Le Conseil d’administration

Dr. David MalkinDr. David Malkin, clinician-scientist, cancer physician and academic leader, is appointed 2nd President of Friends of CIHR
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Toronto – October 15, 2021 – The Board of Directors of Friends of Canadian Institutes of Health Research (FCIHR) is pleased to announce that Dr. David Malkin, MD, FRCPC is appointed President and Board Chair of FCIHR – effective January 1, 2022. Dr. Malkin is a pediatric oncologist, an active clinician-scientist, a committed educator and an accomplished administrative leader.

Dr. Malkin is Professor of Pediatrics and Medical Biophysics in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto and is the CIBC Children’s Foundation Chair in Child Health Research, Director of the Cancer Genetics Program, and co-lead of the Precision Child Health initiative at the Hospital for Sick Children. In addition, he leads regional and national programs in precision oncology for children, adolescents and young adult cancer patients with the aim to transform the outcomes for these patients. Dr. Malkin’s research program focuses on genetic and genomic mechanisms of childhood cancer susceptibility, advances from which have led him to receive many awards and recognitions.

Dr. Malkin succeeds Dr. Aubie Angel, founding President of FCIHR, who notes:
“I am delighted with this Appointment as Dr. David Malkin brings new energy and perspective to the vision and mission of FCIHR and will provide fresh leadership and direction for the many members of our vibrant enterprise”.

FCIHR is a national not-for-profit organization that was established in 2000 to support the goals and ideals of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and to communicate the value of health research to a broad, multifaceted public audience. Through a spectrum of programs, FCIHR also seeks to attract and support young health science trainees and scientists in their career development. The Henry G. Friesen International Prize in Health Research program, which began in 2006 and which includes visits and scholarly events in Canadian universities, exemplifies our mission. FCIHR also convenes public gatherings and roundtables of experts to discuss important health sciences issues of the day, and therein collaborates with like-minded Canadian health science organizations in all sectors.

For further information on Friends of CIHR and its various programs, please visit: or contact: Cristina S. Castellvi. Tel. #: (416) 506-1597. Email:

Dr. Bev Holmes (Vice President, FCIHR)

As President & CEO of the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research, Bev is focused on the funding, production and uptake of health research and health care-related evidence in British Columbia.

Her leadership and commitment to integrating these areas is evident in her work at MSFHR and as vice president of Friends of CIHR, as well as her lead role in developing the BC SUPPORT Unit.

Since joining MSFHR in 2010, Bev has supported the Foundation through a period of organizational redesign and program expansion, and helped establish MSFHR’s reputation as a leader in knowledge translation. Under her leadership, the Foundation has launched a new suite of funding programs that focus on developing, retaining, and recruiting the talented people whose research improves the health of British Columbians, addresses health system priorities, creates jobs and adds to the knowledge economy.

Bev is an active and respected member of the health research community and is regularly called upon to publish and present internationally on health research funding, and how best to support the translation of research evidence into policy and practice.

Bev’s roles prior to MSFHR include health communications and knowledge translation consultant, researcher, writer and communications director. Bev received her MA and PhD from SFU’s School of Communication and holds adjunct appointments at UBC’s School of Population and Public Health and SFU’s Faculty of Health Sciences. Her research interests include knowledge translation, discourse analysis, health communication, risk communication, and public involvement in health research.

Dr. Reinhart Reithmeier (Treasurer, FCIHR)

Reinhart Reithmeier obtained his B.Sc. at Carleton University in 1972 and his Ph.D. in Biochemistry at the University of British Columbia in 1977. Following post-doctoral training at Harvard and the University of Toronto he obtained his first faculty position at the University of Alberta in 1980. Dr. Reithmeier is known internationally for his research on anion transport membrane proteins in human health and disease. An award-winning lecturer, Dr. Reithmeier enjoys teaching introductory biochemistry to 1,000 undergraduate students every year, as well as upper level and graduate courses. As former Chair of Biochemistry and a Special Advisor to the Dean of Graduate Studies on graduate professional and leadership development, Dr. Reithmeier is dedicated to ensuring that graduate students have the skill set and network to be fully prepared to take advantage of the diverse job opportunities available to them in today’s global marketplace. His leadership was recognized in 2012 by election to the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences.

Dr. Andrea Baumann (Director, FCIHR)

Dr. Andrea Baumann is the Associate Vice-President of Global Health, Director of the WHO Collaborating Centre in Primary Care and Health Human Resources and Fellow in the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. Dr. Baumann is widely recognized for her leadership, research and innovation. She has a history of guiding significant initiatives that have had an impact on health systems. She developed a transnational consortium model of graduate education that has received national and international awards. During her tenure as board chair, she amalgamated three large hospitals and created a more effective governance structure.

Dr. Baumann has over 200 peer-reviewed publications, including four books, and she is considered a methodological expert in health systems, human resources and workforce integration. Her work emphasizes the critical link between evidence, policy and practice. Foci include the effect of policy on the employment integration of internationally trained healthcare professionals, emerging trends in infectious disease and potential outcomes for health human resources and the influence of transdisciplinary collaboration on health education.

Dr. Rod McInnes (Director, FCIHR)

Roderick R. McInnes, CM OOnt MD, PhD is the Alva Chair in Human Genetics, Professor of Human Genetics and Biochemistry, and Senior Investigator at the Lady Davis Institute of the Jewish General Hospital, all of McGill University.

Prof. McInnes was previously the Head of the Program in Developmental Biology at the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, and a University Professor at the University of Toronto, an HHMI International Research Scholar, and the Inaugural Scientific Director of the Institute of Genetics of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). He has made important contributions to understanding the molecular basis of retinal and eye development, the identification of genes and processes associated with retinal degeneration, and knowledge of synaptic proteins that modulate ion channels in the nervous system. He is one of three coauthors of the 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th editions of the classic textbook Thompson and Thompson’s Genetics in Medicine, for which the co-authors received the 2015 American Society of Human Genetics Award for Excellence in Human Genetics Education. In 2010, Dr. McInnes was President of the American Society of Human Genetics. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences (CAHS), and was appointed to the Order of Ontario in 2008 and the Order of Canada in 2009. From 2009- 2021 (March) he was the Director of the Lady Davis Institute and until 2017, Canada Research Chair in Neurogenetics. In 2017-2018 he served as the Acting President of CIHR. He received the Paul Armstrong Lecture Award from the CAHS for leadership in advancing health sciences, and the Research Canada Leadership in Advocacy Award for championing health research at the national level in 2019.

Dr. Lynne-Marie Postovit (Director, FCIHR)

Dr. Postovit earned her Bachelor of Science (Honours) at Queen’s University in 1999. After receiving her PhD in Anatomy and Cell Biology at Queen’s, Dr. Postovit completed a CIHR Postdoctoral Fellowship at Northwestern University in the Department of Cancer Biology and Epigenomics. Dr. Postovit was an Assistant Professor at Western University from 2007-2013 and has been an Associate Professor at the University of Alberta since 2014, where she co-directed the Cancer Research Institute of Northern Alberta.

As a recognized authority on ovarian cancer, Dr. Postovit has published more than 60 papers in peer-reviewed journals, including the International Journal of Molecular Science, Frontiers in Immunology, and Scientific Reports. Dr. Postovit has been invited to present her work at national and international research institutes and conferences, including the Karolinska Institute in Sweden and the Canadian Cancer Research Conference. In 2009, she was the recipient of the Peter Lougheed/CIHR New Investigator Award. Demonstrating excellence as a researcher, Dr. Postovit was elected as a Member of the Royal Society of Canada’s College of New Scholars, Artists, and Scientists in 2016.

In addition to her prolific research output, Dr. Postovit has made remarkable contributions to the wider community through her service to the profession. She serves on the editorial boards of Oncology Signaling, Scientific Reports, and the Journal of Cell Communication and Signaling. In 2018, Dr. Postovit chaired the Canadian Conference on Ovarian Cancer Research and was an organizing committee member for the Canadian Oxidative Stress Consortium. She has made outreach and public-facing research a priority as part of her career, participating in a number of community events such as Ovarian Cancer Canada Run for Hope and the Royal Alex Foundation.

Dr. Linda Rabeneck (Director, FCIHR)

Dr. Linda Rabeneck, a physician, clinician scientist and health care executive, is Vice President, Prevention and Cancer Control at Cancer Care Ontario, Professor of Medicine and Professor, Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto, and Senior Scientist at the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES) in Toronto.
Dr. Rabeneck received her MD from the University of British Columbia (UBC), followed by post-graduate training in Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology at UBC and the University of Toronto. She received her Master’s degree in Public Health (MPH) from Yale University, where she trained as a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar.
Dr. Rabeneck, whose scholarly work involves the evaluation of health care interventions and health system performance, is best known for her research on the quality and effectiveness of colorectal cancer screening. She has authored approximately 230 peer reviewed publications.
Dr. Rabeneck played a leadership role in the launch of ColonCancerCheck in Ontario, Canada’s first organized, province-wide colorectal cancer screening program. Under her leadership, Ontario was also the first province in Canada to launch an organized screening program for women at high risk of breast cancer and to launch a pilot of organized lung screening for persons at high risk of the disease.
Dr. Rabeneck is Chair, Colorectal Cancer Screening Committee of the World Endoscopy Organization (WEO), Associate Editor of Gastroenterology, Master of the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG), recipient of the ACG’s Berk/Fise Clinical Achievement Award, and recipient of UBC’s Medical Alumni Association Wallace Wilson Leadership Award. Dr. Rabeneck was elected President of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences in 2017.

Dr. Robert (Bob) Roberts (Director, FCIHR)

Whether it was saving the Prince of Saudi Arabia’s life, co-discovering more than 60 genes related to coronary artery disease, consulting for NASA or developing the quantitative test that has been used to diagnose heart attacks for three decades, Robert Roberts, MD, has advanced health care across the world as the cardiologist who brought molecular biology and genetics to heart disease.

Dr. Roberts, a professor at the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix and department chair of the International Society for Cardiovascular Translational Research (ISCTR) — a nonprofit organization founded by Nabil Dib, MD, to expedite scientific discovery to clinical applications — is a renowned physician, who has trained more than 400 cardiologists. Many of his students are trained in both cardiology and molecular biology and have gone on to become chiefs of cardiology and chiefs of medicine; one even became the president of Ecuador.

“Bringing the techniques of molecular biology to cardiologists has been a large accomplishment in my life,” he said. “I saw it as the future, but many did not for a good reason. Molecular biology is all about growth, and the heart is a terminally differentiated organ, meaning it doesn’t grow any new cells. However, I believed in the techniques. I knew the problems I wanted to answer — that my conventional techniques couldn’t answer — and I could see where they were going to make a difference.”

As part of his role at the UA College of Medicine – Phoenix, Dr. Roberts teaches molecular biology and genetics of the heart. And in his year and half at the ISCTR, the organization has developed an online course with faculty from across North America. The course is planned to go live in August 2017.

“My goal at the college is to try and enhance the reputation of the medical school by providing leadership in research and developing centers of excellence between the Banner Health Care system and the University of Arizona,” Dr. Roberts said.

Dr. Roberts grew up in Newfoundland, Canada. He always knew that he wanted to do something that involved people, and he narrowed his choices down to joining the seminary or applying to medical school. He spent one year in the seminary and then decided to pursue medicine.

“My parents were happy either way,” Dr. Roberts said. “In my home, my parents felt that people had to give back to the community. It was a part of life.”

Dr. Roberts’ accomplished career as a geneticist and cardiologist includes leading the cardiology department at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston for 23 years and serving as the President and CEO of the University of Ottawa Heart Institute, UOHI, where he completed two five-year terms.

Under Dr. Roberts’ leadership, the UOHI flourished. Patient wait times decreased from six months to three weeks; several diagnostic and therapeutic laboratories were added; he founded and directed the Ruddy Canadian Cardiovascular Genetics Centre; and established the Research Methods Centre. The research endowment tripled from $15 million to $55 million, as well. UOHI achieved world recognition for its research impact, being ranked by Scimago Institutions Rankings, a science evaluation resource, in the top 2 percent of 3,043 institutions worldwide.

Among Dr. Roberts’ several accomplishments, the most notable are developing the MBCK quantitative test, which has been used as the gold standard to diagnose heart attacks for three decades, and discovering several genes responsible for heart disease, including the first gene for atrial fibrillation, WPW Syndrome and Coronary Artery Disease (9p21). In total, he has co-discovered more than 60 genes associated with CAD.

From 1987 until 2002, Dr. Roberts was a consultant to NASA.

“My most singular moment was when I gave permission for John Glen to go into space,” Dr. Roberts said. “As a result of that, my wife and I were invited to watch the takeoff from Cape Kennedy. We also met several of the astronauts at dinner that night. It was a great experience.”

Throughout his career, Dr. Roberts has been able to combine his love for travel and history. He has traveled extensively, and as chief of cardiology at Baylor, he participated in an affiliate hospital in Istanbul, where he took care of the royal family in Saudi Arabia as its main cardiologist. He has traveled across the world to give prestigious presentations, including the Opening Plenary Address of the American College of Cardiology, the Japanese College of Cardiology and the Australian and New Zealand Heart Association.

“When I went to places like Cairo and saw the poverty, I really gained a new perspective,” Dr. Roberts said. “I always tell my wife and children ‘Don’t complain to me, you are beyond that. You’ve got more than you will ever need. Go with it.’ I feel most days are more positive and grateful when I think of those months traveling.”

Dr. Roberts completed his undergraduate degree from Memorial University, went to medical school at Dalhousie University and completed his residency at Dalhousie University and the University of Toronto. Dr. Roberts has furthered his training with multiple fellowships, including one in cardiology at the University of Toronto in 1971 and a research fellowship at the University of California San Diego. He has received many awards for his scientific contributions, including the Distinguished Scientist of American College of Cardiology and election to the Academy of Scientists of the Royal Society of Canada.

Dr. Calvin Stiller (Director, FCIHR)

Championed innovation in health and biomedical research and pioneered multi-organ transplantation

A leading authority on immunology and organ transplantation

Dr. Stiller’s magic touch as a builder pervades every phase of his career. A physician, scientist, administrator, policy innovator and entrepreneur, Dr. Stiller developed one of the most dynamic organ transplant programs in the nation and championed countless other initiatives that have enriched research enterprise in Canada. It was Dr. Stiller who, in the late 1970’s, obtained the promising new drug cyclosporine and organized its first multi-centre clinical trial in kidney transplantation in North America, creating the foundation for subsequent studies that put Canada on the world stage. He was responsible for the ground-breaking research that showed that cyclosporine, an immunosuppressant, could halt the progression of Type 1 Diabetes – demonstrating that it was an immune disorder.

Impact on lives today
Dr. Stiller’s ground-breaking research and tireless promotion of organ transplantation continues to sustain life-saving work. When Dr. Stiller began his career in medicine, less than 50 organ transplants were performed in London each year. As of 2004, there were over 200 and in 2019 there were over 3,000 across Canada. Additionally, in a lifetime an individual might be successful in creating one institution or program. Dr. Stiller has been the architect of many, including the Medical Hall of Fame. His visionary building of public and private institutions has created a legacy that for many years will advance Canadian research, employ thousands of individuals, and raise the profile of Canadian innovation around the world.

Dr. Brian Postl (Director, FCIHR)

Dr. Brian Postl has been named a member of the Order of Canada for his leadership of, and involvement in, the advancement of clinical and academic health care in Manitoba.

The dean of Max Rady College of Medicine, dean of Rady Faculty of Health Sciences and vice-provost (health sciences), University of Manitoba was one of 114 new appointments to receive one of the country’s highest honours in November 2020.

Since 1967, the Order of Canada has been awarded to people who make extraordinary contributions to the nation. The appointments are made by the Governor General on the recommendation of the advisory council for the Order of Canada.

Dr. Postl was appointed dean of the Rady Faculty of Health Sciences in 2014 and has been dean of the Max Rady College of Medicine since 2010. Under his leadership, he brought together the Dr. Gerald Niznick College of Dentistry, Max Rady College of Medicine, and the Colleges of Nursing, Pharmacy and Rehabilitation Sciences to create one faculty.

The University of Manitoba medical school graduate, Class of 1976, has held several leadership roles at his alma mater. He has served as head of the departments of pediatrics and child health, and community health sciences at the Max Rady College of Medicine. He was also the director of the J.A. Hildes Northern Medical Unit (now Ongomiizwin-Health Services) and the community medical residency program.

Dr. Postl has made many contributions at the local, provincial and national levels. He was the founding president and chief executive officer of the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, a founding member of the Winnipeg Poverty Reduction Council, served as co-chair of the Premier’s Economic Advisory Committee, and was chair of Research Manitoba. In 2005, Postl was appointed federal wait time advisor to the prime minister.

As medical school dean, Dr. Postl has led policy changes to admissions criteria in medicine to create a student body that more closely reflects the demographics of Manitoba’s population, including rural, French/English bilingual stream, Indigenous admissions processes and new guidelines aimed at advantaging historically under-represented individuals related to socio-economic, sexual orientation and socio-cultural conditions.

Dr. Postl is focused on advocacy through his policy and public service work for equitable and comprehensive health care for Indigenous communities, which is reflected in his commitment to the establishment of the Rady Faculty’s Indigenous Institute of Health and Healing-Ongomiizwin and the Rady Faculty’s Truth & Reconciliation Commission action plan.

He has also championed Equity, Diversity and Inclusion across the Rady Faculty and supported the passage last summer of the country’s first Disruptions of all Forms of Racism policy at a post-secondary institution.

Dr. Marie-Josée Hébert (Director, FCIHR)

Marie-Josée Hébert earned a specialized degree in nephrology at the Université de Montréal, followed by postdoctoral studies at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard. Dr. Hébert is a researcher and nephrologist-transplant physician at CHUM, professor in the faculty of medicine and Shire Chair in Renal Transplantation and Regeneration. Her work has enabled the discovery of new mechanisms involved in the rejection of transplanted organs. In 2015, Dr. Hébert received the Dr. John B. Dossetor Award from the Kidney Foundation of Canada in recognition of her outstanding contribution to research in kidney diseases. In 2017, she was named scientist of the year by the newspaper La Presse and, in 2020, was inducted as a fellow in the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. As vice-rector of research, discovery, creation and innovation at the Université de Montréal since 2015, she has played a leading role in the development of major interdisciplinary research initiatives, including the launch of IVADO, Mila and of the Montreal Declaration for the Responsible Development of Artificial Intelligence.

2021 FCIHR Board - As of September 1, 2021

Directors Emeriti

Le Dr Pierre Bois (décédé)
Université de Montréal

Dr. David Evans
University of Alberta

Dr. Phil Gold
McGill University

Dr. Martin Hollenberg
University of British Columbia

Dr. Grant Pierce
St. Boniface Hospital – Albrechtsen Research Centre, Winnipeg

Past Board Members / Le Conseil d’administration (passé)

Dr. Stephanie Atkinson
McMaster University

Dr. Patricia Baird
University of British Columbia

Mr. Glenn G. Brimacombe
Canadian Psychological Association

Dr. Serge Carrière
Université de Montréal

Mr. Michael Cloutier
InterMune, Canada

Dr. William “Bill” Cochrane (deceased)
University of Calgary

Dr. Juliette “Archie” Cooper
University of Manitoba

Dr. Henry Dinsdale
Queen’s University

Dr. John Foerster (deceased)
University of Manitoba

Dr. Cy Frank (deceased)
University of Calgary

Dr. Pavel Hamet
Universite de Montreal

Dr. David Hawkins (deceased)
Dalhousie University

Dr. Charles Hollenberg (deceased)
University of Toronto

Mr. Patrick (Pat) Lafferty

Dr. David McLean
British Columbia Cancer Agency

Dr. Barry McLennan
University of Saskatchewan

Ms. Cathleen Morrison
Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (past)

Dr. Cam Mustard
University of Toronto

Dr. Fraser Mustard (deceased)
McMaster University

Dr. Dorothy Pringle
University of Toronto

Dr. Emil Skamene
McGill University

Dr. Aubrey Tingle
University of British Columbia



Friends of CIHR is managed by a 15-person Board of Directors elected from the membership at an Annual General Meeting held each autumn in a selected metropolitan centre. Members of the Board of Governors hold terms of office for up to three years and may stand for re-election for any number of terms. Directors serve without remuneration. The Board meets semi-annually through conference calls and a four-person Executive Council, consisting of the President, Vice President, Treasurer and Secretary, meets as often as required to ensure the business of the organization moves forward.

Ad Hoc and Standing Committees may be formed from time to time as required. Currently, an Advisory Committee assists with the management of The Henry G. Friesen International Prize in Health Research. The Board represents a membership active in universities, hospitals, voluntary organizations, community groups and agencies, as well as some private corporations, across the nation.