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Our Board

The Board of Seniors Care Network includes senior healthcare leaders representing hospitals, community service providers, seniors’ advocates and others from across the Central East Region. The Board’s responsibilities include strategic planning, risk management, organizational and management oversight, oversight of internal financial and operational controls, corporate governance, and communication with stakeholders.

Board Members include:

Diane Duncan
Board Chair

Executive Director, Senior Persons Living Connected (SPLC) – Community Agency Representative (Scarborough)

Diane’s career of over 25 years has spanned community-based health and support services, and affordable housing. She is a passionate believer in supporting people to live in the community.  Her experience has included work in direct services, human resources and leadership, with organizations supporting people living in community with developmental disabilities, physical disabilities, HIV/AIDS and seniors. Diane is a Certified Human Resources Leader (CHRL) and is currently pursuing a Master of Health Administration (Community Care) with Ryerson University. She has studied governance with Ryerson University, Community Health Leadership with Rotman Executive Programs and holds a certificate in Indigenous Cultural Safety.

 

Diane has been Executive Director since 2012 with Senior Persons Living Connected (SPLC), a community organization offering a basket of care and services, and also managing subsidized rental and life lease housing. Collectively, these offer a model of care and housing that enable ageing in place for thousands of diverse seniors. Diane has led a strategy that strengthened sustainability while developing responsive and equitable supports specialized to underserved seniors.

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Gillian Barrie
Vice Chair
Community Agency Representative (Durham)

Executive Director, Alzheimer Society of Durham Region

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Gillian was recently appointed as incoming CEO of the Alzheimer Society of Durham Region (ASDR) and will commence this role in August 2022. Currently Gillian is a member of the Senior Leadership Team at ASDR as the Director of Clinical Services and has held this role and other leadership positions at the agency since 2019. Gillian brings over 12 years of experience as a registered Occupational Therapist, having graduated from the University of Toronto with a Masters degree in Occupational Therapy in 2010. Prior to advancing into leadership roles, Gillian worked with VHA Home Health as a community-based OT and Geriatric Clinical Lead. She has also held roles with Central East Home and Community Care Support Services (formerly CE-LHIN).

 

Gillian is an enthusiastic and innovative community leader with expertise in program development and service delivery, client engagement, and is a strong advocate for individuals living with dementia and their care partners. Gillian lends her knowledge and expertise in community dementia supports as a member of several working groups within SGS-East and the local Durham OHT.

 

Gillian is actively involved in her home community of Newcastle where she lives with her spouse and 2 daughters and is currently Co-chair of the Newcastle Community Improvement Plan Committee.

Dr. Sarah Brisbin
Physician Specialist Representative (Geriatric Medicine)

Geriatrician

Dr. Sarah Brisbin is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada with dual certification in Internal Medicine and Geriatric Medicine.

Dr. Brisbin is a Geriatrician at the Kawartha Centre in Peterborough. She provides outpatient Geriatric Medicine Consultation and also serves as a Sub-investigator for clinical trials research for Alzheimer’s Dementia.  She additionally provides service for the Geriatric Medicine Consultation group at the Peterborough Regional Health Centre, as well as throughout the area with the GAIN team program.

 

Dr. Brisbin received her Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Toronto before heading west to obtain her residency training in Internal Medicine at the University of Calgary. She additionally completed her subspecialty fellowship training in Geriatric Medicine at the University of Calgary where she was Chief Resident of the program in her final year. Prior to her formal medical training, Dr. Brisbin completed graduate studies in molecular genetics and worked as a research assistant in Geriatric Psychiatry at Queen’s University. She is a published academic in the fields of molecular biology, Geriatric Psychiatry and Geriatric Medicine.

 

When she’s not busy with clinic duties, Dr. Brisbin enjoys all the outdoor opportunities Central East Ontario has to offer, especially spending time on the water. She is very excited to be joining the Seniors Care Network board and optimizing Senior’s healthcare in her community and province.

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Deb Daly
Pimary Care Representative

Geriatric Nurse Practitioner

Deb Daly is a Nurse Practitioner (NP), and the manager for the Bryan and Bette Rowntree Palliative Care Clinical Centre Program at Scarborough Health Network (SHN). She brings to the table over thirty years of nursing experience, having spent most of this time specializing in direct care for seniors and other vulnerable populations.  Debbie helped to develop the Central East region’s 12 GAIN teams, and served as the GAIN Regional Clinical Lead for three years prior to assuming her current role as Palliative Care manager.   

 

Deb completed her Master of Nursing and Nurse Practitioner diploma at University of Toronto.  She is certified through Pallium Canada as a LEAP facilitator (Learning Essential Approaches to Palliative Care) and acts as a guest lecturer at McGill University for their Acute Care Nurse Practitioner program. Deb is a co-author of the Competency Framework for Interprofessional Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment. 

 

A recent transplant to Courtice, Deb wants to give back to her community.  She is excited to work with the Seniors Care Network Board to advocate for and provide support toward expanding excellent care for seniors living in Central East Ontario. 

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Renate Crizzle
Seniors' Advocate/Public Member (Scarborough)

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Renate is a very active, involved retiree devoting much of her time to advocating for fair and equitable treatment of older people through her volunteer work with CARP, an organization promoting the interests, rights and quality of life for Canadians as they age, as well as promoting an active life style through her volunteer work in the field of tennis as President of a Scarborough tennis club.  

 

A lifelong successful career in Human Resources has equipped her to handle intricate interpersonal relationships and resolve problems successfully.  Rather than seeing just one isolated part of a story, she sees the big picture, for instance the reality that our frail old seniors, whose numbers are steadily increasing, need adequate and effective health care services but also appropriate housing, transportation and caregiver support, and the caregivers in turn need support to prevent burnout. Recognizing the importance of this issue to society, she is hoping to make a contribution as a Board member to finding workable solutions. 

 

Renate has a BA and a Diploma in Human Resource Management from the University of Toronto.

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Pamela Kulas
Long-Term Care Representative

Pamela J. Kulas has devoted her entire career to “helping seniors live fully – every day” (coincidentally, Sienna Senior Living’s mission) by role-modelling Sienna’s core values of respect, passion, teamwork, responsibility, and growth – both to her staff and literally dozens of residents at Victoria Manor.

Having been with Sienna Senior Living since 2003, she stepped into her present role in 2014 where she was challenged with (1) restoring internal culture at this municipal home owned by the City of Kawartha Lakes and (2) Instituting cost-effective systems and processes.

In just a few short years, she has elevated resident satisfaction year over year, uncovered new ways to enhance fiscal responsibility, and introduced a range of technology improvements. Key to Pamela’s career-long success is embodying a “warmth of human connection” philosophy so that families derive peace of mind, knowing their senior loved ones are properly cared for.

In earlier roles with Sienna Senior Living, Pamela created a series of new programs / policies / procedures and willingly took on extra assignments to position Sienna Senior Living as a top-of-mind choice as seniors transition into their next phases of life.

Her passion for helping others, building teams, and improving lives extends into her volunteer activities. Since around 2017, Pamela has volunteered for an organization that focuses on repurposing textiles into unique items of clothing shipped to Nicaragua and Peru.  In addition, she continues to sponsor a young rep volleyball team – comprising 13- to 15-year-old girls – where the girls receive invaluable lessons in teamwork and camaraderie.

No matter the activity, Pamela has earned a reputation of injecting a culture of excellence to unlock group and organizational potential.

Administrator, Victoria Manor Long Term Care Home (Lindsay)

Veronica Nelson
Hospital Representative

President and CEO, Haliburton Highlands Health Services

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Ms. Nelson joined HHHS in December 2023.  With more than 30 years in healthcare, Veronica has been an executive leader since 2015, including serving as Interim President & CEO at RMH and HHHS.  She began her career as a Medical Radiation Technologist, and later obtained her Masters of Medical Radiation Science and Masters Certificate in Healthcare Management. She has a track record of success in developing/implementing strategy, capital projects and community collaborations that produce growth, sustainable finances and future capacity; trusted by Boards and senior management to provide recommendations that support astute business decisions; and able to build synergies between leadership (physicians, management and Foundation/Auxiliary), staff and the community to improve and streamline quality patient care, driving sustainable and innovative advancement.  

Taryn Rennicks
Host Agency Representative

Executive Director, Community Health Centres of Northumberland – Host Agency Representative

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Taryn Rennicks was recently appointed as Executive Director of the Community Health Centres of Northumberland. Ms. Rennicks has been an integral part of the leadership team at the CHCN, advancing from the Manager of Business Operations in 2014, to the Director of Corporate Services in 2016. Taryn’s tenure with the Centre dates back to 2009.

Taryn brings over fifteen years of experience working in healthcare with extensive work in governance and board relations developing strategic and operational plans, motivating staff and volunteers in coordinated efforts to execute these plans, and developing lasting and productive working relationships with all stakeholders properly positioning the CHCN as a true partner in community healthcare providers; most recently as the representative on the Ontario Health Team of Northumberland. Taryn is also on the Board of Directors for Habitat for Humanity Northumberland.

Dr. Sanaz Riahi
Mental Health Sciences (Hospital) Representative

Vice-President Clinical Services, Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences

Sanaz Riahi (RN, PhD) is Vice-President, Clinical Services at Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences (Ontario Shores).  Sanaz works collaboratively with internal and external stakeholders to optimize and advance clinical operations and quality of care at Ontario Shores. She’s passionate about maximizing the use of technology, to support, promote and advance quality interprofessional practice environments to optimize outcomes for patients, staff and the organization.

She has led Ontario Shores in the achievement of HIMSS Davies Award of Excellence and multiple HIMSS EMRAM Stage7 revalidations, placing Ontario Shores as the first hospital in Canada to receive these awards in recognition of its Electronic Health Record System. She is also collaborating with teams to advance bundled care pathways in mental health.

Sanaz is a researcher and educator who has done numerous presentations and has publications in the areas of nursing education, the minimization of seclusion and restraint, the implementation of electronic health records, and violence and aggression in mental health. She is currently a Lecturer in the Department of Psychiatry at University of Toronto.

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Dr. Kim Ritchie
Seniors' Advocate/Public Member (Durham)

Kim has worked as a registered nurse for 25 years, primarily in mental health and geriatric mental health. Her experience includes direct clinical care in hospital and community, working as a clinical nurse specialist in geriatric mental health, and in professional practice and leadership roles. She teaches part-time at Trent/Fleming School of Nursing. She also has experience as a caregiver, having fulfilled this role for older family members with multiple health care needs.

Kim completed a Bachelor of Nursing Science from Queen’s University, a Master of Nursing from the University of Toronto, and a PhD in Rehabilitation Science from Queen’s University.

She currently works as a Research Associate in the Trauma and Recovery Lab at McMaster University. Her research focuses on understanding the unique and shared lived experiences, and psychological impacts among healthcare providers and public safety workers resulting from their work during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Other research projects Kim is involved in include PTSD, trauma, and mental health issues impacting older adults.

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Dr. Sina Sajed
Primary Care Representative

Primary Care Physician (Family Medicine and Care of the Elderly)

Dr. Sajed completed his residency in family medicine at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. After his residency, Dr. Sajed started a community based teaching practice in the Kingston/Gananoque/Thousand Islands area. Among his physician roles in that area, Dr. Sajed attended to patients and was the medical director of two nursing home and was a consulting physician at the Upper Canada FHT Collaborative Memory Program. In October of 2015, Dr. Sajed closed his practice and relocated to the GTA in the pursuit of better specialized educational services for his son with autism.

In Toronto, Dr. Sajed completed the Certificate Program in the Care of the Elderly through the University of Toronto at the Toronto Rehabilitation Hospital in 2017.

 

Currently, Dr. Sajed attends to patients at the Ukrainian Canadian Care Centre and the Tony Stacey Centre for Veterans. Dr. Sajed is a consulting physician at the Toronto Memory Program and the Courtice Primary Collaborative Care Memory Clinic. Dr. Sajed is also the lead physician of the Primary Care Collaborative Memory Services for the Durham/Scarborough. As he was in the Kingston area, Dr. Sajed remains an Assistant Professor for the Department of Family Medicine at Queen’s University (Oshawa/Lakeridge Campus) and has a community based teaching family practice at the Oshawa Clinic where he supervises resident physicians and nurse practitioner students.

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Nancy Veloso
Hospital Representative

Director, Scarborough Health Network

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Coming Soon

Bill Willis
Seniors'Advocate/Public Member

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Bill is a committed husband to Lynne, a woman living with dementia. This reality makes his lived experience so very valuable as the Seniors Advocate/Public Member of our Board and makes him uniquely qualified to act on behalf of seniors with specific needs.

 

As an executive with many years of work experience, Bill understands how to navigate systems and processes with grace and tact. His excellent communication skills and interpersonal aptitude ensure that relationships and interactions are strong, focused and on point.

 

With over 50 years of volunteerism, Bill demonstrates the epitome of public service and understands Board processes, roles and protocols. With experience in sports management at the provincial level and social service through Masonic organizations, Bill’s wealth of knowledge in an array of areas is valued and respected. His desire to bring about change in the arena of senior’s advocacy and support is a driving force behind his Board membership.

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