Our leadership team provides executive leadership to PHO’s
- science and public health functions: communicable diseases, laboratory science, infection prevention and control, applied immunization research and evaluation, environmental and occupational health, health promotion, chronic disease and injury prevention, and emergency preparedness and response
- laboratory operations
- research, information and knowledge services
- corporate functions: finance, procurement, human resources, facilities and legal and privacy
Dr. Peter Donnelly
President and Chief Executive Officer
Dr. Peter Donnelly leads PHO, the provincial agency which provides evidence for policy formulation and undertakes public health capacity building, as well as providing integrated public health laboratory and surveillance systems.
He is an accomplished leader with extensive experience in government and public health policy and program development and delivery at the local, national and international levels.
Prior to joining PHO, Peter was the Professor of Public Health Medicine at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, where he established and led public health medicine research and teaching. From 2004 to 2008 he was the Deputy Chief Medical Officer to the Scottish Government, providing senior leadership and coordination at a national level. His experience includes national planning for communicable disease control and pandemic and emergency preparedness, as well as a range of public health promotion initiatives. As the Director of Public Health in two jurisdictions, he was responsible for the delivery of local public health services and programs.
Peter received his medical degree from the University of Edinburgh Medical School, and has earned multiple degrees and credentials, including masters in both business administration and public health. He is an active researcher and lecturer in many areas of public health, with a focus on health systems governance and on violence reduction. He is involved with numerous national and international associations.
Dr. Brian Schwartz
Brian Schwartz provides executive leadership for PHO’s science and public health functions including: communicable diseases; laboratory science, infection prevention and control, applied immunization research and evaluation, environmental and occupational health, health promotion, chronic disease and injury prevention, and emergency preparedness and response.
Brian has served as Scientific Advisor to the Emergency Management branch of the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) and held the position of Vice-Chair of Ontario’s SARS Scientific Advisory Committee. He also chaired the MOHLTC’s Scientific Response Team during the 2009 H1N1 pandemic. Brian practiced emergency medicine for over 30 years in both community and academic settings, as well as held the position of Director of Sunnybrook Osler Centre for PreHospital Care from 1996-2009. He has been published extensively and has received many awards for clinical and academic excellence in emergency and family medicine; he currently holds an Associate Professor position at the University of Toronto in the Department of Family and Community Medicine and the Dalla Lana School of Public Health.
Brian received his medical degree from the University of Toronto where he also received his Master of Science in Community Health. He received his certification in emergency medicine from and is a Fellow of the College of Family Physicians of Canada.
Chief Laboratory Operations Officer
Mike Mendaglio provides executive leadership for PHO’s laboratory operations. He has extensive experience in the health-care, laboratory services and quality management.
Mike came to PHO from Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre where he was the Operations Director of Laboratory Services, of Biomedical Engineering, and of Phlebotomy Services. Prior to that, he held various senior positions at the Scarborough General and Grace hospital sites, including Director of the Quality and Performance Improvement Division.
Mike guided the renewal and revitalization of PHO’s laboratory system with his extensive experience in operational change including the successful opening of the new PHO laboratory in Toronto.
Mike has an honours Bachelor of Science degree, a post-graduate registration as an Advanced Registered Technologist, and a Master of Business Administration from Wilfrid Laurier University, School of Business and Economics. He is also a certified Medical Laboratory Technologist (MLT) with the College of Medical Technologists of Ontario.
Dr. George Pasut
Vice-President and Chief Information Officer
George Pasut provides executive leadership for PHO’s research, knowledge information and areas including: research and ethics services, knowledge services and information technology and informatics.
He is an accomplished leader with extensive public health experience at provincial, local and health agency levels. Prior to joining PHO in 2010, George served as Vice-President, Prevention and Screening at Cancer Care Ontario. He previously held a variety of roles in the provincial Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) as acting Chief Medical Officer of Health, Associate Chief Medical Officer of Health and Executive Lead, Public Health System Transformation. He served as Medical Officer of Health for the Simcoe County and later Simcoe Muskoka District Health Units. His early career was spent at the MOHLTC as Senior Medical Consultant in communicable diseases and Physician Manager in epidemiology and population health.
George received his medical degree and master of health science from the University of Toronto. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada and a Fellow of the American College of Preventive Medicine.
Chief, Strategy and Stakeholder Relations
Colleen Geiger provides executive leadership for PHO’s strategic, business and operational planning, organizational performance measurement, process improvement, stakeholder relations and issues management.
Prior to joining PHO, Colleen has held senior management positions in both the public and private sector in academic health science settings, community hospitals, local health integration networks, as well as in international health care consulting. She also has extensive experience in not-for-profit governance.
Colleen holds a Master of Business Administration (health services management) from McMaster University and is a Certified Health Executive.
Chief Financial Officer
Cathy Campos provides executive leadership for PHO’s finance, procurement, facilities and enterprise risk management functions.
Cathy is a seasoned executive with extensive senior leadership experience in the health care sector. She was previously the Vice-President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer for Rouge Valley Health System, where she was responsible for the finance, supply chain, capital planning and risk functions at the hospital and acted in the role as the key financial advisor for the business. Prior to Rouge Valley, Campos served as the Director of Finance at Baycrest Centre.
Cathy is a Chartered Accountant and holds a Master of Healthcare Administration from the University of Toronto.
Chief Human Resources Officer
Janet Sweeney provides executive leadership for PHO’s human resources (HR) and legal and privacy functions.
Janet is an accomplished HR professional with demonstrated success in both the private and public sectors. She has extensive experience in leading organization change, HR management and training and development. Janet has lent her experience as a Senior HR Consultant and Interim Executive to the Toronto Central Local Health Integration Network. The Neighbourhood Organization and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.
Janet holds a master’s degree in Education from Boston University.
Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary
As Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary, Alwin Kong provides direction and advice on a wide range of legal and privacy issues arising from PHO’s day to day business. He also provides support for the Board of Directors as the Corporate Secretary.
Prior to joining PHO, Alwin served as the Assistant General Counsel and Director, Legal & Privacy at Cancer Care Ontario where he provided advice on information technology, privacy, public procurement, healthcare management, funding, policy and general commercial matters. Alwin began his legal career at a leading national law firm. Alwin is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada. Alwin received his MHSc. (Health Administration) from the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto and his LL.B. from the University of Windsor.
Director, Financial Planning, Reporting and Compliance
Katerina Petaroudas is a senior finance leader with progressive experience in both the hospital and private sectors. In her current role at PHO as Director, Financial Planning, Reporting and Compliance, Katerina provides leadership for the accounts payable, accounting and financial planning and analysis functions.
In her previous role at Rouge Valley Health System, Katerina led the financial planning and analysis function, which focused on budget planning, business case development and customer centred analytics and reporting.
Katerina holds a Certified Management Accountant (CMA) designation and a Master Degree in Healthcare Administration from the University of Toronto.
As Director of Procurement, Irene Medcof leads procurement and related functions and is charged with developing and implementing leading procurement processes for PHO.
Irene comes from the Ontario government where she held a number of leadership positions at Supply Chain Ontario (SCO) and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC).
At SCO, Irene was responsible for the procurement planning, implementation and contract management for a wide range of commodities including laboratory supplies and courier services. She was also involved in numerous quality improvement activities. At MOHLTC, Irene had roles in the Ontario Public Drug Programs, Health System Accountability and Performance, and Home Care and Community Support Divisions.
Prior to government, Irene’s career was in the home care and community support sector where she also held leadership positions, primarily in strategic planning and quality management.
Irene holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Education, a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, a Master of Arts in Organizational Development and is a Certified Health Executive.
Chris Pickard brings over 30 years of experience in project development and facilities management at a variety of scales and organizations in health care, education and consulting industries. Chris joined PHO to manage the RICN2Lab projects in Orillia, Hamilton, Kingston, Ottawa and Sault Ste. Marie. In his role as Director of Facilities, Chris leads the facilities team and supports a number of key projects, including the, new London Hub Project, the Operational Support Facility and Bio-Repository Centre Project, and the new Thunder Bay Hub Project.
Prior to joining PHO, Chris practiced architecture for a number of years in a large multidisciplinary firm. He then joined the University of Guelph as Director of Planning, Design and Construction where significant projects included the new Science Complex, the East Residence complex and the first Biodiversity Building. He subsequently held roles as Director, Capital Planning and Project Management for Toronto Rehabilitation Institute during the construction phase of their Redevelopment, and Executive Director, Facilities for Centre for Addiction and Mental Health.
Nicholas Paul oversees Molecular Diagnostics, the DNA core lab, the Library, Human Resources and Communications at the PHO’s laboratory. Nicholas previously headed the Public Health Laboratory Renewal project team, which resulted in the establishment of the High Volume Testing Laboratory, the Customer Service Centre, and implementation of an integrated province wide courier system for PHO’s laboratory samples.
Nicholas has held a variety of senior management positions in his career at PHO; as a Director of a Regional Public Health Laboratory, Manager of the Regional Public Health Laboratory system and an acting assignment as Director of the Laboratory Services Branch and Laboratory Licensing and Inspection Service.
Nicholas received his Master of Science from the University of Toronto and a Bachelor of Science from Ohio University. He is a Certified Medical Technologist with the American Society of Clinical Pathologists.
Nicholas is active in the Ontario medical laboratory community and currently is the President of the Ontario “Trillium” Chapter of the Clinical Laboratory Management Association.
Deputy Chief/Operations Director
Eva Proctor oversees clinical and environmental bacteriology and virology and molecular services at PHO’s Toronto laboratory. She has over 25 years of progressive management experience in all disciplines of laboratory medicine in both the private and hospital sectors.
Eva is a strategically focused leader with management experience in complex and fast paced environments. She is recognized not only for building relationships but also for her contributions to system wide improvements, fostered through collaboration with leaders across all programs. She has a keen interest in quality and process improvement in clinical laboratory operations.
Eva is an active member of the College of Medical Laboratory Technologists of Ontario as a Medical Laboratory Technologist and holds a Graduate Diploma in Management and a Masters of Business Administration from Athabasca University. She has also completed the Rotman School of Business Executive Leadership Program.
Aurel Tamburri oversees logistics operations, laboratory infrastructure, laboratory health and safety, and biological resource centre. Aurel also oversees pre-analytics and HVT at PHO’s Toronto laboratory. He has over 25 years of progressive experience in laboratory operations, safety and support services. Since 2000, Aurel has held a number of key leadership roles with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care and PHO. His area of expertise includes occupational health, safety and biorisk management, laboratory operations, process design, program management and regulatory compliance.
Over the years, Tamburri has managed a number of clinical and service related program areas, led a number of initiatives in process and quality improvements, transition plans and continues to strive to build efficiencies within PHO Laboratory operations.
Tamburri is a member of the College of Medical Laboratory Technologists of Ontario as a MLT. He holds a Master of Health Management from Mc Master University, a graduate diploma in Occupational Health, Safety & Environmental Medicine from Mc Master University and received board certification as a Canadian Registered Safety Professional (CRSP).
Operations Director, Regional Public Health Laboratories
Marjorie Allen provides strategic and operational leadership for the ten regional public health laboratories in Ontario. Marjorie joined PHO in 2005 as Quality Assurance Coordinator for the laboratory. In 2009, she moved to the Laboratory Renewal Team to implement high volume test area before taking on the role of senior manager, virology and molecular services.
Prior to joining PHO, Marjorie was a partner in a consulting company that provided quality, food safety and risk management services to a variety of industries. She previously worked in the community laboratories and her educational background is as a medical laboratory technologist. Marjorie holds a Masters Certificate in Operational Risk Management from Shulich School of Business, a Management Certificate from the Rotman School of Business, and a Certificate in Food Science and Safety from the University of Guelph.
Laboratory Director, Information and Research Operations
Kirandeep Bains provides strategic, operational and business leadership for the planning, implementation and direction of bioinformatics and the biocomputing centre, laboratory information systems (LIS), laboratory data and surveillance, and research operations sections of PHO’s laboratories.
Kirandeep brings over twelve years of senior management experience in the healthcare industry. His primary focus was the laboratory and information services, but he also has expertise in leading organizational change and quality improvements. He comes to PHO from Dynacare where he was the Director of Informatics. He also held progressively senior positions at Dynacare within the information and technology solutions and services portfolio and laboratory services portfolio.
Kirandeep graduated with his Honours Bachelors of Science from the University of Toronto and holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix. He has also completed the Evanta Professional Development Academy’s Frontline IT Leadership program, Leaders Beyond Inc.’s IT Leaders Beyond program and Peoplecert’s ITIL’s Foundation Certification for IT Service Management.
Public Health Sciences
Dr. Shelley Deeks
Chief, Communicable Diseases, Emergency Preparedness and Response
Shelley Deeks leads and is responsible for the scientific and operational activities in communicable diseases and emergency preparedness and response, involving the development of PHO’s strategy and activities related to protection against communicable diseases, as well as in preparation and response to health emergencies and exigent circumstances including hazardous materials, catastrophic events and outbreaks.
Shelley has approximately 20 years of experience in communicable disease control, especially focused on outbreak management, vaccine safety and vaccine program evaluation. She is an Associate Professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto, and a member of Canada’s National Advisory Committee on Immunization.
Shelley received her medical degree from the University of Toronto, where she also received her Master of Health Science. She is a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and the Australasian Faculty of Public Health Medicine and has also completed the Canadian Field Epidemiology Program.
Operational Director, Communicable Diseases, Emergency Preparedness and Response
Emily Karas leads the department responsible for the management, prevention and control of communicable diseases and emergency preparedness and incident response. She provides provincial leadership in communicable diseases as well as preparedness and response to both infectious and non-infectious disease emergencies and issues. Emily previously served as PHO’s Director, Knowledge Exchange and Communications and as PHO’s Manager of Communicable Diseases.
Emily has considerable experience at the local and provincial public health levels. She was previously a Nurse Consultant and Team Lead for the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, and worked as a Public Health Nurse at both the Niagara Region and Peel Region public health units. She has almost 15 years of combined public health and nursing experience. Emily holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Queen’s University, a Masters of Nursing from the University of Toronto and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Westminster.
Dr. Bryna Warshawsky
Medical Director, Communicable Diseases, Emergency Preparedness and Response
Bryna Warshawsky is the Interim Medical Director, Communicable Diseases, Emergency Preparedness and Response (CDEPR). She joined PHO as a public health physician in March 2014. Prior to joining PHO she worked as the associate medical officer of health for the Middlesex-London Health Unit.
She is the former chair of the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) and a current member of NACI’s Influenza Working Group. She is cross-appointed in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Western University.
Bryna received her Medical Degree from McGill University and her Master of Health Science (Community Health and Epidemiology) from the University of Toronto. She is a certificant of the College of Family Practice of Canada, University of Toronto and a fellow of The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (Community Medicine/Public Health and Preventive Medicine).
Dr. Gary Garber
Chief, Infection Prevention and Control
Gary Garber is an infectious disease specialist who provides medical leadership to the Infection Prevention and Control Department and medical and scientific advice on infection prevention and control to PHO.
Gary brings over 20 years of experience working in infection control in Ontario and was formerly the Medical Director of the Ottawa Hospital’s Antimicrobial Stewardship Program. Notably, Gary played an instrumental role in developing the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada’s program in Adult Infectious Diseases at the University of Ottawa and served as President of the Canadian Infectious Diseases Society (now AMMI Canada). Gary also served as a founding treasurer with the Canadian Association for HIV Research, was a past President of the Ontario Medical Association section for Infectious Diseases and has been member of the Provincial Infectious Diseases Advisory Committee since it began. Garber has a professorship appointment in the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto and the University of Ottawa. He is an active infectious diseases physician at the Ottawa Hospital.
Gary received his Medical Degree from the University of Calgary and received his Bachelor of Science from McGill University. He trained in internal medicine at the University of Toronto and infectious diseases at the University of British Columbia. He is a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, the American College of Physicians and the Infectious Disease Society of America.
Director, Infection Prevention and Control
Sandra Callery brings extensive experience from the field of infection prevention and control. Her other work experiences include clinical research and occupational health and safety. She has worked in a variety of health care settings, including: public health, small community hospitals and large tertiary care centres. Her most recent position was Director of Infection Prevention and Control at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto Canada.
Sandra is a registered nurse and holds a Master of Health Sciences where her research focused on HIV infection, counseling and testing. She has been involved in research and publications regarding disease transmission and management of patients with antibiotic resistant organisms.
She is a past National President of the Canadian Infection Prevention and Control association (IPAC Canada). She is on the editorial board for the Canadian Journal of Infection Control (CJIC). Other previous IPAC Canada appointments include the National Pandemic Influenza Planning committee as a working group chairperson, and the National Advisory Committee on Immunization.
Sandra has been a member of the Ontario Provincial Infectious Diseases Advisory Committee (PIDAC) and chaired the previous PIDAC Surveillance Advisory Committee from its inception.
She is an Assistant Clinical Professor at McMaster University’s Faculty of Health Sciences and lecturer for IPAC courses through Centennial College and Queens University.
Dr. Vanessa Allen
Chief, Medical Microbiology
Vanessa Allen has been with PHO since 2008 as a Medical Microbiologist and Infectious Disease Specialist, working primarily in the areas of bacterial sexually transmitted infections and food- and water-borne bacterial testing. She is co-chair of the Canadian Public Health Laboratory Network Water Food Safety and Enterics group, as well as the Provincial Multidrug Resistant Gonorrhea Working Group. Vanessa is a Clinical Infectious Siseases specialist at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, where she is also the Infectious Diseases Lead for the Obstetrical Medicine Program. She is also an Assistant Professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology at the University of Toronto.
Vanesa received her Medical Degree from McGill University and her Master of Public Health from Johns Hopkins University. She completed her internal medicine residency with the University of Toronto. Vanessa completed further postgraduate medical training at the University of Toronto in infectious diseases and medical microbiology. She is a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada in all three disciplines.
Dr. Jonathan Gubbay
Deputy Chief, Medical Microbiology
Jonathan Gubbay has been at PHO since 2008 as a Medical Microbiologist and Pediatric Infectious Disease Specialist. He has been the medical lead of many key programs at PHO’s laboratory, including respiratory viral infections, emerging viruses, respiratory bacteria and gastrointestinal viruses. He also represents PHO at the Immunization subcommittee of the Provincial Infectious Diseases Advisory Committee (PIDAC).
Jonathan is currently the Provincial Co-Chair of the Zika Virus Working Group of the Canadian Public Health Laboratory Network. He is a part-time Staff Physician in the division of Infectious Diseases at the Hospital for Sick Children and is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology and Pediatrics at the University of Toronto.
Jonathan received his Medical Degree from the University of New South Wales, Australia. He received his Master of Medical Science in Clinical Epidemiology from the University of Newcastle; he also received his Bachelor of Science from the University of New South Wales. Jonathan is a fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians in general paediatrics and infectious diseases and a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada in medical microbiology. Gubbay is a Licentiate of the Medical Council of Canada.
Dr. Natasha S. Crowcroft
Chief, Applied Immunization Research
Natasha Crowcroft leads Applied Immunization Research at PHO, a program of research aimed at maximizing the health benefits of immunization. In this role, Natahsa develops strategy, direction and partnerships within PHO and with external partners and provides training and mentorship.
Natasha was formerly the Chief of Infectious Diseases (2012-15) and Scientific Director of Surveillance and Epidemiology (2008-12) at PHO. Prior to immigrating to Canada in 2007, she worked for a decade at the United Kingdom’s Health Protection Agency as a National Expert in Immunization. Natasha has published over 200 articles and has international experience working at the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO). She was a member of the Canadian National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) from 2008-13.
Natasha is also a Professor at the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology and Dalla Lana School of Public Health, at the University of Toronto, and an Adjunct Scientist at the Institute for Clinical and Evaluative Sciences (ICES). She received her Medical Degree and Masters of Science from the University of London and received a Bachelor of Arts (Natural sciences) and Doctorate in Medicine (medical PhD) from the University of Cambridge.
Dr. Heather Manson
Chief, Health Promotion, Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention
Heather Manson directs PHO's planning, policy development, evaluation and research activities relating to health promotion, chronic disease prevention and injury prevention. In addition to leading PHO’s healthy communities’ initiatives, comprehensive tobacco use prevention, and commitment to reducing health inequities, Heather promotes province wide system-level changes, particularly by helping public health units meet their obligations under the Ontario Public Health Standards.
Heather joined PHO from her previous role as Vice-President, Vancouver Coastal Health, where she led the improvement of health outcomes by enabling a continuum of care focused around the needs of the patient, client, resident and population. She brings clinical, administrative and population health experience to PHO, having also worked as an Internist, Hematologist, Senior Medical Director and Medical Health Officer in British Columbia. She holds assistant and adjunct appointments at the Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, and the University of Waterloo.
Heather obtained her Medical Degree from the University of British Columbia. She completed post-graduate training in internal medicine and clinical hematology at the University of Toronto and McMaster University respectively, and is certified in these specialties by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. She also has a Master of Health Sciences from University of British Columbia.
Dr. Brent Moloughney
Medical Director, Health Promotion, Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention
Brent Moloughney is the Medical Director, Health Promotion, Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention (HPCDIP). He joined PHO as a Public Health Physician in February 2017.
Prior to joining PHO, he was an independent consultant for over 18 years working with public health organizations at local, provincial/territorial and national levels. Prior to that, he was employed at the Ontario Ministry of Health and a regional health authority in Saskatchewan. Many of his projects have involved the design and functioning of public health organizations and systems, public health workforce development, as well as public health strategies for chronic disease prevention. He is an Adjunct Professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. He received his Medical Segree from the University of Toronto and his Master of Science (Epidemiology) from the University of Ottawa. He is a fellow of The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (Community Medicine/Public Health and Preventive Medicine).
Dr. Ray Copes
Chief, Environmental and Occupational Health
Ray Copes is responsible for leading the Environmental and Occupational Health team as well as developing and implementing of PHO's strategies, policies, services and other initiatives in environmental and occupational health. He also works in collaboration with the Knowledge Services team, ensuring the integrity of research results and the proper dissemination of that information to practitioners throughout the province.
Ray has over 25 years of experience working in environmental and occupational health in Alberta, British Columbia and Ontario, and has consulted for Health Canada and the governments of Newfoundland and Labrador, Nunavut and Saskatchewan. Ray worked extensively with front-line environmental professionals, policy makers and practitioners on provincial and federal levels. He has delivered occupational health services in the private and public sectors and in occupational health and safety regulations. Notably, Ray was the founding Scientific Director of the National Collaboration Centre for Environmental Health, and also served as the Director of Environmental Health Services at the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control. Ray has an extensive teaching background holding Associate and Clinical Professor positions at the University of Toronto and University of British Columbia.
Ray received his Medical Degree from McGill University, where he also received his Master of Science in Epidemiology. Ray received his Diploma in Industrial Health from the University of Toronto and is a fellow of the Canadian Board of Occupational Medicine.
Dr. Samir Patel
Deputy Chief, Laboratory Research
Samir Patel has been a Clinical Microbiologist at PHO since 2009, and has been the clinical lead of many important programs at the laboratory, including vector-borne and zoonotic infections such as Lyme and West Nile, antimicrobial resistance, and a novel pathogen discovery program. He is responsible for the detection of novel or rare pathogens using deep sequencing technologies.
Samir is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology at the University of Toronto. He has actively contributed to many interdepartmental committees both within PHO and beyond, including the ethics committee, and provincial groups, including the Institute of Quality Management Microbiology Committee, and the Canadian Public Health Laboratory Network's Antimicrobial Resistance and Lyme Working groups.
Samir received his doctor of philosophy in tropical diseases from the University of Toronto, where he also received his fellowship in clinical microbiology. He successfully completed his Canadian Society of Microbiology board exam in 2011.
Research, Information and Knowledge
Dr. John McLaughlin
Chief Science Officer and Senior Scientist
John McLaughlin is PHO’s Chief Science Officer, enhancing the quality, integrity and productivity of PHO’s research and other science-based initiatives. Supporting and collaborating with program chiefs, medical and academic staff, and operational teams across PHO, John provides senior leadership to scientific affairs, advises on opportunities, emerging directions and collaborations for PHO, and supports PHO’s advancement of public health evidence and knowledge.
John was first appointed at PHO in 2012 as Research Advisor, and he was Acting Director of Research at PHO’s laboratory before serving as the Inaugural Chief Science Officer. He has more than 25 years of experience and increasing responsibility in leading interdisciplinary health research teams, as well as in executive level management, knowledge translation, scholarly work and service. His research programs integrate diverse approaches and disciplines in large-scale studies, aiming to achieve positive impacts in population health.
John is also a Professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, a fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences and holds affiliate appointments at the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute and the Occupational Cancer Research Centre. Prior to joining PHO, John was a Senior Visiting Scientist at the International Agency for Research on Cancer, a Vice President and Senior Scientist at Cancer Care Ontario and Founding Director of the Ontario Health Study at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research. Trained as an epidemiologist at the University of Toronto (PhD) and Queen’s University (MSc), he has directed an active and sustained research program resulting in more than 300 scholarly publications.
Nancy Ondrusek oversees the Research and Ethics Services team, providing leadership for the development, implementation, evaluation and management of evidence-based research and ethics policies, practices, products and services, to ensure that appropriate infrastructure is in place to enable and promote public health research across the organization. She also leads the ethics team in providing ethics review services and capacity building support to public health units across Ontario.
Nancy began her career with PHO in 2010 as a research ethics officer, where she played a key role in the development of PHO’s ethics framework and service program, transitioning to manager, research and ethics services in 2014. She has over 25 years of experience in research ethics as an administrator, ethics board member and researcher, and is an adjunct lecturer at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto. Nancy obtained a doctorate through the Institute of Medical Sciences and the Joint Center for Bioethics at the University of Toronto and a masters in genetics at Brock University.
Director, Technology Services
As the Director of Technology Services, Cary Luner provides strategic oversight and management to the information technology and information management department. He plans, develops and oversees the technology infrastructure and systems of the organization. With more than 20 years of experience as a strategic IT leader, Cary brings extensive knowledge of project management within the ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library) methodology framework to his role, along with a passion for client service and partnership.
Cary has been involved with PHO since its inception, assuming progressively more senior leadership roles. His expertise extends to security, privacy, system architecture and importantly, the role that technology plays enabling the organization to achieve its objectives.
Julian Martalog has held senior roles in several health care institutions and health agencies, including Quinte Health Care, Toronto East General Hospital, Canadian Institute for Health Information and Cancer Care Ontario. In these roles, he led many major informatics projects including: designing and executing a provincial information delivery strategy, developing a provincial online portal, creating tools for decision-makers and clinicians and implementing comprehensive data quality frameworks.
Julian leads the team that applies information and computer science to public health practice, research and learning, to improve population health monitoring and decision-making. Informatics serves as an organizational resource – providing specialized support with the acquisition, synthesis, analysis, interpretation and presentation of data and information.
Director, Knowledge Exchange and Communications
Tina Badiani oversees Library services, the Sheela Basrur Centre and events, communications and knowledge mobilization. Prior to her role as Director, Knowledge Exchange and Communications, Tina served as PHO’s Manager of Enteric, Zoonotic and Vector-Borne Diseases.
Badiani has 15 years of experience in public health at the provincial level. She was previously an Epidemiologist and Team Lead for the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, and Manager of the former Surveillance team at PHO. Badiani holds a Master of Health Sciences in Community Health and Epidemiology from the University of Toronto.