Since 1989, Carol Popovic has worked as a public health nurse at Region of Waterloo Public Health, a regional health unit in Waterloo, Ontario. Using the strategies, values, and practices contained within the Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion, Carol works with individuals, volunteers, and community agencies to make Waterloo Region a healthy, vibrant community. Currently, Carol co-chairs the Positive Parenting Community Committee and is Cluster Lead to the Healthy Living Division’s Positive Parenting Project. She also provides staff support to the Community Garden Network/Council in Waterloo Region. Recently, she stepped down as chair of “A Taste of Woolwich”, a multi-year initiative promoting local farms, and as a member of the Waterloo Region Food System Roundtable.
Lifetime Achievement Award 2018
Irving Rootman, Ph.D. is an Adjunct Professor in the School of Public Health and Social Policy at the University of Victoria. He has been a researcher, research manager, program manager, professor and consultant in the field of health promotion for more than thirty-five years. Currently, he is the Chair of the Steering Committee for the BC Health Literacy Network. He was a member of the U.S. Institute of Medicine Expert Committee on Health Literacy and Co-Chair of the Canadian Expert Panel on Health Literacy. He has published widely on Health Promotion and Health Literacy. In 2014, he received an Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree for his contribution to health promotion and in 2016, an award for his Lifetime Contribution to Health Promotion at the Sixth Global Forum on Health Promotion. He is the lead editor on the Fourth Edition of Health Promotion in Canada released in November 2017.
Lifetime Achievement Award 2018
A nursing background has provided Margaret Ormond with the vehicle and the language for exploring health care and population health in Canada. Margaret’s long career has been marked by several shifts in direction: the first involved the change from clinical practice to community practice. At the community level, the real issues that compromised the health and well-being of people came into sharp relief. It became clear that neither skillful nursing practice nor access to optimal medical care would correct or even greatly influence health, and it was at the level of determinants of health and social justice that lasting impact could be realized.
The second major shift in Margaret’s career occurred with a focus on community-based research, where the mechanics of rigorous research as applied to marginalized people threw up huge challenges. Initially working with street –involved youth in participatory research, the translation of research to practice evolved naturally, with the development of tools and resources that contained the raw expression of people’s lived experience. Among the most useful tools that have been developed collaboratively with community are Taking Care of Business, a publication intended to provide injection drug users and those working with them, with a practical resource; and four versions of Harsh Reality, a resource developed by street-involved youth for street-involved youth.
Born into a demanding family that insisted that people “put your money where your mouth is,” Margaret’s career has been an exploratory process to consider where best to apply her energy, and where that energy could have the maximum impact. Margaret’s involvement and experience at Sunshine House for the last several years, has refined her focus; the creation and development of dynamic environments where people can come, as they are, and experience “a place to grow”. Margaret continues to be involved in health at the community level, and continues to make determinants of health and social justice a priority in her own work, and in the programs of Sunshine House.
Student Award 2018 (undergrad level)
Graciel Ballesteros is a recent graduate at the University of Toronto Scarborough Campus (UTSC). As a student leader, she has led a team of students working to promote physical activity on campus through a variety of events and outreach sessions. In support of a tri-campus campaign called MoveU, she worked to educate students on the benefits of healthy living, encompassing physical activity, nutrition, and mental well-being. During her time as a coordinator, Graciel was able to reach over 2500 students at UTSC.
Most recently serving as the elected Vice-President of Administration for the Scarborough College Athletics Association (SCAA), Graciel spearheaded a new initiative to build a community around physical activity called ‘Step it Up UTSC!’; a step-challenge that engaged over 350 participants at the university. The initiative continues to advance, as a committee has been brought together to host the 2ndannual ‘Step it Up UTSC!’. In addition, she believes in empowering other students to take on leadership roles in health promotion which led to the embodiment of first year representative positions on the MoveU and SCAA teams.
Currently, Graciel is a passionate health promoter looking to further her skills by studying Occupational Health and Safety at Western University. In her current studies, she hopes to protect the health of workers within the health care setting, with a focus on infection control.
Student Award 2018 (graduate level)
Shelby Johnson is in her second year of a Master of Science in Health Promotion and Socio-behavioural Sciences program at the University of Alberta’s School of Public Health. Under the supervision of Dr. Kim Raine, her solely qualitative thesis explores the perception junior high students have on food skills education. Her research has recently been accepted as an oral presentation at the upcoming IUHPE World Conference on Health Promotion in Rotorua, New Zealand.
Within her faculty’s community, Shelby is an active member of the School of Public Health Students’ Association through her position as Social Representative. She is also involved with the Student Advocates for Public Health where she advocates for the need of municipalities to play a stronger role in providing support for individuals living with dementia and their caregivers. Throughout her time at the School of Public Health, she has worked as a research assistant for the 2018 Alberta Nutrition Report Card and the GO OUT study focusing on Parkinson’s Disease. This fall, she was a teaching assistant for a first year, graduate level course focusing on Health Promotion Research Methods.
Shelby also recognizes the value in playing an active role in her hometown community of St. Albert, Alberta. Since January 2018, she has been a member of the Community Services Advisory Committee, where she meets with stakeholders and provides recommendations to City Council on annual grant allocations.
Shelby is the recipient of the Frederick Banting and Charles Best Canada Graduate Scholarship, the Walter H. Johns Graduate Fellowship, the Dawn Bucharski Graduate Award in Health Promotion, and the Dr. M. J. Ellis Research Award.
Student Award 2018 (graduate level)
Juanita Gnanapragasam is a Masters of Public Health student in the School of Public Health at the University of Alberta, specializing in Health Promotion. Her research focuses on understanding that factors that impact mental health as people adjust to new environments, particularly the adjustment process to graduate school at the UofA. Juanita also holds a BSc.and Certificate in Sustainability from the University of Alberta. During her academic career Juanita has worked in various research and policy positions both at municipal and provincial levels within healthcare in fields such as: Brain and Aging, Surgery, International Population Health and Nutrition, Occupational Therapy, Addictions and Mental Health, and Pediatrics, for which she received a publication in Pediatric Pulmonology for her work on reducing clinic wait times. Previously, Juanita was the principal investigator on a research project understanding the challenges international students face to accessing culturally relevant and nutritious foods. From this research Juanita co-founded the non-profit organization Converse and Cook (www.conversecook.com), which creates social spaces where individuals are empowered to explore their connection to food and their community by creating meals and dining together. For her work she was awarded the Alberta Council for Global Cooperation’s Top 30 Under 30 last year.
In addition to her work on campus Juanita is near the end of a two year teaching fellowship with the University of Alberta’s Peter Lougheed Leadership College. In her role she teaches and helps senior undergraduates to apply theories and concepts on leadership. Juanita also has extensive experience in Edmonton’s non-profit sector both in front-line service delivery and board governance. She is currently a board member at the Edmonton Compass Centre for Sexual Wellness and a member of CanWaCH’s Gender Equality Working Group. Juanita is committed to finding root causes for problems that arise in society and actively seeking creative solutions to solve them.
Student Award 2018 (PhD, post doc level)
Fahim describes himself as a “data-driven person” who enjoys the challenge of applying computational techniques to solve complex problems. He is passionate about health care policy and planning, and currently pursuing his PhD in Public Health at the School of Public Health in University of Alberta. His research interest is to study the application of machine learning in public health surveillance.
Additionally, he is working at Ministry of Advanced Education, Government of Alberta. As a civil servant, he has contributed to various government committees and currently serving as an advisory council member for Alberta Health Services in Greater Edmonton Area. As a council member, he works with local communities on health promotion activities and share their voices to healthcare service providers.
Student Award 2018 (PhD, post doc level)
Ashley M Johnson is currently a PhD candidate in the School of Kinesiology and Health Studies (Health Promotion Lab) at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. Ashley’s research focuses on investigating the structures and conditions that contribute to sustainable multi-sector partnerships in community health promotion. Her research is influenced by her academic background in the field, but also importantly by the successes and challenges she experienced when previously employed in the not-for-profit recreation sector (e.g. as a Director of Community Programs).
Ashley’s current efforts are focused on supporting Kingston Gets Active (KGA), a multi-sector collaborative striving to enhance physical activity opportunities within Kingston, Ontario. Ashley has been a volunteer ambassador to KGA since 2013; in this role she has facilitated physical activity and physical literacy workshops, attended local events, and has been actively engaged with sub groups focused on specific project deliverables. Additionally, Ashley assists KGA with grant writing, program development, evaluation, and trainings. Furthermore, she currently mentors the program staff of the Children’s Movement Program at Brock University assisting them with curriculum development and program coordination. Ashley is also a volunteer adjudicator for a municipal community grant.
In addition to completing her doctoral requirements, Ashley instructed various undergraduate courses at Queen’s University (Kingston, ON) and Brock University (St. Catharines, ON). All of these courses included theory and/or application to health and physical activity promotion, such as teaching students to lead Daily Physical Activity in schools and engaging students in service learning in which they developed physical activity programs for community partners, among others.
In an effort to support educators and practitioners, Ashley has collaborated with Physical Health and Education Canada in developing multiple physical activity resources. For example, Fundamental Movement Skills: Active Start and Fundamentals Stages (2018), Move Think Learn: Physical Literacy through Games and Sport resource series (2013) and An Educator’s Guide to Teaching Fundamental Movement Skills (2011). In addition, she helps community organizations with research grants and projects. Most recently, Ashley worked with the YMCA of Niagara as the Project Lead for Older Adult Community Consultations related to physical activity, volunteerism, and social opportunities. Additionally, Ashley has developed and facilitated countless workshops and trainings for community organizations and community members on various topics (e.g. mentorship, physical literacy, adapting and facilitating physical activity, quality programming).
In support of Ashley’s nomination for this award, the Coordinator of Kingston Gets Active wrote “as a teacher, facilitator and mentor, she inspires students, volunteers and colleagues with her interactive and hands-on approach to be leaders in health promotion” and her doctoral advisor concurred “her success to date at engaging community stakeholders and her peers in a diversity of situations confirms her outstanding leadership capabilities in health promotion”.
Rising Star Award 2018
Jessica Brett is a Public Health Nurse working with Ottawa Public Health’s Substance Use team. She has worked with Ottawa Public Health for three years, and has advanced the practice of health promotion in Canada through her ability to implement multi-pronged approaches to empower communities and residents to take action on their health. Previously, Jessica worked in the areas of immunization and tobacco prevention and cessation. Over the past two years, Jessica has been responsible for implementing Ottawa Public Health’s plan to address cannabis legalization, in which she has led policy development, research analysis, collaboration with community partners, and a health promotion campaign.
Rising Star Award 2018
Jessica Barudin is Kwakwaka’wakw from the ‘Namgis First Nation in Alert Bay, BC. She is a proud mother, Sundancer, Indigenous health advocate, and yoga teacher. She has a Masters in Applied Science in Physical Therapy from McGill University and an Undergraduate Degree in Human Kinetics from the University of British Columbia. Jessica is dedicated to working with the Urban Indigenous community to promote traditional health practices, land-based healing, and community development.
Rising Star Award 2018
Shannon Jones has been a Health Promotion Coordinator for Yukon Government since 2013. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology, a Master’s in Community Planning, and Certification in Sexual Health Education. As a Sexual Health Educator, Shannon is passionate about improving Yukon’s sexual health indicators through comprehensive sexual health education. She travels throughout Yukon modelling best teaching practices to classrooms, parents, group homes, social workers, nurses, and other allies. Shannon’s multiple stakeholder engagement approach is key to building capacity and increasing sexual health education throughout Yukon.
In her free time Shannon enjoys exploring the Yukon by boat, foot, bike or skis.
Rising Star Award 2018
Jennifer McWhirter is an Assistant Professor of Public Health Promotion and Communication in the Department of Population Medicine at the University of Guelph. She received her PhD from the University of Waterloo’s School of Public Health and Health Systems with an Award of Distinction. Through teaching health communication and health promotion to MPH students, Jennifer instills in the next generation of health promoters how to make health information helpful and the healthy choice the easy choice.
Her research focuses on the use of effective communication, education, and policy for cancer prevention. She is interested in the dissemination of health information and misinformation, and how visual images influence people’s health knowledge, attitudes, and behaviours. Her research has been supported by tri-council funding and has been acknowledged with various awards.
Jennifer’s passion for health promotion and cancer prevention is also evidenced in her service to society, including as a member of the Editorial Board for the Journal of Cancer Education and as the Co-Chair of the Ontario Sun Safety Working Group, an award-wining group known for education, research, and advocacy initiatives in connection to UV radiation and human health.
Rising Star Award 2018
Ryan is passionate about inspiring youth to explore the field of health promotion and empowering young people to become health leaders in their communities. Ryan first found a love for health promotion as a Bachelor of Health Sciences Student at the University of Western Ontario. Currently, Ryan is working as a Quality Lead in the Simcoe Muskoka Regional Cancer Program based in Barrie, Ontario. In his role, Ryan facilitates the Simcoe Muskoka Regional Cancer Program Youth Advisory Council (YAC) where he has developed an innovative health promotion training program and curriculum for youth learners. The YAC has successfully implemented and evaluated a wide variety of successful peer-to-peer health promotion programs while building strong, productive relationships with youth groups throughout the region. With Ryan’s support and leadership, the YAC has been recognized by the Canadian Cancer Society for three youth oriented cancer prevention programs. Ryan’s work in health promotion predominantly focuses on sustainable approaches and capacity building, employing a social determinants of health lens to reduce health inequities for diverse populations.
Ryan is deeply committed to working with communities to address local health issues and has made significant progress in building health promotion capacity at the community level. Using his strong leadership and empathy skills, Ryan builds productive relationships with stakeholders to ensure health promotion initiatives are sustainable and relevant. Recently, Ryan collaborated closely with the Barrie Area Native Advisory Circle (BANAC) to successfully submit a proposal to the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care for an Indigenous Health Promotion Collaborative to support culturally based approaches to health promotion in the region.
In his personal life, Ryan enjoys volunteering in his community and working toward positive change. He actively volunteers as a Crisis Responder with the Crisis Text Line at Kids Help Phone and serves on the Board of Directors for the North Simcoe Muskoka Hospice Palliative Care Network. Ryan values the contributions young people make to innovation and strongly believes that healthy communities are built when youth feel supported as leaders.
Health Care Services at Covenant House
Team/Group Award 2018
The Healthcare Services Team is a nurse-led clinic within Covenant House Toronto, Canada’s largest agency serving at-risk, homeless and trafficked youth. In partnership with Inner City Health Associates, the team is comprised of nurses, doctors, psychiatrists and counselors, offering strength-based and trauma-informed care to youth. Youth visiting the clinic have complex physical and mental health needs, often arriving in poor health after trying to cope on their own for too long. Many of the clients served are marginalized including those that are LGBTQ identifying, seeking refuge from persecution internationally, exiting the criminal justice system, aging out of child protection services, or are racialized minorities – all reflecting the many pathways into homelessness. We serve the immediate and long term needs whether or not youth have ID or health coverage. The clinic is seen as a sanctuary and a resource for getting more than traditional healthcare. We prioritize the relational aspect of care, developing rapport, building trust and meeting youth where they are at. This is essential to creating a safe space for young people to increase control over, and to improve, their health.
Lois Jackson, Diane Bailey, Cindy MacIsaac
Team/Group Award 2018
Diane Bailey is the Executive Director of Mainline Needle Exchange, a Halifax-based non-governmental organization. She has worked at Mainline for over 26 years, and has a steadfast commitment to changing how individuals think about people who use substances, and to reducing the stigma and discrimination experienced by those who use substances.
Lois Jackson, PhD is a Professor of Health Promotion at Dalhousie University (Halifax, NS) where she has taught since 1997. Her community-based research involves working with diverse groups (including people who use substances), and highlights the importance of understanding the lived experience of marginalized populations in order to develop appropriate policies and programs.
Cindy MacIsaac is the Executive Director of Direction 180 (Halifax, NS), a community-based, low-threshold opioid treatment program, and she has over 40 years personal experience with substance use and recovery. She is committed to improving the health and life circumstances of people who use substances, and has demonstrated this through the development and implementation of over 40 initiatives to expand access and enhance services for this population.
Mid-Career Award 2018
Michelle Cianfrone is a Senior Project Manager in Health Literacy at BC Children’s Hospital. In this role, Michelle leads innovative, provincial initiatives to enhance the mental health and well-being of children, youth and families across BC. Some recent initiatives include the ongoing development of an online hub for youth mental health and wellness at foundrybc.ca; capacity building resources and events for school professionals in rural and remote communities; and youth-led summits to address stigma in communities across BC. With over twelve years of experience in health promotion and education, Michelle has broad knowledge of project and program management, stakeholder engagement, knowledge exchange and evaluation. Michelle is passionate about improving the health and well-being of populations using evidence-informed, upstream and holistic approaches that engage diverse stakeholders and sectors. Michelle has a Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University and Master’s Degree in Public Health from the University of California, Berkeley.
Mid-Career Award 2018
Absolutely committed both to public health and to life in the North, Shannon is the Manager of Chronic Disease Prevention at the Northwestern Health Unit in Kenora ON, where she has worked for over 14 years.
She holds a Master of Science in Health Promotion from the University of Alberta, a Bachelor of Health Sciences (Honours) from the University of Western Ontario and Credentialed Evaluator status with the Canadian Evaluation Society.
Shannon supervises a range of health promotion staff (health educators, health promoters, dietitians, and public health nurses) and programs throughout 19 municipalities in Northwesterm Ontario. She is credited with strong critical thinking skills and a solid understanding of health promotion and public health.
Under her leadership, the health unit has been granted funding for important public health initiatives, including Food Security Forums to engage thirty-nine First Nation communities across the region. Shannon has facilitated the development of Memorandums of Understanding with school boards in the area, and through her leadership these partnerships have led to large workplace health initiatives, and productive and influential relationships with school boards.
With passion and innovation, she works to enhance the strategic vision of the health unit to be a valued and integral partner in health; and mission of healthy lifestyles, longer lives lived well.
Mid-Career Award 2018
Keisha Williams began working to combat HIV in Black queer communities in 2005. She completed an honours undergraduate degree in Public Affairs and Policy Management in 2009. After graduating she worked with criminalized women in prison and post release from 2009-2017. In 2016, she graduated from the University of Toronto with a Masters of Public Health in Social and Behavioural Health Sciences from the Dalla Lana School of Public Health. During her time there she worked on maternal health and harm reduction research with Lori Ross and Carol Strike. She has worked and consulted with many health organizations including Parkdale Queen West CHC, Black CAP and Public Health Ontario. In 2017 she became an Executive Director at Maggie’s and implemented a plan to improve the health of sex workers that she designed during her Masters degree.
As a new mother she has been busy on her Mat leave, supporting a new organization, Mommy Monitor which works with racialized and marginalized mothers and birth parents.
Keisha has keynoted and led workshops on topics such as Health Equity, Maternal Health, Reproductive Justice, Sexual Health, Harm Reduction, Women in Prison, Health in Prison, and much more.
Keisha is also an artist (artist name kyisha) working primarily in film and movement. kyisha fuses art with health promotion, creating socially relevant content that discusses health and promotes healthy sexuality and consent culture. Kyisha created her first short experimental documentary, Red Lips [cages for Black girls] in 2010. Her most recent film premiered in May 2018. Visit kyishawilliams.com for more information or to get in touch.
Christa Costas Bradstreet
Mid-Career Award 2018
Christa Costas-Bradstreet has expertise in the area of physical activity and health promotion built on thirty years of employed and volunteer experience and an academic foundation in health care, physical education and applied health science.
Christa began her career as a Registered Nurse, specializing in orthopaedic surgery and rehabilitation. She left nursing to complete a Bachelor of Arts in Honours Physical Education, as well as two certificates (Fitness Assessment & Exercise Counseling and Sport Administration) at York University. Christa also completed a Master of Arts in Applied Health Science (Health and Physical Education) at Brock University. However, her most prized certificate is “Mother-of-the-Year” presented to her in 2012 by her youngest daughter!
Christa enjoyed an 18-year career with ParticipACTION (the original and re-established organizations) where she held a variety of roles including National Project Coordinator, Director of Health Communications, and Relationship Manager. Christa also spent five years at Hamilton Public Health Services as a Physical Activity Specialist. She has taught at York University and Sheridan College and helped establish Sheridan’s Exercise Science and Health Promotion degree program.
Past volunteer work includes co-chairing the former national Coalition for Active Living and establishing and implementing a healthy school initiative. Christa currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Canadian Fitness and Lifestyle Research Institute as Chair, the Active Living Alliance for Canadians with a Disability as the Director of Provincial and Territorial Partnerships, and KidSport Ontario.
Christa has operated her own consulting business since 1999 with it becoming her full-time focus in 2016. Clients have included Sport Canada, the Physical Activity Resource Centre (Ontario), CHEO-HALO, the Province of BC, True Sport Foundation, and a number of other sport, physical activity and recreation organizations.
To keep active and healthy, Christa enjoys walking, cycling and swimming. She is a huge Toronto Maple Leaf fan, loves to travel and spend time with friends and family. She is the mum of two human daughters, Alexis and Zoe, and two feline daughters, Maizie (Amazing) and Grace.
Organization Award 2018
Sunshine House began its life in the early 1980s as the Kali Shiva AIDS Society, a volunteer-run organization that emerged as a response to the AIDS epidemic. Kali Shiva volunteers worked to care for individuals and families affected by this tragic new disease, at a time when even health care professionals refused to do so. The organization eventually secured its own home, such that it could provide folks from affected and at-risk communities a non-judgmental, home-like environment in which to come together. Recognizing that social inclusion was at the heart of prevention and harm reduction, the organization focused on programming that supported these values.
Today, Sunshine House has evolved into a gap-filling organization that offers recreational programming, and undertakes other public health initiatives. A core belief at Sunshine House is that social inclusion reduces harm, and as such, social inclusion and harm reduction remain the centre of our initiatives. Sunshine House is currently the only organization in Winnipeg that offers unrestricted access to harm reduction supplies, which are available free for the taking at our front counter, for all who need them. Current initiatives include our community drop-in services, a weekly community brunch, the Like That program, intended for folks who are exploring gender and sexual identity, a foot clinic, and we are currently working to develop a managed alcohol program, a food security-based social enterprise, and anything else that strikes the fancy of those who participate at Sunshine House!
Clinique communautaire de Pointe-Saint-Charles
Organization Award 2018 / Prix d’excellence pour une organisation 2018
La Clinique communautaire de Pointe-Saint-Charles est un organisme de santé contrôlé par les citoyen-ne-s du quartier. Son objectif est d’organiser des services préventifs et curatifs et de regrouper les citoyen-ne-s autour des questions de santé afin d’améliorer les conditions à court et à long terme. La Clinique communautaire a un statut d’organisme communautaire, mais un mandat de CLSC, tel que défini dans la Loi sur la santé et les services sociaux. Ce sont les citoyens et citoyennes qui décident des orientations et des services de la Clinique et s’assurent qu’elle réponde aux besoins en santé et en services sociaux du quartier. La gestion citoyenne de la Clinique reflète donc la vision et les valeurs promues et défendues par la population. Au cœur de ces orientations se trouve une conviction fondamentale: la santé est un droit essentiel et collectif non négociable.
Pour en savoir plus, visitez notre site web: ccpsc.qc.ca
Anna Vanderlaan oozes with passion for health promotion. As a Health Promotion Specialist for Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health her work covers a variety of topics with a predominant focus on the social determinants of health, reducing health inequities, and child and maternal health. Anna employs an evidence-based approach to her work infusing frameworks and models with the intent to reduce health inequities through the programs and policies that she is responsible for. She was a key contributor on two landmark initiatives of Public Health Ontario: the Health Promotion Foundations Course and the Health Equity Impact Assessment Course.
Anna has also made significant progress on local projects in the community through her role as the Evidence-Informed Planning coordinator for the Dufferin Coalition for Kids. Anna’s strong leadership skills allowed her to quickly build positive working relationships and gain trust among a diverse range of community partners to guide the work of the planning table. One of the collaborative projects includes a partnership with the local school board to develop and implement an evidence-based program for elementary schools that focuses on positive coping skills and resilience to promote mental health and reduce substance use among students.
Anna is a strong advocate for health promotion and public health. She is growing confident as an effective facilitator and can hold a room with her wit and warmth. Anna is also an expert on partnership development and stakeholder mobilization. Her personable and genuine approach to community groups, colleagues, and clients ensures outcomes are reached in an inclusive, friendly, and positive manner.
Mid-Career Award 2017
Anita is Health Promotion Supervisor at Lambton Public Health and is responsible for leading a multidisciplinary team of professionals including public health nurses, health promoters, and program support staff. Previously, she was a Health Promoter at the health unit and focused on issues related to tobacco, physical activity, and healthy aging. In 2017, Anita designed a Health Promotion course for a new Fitness and Health Promotion Diploma Program at Lambton College.
Anita embodies the principles enshrined in the health promoter competencies, as demonstrated through her leadership of Lambton Public Health’s Healthy Aging strategic plan implementation team, as well as her work with the social determinants of health nurses at Lambton Public Health and her involvement with the OPHA/ALPHA Health Equity Workgroup.
Anita is very active in the community and has raised over $300,000 as a team captain for the MS Society Cycle-athon. Her nomination for the 2016 Mayor’s Honour List for her efforts in building a cycling culture in Sarnia-Lambton demonstrates that Anita’s volunteer efforts are highly regarded and consistent with health promotion principles, such as building community capacity and creating supportive environments.
According to an individual who supported her nomination, “it is plain to all who meet Anita that her mission in life is to help motivate people and to make the world a better place”.
Rising Star Award 2017
Cerina Lee is Public Policy Coordinator for Action on Smoking and Health, Western Canada’s leading tobacco control organization. Internationally, Cerina is employed by the World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA) as a Lead Trainer and now a Secretary for the Committee on Empowerment of Women and Youth at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. Recently Cerina was selected as the Head Delegate and Ambassador for the Young Diplomats of Canada, a national, non-partisan organization that promotes the leadership of young Canadians through international delegations and advocacy initiatives. She represented Canada, leading four other Canadian delegates at the International Monetary Fund/World Bank Annual Meetings in Washington, DC. Finally, she facilitated high-level stakeholder meetings at the Canadian Embassy with influential leaders including several of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s cabinet members.
Cerina is an ambitious, highly skilled, and award winning health promoter who exemplifies the qualities of leadership, perseverance, and a willingness to challenge herself in new situations. Her passion and commitment toward public health, international advocacy, and foreign policy work on topics ranging from tobacco and cannabis regulation to air and water quality has resulted in numerous opportunities for her to represent Canada on the world stage. According to her award nominator, “Cerina is a deserving nominee for the Rising Star Award because she exemplifies true passion in healthy public policy and is a continuous leader in tackling the United Nations Sustainable Goals at both the provincial and international scale”.
Rising Star Award 2017
Dorothy is the Lead Peer Health Educator with Healthy McGill, McGill University’s health promotion unit. The organization is responsible for connecting students to resources in order to develop healthy lifestyles. She is a force for collaboration on the McGill campus and a leader within her team—actively facilitating mentorship, team-building, and staff engagement with strategic planning. This commitment extends beyond Healthy McGill to training and support for staff and volunteers at other universities, community organizations, and even professional health units at McGill.
Among her recent contributions to health promotion, Dorothy worked closely with 2017 orientation organizers to overhaul their sexual violence response protocols and expand substance misuse and bystander training for hundreds of frosh volunteers. These changes permitted a pioneering legal agreement between the university and student associations for the Code of Student Conduct to apply to off-campus orientation events, thereby providing institutional recourse channels for any incidents balanced with a proactive educational approach. Dorothy goes above and beyond because she is passionate, driven, and incredibly competent. Not content with the status quo, Dorothy continuously seeks developmental opportunities to further the impact of her work, whether that is training on anti-oppressive child-care or a national student affairs conference.
According to an individual that supported her nomination, Dorothy’s ability to connect with groups and students on campus has “allowed health promotion initiatives to flourish in all areas of our university”.
Head & Hands
Organization Achievement Award 2017
Head & Hands is a non-profit youth organization in Montreal and has served the community of Notre-Dame-de-Grace, as well as the rest of the city and beyond, for close to 50 years. The organization offers free medical, social, and legal services and programs for youth ages 12 to 25. Head & Hands’ mission is to work with youth to promote their holistic well-being. In order to best support youth and the community, Head & Hands’ approach is non-judgmental, confidential, accessible, harm-reductive, and anti-oppressive.
Head & Hands has been a well-known and respected organization in the city of Montreal since its establishment in 1970. A recent example of this is the community’s decision to move Head & Hands into a vacant library space, which would mean 10 years of free rent and more space to do its work collectively. Head & Hands was also the recent winner of the Montreal Community Cares Community Organization Award. The award recognized its work as a community champion that is seeking to make Montreal a better place to live and work. Additionally, Head & Hands was one of nine organizations in Montreal awarded funding for mental health from Bell Let’s Talk.
Head & Hands is both unique and outstanding for the simple reason that it meets youth where they are. Its medical clinic is a critical resource for youth in Montreal as it is one of few clinics that will see patients without medical insurance, thereby making it accessible to migrants, undocumented youth, international students, underemployed youth, and more. By listening to and connecting with youth the organization has been able to consistently identify needs, provide support, and fill in the gaps made by lack of access to community services and programs. Head & Hands recognizes the ways in which systemic barriers such as poverty, racism, ableism, and capitalism harm people and communities. As a result, the organization has always been committed to supporting marginalized and underserved communities and ensuring that youth get access to the resources they need to survive and thrive.
Rising Star Award 2017
In addition to her role as a Clinical Research Analyst at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Ishita is a Women’s Health and Sexual Rights advocate for the International Women’s Rights Project. One of Ishita’s major tasks is to work closely with the United Nations as well as with local universities to help write recommendation reports, ensuring a strong research base for future policy proposals. Specifically, she reviews and analyzes case studies on women’s participation in maternal and child health governance and revises guidelines for gender-mainstreaming in United Nations Development Programme-supported Global Environment Fund-financed projects. This work has been used by the United Nations to improve its hiring and training procedures, thereby contributing to positive and sustained women’s health and safety policy changes.
Ishita also founded MOM’S-THE-WORD (MTW), a non-profit organization that hosts free prenatal workshops for homeless and low-SES pregnant women to fight health-illiteracy, maternal poverty, and infant morbidity. MTW has raised more than $100,000, hosted 60+workshops, and advised more than 750 impoverished women on how to have a healthy pregnancy. As a mental health advocate, Ishita is a Board Member of Our Place Community of Hope, a non-profit organization that aims to help individuals struggling with mental illness.
In her personal life, Ishita spreads positivity to others while supporting her community and empowering those who live in it. She understands that a strong community is built when all people come together, spend quality time with one another, have shared values, and combine work and play.
Lifetime Achievement Award 2017
For the past 27 years Jodi has worked to build and support a healthy and vibrant Windsor-Essex community through her role as a health promoter with the Windsor Essex Community Health Centre. Her willingness to discuss health topics of concern and promote system navigation has proven her to be a valued member of the health unit.
Jodi is a health promoter that we can all look up to. When she is faced with a new challenge there is no stone left unturned and all aspects of the situation are reviewed with every angle being utilized. Through her dedication to working with multicultural community members she has demonstrated what it means to be a proud Canadian and foster a welcoming environment for newcomers. With her commitment to the LGBTQ community she truly portrays an individual who is accepting of all people. Jodi consistently advocates for LGBTQ events with the city, such as Pride Fest & Parade, Run for Rocky, and SAFE committee events.
In 2017, Jodi collaborated with local citizens to organize a community forum to discuss opioid use among adolescents called “Not My Kid”. Through her work for this event she was able to connect with community partners to discuss the importance of preventive measures while managing the outcomes already occurring in Windsor-Essex with the hope of starting a ripple effect throughout the country. The forum included support from local law enforcement, Crime Stoppers, treatment centres, and individuals with lived experiences. Due to its success the forum’s model will subsequently be used a turnkey program within the county.
According to her award nominator, “without health promoters like Jodi our community would be at a disservice and our community would be less informed about healthy decision making and positive life choices”.
Rising Star Award 2017
Joel is a Health Promotion and Research Analyst in the Infectious Disease, Sexual, and Dental Health division at Region of Waterloo Public Health and Emergency Services (ROWPHE). Within this role, Joel leads and develops strategic planning and research projects, as well as program evaluation activities in a multi-stakeholder environment. In addition, he prepares recommendations to inform and enhance programs, policies, and practices using evidence-based frameworks and mixed methods research and analysis.
Joel is a highly accomplished individual both academically and professionally and has held positions in public health organizations within the public, private, and non-profit sectors (ROWPHE, World Health Organization, University Health Network, BioLite Energy, Inspire Clean Air Technologies). Recently, he completed a synthesis report for the World Health Organization’s Department of Public Health and Environment on current training programs and tools for training healthcare professionals in LMICs on how to reduce their client’s exposure to air pollution. He also collaborated on the creation of a health education tool to facilitate healthcare professionals in advising their patients and families on the adverse health effects of air pollution.
According to an individual who supported Joel’s nomination, “he combines expert analytical skills with a firm grasp of health promotion principles, strategies and values, and a personable, collaborative professionalism”.
Rising Star Award 2017
Leigh Vanderloo is the Knowledge Translation Manager at ParticipACTION, a national non-profit organization. ParticipACTION aims to help Canadians move more and sit less. In her current role she serves as the organization’s subject matter expert and is responsible for leading various knowledge translation activities, primarily the Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth. Additional duties include leading a multi-disciplinary team in creating thought leadership initiatives, program planning, and evaluation. Leigh also sits on various steering committees and working groups related to outdoor active play, physical activity measurement, collective impact planning, and risky play. Finally, she is a regular contributor to the Huffington Post.
Leigh has an impressive curriculum vitae for someone so early in her career. To date, she has published 20 peer-reviewed journal articles, with 1 accepted, and another 8 under review. She has also had the opportunity to present her work at 4 national, 15 international, and 10 student-based conferences (she received top recognitions for 3 of these presentations).
As for awards and recognitions, Leigh was awarded the Ontario Graduate Scholarship in Science and Technology ($10,000) to pursue graduate studies after she completed her undergraduate degree. She was then successful in winning the highly competitive Masters ($17,500) and Doctoral ($105,000) Research Award from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). In 2015, she was awarded the Marco Cabrera Student Research Award from the North American Society of Pediatric Exercise Medicine for her contributions to the field. Most recently, in April 2017, Leigh was awarded the prestigious CIHR Fellowship award ($120,000) to carry out health promotion-based physical activity research with young children at SickKids Hospital in Toronto.
Mid-Career Award 2017
Paola is a lecturer in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University. Since graduating from the University of Toronto’s Master of Public Health: Social and Behavioral Health Sciences (Health Promotion) program approximately 10 years ago, she has made an exceptionally large and innovative contribution to health promotion. One of her early accomplishments was co-authoring a policy report to support national mental health promotion efforts. National and international leaders have recognized the report as an important early contribution to Canada’s first national mental health strategy.
Upon moving to British Columbia Paola became the founding manager of the BC Mental Health and Substance Use Health Literacy Network. Through this role she brought together a wide range of stakeholders to implement a provincial strategy to improve health literacy in the area of mental health and substance use. She also joined the Board and Executive of the Public Health Association of British Columbia and inspired the development of the Public Engagement Committee. Paola subsequently became president of the organization. Finally, she founded Bridge for Health, a new co-op that serves as an incubator for social innovation in health and provides volunteer opportunities for members of the Vancouver community.
As part of her work with Bridge for Health Paola led a youth participation and leadership initiative celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion. In addition she developed the “Well-being at Work” Innovation Labs in Surrey with some local businesses. Art shows, community lectures, an ideas lab, and research partnerships are just a few of the activities that Bridge for Health is now involved in.
Paola has a stellar track record of professional accomplishments in public health and related fields and a strong history of progressive advancement in leadership and management roles. She is not only a current leader in health promotion in Canada, but she is destined to be a future one as well.
Public Health Association of British Columbia
Organization Achievement Award 2017
The Public Health Association of British Columbia is a voluntary, non-government, member driven organization that provides leadership to promote health, well-being, and social equity—a mission directly related to health promotion. The organization has distinguished itself through its inter-sectoral collaborative approach to organizing innovative conferences, summer schools, and other events, many of them focusing on health promotion.
The Association has hosted the BC Health Literacy Network that is based on a health promotion approach, as well as the BC Farm to School Network, which works to “bring healthy, local, just, and sustainable food sourcing and food systems education into BC schools”.
Additionally, the organization has offered to host the BC Health Promotion Network and provide teleconference support to Health Promotion Canada. As part of its 2017 Conference, the Public Health Association of British Columbia hosted the launch of the 4th edition of Health Promotion in Canada. Throughout its existence the organization has also honoured policy makers, practitioners, and researchers for their contributions to health promotion.
According to a letter of support submitted for this nomination, “[the] Public Health Association of British Columbia is a creative, bold, and passionate organization which embodies the core values, beliefs, and ideals of the Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion…”.
Mid-Career Award 2017
Sandee is a Community Health Promoter (CHP) at the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit (NBPSDHU). She is also a health and wellness enthusiast, an active volunteer in her community, and a well-respected colleague, community partner, and coach who is making a difference in the field of health promotion in a big way. With an undergraduate degree in environmental health and a master’s degree in education Sandee has embraced her career in public health and has not looked back.
As a CHP on the Healthy Schools Team, Sandee works closely with the Board of Education and provides health leadership and opportunities for collaboration between public health and education sectors. She works closely with an assigned number of schools within the board and acts as the mental health and curriculum lead for the Healthy Schools Team. Additionally, Sandee was handpicked to forge a formal partnership agreement between NBPSDHU and the area’s largest school board, which resulted in the development of a shared vision and approaches to health that were purposeful, thoughtful, and meaningful. The gains of these efforts have been immense and the accomplishments have been presented provincially influencing positive actions and recommendations.
Outside of the office Sandee devotes her time to variety of activities; first, she is an active member of the Parent Council at her children’s school; second, she is a Breastfeeding Peer Support Volunteer (offering telephone support to breastfeeding mothers); third, she is a certified life coach; fourth; she operates a home-based wellness business; and finally, she works with Parks and Recreation Ontario as a rural community mentor for the development of municipal youth advisory councils for Northern Ontario.
Sandee’s passion for health promotion along with her diverse work experiences demonstrate her commitment to improve the health of her workplace, schools, and the Northern Ontario community at large.
Lifetime Achievement Award 2017
Sharon MacIntosh recently retired but for over three decades she was a population health promotion specialist dedicated to decreasing health inequities and improving health outcomes for all Nova Scotians. Sharon was the first district-level health promoter in Nova Scotia and her performance motivated the Nova Scotia Department of Health to expand the position throughout the province. This position supported the goals of the Nova Scotia Public Health Standards through evidence-based actions aligned with the Public Health Protocol Expectations and provincial strategies.
Sharon’s work has had a significant impact on tobacco control concerning smoke free places, cessation programming, and policy development. Her efforts have contributed to a major reduction in the smoking rates of Nova Scotians, as well as led to ripple effects throughout Canada.
Sharon served as a consultant to Health Canada and was involved in the development of a variety of national workplace health initiatives. She was also a project lead for a number of smoke-free policies and stop smoking national demonstration projects. Throughout her career she effectively built and maintained a strong national network of renowned tobacco control experts and public health colleagues. Additionally, Sharon strengthened the capacity of emerging leaders in health promotion by providing mentorship, acting as a practicum advisor, and supporting curriculum development related to health promotion at Dalhousie University’s School of Health and Human Performance.
According to an individual that supported her nomination, “Sharon has been a trail-blazer for health promotion in Nova Scotia” and “a true tobacco control pioneer” in the province.
Toronto Harm Reduction Alliance
Team/Group Award 2017
The Toronto Harm Reduction Alliance is a coalition of passionate harm reduction workers and community members that address the social determinants of health of people who use drugs. Within the context of budget constraints and political ambivalence, the Toronto Harm Reduction Alliance engages in actions to advocate for the rights of people who use drugs. For example, the Toronto Harm Reduction Alliance educates community members about their rights and harm reduction, builds capacity among frontline workers (e.g. skills-training, self-care workshops), and pushes organizations to expand innovative programs and services. Throughout the opioid crisis the Toronto Harm Reduction Alliance has remained engaged in the media in order to heighten the public’s awareness of this emergency and advocate for government action.
Most recently, the Toronto Harm Reduction Alliance filled a critical gap in health promotion and harm reduction services by opening an Overdose Prevention Site in Toronto. This action was undertaken without institutional support. Since its opening the site has seen approximately 30 people a day and reversed over 100 overdoses. The site also offers education, equipment, drug testing, food, hygiene supplies, referrals, and Narcan training.
According to an individual that supported the organization’s nomination, “the Toronto Harm Reduction Alliance’s work embodies the values of health promotion: inclusion, respect, empowerment, social justice, and equity. They bravely organize to do work where other organizations hesitate”.
Lifetime Achievement Award 2017
Over the last thirty-five years Trevor Hancock has been a “transformative leader” in health promotion who has shaped the past, present, and future of the field. Not only did he introduce illuminating concepts such as “healthy communities” and “healthy public policy” in the 1980’s that have inspired people around the world to look at health in a different way, but since then he also helped individuals, communities, and organizations around the world to put these concepts into practice in creating healthy communities and policies to address inequities in health and achieve quality of life.
Recently, he has informed the general public about these matters though his regular columns in The Times Colonist, a Victoria newspaper. In addition, he recently chaired a Canadian Public Health Association Working Group to address the ecological determinants of health and has written a chapter for the fourth edition of Health Promotion in Canada on population health promotion in the Anthropocene, which should inspire people working in the field to turn their attention to the physical world in which we live and its relationship to the social and political world. Thus, he is truly a unique, outstanding, and worthy recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award.