Our Board of Trustees

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Dr. Cara Bablitz: A resident of Edmonton, Alberta, Dr. Cara Bablitz is a Family Physician with specialization in Palliative Medicine. Dr. Bablitz has successfully worked in hospice settings and is currently engaged with the Indigenous Wellness Clinic in Edmonton where she has developed the Palliative Care Outreach and Advocacy Team (PCOAT) to provide palliative care to socially-vulnerable patients in Edmonton. In the past, she established an outreach clinic at Poundmaker’s Lodge Treatment Centre, worked to provide Primary Care on the Paul Band and Alexis Reserves and continues her work focusing on improving health equity and improving health outcomes of Indigenous peoples as chair of the Alberta Medical Association Indigenous Health Committee.

Dr. Bablitz’ s leadership and community engagement have not gone unnoticed: She is the 2018 “Canadian Medical Association (CMA) Award for Young Leaders (Early Career)” recipient, the 2016 “Canadian Society of Palliative Care Physicians (CSPCP) Research Award” winner wherein she was voted as having a top Resident Research Project in Canada at the CSPCP Annual Conference. Dr. Bablitz is also the 2011 Tom Wegmann Memorial Award recipient, a prestigious award which recognizes an Indigenous student with an interest in Indigenous health care.

Dr. Jim Beaubien: Jim has over 40 years experience as a consultant, facilitator and educator, sharing his knowledge, skills, wisdom and humour with corporations and schools of business throughout North America.

In addition to being a managing partner at HOPE Learning with his wife Karen Caesar, Jim is also an adjunct professor for the Executive Education Program at the University of Alberta, and Organizational Development and Leadership MA at the Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara. He has taught with the Society of Certified Management Accountants’ Strategic Leadership Program, the Canadian Medical Association, and the University of Calgary. Students in the MBA program at the University of Alberta jointly selected Jim and Karen as Professors of the Year for 2003.

In addition to his work with HOPE Learning, Jim is a managing partner with Flowpoint Systems, a privately owned manufacturer and distributor of intelligent bulk water and fluid distribution stations, fluid receiving stations, and the Flow+ Access Terminal and Software system.

In his consulting work, Jim specializes in strategic planning, organizational development and leadership with an emphasis on implementation.

Jim is a Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) and a member of the Canadian Speaking Hall of Fame. He holds a PhD in Educational Psychology from the University of Alberta.

Dr. Karen Breeck: Dr. Karen Breeck  is a past President of the Federation of Medical Women of Canada (FMWC) and former Aerospace Medicine Specialist with the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF).

Born and raised in Calgary, Dr. Breeck moved to Newfoundland to study cetaceans, receiving her B.Sc. (Biology) in 1987. She stayed at Memorial University for medical school, also deciding to sign up to the Medical Officer Training Plan (MOTP) before receiving her MD in 1990.

In 2000, Dr. Breeck pursued a MHSc at University of Toronto in Occupational and Environmental Health with a Diploma in Women’s Studies. As part of her degree she  completed a research project on the gender specific operational medical support needs for female CAF pilots.  In 2002 she became American Boarded in Preventive Medicine after completing an aerospace medicine residency with the United States Air Force in San Antonio, Texas.

Dr. Breeck has certifications in Basic and Advanced Diving Medicine, Submarine Medicine, Tropical Medicine, Emergency Disaster Planning, Space Indoctrination, Land / Sea / Arctic Survival, Resistance to Interrogation, Basic and Advanced Flight Safety, Compassion Fatigue, Flight Medicine, Civil Aviation Medicine and is a proud “Top Knife” graduate from Luke Air Force Base, Arizona.

Highlights of Dr. Breeck’s military career included peacekeeping in the Middle East, ice storm and hurricane disaster relief, being the sole flight surgeon on a US carrier at sea for 9/11, secondment to the Canadian Space Agency Astronaut Medical Support Office and subsequent medical support of a shuttle mission at Johnson Space Center, medical advisor duties to the Chief of the Air Staff, flight surgeon to the Snowbirds and last but most certainly not least, supporting our Canadian military casualties from the Afghanistan war on their way back home via Germany.

During her twenty years of military service Dr Breeck had the privilege to work/live in every province of Canada and 26 nations internationally. Dr Breeck was recognized with the Canadian Society of Physician Leadership Excellence in Medical Leadership Award in 2009.

Dr. Breeck presently resides in Ottawa, Ontario  and continues to search for meaningful ways to continue serving her community and country through volunteering, mentoring, advocating and philanthropy efforts.  She has served on a number of volunteer not-for-profit boards and committees and is a proud member of Toastmasters and the Women, Peace and Security Network-Canada.

Ruth Collins-NakaiDr. Ruth Collins-Nakai, CM: Dr. Collins-Nakai, is an internationally respected pediatric and adult congenital cardiologist, spent over 30 years at the University of Alberta in various roles, including Full Professor and Associate Dean of the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry. She served as Commissioner of the Premier’s Commission on Future Health Care for Albertans, President of the Alberta Medical Association, Chair of the Board of Governors of the American College of Cardiology, President of the Canadian Cardiovascular Society, President of the InterAmerican Society of Cardiology, as one of the founding members of the Governing Council of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, and as President of the Canadian Medical Association.

In 2001, the International Academy of Cardiovascular Sciences awarded her its Distinguished Achievement Award for promoting cardiovascular education and research throughout the world and in 2005 she was recognized as one of Alberta’s 100 Physicians of the Century. She has also been honored with the YWCA’s Women of Distinction Lois E. Hole’s Lifetime Achievement Award and the Canadian Medical Association’s Medal of Service. She has been named a “Distinguished Citizen” by Grant MacEwan College and in June 2009 was recognized and installed in the City of Edmonton Hall of Fame for her service to community. In 2012 she was the recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal, and most recently (2015) received the Annual Achievement Award from the Canadian Cardiovascular Society. She was appointed Lt. Colonel for 1 Field Ambulance, Canadian Forces, in September of 2013.

She now continues with consulting, board directorships, and leadership initiatives.  She currently serves on several business, professional and philanthropic boards and, until June of 2013, Alberta Health Services.  She is married with two grown children.  She is an avid golfer, and proud of her rural Alberta roots.

John GrayDr. John Gray: Dr. Gray joined the staff of the Canadian Medical Protective Association in 2000 and was the Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer until October 2014. A graduate of Queen’s University, he practised family medicine in Peterborough from 1974 to 2000. His interest in the medical profession is reflected in his more than 20 years on the executive of his county medical society and 10 years with the Ontario Medical Association, including one year as president. He had served 5 years on the board of directors of the Canadian Medical Association and 2 years on the council of the CMPA prior to his appointment to staff. He was a diplomate of the American Board of Family Practice until 2004, and is a fellow of both the American Academy of Family Physicians and the College of Family Physicians of Canada. In addition to his CMPA responsibilities, Dr. Gray was a member of the board of directors of the Physician Insurers’ Association of America (PIAA) and chaired that organization’s international section. In 2013 Dr. Gray was awarded Honorary Memberships by the Ottawa Academy of Medicine and by the Canadian Medical Association, the Leadership Award by the PIAA, and Life Membership by the Ontario Medical Association. In 2015 Dr Gray was awarded the Canadian Medical Association Medal of Service.

Dr. Allon Reddoch: A resident of the Yukon Territory for 45 years, Dr. Allon Reddoch works as the Chief Medical Consultant to the Yukon Workers’ Compensation Health and Safety Board. Since completing his medical studies, Dr. Reddoch has actively worked as a family physician since 1974, complementing his knowledge with post-graduate studies in dermatology, allergy and disabilities and impairments.

Professionally, Dr. Reddoch’ s many leadership appointment include seeing him elected by his peers to the roles of President of the Yukon Medical Association (1979 to 1990) and the Canadian Medical Association (1998-1999).

An active and engaged community member, Dr. Reddoch is a Member of the Rotary Club of Whitehorse (1975 to present) where he served as President in 1983, the St. John Ambulance charitable organization, the Ramesh Ferris Cycle to Walk Society (polio eradication, education and rehabilitation) and other charitable and community building organizations. Dr. Reddoch was elected to the Board of Trustees for the Canadian Medical Foundation in 2018.

Dr. Yipeng Ge:  Yipeng Ge is a Chinese-Canadian, first-generation immigrant, and a humble and grateful guest of this land. He grew up in Waterloo, Ontario and completed his undergraduate studies at McMaster University in Health Sciences (Honours) with a specialization in Global Health. He is currently an M.D. Candidate at the University of Ottawa Faculty of Medicine, and an incoming resident physician in Public Health and Preventive Medicine (including family medicine) in Ottawa. He is Canada’s official youth delegate to the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).

Yipeng is passionate and interested in tackling health and social inequities through addressing the social and broader determinants of health. Much of his brief academic and medical career has been guided by these values.

Yipeng has worked for various global health organizations including the World Health Organization (Headquarters) in Geneva, Switzerland and the Population Health Research Institute in Hamilton, Ontario. He has also been involved in various student-led initiatives including, co-founding the McMaster Indigenous Health Conference in 2016 and chairing the Canadian Global Health Students and Young Professionals Summit in 2018. He was the first student/young professional co-chair for the 25th annual Canadian Conference on Global Health in 2019.

He is the past Director of Government Affairs for the Canadian Federation of Medical Students (CFMS), leading national advocacy efforts with medical students between 2017-2019. He previously served on the board for the Canadian Coalition for Global Health Research (CCGHR) and as a student representative for the Medical Council of Canada (MCC). He currently serves on the board for the Canadian Society for International Health (CSIH).

Yipeng has artwork featured in Murmurs: the Journal of Art and Healing, on the cover of Canadian Family Physician (CFP), a peer-reviewed medical journal, and Chrysalis: a collection of art by University of Ottawa medical students. He also received the first prize for a Canadian Association of Physicists Art of Physics photography contest in 2009.

He is passionate about health equity, community-engaged initiatives, and advocacy work and enjoys running and cycling along the Rideau canal, playing golf in Waterloo, and spending time with family and friends. In his free time, he can be found reading, writing, watching movies, painting, and learning to prepare and cook tasty vegetarian meals.

Kevin O’Brien: 

Kevin, a graduate of Wilfred Laurier University, has a career that spans 40 years in international cooperation, community development and humanitarian aid, with both domestic and international civil society organizations.

Kevin began his career as a community development worker and teacher in Sierra Leone, living and working in a remote rural village for two a half years. His career would take him to England, back to Sierra Leone, as well as Senegal, West Africa, where he worked as the Country Director for Plan International, with the overall responsibility for the design and implementation of an integrated community development program in remote rural areas while working within the host government’s strategic development framework.

Returning to Canada in 1991, Kevin acted as Director of Residential Services with SUREX, an organization providing 24-hour care and training for adults with developmental disabilities, before becoming the Executive Director of Canadian Feed the Children in 1997. Under his leadership CFTC expanded from being primarily a commodity-based relief organization to one utilizing responsive integrated development programs/strategies. In 2002 Kevin was recruited and appointed Executive Director of Canadian Physicians for Aid and Relief, an NGO building healthy communities in Ethiopia, Uganda, Malawi and Tanzania, with a focus on primary health care, food security, water, sanitation, hygiene and livelihoods utilizing cross country themes of gender equity, environment and prevention of HIV.

Kevin is currently an International Development, and Organizational development and management consultant.

Wendy Zhang: Born and raised in Ottawa, Wendy Zhang has spent a large part of her life thus far being a health advocate, academic, and volunteer. From an early age, Wendy’s interest in giving back to the community led her to volunteering at local hospitals and coaching Special Olympics Ontario Track and Field. With her curiosity for science and health, Wendy completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Cellular, Molecular Biology as well as a Master’s in Neuroscience at the University of Ottawa. Throughout her undergraduate and graduate degrees, Wendy was heavily involved in student-leadership roles such as an Executive of the Science Students’ Association, the Faculty of Medicine’s Cellular, Molecular Medicine/Neuroscience Student Council, organizer of the Ottawa Science Olympiad for Ontario and Quebec Universities, organizer of large scale fundraisers for Shinerama, the Spread the Net Challenge, and co-founding the University of Ottawa’s first healthcare symposium for undergraduate students, which has continued annually since 2010.

She began her career in ALS research at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute while also teaching high school academic and university level science and math. During this time, she also joined the Board of Directors of the Ryan’s Well Foundation, where she spearheaded new fundraising efforts, developed educational workshops, and played a key part in guidance and governance.

In 2017, Wendy made the transition to medicine and is now in her third year of her medical degree at the University of Toronto. During these last few years, she has continued to stay active in the community, student initiatives, and she served as the Co-President of the University of Toronto’s Interest Group in Family Medicine. Wendy is passionate about primary care, prevention, medical education, and is particularly interested in rural practice.

Outside of the classroom and the healthcare setting, Wendy enjoys spending time with family and friends, practicing yoga, cultivating her green thumb, and being outdoors as often as she can – whether it’s through cycling, running, camping, or exploring new trails.