Governance

Executive Committee (2012 to present)

At the 14th International Congress on Circumpolar Health in 2009, CSCH elected a new executive to carry out and expand the activities of the organization. With the dawn of a new era of circumpolar research and cooperation, the executive looks forward to working with members on initiatives of mutual interest.

The Executive Committee of the CSCH consists of an elected President, Secretary and Treasurer as well as additional Directors. In addition, CSCH is striving to reactivate a Regional Advisory Council consisting of one member from various regions and Aboriginal organizations.

President

Dr. Kami Kandola is currently the Deputy Chief Public Health Officer of the Northwest Territories (NWT) since 2003 and was the Chief Public Health Officer from 2009-2011. She has extensive knowledge of the people of the North and linkages to policy and practice. She has assisted with linking to the necessary NWT policy and clinical partners and will facilitate future linkages. She has also authored 18 reports and publications and made 8 oral or poster presentations. Her clinical, northern and international and research experience provide her with the background needed to assume the role of President of the Canadian Society for Circumpolar Health. It is her desire that issues related to circumpolar health will be brought to the global health table and given their due recognition as important contributors to the overall disease burden of the circumpolar indigenous population, particularly in the Canadian North.

On a personal note, Dr Kandola currently resides in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. She is married and has a young son. She initially came to Yellowknife on a one-year contract in August 2003 and fell in love with the North, as well as a long-time northerner.

Email: kami.kandola [at] ichr [dot] ca

Vice-President

Dr. Michael Jong is a professor of family medicine at Memorial University and Vice President of Medical Services for Labrador-Grenfell Health Regional Health Authority. He is rural family physician and for the past 30 years lives in the remote community of Happy Valley-Goose Bay in Labrador, Canada. His interests are in rural and remote medicine, health of Indigenous peoples, health education, telehealth and rural health research. His greatest passion is still fly-fishing. He developed the Northern Family Medicine (Norfam) program to train medical students and residents for rural and remote practice. He has been president of the Society of Rural Physicians of Canada and has been recognized by the College of Family Physicians of Canada as the Newfoundland and Labrador family physician of the year. Michael is returning for his second term on the executive of the Canadian Society for Circumpolar Health.

Email: mjong [at] hvgb [dot] net

Treasurer

Dr. Alex Drossos is a psychiatry resident at the University of Toronto. He is passionate about Inuit Health and, more generally, the health and human rights of Indigenous Peoples globally. Though not a northerner himself, Alex has clinical experience in Canada’s north (in both Iqaluit and Churchill) as well as in Tromsø, Norway. Through the Department of Psychiatry in Toronto, Alex plans to continue one to two trips annually to Nunavut for clinical work as well as conduct telepsychiatry consultations remotely. As a resident at U of T Alex is also enrolled in the Global Health Education Initiative. Outside of medicine, Alex’s additional education includes computer engineering (BESc), health services management (MBA) and health professional education (MEd) during which he completed the Collaborative Program in Aboriginal Health. Alex also serves on the board of the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention. On the side, Alex is learning Inuktitut.

Email: alex.drossos [at] mail [dot] utoronto [dot] ca

Secretary

Gwen Healey was born and raised in Iqaluit, Nunavut and it is in this community that she continues to live and work with her family. Gwen is the Executive and Scientific Director of the Qaujigiartiit Health Research Centre (AHRN-NU) in Iqaluit, NU. Gwen is also working on her PhD in Public Health at the University of Toronto. It is well-known in Canada that northerners face a number of challenging circumstances when it comes to health. There are also tremendous strengths in communities to address local health concerns, such as a willingness to work together, traditions and customs that support healthy lifestyles and activity, and strong cultural pride. Drawing upon existing community strengths and resources, and building capacity to conduct research in the North, is the key to addressing a number of health concerns presently and over the coming years. For this reason, Gwen founded the Qaujigiartiit Health Research Centre (AHRN-NU). The goal of Qaujigiartiit is to enable health research to be conducted locally, by Nunavummiut, in a supportive, safe, culturally-sensitive and ethical environment. We promote a model in which Inuit Qaujimajatuangit and western science ways of knowing are incorporated into initiatives that address health concerns, create healthy environments, and improve the health of Nunavummiut. For more information about the Qaujigiartiit Health Research Centre (AHRN-NU) and on-going initiatives, please visit the website www.qhrc.ca.

Member-At-Large

Michael Chappell has practiced speech-language pathology since 1982 in both Canada and in the Middle East. He has published and presented work on service delivery in the Canadian Arctic. He now works throughout the Qikiqtani communities providing front line clinical services to children and adults. He has maintained a position as a clinical educator for the University of Toronto and welcomed graduate students to the ‘remote community experience’. He has collaborated with First Nations Communities in Ontario throughout his work experience. International experience and frequent international travel has given Michael a broader understanding of global ecology, culture and language. He has trained with FASD treatment team in New Brunswick First Nations Communities and he has seen first-hand how health issues both drive communities to desperation and how ‘well organized and culturally safe health care practices’ can provide successful support. Michael with a national group of concerned health care professionals formulated, applied for and won international funding for a two year hearing project to help pre-school children in Nunavut. Michael has called Iqaluit home since 2007. He enjoys exploring the ancient places on the Arctic Tundra and vacationing in the National Parks of the High Arctic.

Member-At-Large

Born and raised in Fort Smith, Northwest Territories in a large Métis family, Candice Lys is now a Research Associate with the Institute for Circumpolar Health Research in Yellowknife. She graduated with First Class Honors from the BA Honors (Sociology) program the University of Alberta and holds a MA (Health Promotion) from Dalhousie University. Currently, Candice is a doctoral student and Vanier scholar in the PhD (Public Health Sciences) program at the University of Toronto Dalla Lana School of Public Health. Her current research involves developing, implementing, and evaluating a sexual health theatre project with youth in the NWT (called FOXY; Fostering Open eXpression among Youth) using community-based participatory methods. Candice is involved with numerous territorial, national, and international committees and conferences, including serving on the Scientific Committee for the 15th International Congress on Circumpolar Health.

Past President (2009-2012)

Susan received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of British Columbia in 1987 and a Masters in Epidemiology from McGill in 1996. She has also recently been appointed as assistant professor at the University of Toronto’s Dalla Lana School of Public Health. She has spent most of her career in remote and northern communities, working in the clinical setting, public health, and research. She has an interest in building sustainable health research capacity in northern regions. She helped establish the Northern Cochrane Network Site, and currently serves as territorial Co-Rep.

Susan is happy to be staying involved on the CSCH executive as past president, and will support the continuity and smooth transfer of operations within the CSCH.

Email: susan.chatwood [at] ichr [dot] ca

Guiding Documents

For a copy of the updated CSCH bylaws, click here. In 2004, the Regional Advisory Council met to develop a strategic outlook for the Society. It is available here.

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