Planning Committee Co-Chairs
MD, MSc, FRCPC, FHRS
Jeff Healey is a Cardiologist/Electrophysiologist and Professor of Medicine at McMaster University
He is the director of the division of cardiology, and the Population Health Research Institute Chair in Cardiology. He is the chair of the Canadian Stroke Prevention and Intervention Network (CSPIN) and past chair of the Canadian atrial fibrillation guidelines committee.
He was the lead author of the ASSERT trial, which was published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2012 and demonstrated the increased stroke risk associated with sub-clinical atrial fibrillation detected by pacemakers. He was also the lead author of the RELY AF cohort study, a 15,000-patient worldwide registry, published in the Lancet in 2016, examining the causes, treatment and outcomes in patients with atrial fibrillation.
He currently leads the ARTESIA trial, evaluating the role of anticoagulation in patients with subclinical AF
MD, FCCS, FHFSA (hon), FESC, FACC, FHFA, FRCPCDr. Shelley Zieroth joined the Section of Cardiology at St. Boniface Hospital in Winnipeg in July 2006. She a Professor in the College of Medicine, Max Rady Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Manitoba, as well as Director of the Heart Failure and Heart Transplant Clinics. She is also Head of the Medical Heart Failure Program for the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, Cardiac Sciences Program.
Dr. Zieroth attended medical school at the University of Manitoba and went on to train in Internal Medicine and Cardiology at the same centre. She completed her Postdoctoral Clinical Fellowship, specializing in Advanced Heart Failure and Cardiac Transplant, at Toronto General Hospital.
She is involved in several heart failure clinical trials as a PI, is National Lead for EMPACT-MI, EMPULSE, DETERMINE and FINE-ARTS clinical trials and she is on the Steering Committee of PARAGLIDE. Her area of research examines the efficacy of new treatments including food derived bioactives in heart failure. She is the Immediate Past President of the Canadian Heart Failure Society and on the Canadian Cardiovascular Society Primary Panels for both the Heart Failure and Heart Transplant Guidelines. She is also Co-Chair of Canada's largest annual heart failure meeting, HF Update, and Scientific Planning Committee Chair for the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress. Her current passion is working with national and provincial patient advocacy groups and primary care to operationalize hub and spoke models of heart failure care.
Dr. Zieroth is actively engaged in Social Media and promotes #cardiotwitter for its rapid access to clinical trial data, publications and free on line access to medical education. It is through this engagement Dr. Zieroth has become recognized as a global supporter and sponsor of women in medicine and cardiology.
Planning Committee Members
A. Shekhar Pandey
B.Sc ., MD, FRCP, ABIM, CBNC
Dr. A. Shekhar Pandey is an Assistant Clinical Professor (Adjunct) in the Department of Medicine McMaster University. He is presently a Staff Cardiologist at Cambridge Memorial Hospital & is an invasive, Cathing Cardiologist at St. Mary’s Hospital in Kitchener, ON. His practices in Cambridge, at the Cambridge Cardiac Care Centre. Growing up in Cape Brenton, NS, he went on to complete his BSc at Dalhousie University and MD at the University of Toronto. He currently has appointments with the Department of Medicine at McMaster University, and is an ethics office at the University of Waterloo, Clinical Research Ethics Board. Dr. Pandey is the founder of the “Prevent” Clinic, a multi-disciplinary, high risk primary and secondary prevention clinic focused on risk modification and lifestyle optimization. He is also the medical director of the regional cardiac rehabilitation program at the Cambridge Cardiac Care Centre.
@Dr. Alexandra Bastiany, MD FRCPC DRCPSC, is a cardiologist at Thunder Bay Regional Health Centre. She earned her medical degree and completed her Internal medicine and Cardiology training at the Université de Montréal (UdeM). She graduated with honors, as the UdeM Faculty of Medicine first Black valedictorian. Dr. Bastiany then successfully completed a fellowship in Interventional Cardiology at the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute (University of Alberta) in Edmonton, making her the first Black female Canadian Interventional Cardiologist. Dr. Bastiany is fluent in English, French, and Haitian Creole. She was born and raised in Montreal, QC of Haitian parents and developed a strong interest in community work amongst visible minorities. She took direct action, according to her passion, and partnered with La Maison d’Haïti, a local community center to organize learning sessions on common health issues afflicting the Haitian population of Montreal, and for her efforts won 2nd place at the FMRQ Excelsior awards for her community work. She has also worked directly with other local community organizations, and started career days for minority and children from underserved communities, working to provide them with representation via professional role models. Combining her expertise in cardiovascular disease and her passion for community work, Dr. Bastiany is actively working to decrease the race and gender biases leading to differences in standard of care and clinical outcomes.
Resident in Internal Medicine
Rudy Unni is a third-year Internal Medicine resident at the University of Ottawa. He received his MD in 2018 from the DeGroote School of Medicine at McMaster University. His research interests include echocardiography, cardiac arrest and critical care. He will be starting a Cardiology residency at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute in July 2021. You can find him bookmarking #CardioTwitter and #EchoFirst threads on Twitter at @rudyunni.
CIM, FCSI, CIWM, CFP
Amanda is the head of Knapp Wealth Management and has been guiding clients in their various financial life stages for over 30 years. She is a passionate Financial Planner, Wealth Advisor, Portfolio Manager & Vice President at RBC Dominion Securities Inc., working as a trusted advisor to Individuals, Businesses, Families and Not for Profits.Founder of WOWtheWorld, Advocate for Women in Wealth, Financial Literacy Speaker, Socially Responsible Investor and Fluent Listener of people’s stories and goals. She has achieved the highest education accreditations in the industry to serve clients.
MD, MSc, FRCPDr. Anique Ducharme is a Professor of Medicine at Université de Montréal and holds the University of Montreal Fondation Marcelle and Jean Coutu, Cal & Janine Moisan for better practices in advanced heart failure. She is also the founder and Director of the Heart Failure Clinic at the Montreal Heart Institute (MHI) and a former Senior Clinical Researcher at the Fonds québécois de recherche en santé (FQRS). She is president of the Canadian Heart Failure Society (CHFS) and the past chair of the Scientific Program Committee for the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress (2018-2020). In addition, she is an active member of the CCS Heart Failure Guidelines Committee, sitting on the primary panel since 2006.Dr. Ducharme graduated from Université de Montréal in 1991 in Medicine (MD) and Biomedical sciences (MSc, cardiac transplantation) and completed her residency in Cardiology in 1996. She pursued additional training in Echocardiography at the Montreal Heart Institute, then in Molecular Biology and Heart Failure at the Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School in Boston. Since her return in 1999, she has held a position in the Noninvasive Cardiology department at the Montreal Heart Institute, where she carries out activities in echocardiography, advanced heart failure and cardiac transplantation. Her clinical and research focus is on advanced heart failure, including remodeling, pharmacological and device therapies (cardiac resynchronization therapy, mechanical assist devices and transplantation).Dr. Ducharme has published over 150 peer-reviewed articles, 15 book chapters, 200 abstracts and 2 online university tutorial courses (Echocardiography Certificate, University of Melbourne, Australia).She is currently PI for the SELFIE (Virtual HF clinic) and the CHAMP trials, and has sat on the executive committee of the CANSAVER and EARTH studies. Dr. Ducharme has served on several steering committees for large-scale studies, including GUIDE-HF, STICH, AF-CHF, EARTH, RELAX-HF and CHARM. She also participates in several review panels for journals, including Circulation, the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, the Journal of Cardiac Failure, the Canadian Medical Association Journal and the Canadian Journal of Cardiology.
Dr. Christine Pacheco is a cardiologist at Pierre-Boucher Hospital and University of Montréal Hospital Centre (CHUM) in Montréal, Qc, and faculty member in the department of Medicine at University of Montréal.
After earning her medical degree and completing internal medicine and cardiology training at Université de Montréal, Dr. Pacheco successfully completed a fellowship in Women’s Heart Health at the Barbra Streisand Women’s Heart Center at the Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute in Los Angeles, California, where she acquired specialized training in the diagnosis and treatment of cardiac conditions affecting women. She has published research on cardiac disease predominantly affecting women including peripartum cardiomyopathy, coronary microvascular dysfunction and acute coronary syndrome in women, and has presented at Canadian and international conferences. She is the co-chair of the Canadian Women’s Heart Health Alliance Knowledge, Translation and Mobilization working group and a member of the executive board of the Heart and Stroke Foundation’s Quebec chapter. She is also one of the founding members of Quebec’s first integrative women’s cardiovascular health centre, Cardio-F.
MD, MPH, FRCPCChris Cheung completed his training in Internal Medicine, Cardiology, and Cardiac Electrophysiology at the University of British Columbia, and is currently pursuing advanced Cardiac Electrophysiology at the University of California San Francisco. He represents trainees on the Canadian Cardiovascular Society as the Trainee Committee Chair.
MD, M.Sc., FRCPC
Dr Atzema is a Staff Emergency Physician at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and a Senior Scientist at Sunnybrook Research Institute and ICES. She is an Associate Professor at the University of Toronto and a Decision Editor at Annals of Emergency Medicine. She has published over 100 peer-reviewed publications, primarily on care of cardiovascular disease within the emergency setting and transfer of care back to longitudinal care providers. Her primary focus is on atrial fibrillation (AF), with a secondary focus on hypertension and heart failure. As a member of the Canadian Cardiovascular Society’s (CCS) Primary AF Panel she has contributed to the CCS AF Guideline documents since 2014, and she has been a member of the CAEP AF checklist committee since its inception in 2017.
MDDr. Belardo is a preventive cardiologist in Newport Beach, California, that in addition to traditional medicine, focuses on lifestyle modification, and evidence based nutrition, in order to prevent heart disease. She is the co-chair of the American Society for Preventive Cardiology Nutrition Committee, the Communications Catalyst for for the California Chapter of the American College of Cardiology, and a member of the American College of Cardiology Nutrition and Lifestyle Sub Committee.
MDCardiothoracic Radiologist Hamilton General Hospital, Assistant Professor McMaster University, Undergraduate Radiology Program Director.
MD, BSc (Hons), MB ChB, MRCP (UK),
MD, MSc, FRCP(C)Director, Preventive and Genomic Cardiology
FRQ-S Clinician-Scientist/Chercheur-Boursier Clinicien
Associate Professor of Medicine, McGill University
McGill University Health Center
Dr. Thanassoulis is the Director of Preventive and Genomic Cardiology at the MUHC and an Associate Professor of Medicine at McGill University. His clinical interests are in cardiovascular prevention, dyslipidemia (specifically lipoprotein[a]) and premature coronary artery disease. He currently runs the MUHC Family Heart Clinic for patients with premature CAD and their families with the goal of optimizing their preventive care. His research interests are in the genetics of aortic valve stenosis where he leads an international consortium investigating the role of genomic variation in this disease. He is also working on developing new approaches to optimize cardiovascular prevention in young individuals. He is the co-Chair of the 2021 CCS Dyslipidemia Guideline Committee.
MD, MSc, FRCPCDr. Guillaume Marquis-Gravel is an interventional cardiologist and clinical scientist at the Montreal Heart Institute, and an assistant professor at Université de Montréal since 2020. He completed his medical training (MD), a Masters in Biomedical Sciences (M.Sc., with Honors), a residency in internal medicine, and a residency in adult cardiology (with Honors) at the Université de Montréal. He then completed a 1-year clinical fellowship in interventional cardiology at Duke University (Durham, NC, United States), followed by a 2-year clinical research fellowship at the Duke Clinical Research Institute. He is the primary author or a co-author of 59 peer-reviewed publications, including in the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA Cardiology, the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, and Circulation, and of 4 book chapters.
Harriette Van Spall
@Education and Professional Standing
Dr. Van Spall completed Bachelor of Science and Doctor of Medicine degrees at the University of Toronto, and a Master of Public Health degree at Harvard University. She completed postgraduate training at the University of Toronto. She is a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. She is appointed in the Department of Medicine and the Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact at McMaster University. She is a full-time cardiologist in the Department of Medicine at McMaster University with clinical activities in Heart Failure, Echocardiography, and inpatient cardiac care.
Dr. Van Spall is a scientist in the Knowledge Translation and Heart Failure programs at the Population Health Research Institute. Supported primarily by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and Ontario's Ministry of Health and Long Term Care, she leads clinical trials with a focus on health care services and health systems improvement in Heart Failure. She mentors postgraduate research fellows, graduate students, and medical residents in health services research. She has garnered more than $4 million in research funding, has won several research awards, is an invited speaker at international conferences, and has published her work in high-impact medical journals, including JAMA, Lancet, Circulation, JACC, European Heart Journal, and Annals of Internal Medicine.
BSc, MD, FRCPC, FHRS
Jason Andrade, M.D., FRCPC, FHRS, is a Cardiac Electrophysiologist at Vancouver General Hospital in Canada, with joint appointment at St Paul’s Hospital and the Montreal Heart Institute. He is an Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of British Columbia (UBC), and an Assistant Professor at the Université de Montréal. Dr. Andrade is the Director of the Electrophysiology Laboratory at VGH, as well as Director of the Atrial Fibrillation Clinic at VGH. He also serves as co-chair of the Canadian Cardiovascular Society Atrial Fibrillation Guidelines committee and serves as the medical chair for Heart Rhythm Disease for the Cardiovascular Disease Network in the province of British Columbia. He previously served as chair of the education committee for the Canadian Heart Rhythm Society, and is currently a member of the CHRS Device Committee.
Dr. Andrade is the principal investigator of several multicenter randomised clinical trials on cryoablation (the CIRCA-DOSE study and the EARLY-AF program). He has authored or co-authored over 170 scientific publications, predominantly in the domain of atrial fibrillation. His publications can be found in journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine, Circulation, JACC, JAMA, and Heart Rhythm. He is also the author of a handbook of cardiac electrophysiology, a handbook of electrocardiogram interpretation, and several chapters related to atrial fibrillation, ablation, and cardiac cryoablation.
Jean C. Grégoire
MD, FRCP(c), FACC, FACP
Dr. Jean C. Grégoire received his MD from the University of Montréal in 1985. He performed his residency in Internal Medicine and Cardiology in 1990 at the same University. He completed training in interventional cardiology at the Quebec Heart Institute, followed by two years of animal model study of coronary restenosis after angioplasty and endothelial dysfunction at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota.
He is an Associate Clinical Professor at the University of Montreal and works in the Interventional Cardiology Service, Coronary Care Unit, and in clinical research at the Montréal Heart Institute. He is the author of several book chapters and scientific publications. He is a former co-chair of the Canadian Dyslipidemia Guideline (2012 and 2016) and current member of the primary committee of the Lipid and Hypertension Canada guidelines. His principal research interests include the role of oxidative stress and inflammation in atherosclerosis and endothelial dysfunction, atherosclerotic plaque imaging, dyslipidemia, diabetes, hypertension and acute coronary syndrome.
MD, CM, FRCPC. FCCS, FACC, FAHA, FESC, FCAHS
One of the nation’s leading parenting experts, Jennifer Kolari is a highly sought-after international speaker and the founder of Connected Parenting. A child and family therapist with a busy practice based in Toronto and San Diego, Kolari is also the author of Connected Parenting: How To Raise A Great Kid (Penguin Group USA and Penguin Canada, 2009) and You’re Ruining My Life! (But Not Really) Surviving the Teenage Years with Connected Parenting (Penguin Canada, 2011). Kolari is a frequent guest on many national morning shows and her advice can be found in many Canadian and U.S. magazines.
Jennifer entertains and educates audiences with her powerful parenting model based on the neurobiology of love. Kolari’s wisdom, quick wit and down-to-earth style helps parents navigate modern-day parenting problems, offering real-life examples, as well as practical and effective tools and strategies. Her highly entertaining, inspiring workshops are shared with warmth and humour, making her a crowd-pleasing speaker with schools, medical professionals, corporations, and agencies throughout North America, Europe and Asia.
Dr. Jillian Horton is an Associate Professor of Internal Medicine at the University of Manitoba. She is Associate Head of Internal Medicine and Directs the Alan Klass Health Humanities Program, and the Director of physician and Learner Wellness. She is a graduate of McMaster medical school and completed her residency and fellowship in general internal medicine at the University of Toronto. She has completed a longitudinal internship in teaching Mindful Practice (at the University of Rochester) and Chief Wellness Officer training at Stanford University. Her writing about medicine appears regularly in the LA Times, the Globe and Mail, Maclean’s, and Medscape. She also hosts the novel series Arts, Medicine, Life at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa. In April 2020 she was awarded the prestigious Gold Humanism award by the Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada for her contributions to compassion in clinical care and her leadership in the field of humanities in medical education. Her first full-length book, We Are All Perfectly Fine, was released by HarperCollins Canada in February; it is about mindfulness, self-compassion, and bringing our whole selves to our clinical practice, and is a national bestseller.
@Originally from Calgary, AB, Dr. Judy Luu completed a combined MD/PhD with a doctoral focus on using cardiac MRI in patients with ischemic heart disease under the mentorship of Dr. Matthias Friedrich. After completing her adult cardiology residency at the University of Manitoba, Dr. Luu is now pursuing a fellowship in Women’s Heart Disease at Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre in Los Angeles, California with world-renowned expert, Dr. Noel Bairey Merz. Her research interests includes utilizing invasive and non-invasive imaging to help diagnose women with coronary microvascular dysfunction.
Julia Cadrin-Tourigny completed her medical studies and training in cardiology and electrophysiology at the University of Montreal and the Montreal Heart Institute. She completed an additional post-doctoral training in cardiovascular genetics at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Hereditary heart diseases and most particularly arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (CAVD) are her main research interests. She is an assistant professor of cardiology at the Montreal heart institute where she practices in both electrophysiology and cardiovascular genetics.
Dr. Mielniczuk is a Professor of Medicine at the University of Ottawa and the Director of the Advanced Heart Diseases Program at the Ottawa Heart Institute, as well as Vice-Chair of Patient Safety and Clinical Care for the Department of Medicine. She is also cross-appointed to the Depart. of Cellular and Molecular Medicine. She is a translational scientist and currently holds a University of Ottawa Chair in Heart Function Research, has more than 100 peer reviewed papers, and has built a multi-disciplinary right heart failure research program at the University of Ottawa. Provincially and Nationally, Dr. Mielniczuk is an active leader for the HF and Pulmonary Hypertension community and is Vice-Chair for the Pulmonary Hypertension Association of Canada.
Margot Davis is a cardiologist at Vancouver General Hospital and St. Paul’s Hospital, a Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of British Columbia, and Director of the UBC Cardiology-Oncology Program. She attended medical school and completed her Internal Medicine residency and Cardiology fellowship at the University of British Columbia. She then completed fellowships in Advanced Heart Failure & Transplant Cardiology and Cardio-Oncology & Cardiac Amyloidosis at Stanford University School of Medicine. She obtained her Master of Science degree in clinical epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health.
Dr. Davis is Co-Chair of the CCS/CHFS Position Statement on Cardiac Amyloidosis, a Primary Panel member of the CCS Cardio-Oncology Guidelines, and a Secondary Panel member of the CCS Heart Failure Guidelines. She is on the Executive Committee of the Canadian Heart Failure Society Board of Directors and she is Vice President of the Canadian Cardiac Oncology Network. Her research interests are focused on the prevention, diagnosis, and management of heart disease related to cancer therapy, cardiac amyloidosis, and advanced heart failure.
B.Sc, M.Sc., Ph.D., MBA, CIMBefore moving to wealth management, Mark spent more than a decade on the institutional side of the investment business as a Senior Research Analyst, Head of Research, Director of Institutional Equities, Executive Committee Member, Board Member, Head of Institutional Equity Sales & Trading and most recently Managing Director, Head of Institutional Equity Sales. Mark holds a Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, Doctorate of Philosophy and Master of Business Administration.
MD, PhD, FRCPC
Dr. Matt Lanktree is a clinician scientist and assistant professor in adult nephrology genetics who cares for patients with chronic and end-stage kidney disease at St. Joseph Healthcare Hamilton and McMaster University. Dr. Lanktree obtained a combined MD and PhD at Western University with research in human genetics before residency in internal medicine and nephrology at McMaster University. He then completed a post-doctoral research fellowship in heritable kidney disease at University of Toronto before return to McMaster as Faculty in 2019. Dr. Lanktree is now the medical director of the McMaster Kidney Genetics Clinic. Dr. Lanktree has published over 60 articles in high impact journals in genetics and medicine and has set his goal to translate genetic studies into improved care of patients with kidney disease.
Dr. Matt Lanktree is a clinician scientist and assistant professor at McMaster University and St. Joseph Healthcare Hamilton. Dr. Lanktree is medical director of the McMaster Kidney Genetics Clinic. Dr. Lanktree has published over 60 articles in high impact journals in genetics and medicine and has set his goal to translate genetic studies into improved care of patients with kidney disease.
Dr. Michael McDonald obtained his medical degree at the University of Ottawa after completing his undergraduate studies in Life Sciences at Queen's University. He subsequently completed his Internal Medicine and Cardiology training at the University of Alberta, followed by subspecialty fellowship training in Advanced Heart Failure/Transplantation and Implantable Device Therapy at the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre and Mount Sinai Hospital, University of Toronto.
Dr. McDonald has been a member of the Division of Cardiology at the University Health Network/Mount Sinai Hospital since 2010, where his clinical focus is the management of patients with advanced heart failure and cardiac transplantation. Dr. McDonald is currently an associate professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto. He has received a number of teaching awards and citations, and is the Medical Director of the Adult Heart Transplant Program at the University Health Network/Peter Munk Cardiac Centre, and is the Director of the Advanced Heart Failure/Transplantation Fellowship Program. He is the past president of the Canadian Cardiac Transplant Network and the current co-chair of the Canadian Cardiovascular Society's Heart Failure Guidelines Committee.
MD, MPH, FACC
Muthiah Vaduganathan, MD MPH FACC is a cardiologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School (Boston, MA). His research focuses on drug development, clinical trials, and implementation of cardio-renal-metabolic therapies. He has authored or co-authored more than 400 peer-reviewed publications. Dr. Vaduganathan serves on the editorial boards of the European Journal of Heart Failure, JACC Heart Failure (Social Media / CME Editor), & JACC (FIT / Early Career Section Editor). He participates as an investigator and Clinical Endpoints Committee member for ongoing advanced-phase trials in HF and cardiometabolic medicine.
Dr. Nadia Giannetti received her MD from McGill University in 1991. She became an Attending Cardiologist at the McGill University Health Centre after completing a fellowship in Heart Failure and Cardiac Transplantation at Stanford University in California.
Dr. Giannetti is the founder and Medical Director of the Heart Failure and Heart Transplant Centre at the McGill University Health Centre in Montreal, Quebec. She is a Clinical Researcher with interests in outcomes in high-risk heart failure patients and post-heart transplant complications. For the past 10 years, she has been an active member of the Canadian Heart Failure and Heart Transplant Guidelines. Dr. Giannetti is a full-time Clinical Cardiologist at the McGill University Health Centre, with responsibility for the care of over 1000 patients with heart failure. She is also an Assistant Professor at McGill University’s Department of Medicine and Chief of Cardiology at the McGill University Health Centre.
MDDr. Najah Adreak is a clinical researcher with a Master of Science in Surgery program at the University of British Columbia (UBC) and a Clinical Research Assistant with the Cardiovascular Surgery Research group at St. Paul’s Hospital, Vancouver. She earned her medical degree from Tripoli University and has trained in the Cardiac Surgery residency program in her country before moving to Canada for further education and training. Dr. Adreak is the Trainee Representative for the Canadian Women Heart’s Health Alliance and an active member of the education and training working group. She is an advocate for cardiovascular health and treatment, especially for underserved women patients. Currently, she works as an academic advisor to provide support for virtual and online learning modules in the anatomy department at the faculty of medicine, UBC.
@Nathalie Bolduc received her master’s degree in genetic counselling from McGill University. Through her practice, she acquired a unique combination of clinical expertise in both the public and private healthcare sectors as well as in research, industry and non-profit. She worked in several clinical specialties and also led the provincial predictive testing program for Huntington disease for several years. An excellent communicator, she is interested in making genetics accessible through conferences to healthcare professionals and to the general public as well as by advocating for the role of genetic counsellors in the integration of genomics into primary care and preventive medicine. She also worked with non-profit organizations to create educational resources for hereditary diseases. She was President of Quebec Association of Genetic Counsellors and President of the Canadian Association of Genetic Counsellors.
MD, MSc, FRCPCDr. Parkash obtained her medical degree in 1996 from Dalhousie University. She completed her residency in internal medicine/cardiology in Ottawa from 1996-2002, followed by a fellowship in cardiac electrophysiology at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital from 2002-2004. She obtained a Masters of Science in Epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health in 2004. She is a professor of medicine at Dalhousie University, from 2004 until the present. She has two major areas of research: atrial fibrillation (AF) and cardiac implantable electronic devices (CIEDs). Currently, Dr. Parkash is involved in a number of clinical trial initiatives in atrial fibrillation focused on mechanisms of disease and management strategies, as well as a large trial in catheter ablation and heart failure. She continues to investigate prevention of recurrent atrial fibrillation in patients with a high symptom burden to prevent future cardiovascular events and improve quality of life. In addition, she investigates Cardiac Implantable Electronic devices in the areas of device recalls, management, outcomes, complications, heart failure, virtual care strategies, as well as prevention of sudden death. Dr. Parkash is the past Chair of the Canadian Heart Rhythm Society Device Committee and has been lead investigator in initiatives to improve outcomes in patients with cardiac implantable devices. Dr. Parkash is the Associate Scientific Director of the Cardiac Arrhythmia Network, dedicated to reducing sudden cardiac death, atrial fibrillation and syncope in Canada.
MD., Ph.D., FRCSC
Dr. Whitlock is a Professor of Surgery at McMaster University and a practicing cardiac surgeon at Hamilton Health Sciences. He is a lead investigator at the Population Health Research Institute and the principal investigator of the LAAOS III trial, along with co-principal investigator Dr. Stuart Connolly. Dr. Whitlock holds the Canada Research Chair in Cardiovascular Surgery and a career award from the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.
Through the multinational studies that he has led, which include SIRS, TRICS III, VISION Cardiac, and LAAOS III, he has established a network of over 130 collaborating cardiac surgical centres in 32 countries.
MDScott D. Solomon, MD is the Edward D. Frohlich Distinguished Chair, Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Senior Physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He received his A.B. from Williams College and his M.D. from Harvard Medical School.
Dr. Solomon’s research interests have focused on changes in ventricular structure and function following myocardial injury, modifiers of risk and influences of outcome in patients following myocardial infarction and with chronic heart failure, cardiovascular safety of non-cardiovascular therapies, factors that influence the transition from hypertension to heart failure, and heart failure with preserved ejection fraction. He has pioneered the use of cardiac imaging in cardiovascular drug and device development and use of imaging in clinical trials. He is an expert in cardiovascular safety and outcomes research, and led the NIH-sponsored Celecoxib Cross-trials Safety Study which directly informed regulatory agencies about the safety of widely used non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents. He and his research group have played a leading role in the development of several heart failure therapeutics, through phase 2 and phase 3 international clinical trials in heart failure, hypertension and myocardial infarction, including the SAVE, HEART, VALIANT, CHARM, PEACE, OVERTURE, MADITCRT, ALOFT, ALLAY, TREAT, RED-HF, ALTITUDE, FREEDOM, TOPCAT, ASTRONAUT, ATMOSPHERE, COSMIC, APOLLO, PARADIGM, PARAGON, DAPA-HF, EXPLORER-HCM, GALACTICHF trials. He directs the Cardiac Imaging Core Laboratory and the Clinical Trials Endpoints Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He directed the Cardiac Imaging Center for the NHLBI Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) study and Hispanic Community Health Study – Study of Latinos (HCHS-SOL), the two largest NIH cohort studies. He led the first successful Phase II trial in heart failure with preserved ejection fraction, the PARAGON-HF and the ongoing DELIVER and FINEARTS outcomes trial in HFpEF. He served as PI for the NHLBI funded INVESTED trial studying influenza vaccine to reduce cardiovascular events.
Dr. Solomon leads a research group consisting of 8 faculty members, 8 research fellows and 40 support staff. He currently receives, or has received, extensive research support from the NIH and multiple industry sponsors. He has directed the Harvard Medical School Cardiovascular Clerkship and the Echocardiography training program at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He has authored more than 700 peer-reviewed articles, reviews and editorials, three textbooks of cardiac imaging, including Essential Echocardiography, A Companion to Braunwald’s Heart Disease (2018), and the Echocardiography sections for the 10th and 11th edition of Braunwald’s Heart Disease and 19th and 20th edition Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine. He is listed by Thomson-Reuters as one of the most highly cited scientists for the past 5 years. He has received a Doctor Honoris Causa (honorary doctorate) from Semmelweis University in Budapest, Hungary. He has served as Cardiology Section Editor at UpToDate, Associate Editor at Circulation, International Associate Editor at the European Heart Journal, and currently serves as editor for the 12th Edition of Braunwald’s Heart Disease.
MD , MSc, MPH, FRCPC, FCCS
Dr. Virani is Chief of Cardiology at Providence Health Care and Physician Program Director for the Provincial Heart Centre at St. Paul’s Hospital.
A key opinion leader for heart failure in Canada, Dr. Virani is Provincial Medical Director for Cardiac Services BC, a Past-President of the Canadian Heart Failure Society as well as Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of British Columbia.
He completed his internal medicine and cardiology training at UBC before embarking on a sub-specialization in heart failure and cardiac transplantation at Stanford University. He also has a Master’s degree in Public Health from Columbia University with a focus on healthcare management. His professional interests include public policy related to health care delivery with specific reference to healthcare systems redesign and quality in the Canadian context.
He is Co-Chair of the Canadian Cardiovascular Society Heart Failure Guidelines Panel and Co-Chair of BC’s Provincial Advisory Panel on Cardiac Health. He also serves as Medical Director for HeartLife Foundation, Canada’s first and only patient-led national heart failure organization.
MD, MSc, FRCPC, FACC, FAHA, FESC, FCCSDr. Shaun Goodman is a Staff Cardiologist and Associate Head in the Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, at St. Michael’s Hospital. He is a Professor and Heart & Stroke Foundation of Ontario (Polo) Chair in the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto. He is a Consultant to the Canadian Heart Research Centre (CHRC). He is an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Alberta and a Co-Director of the Canadian VIGOUR Centre. Based upon his longstanding interest and research in the secondary prevention management of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD), he has served as a Steering (e.g., EXSCEL, EMPACT-MI) and Data Safety Monitoring (e.g., HARMONY, SOUL, FLOW) Committee member of many clinical trials of glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists and sodium–glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors in ASCVD patients with and without Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM).
MD, FRCPC, MHScDr. Field is a stroke neurologist and clinician-scientist at the University of British Columbia. Her research interests are clinical trials, and means to enhance trial efficiency through improved characterization of patient-centred outcomes and incorporation of existing and emergent technology. She is the co-lead for the first Canadian Best Practice Guidelines for management of Cerebral Venous Thrombosis and was named as one of Canada’s Top 40 under 40 in 2020.
Faculty - Symposia & Corridor Consults
Dr. Alice Cheng is an Endocrinologist at Trillium Health Partners (Credit Valley Hospital) in Mississauga and St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto and is an Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto. After completing Endocrinology training at the University of Toronto she also completed the Master Teacher Program offered through the Department of Medicine. She has served on the Expert Committee for the 2003 Diabetes Canada clinical practice guidelines and the Steering and Expert Committees for the 2008 revision. She has also served as Chair for the 2013 Diabetes Canada clinical practice guidelines. Dr. Cheng is actively involved in continuing education and has received a Certificate of Recognition from the Ontario College of Family Physicians for her contributions to diabetes care and family medicine education. In addition, she has been awarded the national Charles H. Best Award by Diabetes Canada.
@MD, FRCPC, FHRS
Dr. Atul Verma is a staff cardiac electrophysiologist and Director of Arrhythmia Services at Southlake Regional Health Care Centre in Newmarket, Ontario, Canada. He is an Associate Professor with the University of Toronto and Adjunct Professor with McGill University. Specific interests include ablation of atrial fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia especially new techniques and technologies.
Dr. Verma has served as Chair or writing member of a number of national and international guideline committees including the Canadian Cardiovascular Society Atrial Fibrillation Guidelines Committee and the HRS Consensus Statement on Catheter Ablation of AF. He has also led many clinical trials in cardiac ablation.
Dr. Verma completed his medical school and cardiology residency at the University of Toronto and then specialized in cardiac electrophysiology at the Cleveland Clinic. He has published over 250 peer-reviewed articles in many journals including the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA, Lancet, Circulation, JACC, European Heart Journal, and others.
MD, MSc, FRCP, FACC
Beth Abramson MD is Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Toronto. She is the Paul Albrechtsen Professor in Cardiac Prevention and Women’s Health in the Division of Cardiology at St. Michael’s Hospital, University of Toronto. Her interest is knowledge translation, including writing guidelines to educate physicians on preventive cardiology and women’s health issues:
2000 primary panel: CCS Women and Ischemic Heart Disease;
2005, 2021 co-chair: CCS Guideline on Peripheral Arterial Disease
2009, 2013 and 2020 primary panel: Canadian Menopause guidelines
2014 primary panel: Canadian guidelines for the management of stable ischemic heart disease.
Dr. Abramson’s is involved in the North American Menopause Societys’ (NAMS) awareness efforts. She is on the American College of Cardiology’s hypertension working group and the American Society of Preventive Cardiology’s Women’s working group. She is a founding member and outgoing Chair (2018-2020) of the Canadian Women's Heart Health Alliance Education Working group, which has created an electronic course and toolkit on Women and Heart Disease for MDs. She enjoys educating the public on heart health and is a national spokesperson for the Heart and Stroke Foundation. Her book, Heart Health for Canadians, published in 2013, aims to help people prevent and understand heart disease. In 2015 she was awarded the prestigious Harold N. Segal award of Merit, in recognition of her many contributions to preventing heart disease amongst Canadians. She currently directs a fellowship in Preventive Cardiology at the University of Toronto.
MD, FRCPC, FCCS, FACC, FHFSA
Dr. Jonathan Howlett is an Advanced Heart Failure Cardiologist. Dr. Howlett graduated from the University of Toronto Medical School in 1989, completed Internal Medicine and Cardiology studies at Dalhousie University in 1994, and continued his training at the Toronto Congenital Cardiac Centre for Adults. He served as Assistant Professor of Medicine at Dalhousie University in Halifax from 1995 to 2008, and then became Clinical Professor of Medicine at the Libin Cardiovascular Institute and Cumming School of Medicine at the University of Calgary, where he remains at present.
His current activities include clinical trials research in the areas of heart failure, health care delivery, outcomes and knowledge translation. He is past Chair of the Canadian Cardiovascular Society Heart Failure Guidelines and has served on several national and international Guidelines Committees, Scientific Planning and Steering Committees. He is currently Co-Chair of the Heart Failure Working Group Alberta Strategic CV Clinical Network, Past and Founding President of the Canadian Heart Failure Society and co-chair of the CHFS Annual HF Update Meeting. He publishes actively in the areas of chronic cardiovascular disease management, heart failure and end of life, and has published over 150 peer-reviewed articles and is an Associate Editor of the Merck Manual.
MBBCh, MScDr. Justin Ezekowitz obtained his Bachelor of Science degree (honours in zoology) at the University of Alberta, and his medical training at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, where he earned an honours degree. He completed his residency in internal medicine at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center / Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas. He then returned to Canada for a fellowship and research training, and completed a Master of Science in clinical epidemiology at the University of Alberta's Department of Public Health Sciences, as well as a cardiology fellowship at the University of Alberta.
He is on faculty as a Professor of Medicine in the Division of Cardiology, Director of the University of Alberta Cardiovascular Research Institute, and Co-Director of the Canadian VIGOUR Centre at the University of Alberta. He is a cardiologist at the University of Alberta Hospital and Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute.
His research focuses on heart failure (specifically with heart "pump" problems or end-stage heart disease). He is involved in numerous clinical trials in heart failure at the local and international levels. He has authored a number of book chapters in medical textbooks and over 300 publications in his field.
Dr. Ezekowitz is involved with numerous organizations including the Canadian Cardiovascular Society, CHFS, the Heart & Stroke Foundation, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Heart Failure Society of America, the European Society of Cardiology and the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association.
Dr. Steve Wong completed his MD degree at the University of Calgary. He joined the Internal Medicine residency program at the University of British Columbia and completed a fifth year in the General Internal Medicine Fellowship with a focus on perioperative medicine.
Dr. Wong has developed a number of courses and initiatives aimed at bridging technology, evidence-based medicine and clinical practice in close collaboration with the UBC Division of Continuing Professional Development (UBC CPD). He is currently the Medical Director for "This Changed My Practice" (www.thischangedmypractice.com) -- a free, web-based educational resource for BC physicians at UBC CPD. The site won the Royal College award for Innovation in Medical Education as well as the CFPC Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Program Award.
Currently in practice in Vancouver at the Seymour Clinic and in Richmond, BC as a General Internist, Dr. Wong's clinical interests include hypertension, lipids, cardiology and global management of diabetes. He also attends on the clinical teaching unit at VGH and has trainees 12 months a year integrated into all of his practice environments.
MD FACC FASE
Dr Ahooja is a Cardiologist in the greater Toronto area with board certifications in Internal Medicine, Cardiology, Echocardiography, Nuclear cardiology and Cardiac CT. Her practice encompasses the entire spectrum of cardiovascular disease with a focus on advanced cardiac imaging and preventative care. Her training has spanned four countries. She completed her bachelors degree at the University of Toronto, medical school at Kasturba Medical College, India and the University of the West Indies followed by Internal Medicine residency and Cardiovascular Fellowship at Wayne State University in Detroit Michigan where she served as Chief Fellow during her training. Upon graduating, she practiced Invasive Cardiology at Troy Beaumont and Mclaren hospitals in northern Michigan during which time, she acted as associate professor with the University of Michigan, training medical students and residents while also acting as director of the Echo and TEE labs.
In 2007 she returned to Canada to join the Heart Health Institute. She has received several awards for excellence in clinical care and has co-authored a chapter in the Textbook of Comprehensive Hypertension. She serves on the advisory board for the Canadian Medical and Surgical Knowledge Translation Research Group and on the membership committee of the American Society of Echocardiography. She is also the current Co-Chair of the Year in Review committee to help develop the scientific program of the annual Canadian Cardiovascular Congress.