Update Fall 2013 - Physical Therapy


Update Fall 2013 - Physical Therapy
Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy
Alumni Association
Physical Therapy
Executive Committee
and Occupational
Gaye Walsh
President (on leave)
Therapy Alumni
Margaret Shaw
Mary Sauroil
Interim Co-Chair
Interim Co-Chair
Spring Reunion
Committee and PT
Faculty Rep
Ashley Graham
Update Editor
Biraj Khosla
Achievement Awards
Diane Gasner
Patty Rigby
OT Faculty Rep
Shirley Lupton
Danielle D’Alessandro
Andie Hickling (OT)
Ryan Wells (PT)
Student Reps
Alumni Co-Chair Update...
Our big news is of course the activities of Spring Reunion. You will read about our Alumni
Award winners in a separate article. It is always a real thrill to learn of the wonderful
achievements of our winners. Mary Sauriol, Co-Chair of the Executive, has been chair of our
Special Events Committee and deserves our thanks for the inordinate amount of time required
to ensure the success of our annual meeting and breakfast.
In addition this year, we are planning a very special event with dinner and show at the Famous
People Players Theatre. Diane Gasner has assumed responsibility for planning and
organizing this occasion. Look for more information in this issue. We would like to discover
events which will allow those across the country to participate. Any ideas? Please let us
We are sorry that Angie Andreoli will be leaving us this year. Angie has carried out the duties
of treasurer so ably and we are most grateful for her dedication to her role and to the Alumni.
However, we are happy to send our best wishes to her and her new son - both mother, father
and baby are doing well and getting to know one another.
This Update
Alumni Update
Message from the
Department Chairs
Student Updates
Spring Reunion 2013
Alumni Achievement
On a different note we are sad to report the death of Dr. Katherine Berg's mother in late July. On behalf of all alumni we
extend our deepest sympathy to Katherine.
Please keep in touch with your alumni association, e-mail provides up with a wonderful way of communicating and allows
us to keep in touch. PLEASE USE IT! We want to hear from you.
Sincerely, Marg Shaw
Update your address:
PT/OT Alumni Association
University of Toronto
160/500 University Avenue
Toronto, ON M5G 1V7
Or contact Morgan Tilley at:
Email: [email protected]
Tel: 416-978-3588
Fax: 416-946-7722
Or directly by clicking here
UPDATE welcomes submissions from alumni. We want to hear about your accomplishments!
Please note submissions are subject to gentle editing. Please send submission to [email protected]
Departmental Update: Occupational
Science and Occupational Therapy
Greetings! We’ve had an exciting summer with lots of news to share!
Hear about Angela’s research
at the 2013 OS&OT Research
Symposium (see below).
I am thrilled to announce that Dr. Angela Colantonio (’78)
has been awarded the very prestigious and well deserved
Canadian Institutes of Health Research Chair in Gender,
Work and Health for her research program: Gender, Work and
Susan Rappolt, Chair
Traumatic Brain Injury: Addressing the Gap in Occupational
Health and Safety (OHS) Research, Policy, and Practice. Through this award Angela will
train new researchers to study the relationships between work and health associated with
gender and sex and translate the findings into recommendations for interventions and
policies. Angela’s research has shown that women sustain work-related head injuries
much more frequently than previously reported, and she has identified the risk factors
associated with gender and types of industry. Angela has also examined the social and
environmental factors that affect women's long term health outcomes following traumatic
brain injuries. She has discovered that significant numbers of homeless and incarcerated
individuals have had traumatic head injuries, but that there are very few resources to
address the needs of these individuals. In a set of studies, Angela tracked traumatic and
non-traumatic brain injuries across the continuum of care for all 14 Local Integrated
Health Networks in Ontario, providing guidance to hospital and community programs on
what resources are needed in each jurisdiction. Angela has worked tirelessly with health,
labour and housing policy-makers and community partners, such as the Brain Injury
Association, to align public policies with evidence. Angela contributes to numerous
national and international research organizations, and leads the American Congress of
Rehabilitation Medicine’s Task Force on Girls & Women with Acquired Brain Injury. Within
the Department, Angela is a highly esteemed mentor and colleague. She chairs our
Research Committee and has led unprecedented Department-wide grant initiatives in
occupation-based interventions for chronic disease prevention and management. Angela
has also held the Saunderson Family Chair in Acquired Brain Injury Research at the
Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, University Hospital Network since 2003.
Thelma Cardwell Research Day
The 2013 Thelma Cardwell Lecture and Student Research Day was held on June 16th in the McLeod Auditorium. Dr.
Karen Whalley Hammell, PhD, MSc, Dip COT (UK), OT(C), was selected by faculty members as the 2013 Thelma
Cardwell Lecturer. Dr. Walley Hammell’s address: Beyond deficits: Perspectives on well-being and occupational
therapy provided a very stimulating challenge to more critically examine some of the profession’s most cherished
values. Specifically, Dr. Whalley Hammell discussed our commitment to client-centredness in light of the
profession’s current core competency, “enablement”. Dr. Whalley Hammell noted that by definition, enablement is
the process of allowing, permitting, making able, giving power, making possible, which implies a hierarchical
relationship in which the powerful allow opportunities and bestow abilities on the powerless. Therefore, she
argued, our commitment to client-centredness conflicts with purpose of enablement. Dr. Whalley Hammell
suggested shifting our focus from ‘what can I do for this person?’ to ‘who is this person and what do they need?’ to
promote “a client-centred partnership with shared power”. Dr. Whalley Hammell
introduced a Respect Model of Client-centred Occupational Therapy that focuses
therapists’ attention on clients’ abilities, strengths, experiences, knowledge and their
moral right to make choices concerning their lives, while maintaining a critical
awareness of power relations and of cultural humility. Year 2 Student Melissa Paniccia
provided a heartfelt response to Dr. Whalley Hammell’s Thelma Cardwell Lecture. Please
see the link for the 2013 Thelma Cardwell Lecture and Research Day on our website
(http://www.ot.utoronto.ca/research/research_day/index.asp) where you will find Dr.
Whalley Hammell’s lecture, the proceedings of the day and wonderful photos of our
speakers, award winners and students presenting their work.
In her welcoming remarks, Dean Catharine Whiteside congratulated our second year students’ on their
outstanding research projects. Every year we are more impressed with our students’ research methods, findings
and the sophistication of their oral and poster presentations. Almost all of our students
this year also presented their research at the Canadian Association of Occupational
Therapists Annual Conference in Victoria in May, or will be presenting at the Ontario
Society of Occupational Therapists Annual Conference in London on September. Here is
a sample of the 2013 research topics, students and supervisors:
Caregivers and Persons with Dementia: Increasing Participation in Shared Leisure
Activities Michelle DiLauro & Amanda Pereira (students) Jennifer Carr (’97), Mary Chui and
Virginia Wesson (supervisors)
Living with Episodic Mental Illness: Work versus Benefits Amanda Yaeck & Justin Simon (students) Rebecca Gewurtz
Bonnie Kirsh (’77) (supervisors)
The Effectiveness of Occupational Therapy in an Oncology Rehab Program Jaymie Labelle & Tiffany Wu (students),
Debbie Hebert, Jennifer Soong (’08), Margaret Lui (’08) & Stacey Marshall (supervisors)
Outcomes in Pediatric Flexor Tendon Injuries Sara Lindsay & Cynthia Ho (students), Emily Ho (’97) supervisor
Screening for Traumatic Brain Injury and Cognitive Impairments in Homeless and At Risk Youth Jade Ryan &
Katie Uram (students), Nancy Ennis, Angela Colantonio (’78), Michael Cusimano & Jane Topolovec-Vranic (supervisors)
Leadership in Promoting Diversity and Inclusion
For several years members of the Department have been building tools to
promote diversity and inclusion among our students and across society. As part
of The Diversity and Inclusion Group, Barry Trentham, Jill Stier, Debra
Mosnyk (Cameron), Lynn Cockburn, Anne Fourt, Alim Lalani, Denise Reid,
Rebecca Renwick and Ruheena Sangrar have developed a program to support
students’ development of cultural competencies among our culturally diverse
student body. During orientation, group members lead our incoming students
through a cultural sensitivity workshop that highlights cross-cultural communication challenges and builds
awareness of how social-cultural location shapes the therapeutic process. In subsequent sessions, the students
develop guidelines to support their individual and collective ability to learn from one another about cultural
differences, assumptions and health belief systems. The students’ ‘Guidelines for Cross-Cultural Dialogue’ are
then disseminated to students and to core and community faculty to be used in classes, placements and in student
study groups. The Department’s Diversity and Inclusion Group submission of their novel teaching tool was profiled
as part of the 2013 U of T International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (IDERD) Campaign.
Mallory Ryan (’11) and Jade Ryan, MScOT Year 2, sisters who have been dancers since they were three, put their
knowledge of inclusivity to work when they created Dance Ability, a dance program for
children of all abilities. As dance instructors at Dance Elite in Milton, Mallory and Jade
designed the Dance Ability to provide 1:1 assistance through a team of volunteers to meet
the individual needs of students of all ages, from preschool to young adults. In addition to
making the dreams of the children and teens who participate come true, a big part of the
program is the training Jade and Mallory provide to their high school student volunteers.
Here are a few comments from the volunteers and the dancers’ parents:
“The most important thing that I learned is that the kids aren’t as fragile as they look. They are
strong and smart in their own way” - Volunteer
"When [our daughter] was about a year old, they told us she would likely never walk. On her 5th birthday, she
danced with her friends! You may never know how much your class has meant to her and to us." Parent
"I just wanted to thank you for teaching [our son's] dance class. He has made so many improvements in his
gross motor ability. He loves his dance class and practices his "moves" at home - unlike regular physio. We are
amazed at the gains he has made - thank you for this amazing program." Parent
Mallory and Jade were thrilled when Global TV contacted them to showcase Dance Ability on their new program
“Walk the Walk” which will air this fall. We’ll keep you posted on the date!
New Faculty Appointment: With great pleasure we welcome Dr. Nick Reed to our Department as
an OS&OT – Bloorview Research Institute Joint Clinical Scientist. As a graduate of both our MScOT
program (’07) and the PhD program in the Graduate Department of Rehabilitation Science (’12), and
as a sessional instructor in the Department from 2010-2012, Nick is well known for his innovative
research contributions, his engaging teaching style and his ready service to the Department. In his
new Joint Clinical Scientist position Nick will continue to build his program of research on return to
play, school and other aspects of community integration following concussions. Nick will be working
with clinicians at Holland Bloorview to facilitate programs of clinical research to evaluate practices
and set practice standards. As clinical research in occupational therapy practices is something that
many of our institutional partners aspire to, we will work with Nick to support and advance a model for clinical
research among our partner organizations.
2013 Cyclical Program Review – External Review
Every five years at the end of the chair’s term, the Department undergoes a comprehensive external review. Dr.
Juliette Cooper, University of Manitoba, Dr. Mary Law, McMaster University, and Dr. Yolanda Suarez-Balcazar,
University of Illinois at Chicago, have received our self-study and will be on site September 26th and 27th. During the
two days Drs. Cooper, Law and Suarez-Balcazar will meet with the Dean and members of the decanal team, students,
alumni, core faculty, status only and adjunct professors and instructors, chairs of other departments, community
partners and Department staff.
2013 Faculty Assembly and Research Symposium
Please Mark Your Calendars!
Wednesday December 4th 2013
Annual Faculty Assembly
Social and Entrepreneurial Practices of Occupational Therapy:
Forging Beyond Health Care Constraints
Keynote: Dr. Nick Reed
Clinician Scientist, Department of OS&OT and Bloorview Research Institute
Music Room Hart House: 2:00- 4:30 p.m.
Faculty Research Symposium
Brain and Mental Health, Human Development, Complex Diseases, and Global Health
Keynote: Dr. Angela Colantonio
Professor, Department of OS&OT, CIHR Chair in Gender Work and Health
Great Hall Hart House: 5:00-7:00 p.m.
The Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy is incredibly fortunate to have over 400 status
only and adjunct professors and lecturers. We look forward to our Annual Faculty Assembly to share perspectives on
new occupational therapy practices and needs for evidence that will shape our educational and research programs.
Dr. Nick Reed will share his experiences in setting up a private, uninsured occupational therapy practice to guide
children and youth with concussions in safely returning to school, play and sport. Following the Annual Faculty
Assembly we will be celebrating Dr. Angela Colantonio’s CIHR Chair in Gender Work and Health and showcasing
faculty members’ research in the fields of Brain and Mental Health, Human Development, Complex Diseases, and
Global Health.
Thank You
In closing, I would like to express the Department’s gratitude to the 96 Alumni who collectively have
donated over $15,000 through their annual giving, Alumni Reunion donations, and other very thoughtful
gifts this year. Your donations to the Department support our students in four ways. First, your gifts are
used to support entrance scholarships to secure the acceptances of our top ranking applicants to the
program. We will provide four scholarships to incoming students this fall. Second, your gifts support
students in undertaking valuable fieldwork experiences in underserviced settings here and abroad. Over
25% of our students travel outside the Greater Toronto Area and internationally for learning not possible
in downtown Toronto. Third, your donations support student travel to conferences to present their
research and innovations to national and international audiences. Finally your gifts help us support
students who, through unexpected circumstances, find themselves in dire financial need during the
program. Your annual giving makes a great impact on the quality of our students’ experiences, and
enhances their journey to becoming leaders in occupational therapy.
Departmental Update: Physical Therapy
It has been an exciting six months in the Department of Physical
Therapy! The Department has been very engaged on several fronts. For
example, The Ontario Internationally Educated Physical Therapy Bridging
Program (OIEPBP) has continued to grow and move forward with a very
positive energy and focus thanks to the talented team of Sharon
Switzer-McIntyre, Cathy Evans, Alison Bonnyman, Martine Quesnel and
Nicole Percival. The OIEPBP admission process was very successful,
resulting in a 2013-14 class of 23 learners after assessing 42
applicants. They collaborated with the University of Alberta Bridging
Program to implement an admission assessment.
I am delighted to congratulate Dr. Nancy Salbach,
who was successful in being awarded tenure
Katherine Berg, Chair
effective July 1st. Nancy was appointed Assistant
Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy in September 2007. She has a
cross-appointment to the Graduate Department of Rehabilitation Science and is an
Adjunct Scientist at Toronto Rehab/UHN and St. John’s Rehab/Sunnybrook. She
received her PhD in Epidemiology through the Department of Epidemiology and
Biostatistics at McGill. Nancy is widely known for her work in self-efficacy related
to walking performance for patients with stroke.
The Department hosted their annual Exceptional Achievement and Recognition
Awards Ceremony in the winter. These awards provide an opportunity to
acknowledge those who have made outstanding contributions to the Department of Physical Therapy
curriculum. We were pleased to recognize over 130 individuals and teams for their outstanding
contributions to the Physical Therapy curriculum. The Exceptional Achievement Award winners were:
Angelo Papachristos – Practitioner; and Annette Marcuzzi – Professional Development. Congratulations
to all the award recipients! The Awards Celebration was followed by a session for the community
entitled: ‘Department of Physical Therapy Curriculum Innovation: a Dialogue’. This was an opportunity
for the Department to provide an update on one of our Strategic Directions, our curriculum renewal
project. Both events were very successful, with 140 attendees for the Awards Ceremony, and over 60 for
the Faculty Curriculum session.
Once again, I would like to thank all the individuals who read the Computerized Administered Profiles
(CAPS) this year. Thanks so much to the 95 clinicians, 41 faculty and 73 students who helped mark the
exams. We couldn’t do it without you!
Visitors to the Department
Representatives from the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT), Foreign Credentialing
Commission on Physical Therapy (FCCPT) and the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy
(CAPTE) came to visit the Ontario Internationally Educated Physical Therapy Bridging Program (OIEPBP)
here in the Department. Our American Colleagues are in the exploratory stages of developing a Program
looking to bridge the gap in the non-US trained physical therapist who is seeking licensure in the United
States. The contingent had an action packed day of discussion with a variety of OIEPBP faculty and
learners. They also observed classes in action and participated in an Information Session for Potential
applicants in the evening. The OIEPBP continues to collaborate with our American Colleagues as they
develop their framework for bridging in the United States.
Alumni Spring Reunion
Graduates from years ending in 3 or 8 gathered in the Rehabilitation Sciences Building for breakfast,
presentations and a tour of the building in June. There were Alumni members in attendance who
graduated up to 55 years ago. This year, the Achievement Awards were presented to Diana HopkinsRosseel for Physical Therapy and Bonnie Kirsh for Occupational Therapy. The Invited Speaker was Dr.
Stephanie Nixon, Assistant Professor, who introduced us to the far-reaching work of the International
Centre for Disability and Rehabilitation at the University of Toronto. The morning ended with tours of the
building led by students which included the labs of Drs. Karl Zabjek and Sunita Mathur.
Awards and Honours:
Congratulations to Nancy Quinn and Shelley Gautier, who were honored with a Diamond Jubilee Medal
by the Canadian Paralympic Committee, in partnership with the Government of Canada. Dina Brooks and
Roger Goldstein received the 2012-2013 Ontario Lung Association/Pfizer Canada award for research on
COPD/Smoking Cessation. Julie Hard and Deborah Kennedy are inaugural recipients of the
Distinguished Rehabilitation Science Alumni Awards from McMaster University. Judith Hunter received
the Excellence in Interprofessional Pain Education Award, 2013, from the Canadian Pain Society. Kelly
O'Brien was awarded a Connaught New Researcher Award in May. Nancy Salbach received a CIHR New
Investigator Award. Kara Patterson received the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada’s “Focus on
Stroke Research Scholarship.” Kara also was awarded the 2013 NSD-PFC Research Grant in Neuroscience
by the Physiotherapy Foundation of Canada from July 1st, 2013 to June 30th, 2014.
Department of PT students and faculty won several awards at the Ontario Physiotherapy Association’s
(OPA) Annual Conference, and the Canadian Physiotherapists Association (CPA) this spring:
People’s Choice Poster Award (3rd Place): Maegan Bell presented the poster on behalf of her group which
included MScPT 2012 graduates Lindsay Bays, Kaitlin Turner, Clara Oi Yan Lai, and Carmen Lau
Martine Quesnel: Silver Quill Award for Best Student Paper Published in Physiotherapy Canada 2012:
The Ann Collins Whitmore Student Competition: Sachi O’Hoski presented the poster on behalf of her
group which included MScPT 2012 graduates Taimoor Tariq Agha, Sachi O’Hoski, Bonnie Winship, and
Lauren Herridge
Physiotherapy Foundation of Cda Award – the Ann Collins Whitmore Memorial Scholarship: Brenda Mori
Special Award for Professional Contribution External: Jo-Anne Howe, Lecturer
Special Award for Professional Contribution Internal: Maria Lung, PhD student
Special Award for Students: Ali Hassan, Second Year Student
1st Prize Poster: Michelle Duong; Deepti Singh; Dr. Dina Brooks
2nd Prize Poster: Presenter - Maria Lung; Authors - Jenna Beatty, Sara Brown, Erika Bates, Tara Cameron,
Manuel Gomez, Maria Lung, Katherine Berg
3rd Prize Poster: Brenda Mori, Charlotte Anderson
Rehab Rounds
Please join us for the new season of Rehab Rounds which is held the first Thursday of each month at
noon at 500 University Avenue. To view upcoming dates please visit our website at http://
To understand faculty categorization
click here for an article on the topic.
PT/OT Alumni Evening
3 Course Dinner
World Renowned Show with Magical and
Meaningful Memories
$75.00 / pp by cheque to Diane Gasner by Oct 1, 2013
722 - 80 Front Street East
Toronto, M5E 1T4
Friday, October 25, 2013
6:30 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Famous PEOPLE Players
Dinner Theatre
343 Evans Avenue
Click Here to check out a You Tube
video of Rick Mercer at the Famous People Players theatre - he loved it!
free parking or TTC access
RSVP: Alumni Office
416 978.1820
[email protected]
Alumni Profile Update: Shelley Gautier
PARALYMPIAN … and a recipient
awarded by the Canadian
Paralympian Committee in
partnership with the Government
of Canada.
So, lots has happened since Shelley
returned home from a successful
London Paralympics. After a short
and well deserved break she was
back training indoors and then at
Christmas off to Florida for
Shelley Gautier receives Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Award
outdoor training opportunities.
With her new Lemond Trainer,
Shelley is training five days a week, working on sprints, basic endurance and muscular endurance.
Results are looking good for the 2013 Para-cycling Road Season which has officially started with a P1
race in Greenville South Carolina, the road course for the 2014 World Para-cycling Championships
Somehow when in town, Shelley fits in a teaching schedule of one or two days a week at the University
of Toronto, Department of Physical Therapy. Her teaching is a critical part of the Disability Course and
the Neurological curriculum, focusing on ABI. Shelley says “it is very important to be an elite who is
into her sport and is also one who helps out other people. I am grateful for the help I receive and I
have found ways to use my knowledge and skills to also help people”.
Shelley would be thrilled if you visited her BLOG, http://roadtolondon2012.wordpress.com to follow
her training season and time trials in preparation for the Rio Olympics. Come 2016, we will be
cheering from afar.
Stay tuned for web-site revisions and easier access but for now we are the
P & OT Alumni Association
To read present and past issues of UPDATE on-line
You can also find us on Facebook! Check either place regularly for updates and highlights!
Student Updates
These last few semesters have been fun and exciting for
the OT students. While trying to maintain some work life
balance, 3 OT dragon boat teams practiced once a week after
placement to train for the dragon boat festival held at the
Toronto Island. The training paid off with one boat securing the
3rd place spot within their heat! While the other 2 teams had
the chance to beat their own personal bests! There have been a
variety of social events including our annual semi-formal,
potlucks and pub nights to foster those lasting connections
within the student body.
In addition to all these leisure occupations, students
have also been able to demonstrate their productivity during
the Thelma Cardwell research day. Research themes ranged
from assessment to maintaining professional development.
OT2 students were given the opportunity to showcase their
hard work over the past year to a variety of faculty, staff,
clinicians and students with an interest in occupational
therapy. The long hours,
sweat and tears that the OT2s
put into their projects paid off
as the day was a great
success! The OT1’s will
definitely have some great
learning and inspiration to
look forward to as they
venture on to their second
and final year!
Hello from the 2013-14 Physical
Therapy Student Council!
Since being elected in July, this
year’s council has been hard at
work planning the orientation of
the incoming class of 2015. We are
very excited to introduce the first
year students to the Faculty of
Medicine, University of Toronto,
and the beautiful city of Toronto. This year features a tour of
Toronto, a trip to a Blue Jays game,
and a day on Toronto Island. We
are looking forward to the many
events we have planned for this
year and getting more involved in
the community to promote the
profession of Physical Therapy.
Spring Reunion 2013
Saturday morning, June 1 at 500 University, exciting
home of Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy,
well attended by the 6T3ers who were impressed by
the building, its programs and scholarly activities.
Followed by a celebratory lunch.
We were pleased to be able to contribute to the
REUNION CLASS CHALLENGE to raise funds for student
scholarship and research.
To advertise for your own
class reunion please
submit your request to
[email protected]
or place a notice on the
Alumni’s Facebook page.
!!We will be back!!
2014 PT and OT Spring Reunion of Classes ending in 4 or 9
Saturday, May 31st - Breakfast at 9.30 AM followed by the Annual Meeting, Presentation of the
Alumni Awards, Guest Speaker and tours of the Rehabilitation Building at 500 University Ave.
In addition, UofT will be holding many other events from May 20th to June 1st.
Further information will be forthcoming. Start making arrangements for your class to attend.
To contact the PT and OT Alumni:
Email: [email protected] Phone: (416) 978-1820
2013 Alumni Achievement Awards Recipients
Biraj Khosla, Bonnie Kirsh, Diana Hopkins-Rosseel, Diane Gasner
PT Award Recipient
Diana Hopkins-Rosseel is a 1982 graduate of
the U ofT Physical Therapy program. She has
a an MSc. In Rehab from Queen’s University.
Immediately after qualifying as a
Physiotherapist Diana’s experience has
included many years working as a as a fulltime staff physiotherapist, and running her
own Cardiac Rehab Centre in Kingston for
eight years. Her career in teaching full-time at
Queens University began in 1989 as a
Lecturer, through to Assistant professor in
1994, Associate Professor in 1999, and
Professor since 2011. Throughout her years
teaching at Queens University Diana has
continued to work at the Hotel Dieu Hospital
on a casual basis which she does to this day.
Diana’s multiple education-related initiatives
in Physical Therapy and Rehab have led her
students to describe her as an educator,
clinician, scholar and a mentor. Since 2002
Diana has Chaired the Canadian
Physiotherapy Associations’s
Cardiorespiratory Division. She has done so
while focusing intensively on evidence-based
methods for behaviour modification in
physical therapy; research in cultural
competence, and interprofessional education
which she has also presented on at the
provincial & national Physiotherapy
Associations as well as World Confederation
of Physical Therapy Conferences.
It is important to point out that Diana was
well ahead of her times in her passion for
interprofessional education which she has
championed since 1989. Her achievements
include research published in peer reviewed
journals, two books, innumerable
presentations, workshops, and seminars. She
presented at the Society for Teaching &
Learning in Higher Education focusing on key
issues in education; innovative educational
environments, independent learning practices
and entry-level competency in Physical
Therapy programs. In doing so Diana has not
only inspired and led her students but also
made a major impact on the Physical Therapy
profession through her support of practice
standards and presenting at research-based
symposia. Diana has won many awards and
honours including those from the Hotel Dieu
Hospital, University of Western Ontario,
Queens University as well as the Ontario
Physiotherapy Association.
Diana’s sharp professional focus integrates
knowledge and theory with practice because
in addition to teaching Diana has continued
doing clinical work for the past 31 years even
while teaching full-time . Diana has brought
the experience of her diverse professional
roles to bear on direct service benefitting and
making meaningful difference to clients’
quality of life.
Diana’s work as a clinician and business
owner has been her impetus to create and
teach a course at Queen’s University titled
“Business Practices in Rehab”. Among those
Diana has included to teach this course are
experienced clinic owners, accountants and
bankers. Thereby helping students develop a
combination of both clinical skills and
business training. Aside from research, and
articles Diana has shared her unique
perspective as a clinician, researcher and
educator in book chapters, a book titled:
“Business in Clinical Practice: How to Get
There from Here” which was published in
2007 and subsequently as lead co-author on
a second Book titled “Your Clinical Practice –
Being the Best There Is”.
Today adding to Diana’s many awards and
honours, it is our pride and privilege to
present her with this year's Alumni
Achievement Award for Physical Therapy.
OT Award Recipient
Writing this speech about Bonnie’s career and
achievements has been a daunting task.
Because her achievements are very extensive
and wide-ranging. From all perspectives
whether direct-service, research, or academia
Bonnie’s career has focused on improving the
lives of people living with mental illness.
Bonnie is a true exemplar of acting local and
impacting global because she studied at UofT
as an undergraduate, a graduate student, and
now as faculty member; being in Toronto and
with her teaching, research, advocacy and
leadership making an impact well beyond
She began her career working at the Clarke
Institute, (now part of the Centre for
Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in it’s
Work Adjustment Program counselling
individuals with mental illness who wanted to
return to work. And then moved on to her
role as a community OT while also becoming
a clinical associate at UofT. It was these
experiences which laid the foundation for her
research and advocacy to follow. Bonnie
recognized the enormity of the challenge of
persons with mental illness returning to work
because of the stigma that haunts mental
illness. But Bonnie also knew that that walls
turned sideways can become bridges. Since
then Bonnie has focused her sustained
endeavours at all levels to improving the lives
of people living with mental illness.
As clinical associate Bonnie felt the pull of
academia and completed her PhD in Applied
Psychology, studying factors that promote
and impede work for people with mental
Bonnie’s research has since focused on
community and work integration for persons
living with mental illnesses. When I said
Bonnie’s work has been extensive and wideranging, I was referring to her investigations
of critical components of community support
programs, studying the impact of workplace
cultures on mental health, examining
employment outcomes associated with
models like supported employment. In
addition Bonnie also focused on the mental
health of injured workers. Her current work is
testing programs aimed at reducing stigma in
workplaces. She has received funding from Tri
Council granting agencies, the Canadian
government, the Ontario Mental Health
Foundation and the Workplace Safety and
Insurance Board, amongst others. She has
published numerous articles, reports, and
book chapters on the topic, spoken and
advocated for those with mental illness on
various forums, in the media and otherwise.
Bonnie’s past experience as a clinician, and
her research focus on mental health has led
governments and policy makers to consult her
on employment and disability policies for
people with mental illnesses. In fact Bonnie is
the only OT on the Mental Health Commission
of Canada since its inception five years ago.
The commission recently rolled out it’s
national strategy for mental health in Canada,
just earlier this year.
Aside from Bonnie’s research on employment
and stigma, Bonnie has brought her OT
perspective to the largest project on
homelessness in the world – which involves
five Canadian cities, Vancouver, Winnipeg,
Toronto, Montreal and Moncton. Over 2,000
Canadians in these five cities were randomly
assigned to either an experimental
intervention, called Housing First, or to
treatment as usual. The recent 2013 federal
budget referred to this study in its
commitment to devoting $119 million annually
over over five years to the problem of
homelessness in Canada.
Bonnie has also continually maintained her
commitment to her students as she has taught
and supervised countless students in their
coursework, research projects and doctoral
dissertations and through her mentorship has
contributed to increasing research capacity in
the area of mental health and most
importantly, has enlightened and inspired her
students to promote meaningful occupation
for people living with mental illnesses,
addictions and homelessness.
If I were to talk for another few hours I could
still not do justice to Bonnie’s work, though I
would like to add that in the areas of
administration and advocacy, after stepping
down from her role as interim Chair of the
Department of Occupational Science and
Occupational Therapy she has continued as
the Vice Chair of the Department from
It would be a futile effort on my part to go into
the innumerable research grants Bonnie has
been awarded but Bonnie was honoured to
receive the Excellence in Peer Mentorship
Award in 2008.
On this note I have to say it is our a high
privilege and honour to add to Bonnie’s many
awards and honors by presenting her with this
year’s Alumni Achievement Award for
Occupational Therapy.
The Alumni Achievement Awards continues to applaud Physical Therapy and
Occupational Therapy graduates who have made an exceptional contribution as a member
of each of our professions. The award acknowledges a diversity of achievements in
Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy in Scholarly Activity within the clinical,
community, or academic environments; Therapeutic Practice; Education at any level;
Administration and Political Advocacy.
Please continue to support the Alumni Achievement Awards by making a nomination!
You can find information on how to make a nomination on the last page.
Would you like to reconnect with
classmates or would like a class list
If you’d like to make a gift, please visit the
Rehabilitation Sciences Sector’s online giving page
(donate.utoronto.ca) to make a donation to either
Physical Therapy or Occupational Science and
Occupational Therapy. Funds raised are used to support
students through bursaries and scholarships and also to
fund travel to national and international conferences
and clinical placements.
to help with reunion planning?
Contact Morgan Tilley, Alumni
Relations Coordinator at (416)
978-3588 or
[email protected] for advice
and assistance with your reunion
Also, as an alumnus or alumna of the
University you have access to a wealth
of benefits through the Alumni
Relations Office.
You can:
Call for Clinical Instructors: IMAGINE
(Interprofessional Medical and Allied Groups for
Improving Neighbourhood Environment) is an
interprofessional, UofT student-run community
health initiative aimed at promoting and providing
health care, and is looking for registered
physiotherapists for its clinic to supervise students
on a 1:1 basis. The IMAGINE clinic is a primary
health care clinic that serves marginalized
populations in Toronto. The clinic is staffed by
students and preceptors from various disciplines,
including social work, nursing, pharmacy and
medicine. A document describing the extent of
services provided is available upon request. Great
opportunity to serve the community and gain
teaching experience. For more information please
visit http://www.torontomeds.com/imagine/.
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Department events
Join our recreation and
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If you would like more information,
please contact
[email protected] or call
15 15
Dear Alumnus:
The Alumni Achievement Award was established in 1995, and awarded first at the AGM in June 1996. The
Award acknowledges graduates who have made an exceptional contribution as a member of the Physical
Therapy or Occupational Therapy professions. Alumni or members of the public may nominate a University
of Toronto graduate in Physical Therapy or Occupational Therapy for this award. The year 2012 marked
the 17th anniversary of the Achievement Award.
Beginning in 1996 an award has been made to one alumnus from Physical Therapy and one alumnus from
Occupational Therapy each year. The areas of achievement for consideration for this Award are based on
achievements in any three of the following categories:
• Scholarly Activity in clinical, community, or academic environment
• Therapeutic Practice
• Education (of PT/OT students, (at university or college level) health professionals, general public
• Administration
• Political activity and advocacy for the profession of PT/OT.
The Achievement Award Committee will contact all nominators to acknowledge receipt of nominations. The
Selection Committee may contact nominees to obtain additional information related to their nomination.
Please include phone and/or email contact information of the nominee in your nomination. A CV and/or
comprehensive information providing specifics of the
nominee’s achievements is REQUIRED to give the
To contact us or forward nominations:
Achievement Award Committee a more complete idea of
the nominee.
Alumni Achievement Award
PT & OT Alumni Association
University of Toronto
If you require assistance in completing a nomination, or
500 University Avenue, Room 161
have additional questions please contact us and we will be
Toronto, ON, M5G 1V7
pleased to assist you.
All information provided will be used exclusively for
Award determination purposes.
[email protected]
E- mail: ______________________
Year of Graduation_____________
PT_________ OT_____________
The Nominator should describe the outstanding
contributions in each category checked, in a
covering letter. The more comprehensive the
information the better.
E- mail: ______________________
Scholarly Activity
Therapeutic Practice
Political Activity/Advocacy