OPHA’s Honorary Membership Award

Dr. David Mowat – 2015

With a career spanning over 35 years, Dr. Mowat has left his mark on the public health sector not only in Ontario but at the national level as well.

Some of you may know Dr. Mowat from his role as Medical Officer of Health for Peel Region. There he created a strong organizational culture for evidence-informed decision making and broke new ground on many fronts. The report he prepared with colleagues across the region in 2014, for example, called Improving Health by Design, brought much needed attention to the role that transportation and community design can play in influencing people’s health. As noted by one of his colleagues “Dr. Mowat’s influence shaped Peel Public Health to its core” and
“placed it in a leadership position within the public health community”.

Throughout his career, Dr. Mowat has been committed to furthering public health education. He serves as an adjunct faculty member at McMaster University, Queen’s University and the University of Toronto where he’s helping to shape the next generation of public health talent.

As Deputy Chief Public Health Officer at the Public Health Agency of Canada, he strengthened public health practice, knowledge translation and the development of the public health workforce. This included, for example, the creation of core competencies, graduate programs, Chairs of Applied Public Health and the National Collaborating Centres for Public Health.

You may not know that much earlier in his career Dr. Mowat was also a Medical Officer of Health in Kingston and served in the role of Chief Medical Officer of Health twice. More recently, as A/CMOH, Dr. Mowat ensured the needed policies and procedures were in place for containing and treating potential cases of Ebola.

We’re pleased to know that Dr. Mowat has recently returned to the national scene as Scientific Leader, Population Health at the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer. No doubt he will continue be a champion of prevention and find innovative ways to reduce health disparities and
promote health for all.

Joyce Fox – 2014

Joyce started her role in public health as a registered nurse in 1986 and took on various leadership roles over the years, most recently as Director of Healthy Living Service at the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit since 2005.

She has always demonstrated a clear and positive focus both on the mandate of public health, and on the wellbeing of her staff team. Joyce has been instrumental to many successes, working with her communities and partner agencies to develop healthy public policy in areas that have included tobacco control, injury and substance misuse, healthy schools and healthy built environments. Community access to services was also a clear priority demonstrated through her work to develop health connection and youth engagement strategies.

Joyce has been a dynamic leader not only in Simcoe Muskoka, but also in the broader field of public health nursing at the provincial and national levels. This has included leading the development and implementation of Clinical Service post-SARS and holding leadership positions with organizations such as the Community Health Nurses’ Association of Canada and the RNAO Community Health Nurses’ Interest Group. Her contributions there have been recognized though various awards.

Joyce is an exemplary and dedicated leader, mentor to her staff and role model to many. She truly a seasoned professional and outstanding public health leader.

Dr. David Walker – 2013

Dr. David Walker is a Professor of Emergency Medicine, Family Medicine and Policy Studies at Queen’s University

Paulina Salamo – 2009

The OPHA’s Board of Directors honors the outstanding contribution to public health in Ontario made by Paulina Salamo for her leadership in the development of the new Ontario Public Health Standards and Protocols. The adoption of the new Standards and Protocols by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care marked a significant milestone in the provincial government’s strategy to renew public health in Ontario. Ms. Salamo and her team spearheaded a complex process which included a Program Standards Technical Review Committee, Writing Teams and Protocol Development Teams. Ms. Salamo’s leadership and negotiation skills and unfailing commitment to public health resulted in gathering the strategic and technical advice that guided the development of new standards and protocols. Ms. Salamo facilitated ongoing consultations with the public health sector in Ontario over a two year period. Ms. Salamo has been championing public health policy and practice issues since she was involved in the development of the Operation Health Protection strategy which was launched in 2004. Her long-term view
and commitment to developing public health policy in Ontario is exemplary. OPHA is proud to honour Ms. Salamo’s contributions to public health.

Dr. Sheela Basrur – 2007

The 2007 Honorary Membership Award was presented to Dr. Sheela Basrur for her internationally recognized contributions to public health and excellence in leadership as Medical Officer in the City of Toronto, Chief Medical Officer of Health and Assistant Deputy Minister of Health. Her support for the mission and values of OPHA was consistently evident throughout her career.