biostatistics and Informatics Core of the Michigan Nutrition and Obesity Research Center, and the Udall Parkinson’s Disease Biostatistics and Data Management Core. He co-directs the Center for Complexity and Self-management of Chronic Disease (CSCD Center) and the multi-institutional Probability Distributome Project.

Sandy Dupuis

Sandy Dupuis has more than 10 years experience in the public sector driving data driven decision-making, evaluating programs and services, and developing performance measurement frameworks.

After many years as an Epidemiologist in Public Health, Sandy Dupuis is currently supporting departments across the Niagara Region organization to drive continuous improvement as the Corporate Performance Specialist.

Sandy is passionate about community impact and ensuring decisions are made based on evidence. She will never shy away from a conversation about data!

Dr. Brent E. Faught

Dr. Faught is a Professor of Epidemiology in the Department of Health Sciences and Graduate Program Director for the Master of Public Health degree program at Brock University.

His research expertise is in physical activity epidemiology. Physical activity and relational risk research examines an individual’s decision to adopt a regular physically active lifestyle as a health preventative measure.

Dr. Faught examines this relationship in young children and pediatric populations with respect to a variety of health conditions.

Simon Hagens

Simon Hagens is Group Director, Performance Analytics at Canada Health Infoway. In fourteen years with Infoway, Simon’s largest contributions have been the development and implementation of the Benefits Evaluation strategy and the establishment adoption requirements to drive adoption.

Simon is currently Board Chair at Four Villages Community Health Centre in west Toronto. In prior roles, Simon has been a manager in a primary care and community health organization, and a market researcher in the pharmaceutical industry. Simon holds a B.Sc from the University of Guelph and an MBA from McGill University, and has been working healthcare for 20 years.

Dr. Joanna Henderson

Dr. Henderson is Director of the Margaret and Wallace McCain Centre for Child, Youth & Family Mental Health at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Executive Director of Youth Wellness Hubs Ontario, and Associate Director of Frayme.

Dr. Henderson’s research aims to improve youth access to high quality mental health and substance use services and supporting youth engagement in system and service planning.

Kevin Hobbs

Kevin Hobbs is an actor and writer, and is currently a Masters candidate at Brock University in Social Justice and Equity. For over twenty years he has employed various narrative and artistic methodologies to improve the communication skills of healthcare students and professionals.

Conor Holler

For the past ten years Conor has led digital strategy and product development teams. He works with clients in the public and private sectors to improve customer experience, enhance digital effectiveness, and produce more impactful products and services.

Conor is an experienced storyteller having spent many years as a digital media producer and professional comedian. Along with global partners and distributors, he has developed and launched multiple award-winning media products using emerging technologies like AR, VR, IoT, as well as on traditional platforms like film and television. He strives to bring storytelling and creativity to every project he works on, whether it’s in the theatre or the boardroom.

Leanne Hughes

Leanne has 23 years of experience in Recreation Therapy at Sunnybrook Health Sciences, located in Toronto, ON; working on various patient care areas. She truly values her experience at Sunnybrook and considers Person Centred Care and Staff Wellness a priority.  In her current position, Leanne is the Professional and Education Leader of Recreation Therapy.

She is registered with Therapeutic Recreation Ontario (R/TRO) and is a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS). Leanne has been involved on the Therapeutic Recreation Ontario Board for the past 14 years and currently holds the position of Past-President.

Hartley Jafine

Hartley Jafine is an instructor in the Bachelor of Health Sciences (Honours) program and Arts & Science program at McMaster University, where he facilitates theatre and arts-based courses. He is also a lecturer (part-time) with the Department of Family Medicine.

When not on the McMaster campus, Hartley works as a freelance applied drama and improv practitioner, communication coach with the University of Toronto’s Postgraduate Medical Education program and an arts educator at Baycrest Health Sciences.

For over a decade, he has been integrating drama, improv, and play specifically within health sciences pedagogy. He is also a clown nose enthusiast.

Dr. Rebecca MacPherson

Dr. MacPherson’s research program strives to understand the relationship between disturbances in cellular homeostasis and metabolic diseases such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, and Alzheimer’s disease.

The aims of her research program is two pronged: 1) to understand the role of lipid metabolism in maintaining cellular homeostasis with a focus on the role of adipose triglyceride lipase (ATGL) in the regulation of fat metabolism in adipose tissue, skeletal muscle, and liver in health and disease; 2) to understand the cellular mechanisms and pathology that contribute to neurodegeneration in metabolic disease.

Joe Mayer

Joe Mayer is Chief Revenue Officer at IDENTOS. He is responsible for global revenue and leading commercial activities for the North American Healthcare market. Joe has over 15 years of digital health experience including a decade in leadership roles across TELUS Health. Joe has built, delivered and operated digital innovation for governments, military, hospitals and many other healthcare providers domestically and internationally.

In addition to his MBA, Joe has an Honors Health Science Degree from the University of Western Ontario and is PMP, ITIL and CPHIMS certified. He has also completed ICD NFP Governance program at Rotman School of Management and proudly serves as a member of the Board of Directors for VHA Home Healthcare.

Neil McFarlane

As a solutions architect, Neil McFarlane works with Canadian healthcare providers, regional health authorities, government health institutions, and life science organizations on all aspects of cloud adoption and transformation.  His work spans technical fields such as storage, hybrid architectures, disaster recovery, and data lakes; as well as broader enterprise concerns such as migration, security & compliance, and DevOps adoption.

Neil’s background prior to his work in healthcare with AWS includes leading large programs such as utility regulatory reform, grid modernization, and smart cities.

Dr. Helia Mohammadi

Dr. Mohammadi is the National Healthcare Chief Data Scientist for Microsoft Canada. With over 10 years of experience in research and applied Artificial Intelligence, she leverages and extends Machine Learning and cloud solutions to help process data into actionable insight, and to aid with digital transformation in the healthcare domain from predictive analytics to genomics research and precision medicine.

Dr. Mohammadi is an inventor and extended her research into patents and journal publications in biomedical Machine Learning at University of Toronto, where she received a Doctorate in Electrical and Computer Engineering.

She was named as “Top 30 Influential Women Advancing AI in Canada” in 2018.

Jayne Morrish

Jayne Morrish is the Knowledge Mobilization Officer at Brock University’s Centre for Lifespan Development Research. In her role, Jayne engages with partners such as the World Health Organization and Mental Health Commission of Canada to involve them in the research process at the Lifespan Centre and help co-produce research findings with applicability and impact outside of the academic context. Additionally, Jayne focuses a great deal of her work on authentic community engagement, to ensure that Lifespan Centre research is oriented in the needs of the individuals that it applies to.

Jayne has received various awards for her work, including the Certificate of Academic Excellence from the Canadian Psychological Association for her Master’s thesis and a 40 Under Forty Award.

Dai Mukherjee

Dai is a Senior Manager in Deloitte’s Health Transformation Consulting practice, with 15 years of experience.

He is an MBA from the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto and has an undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering from the National Institute of Technology, Jamshedpur, India. He also co-teaches the Health Care Consulting course offered to second year MBA students at the Rotman School of Management.

Dr. Farouk Nathoo

Farouk Salim Nathoo was born in Nairobi Kenya in 1975 and grew up in Vancouver Canada. He is an Associate Professor and Tier 2 Canada Research Chair (2013-2023) in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Victoria, and an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science at Simon Fraser University.

His primary areas of research are the analysis of neuroimaging data, imaging genetics, statistical modelling, and Bayesian methods.

Recent career contributions are to the development of methods for the analysis of neuroimaging data motivated by the electromagnetic inverse problem, spatial modeling and computation for fMRI data, brain connectivity studies and the joint analysis of neuroimaging and genetic data.

Dr. Joe Norris

Dr. Norris, Chair of the Department of Dramatic Arts at Brock University has focused his career to support community and educational organizations through the use of social issues theatre to address topic that concern them.

Norris and casts of Mirror Theatre have devised over 70 live and video participatory performance/workshops that are designed to raise awareness and evoke meaningful conversations.

Mark Rajack

Mark Rajack is the Project Director, Partnerships and Innovation for Niagara Health.

Mark is focused on driving a forward-thinking strategy that will not only connect Niagara Health’s strategic priorities with new and innovative technologies but will also work on building strong and lasting partnerships with community partners and stakeholders, placing an emphasis on technology in support of the patient experience and transitions to care.

Mark has over 15 years of experience in the e-health/healthcare IT sectors and is extremely passionate about improving the healthcare experience for Canadians.

Brent Rowan

Brent Rowan is a professional community musician. He has performed and recorded across Canada, the UK and Germany with 2009 & 2015 Juno Nominated Eccodek, Jason Raso Funktet and has released three of his own albums; “It’s About Time” 2006, “IZ” 2012 & “Where is Local” 2016.

Brent is the founding director of the Guelph Youth Jazz Ensemble and the New Horizons Band for Guelph, teaches in the Community Music Program at Wilfrid Laurier University and at his private music studio.

Brent is a candidate for MA/PHD in Critical Studies in Improvisation University of Guelph.

Laurie Sadowski

Laurie Sadowski  is the Arts in Medicine Coordinator at Niagara Health, creating arts-based experiences in outpatient oncology and Adjunct Faculty at WLU.

She is currently leading a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Partnership Engage grant exploring arts-based engagement for those affected by Multiple Sclerosis (MS). Other current projects include two St. Catharines Cultural Investment Program community grants (one for MS, and another for mental health); chairing Arts & Health Niagara; co-chairing the Niagara Region Qualitative Research Interest Group; Research Assistant in the ICU at Niagara Health; and her role as Volunteer Coordinator for Willow Arts Community.

As an arts animateur, community music facilitator, published author, and music and wellness advocate, Laurie’s projects drive her passion to promote how the arts can enhance overall wellbeing.

Mary Sanagan

Mary is a partner in Deloitte National Health practice. She has 20 years of large-scale technology enabled transformation experience in the Canadian and US health markets. Mary is a certified project management professional and leads strategic/advisory engagements focused solely in the digital health care space.

She has overseen a variety of HIS initiatives in various stages of their lifecycle from procurement to implementations in single site and multi-site organizations with both phased and big bang approaches.

Rupen Seoni

Senior Vice President and Practice Leader at Environics Analytics, Rupen Seoni leads a practice area that includes the public sector, health care, energy and not-for-profits. He brings to his position over twenty years of experience in marketing analytics, working with organizations of all sizes to unlock the value of information in decision-making and business strategy. He specializes in helping organizations understand population trends, segmentation and performance benchmarking.

Rupen earned a master’s degree in urban planning and held positions with Nielsen, Compusearch, Campbell Soup and CIBC prior to joining Environics Analytics.

For the last two years, he has appeared on CTV’s Canadian and U.S. federal election coverage as a commentator on voter demographics in key races.

Dr. Jennifer Tsang

Jennifer Tsang is an intensivist and researcher with an academic interest in building research capacity in community hospitals. She completed her MD degree at the University of Ottawa, internal medicine residency, and critical care fellowship at the University of Toronto in 2008. In December 2013, she completed a PhD in molecular biology and Royal College Clinician Investigator Program at the University of Toronto.

She is the Research Lead of Niagara Health and Niagara Regional Campus of Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at McMaster University.

Dr. Tsang has built a robust research program, and developed a peer-reviewed grant funded Quality Improvement Program with the aim to improve pain, agitation and delirium management in a community ICU. She has also developed an organizational-wide research program in a community hospital.

She is currently working on creating a Canadian Community ICU Research Network to facilitate research building in community ICUs across Canada.

Dan wasserman

Founder & CEO, Mammoth Health Innovation Inc.

Dan Wasserman, founder and CEO of Mammoth Health Innovation Inc., is a serial entrepreneur. He started his career in the advertising agency and next built a competitive intelligence business, which was sold to AC Nielsen. From there he co-founded an entertainment technology company and after three years of working in Hollywood, returned to Canada. He then created the promotion that generated over $25 million in first year revenue for Sympatico™ and left to  consult for a number of emerging technology companies. One of these convinced him to relocate to Virginia, just outside of Washington, DC.

For 5 of the 11-years in DC he dealt with top Pentagon brass, all of the “three letter agencies,” senior law enforcement officials (including the Joint Terrorism Task Force) and in 2006 he was one of three finalists for the “Innovation of the Year Award” by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP).

Dan has extensive experience in procurement, government relations, marketing, and scaling innovations to commercial success. He also was mentored by Dr. Bruce Merrifield, the co-creator of three key pieces of legislation that still drive American innovation; the Limited Liability Company (LLC), the Small Business Innovation and Research (SBIR) grant program, and INPACT, the model that underpins the commercial successes of such countries as Israel, Ireland, and India.

Dan returned to Canada in 2010 and for six years served as an Executive in Residence (EIR) at ventureLAB, where he created the Healthcare Ecosphere, which ultimately received FedDev funding. Dan’s sat on a number of boards, both in Canada and the USA, and currently is the Vice-Chairman of ReMAP, a federally funded Business-Led National Centre of Excellence (BL-NCE). He holds a BSc (Biology) from the University of Toronto and an MBA (Marketing) from York University’s Schulich School of Business.

Dr. Colleen Whyte

Colleen Whyte is an Associate Professor in the Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies at Brock University. Her research focuses on aging within Canadian society, and the contributions of recreation and leisure to quality of living for older adults. She is particularly interested in examining the experiences of older adults within long-term care (LTC) homes and working to foster a cultural shift away from societal discrimination based on age.

Dr. Barry Wright

Barry Wright joined the Goodman School of Business in 2003. He received his PhD in Organizational Behaviour and MA in Psychology of Sport from Queen’s University, and his Bachelor of Physical Education from the University of Alberta. He teaches courses in leadership, change, and organizational behavior.

Wright served as the Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs and Accreditation of the Goodman School of Business from 2008 to 2010, and as Interim Dean from 2015 to 2017. He has also been a Visiting Professor at L’Ecole Superieure de Commerce d’Amiens in France and the University of International Business and Economics in China.

Coming soon

  • Rick Ferron
  • Karen Lutz
  • Ryan Waterhouse