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The Health Promotion Capacity Building (HPCB) Team
Our Health Promotion Consultants:
 
Our health promotion consultants develop and deliver in-person and virtual training events aimed at building the capacity of Ontario’s health promotion practitioners and their organizations in core public health competencies including health communication, policy development, alcohol policy, and program planning and evaluation. Our consultants work with a variety of audiences including Ontario’s public health units, non-government organizations, community health centres, local networks and agencies, municipal departments and volunteer organizations.

Samiya Abdi

Position: Health promotion consultant, with a primary focus on program planning and evaluation
Education:
  • Graduate diploma in Social innovation and systems thinking, University of Waterloo
  • Masters of public health, University of Waterloo
  • Bachelor of science in public health and safety, Ryerson University

Samiya provides training and support services to Ontario’s public health and health care stakeholders to assist them to plan and evaluate interventions. She specifically supports HPCB’s capacity building plans as well as deliverables related to the Healthy Kids Community Challenge. Samiya has over ten years of experience in program development, management, implementation and evaluation working within the non-profit, corporate and government sectors. Samiya has consulting experience with senior hospital administrators and ministries executing and streamlining health practices and policies, as well as spearheading the monitoring and surveillance of local and regional health trends with the development of health indicators and evaluation benchmarks. 

Kim Bergeron

Position: Health promotion consultant, with a primary focus on policy and by-law development
Education:
  • PhD in health studies with a focus on health and the built environment, Queen’s University
  • Masters of health studies, Athabasca University

Kim provides training and support services to Ontario’s public health and health care stakeholders with a special focus on policy and by-law development. She works with clients to provide an overview of policy and by-laws, and develops strategies for ensuring collaborative efforts to create healthy communities.  Kim has worked alongside the Ontario public health system to facilitate multidisciplinary partnerships to create healthy, sustainable communities for over twenty years. Kim has provided consulting services to a number of provincial government programs working towards policy change, program development and improving standards of practice.

Jason LeMar

Position: Health promotion consultant, with a primary focus on alcohol policy
Education:
  • Bachelor of commerce in health administration, Ryerson University
  • Bachelor of arts in health sciences, Brock University
  • Workplace wellness and health promotion diploma, Centennial College 

Jason has over ten years of experience providing training and support services to Ontario’s public health and health care stakeholders with a special focus on alcohol policy. Jason is an active participant on national and provincial committees that focus on alcohol use and policy implications, providing strategic advice and content expertise, including the Low Risk Alcohol Drinking Guidelines working group. Before PHO, Jason worked for Cancer Care Ontario and the Ontario Public Health Association, providing technical assistance, training, and consultation support directly to Ontario’s public health units.

Allison Meserve

Position: Health promotion consultant, with a primary focus on program planning and evaluation
Education:
  • Masters of public health, Columbia University
  • Bachelor of arts in women’s studies, Colorado College

Allison provides training and support services to Ontario’s public health and health care stakeholders with a special focus on program planning and evaluation.  She delivers webinars and workshops on situational assessments, communicating evaluation results and policy evaluation.  With over twelve years of experience, Allison has worked as a program manager in maternal and child health internationally and as a program evaluator in community health at the local level. Allison has contributed to publications, reports, and resources on public health and evaluation, with her work published in several academic journals.

Sophie Rosa

Position: Health promotion consultant, with a primary focus on health communication
Education:
  • Masters of science in health studies and gerontology, University of Waterloo 
  • Bachelor of science in psychology, Concordia University   
  • Bachelor of arts in professional writing, Université de Sherbrooke

Sophie provides training and support services to Ontario’s public health and health care stakeholders with a special focus on health communications and supporting HPCB’s capacity building plans. Sophie is fluent in both official languages, and as part of the French language services committee, she works with partner resource centres to address the public health needs of French speaking communities. She has over fifteen years of experience in health promotion, communications, engagement and strategic planning. Previously, Sophie served as a senior communications advisor in the public service, as a freelance health writer, and also a communications advisor for the Canadian Institutes for Health Research. Sophie also served as a health promotion specialist for the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit.

Our product development advisors:

Product development advisors facilitate the development of our print and on-line tools and resources used to build the capacity of health promotion practitioners in Ontario. Examples of knowledge products include online and interactive e-learning tools such as the Online Health Program Planner, the Health Promotion Foundations self-directed course, health equity resources, workbooks, webinars, research briefs and articles on various health promotion topics.

Kara DeCorby

Position: Senior product development advisor
Education:
  • PhD in the faculty of life and health sciences, Queen Margaret University (in progress) 
  • Masters of science in the faculty of physical education and recreation studies, University of Manitoba
Kara directs the development of all knowledge products at a departmental level to build the capacity of Ontario’s public health and health care intermediaries. Kara is responsible for quality control, usability testing, evaluation and translation. Kara brings over twelve years of experience developing and managing research projects in health sciences, leading and contributing to evidence synthesis, information exchange, methods development, and critical appraisal. Kara uses an evidence based approach to communications strategies, operating procedures, and developing knowledge products.
 
Shawn Hakimi
Position: Product development advisor
Education:
 
  • Master of science in global-public health, Karolinksa Institute
  • Honours Bachelor of science, Queen's University
  • Bachelor of physical and health education, Queen's University
  • Diploma in Health Promotion, Humber College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning

Shawn supports knowledge product development primarily for the Health Promotion Capacity Building unit. Shawn is also involved in the development and maintenance of the Health Promotion Foundations Course and Online Health Promotion Planner. With over six years of experience, Shawn has worked in academic research, health administration and correspondence development on local and international levels.     

 
Gloria Mensah
Position: Product development advisor
Education: 
  • Master of Public Health, University of Waterloo
  • Honours Bachelors of science, University of Waterloo
Gloria supports knowledge product development activities within Health Promotion Capacity Building and works closely with the Senior Product Development Advisor. Gloria also assists with rapid review summary reports on various public health topics. She has previously worked for the Natural Health Products Directorate at Health Canada in Ottawa and eHealth Ontario.  
 
Anna Vanderlaan
 
Position: Research Coordinator, with a primary focus on health equity and perinatal mental health
Education:
  • Masters of public health, Queen’s University
  • Honours Bachelor of science, Queen’s University
Anna’s role with the Health Promotion Capacity Building Team involves coordinating two major research projects. She supports the research and stakeholder engagement activities of the Healthy Human Development Table – a multi-disciplinary group working to improve perinatal mental health outcomes in the province. She also works closely with Dr. Ingrid Tyler to develop resources for building the capacity of Ontario’s public health professionals to use the Health Equity Impact Assessment Tool.
Our Operations Staff:

Operations staff provide oversight and strategic direction for HPCB initiatives through operational planning, stakeholder and client management, service tracking, and the evaluation of systems and services. Working with partner resource centres and funders, operations staff ensure alignment and coordination within Ontario’s health promotion system, striving for exceptional client service. 


Cara Markic

Position: Administrative assistant 
Education:
  • Management studies, Human Resources, Sheridan College
  • Business writing, MS Suite, Toronto School of Business
  • Basic Computer Programming, DeVry Institute
  • Bachelor of Science in Criminology, Philippine College of Criminology

Cara provides administrative and financial analysis support to team and department.  She has a Bachelor of Science in Criminology and additional certificates in human resource, marketing, customer service, business writing, finance and payroll systems, and MS Office applications.  Cara has over 20 years of experience in Administrative Services.

Priyanka Raj

Position: Program analyst
Education:

  • Master of Public Health, University of Toronto
  • Honours Bachelor of Science, University of Toronto

Priyanka assists in contract oversight and delivery of programs of PHO's Health Promotion resource centres and external partner resource centres. With over five years of experience, Priyanka has worked locally at Peel Public Health Unit, and provincially at Cancer Care Ontario within the Occupational Cancer Research Centre and Cancer Screening Unit. 

Benjamin Rempel

Position:  Manager, health promotion capacity building
Education:
  • Master of Public Health, University of Waterloo
  • Honours Bachelor of Health Promotion, Laurentian University

As manager of the HPCB team, Ben is responsible for providing leadership on the staffing, design, implementation, management, monitoring, and evaluation of all health promotion capacity building initiatives at PHO. Ben has over twelve years of health promotion and project management experience, planning and evaluating successful provincial public health initiatives across a variety of settings. Before PHO, Ben served as program manager at public health non-governmental organization, overseeing health promotion programs and social research projects on numerous topics including injury prevention, community engagement, and alcohol policy. Ben has been a main contributor to numerous publications, reports, and resources on healthy public policy including publication in several academic journals. 

 
Start the conversation
Contact us at hpcb@oahpp.ca or use our Online Service Request Form
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Page updated on [date/time] 09/01/2017 2:03 PM
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