CAHH Executive Committee Nominees

Inaugural meeting and elections of the executive committee of the


Will be held in Halifax, Nova Scotia - April 27, 2018; 5:15 - 6:00 pm

[View PDF version]


PRESIDENT: ACCLAIMED - pending motion at the Special Inaugural Meeting of CAHH/ ACSHS on April 27th

Tom Rosenal, MD - University of Calgary; Co-Chair Health Humanities Committee
I see great opportunities for the development of our discipline that could lead to ever more interesting contributions to the collection of fields that we are heir to. My optimism arises from having known a number of health humanities colleagues involved in Creating Space and others from various countries and disciplines. Known them as people and by the work they do. I must admit to being a “true believer.” That is, health care needs help and I am confident that we can make an Important contribution to that change and the relevance of the humanities and social sciences. But I am enough of a realist to know that we may err, disagree disagreeably, and take bloody forever to reach some of our most cherished goals. I am also comfortable with ambiguity and mystery in spite of — or perhaps because of — my background in formal linguistics. I am up to working on the needs faced by a new organization. I have an intensivist’s comfort dealing with lines whether found in patient’s stories or inserted into their central veins or weaving together a team. For the past decade, I have had health humanities as my primary professional focus, helping to build a multidisciplinary group at the University of Calgary made up of colleagues and students who have challenged and stretched my thinking. I have been co-chair of the Calgary Health Humanities Committee reporting to the Associate Dean, Undergraduate Medical Education for 6 years. I co-chaired the 2012 Creating Space in Banff. Since then, attending the Creating Space conferences has become a favourite activity of mine. I am an associate professor, Department of Critical Care Medicine and have been subspecialty training program director. I have published in the areas of health humanities, clinical informatics and critical care. I will commit to hear you, our membership, pay attention and work towards those aims we develop as an association and in collaboration with other willing health humanities associations.



Sarah de Leeuw, PhD - University of Northern British Columbia; Director, Health Arts Research Centre
First, please excuse my absence at the 2018 Creating Space gathering. I was recently in a bad cycling accident that left me without a left elbow! I am quickly recovering, however, and would be happy to help with this amazing new initiative. As a health-humanities scholar working in a faculty of medicine, and as an award-winning poet and literary non-fiction author, I am especially keen to ensure the CAHH Executive Committee commits to diversity and social accountability in all projects and future directions. I would bring more than two decades of community-informed research, pedagogy, and governance expertise to a role with the CAHH Executive Committee, including: experience as the president or vice-president of more than 10 not-for-profit, arts, health, and cultural organizations and boards; active participation in organizing past Creating Space meetings; linkages with national and international humanities-informed institutes and editorial boards; authorship on more than 150 publications across multiple genres and disciplines, including health and medical humanities; and, an abiding commitment both to Northern and Indigenous geographies, and to the humanities in the service of addressing health inequities.


Hartley Jafine, MA - McMaster University; Facilitator, Department of Family Medicine

As a theatre artist and educator, I have spent over a decade working in the health humanities. The position of Vice-President calls upon my educational background, and current research and teaching. My experience is an excellent fit for the position and I would be honoured to represent the CAHH in this role. My teaching and research focuses on applied drama and improv, specifically within the field of health sciences. At McMaster University, I teach theatre and arts-based courses within undergraduate health science education (Bachelor of Health Sciences program) and hold a lectureship in the Department of Family Medicine. At Baycrest Health Sciences, as an arts educator, I use theatre to train health teams and enhance interprofessional competencies. With the support the University of Toronto Medical Humanities and Sunnybrook Education Grant, I am also collaborating with physicians at Sunnybrook Hospital, piloting a medical improv curriculum for the family medicine residency program. Additionally, my work explores how the arts can be used as a methodology to disseminate health research. I have devised several productions with the Program for Interprofessional Education at McMaster and have been involved in research-based (verbatim) theatre productions, including one on mental health in medicine. I have previously attended and presented at four Creating Space conferences and will be on the organizing committee for Creating Space 2019. The CAHH will be a space to connect and celebrate the health humanities, about which I hope to further strengthen and deepen the conversation in our country. Bringing the perspective of a theatre artist, I want to introduce the field to those beyond the walls of education/academia, engage creatively with the public, and promote the necessity of health humanities within all health care spaces.


Monica Kidd, MD - University of Calgary; Co-chair, Health Humanities Committee

I co-authored a paper more than 10 years ago that surveyed the medical humanities curricula in Canadian medical schools. I was a medical student at the time and was highly biased in that I wanted to see more of it taught in medical schools! Nothing has changed in my perspective now that I'm a grown-up doctor and am involved in teaching. Recently, having revisited the question of humanities curricula in medical schools, I have been reminded that physicians with a humanities bent need each other, and they need professionals and scholars from other disciplines to help them puzzle through the problems that ignite us as narrative-minded people. I think we need an organization like this, and therefore I feel I should step up to help. Before I went to medical school in my 30s, I was a journalist for CBC Radio, and have published 7 books of fiction, non-fiction and poetry, as well as dozens of academic papers on fields ranging from natural history and evolutionary genetics through global and child and maternal health through medical humanities.


Shane Neilson, MD - University of Guelph; Family Physician
I am a PhD candidate in the English and Cultural Studies Department at McMaster University where I research the representations of pain in Canadian literature. This research is funded by a Vanier Graduate Scholarship. I also work as a family physician at the University of Guelph and I work in the community as a (clinical) adjunct professor of medicine using the Waterloo campus as a base. I have published several books of poems, a book of short fiction, and two memoirs with Canadian presses. This year, a new book of poems is forthcoming with Biblioasis as well as a book of criticism from PQL on the English language poetry of the Maritime region. In 2019, I will publish a memoir about the concurrent illnesses of my children with Eyewear Press in the UK. I have extensive experience with organization management, currently serving as an editor with Hamilton Arts & Letters Magazine, Frog Hollow Press, and Anstruther Press. I have several years of successful grant application experience. What I bring to an organizational structure is Humanities scholarly capacity along with a practicing physician identity and extensive experience in Canadian publishing. I also have a lot of energy and want to build humanities infrastructure in Canada, and am actively engaged in that activity in Waterloo and in organizing Creating Space 2019.


Andrea Zumrova, MD - University of Ottawa;  Resident (YR1), Department of Family Medicine
I have been an advocate for the presence of humanities in medicine since the beginning of medical school. Participating in the Canadian Association of Health Humanities is a national way to expand my advocacy for the humanities. I started out leading the Arts in Medicine Interest Group at the University of Ottawa where we pushed for the arts as a method to improve medical student wellness and process complex human experiences. In the year that I was involved with the Arts in Medicine, we tripled the number of events that students had access to and managed to expand beyond the walls of our medical school and showcase student art in the community. We presented some of our findings at the Creating Spaces Symposium and won the first-place prize poster. After this, I expanded my leadership skills by becoming an editor for Murmurs Magazine, yet another avenue for medical students and residents to explore their emotions through art. For this publication we overcame cross-cultural boundaries and collaborated with a medical school in China to get more diverse experiences. Once again, these findings were presented at the Creating Spaces Symposium and published in medical magazines in an attempt to raise awareness about the magazine. With my experiences in leadership thus far, I have gained skills in promoting the humanities as a source of wellness and the managerial tasks that are involved in coordinating humanities projects. I hope to bring these skills to the CAHH executive committee and spread the importance about humanities on a national scale.


Ayelet Kuper, MD DPhil - University of Toronto, Scientist & Associate Director (Faculty Affairs), Wilson Centre for Research in Education
The development of CAHH is an exciting opportunity to create a formal community — including social sciences and humanities (SSH) scholars and practitioners, health care practitioners and educators who engage with SSH, and people with lived experience of health/illness/healthcare as patients and caregivers — that can work together to advance the health humanities nationally and in many different local contexts. I want to help grow that community through my professional and academic networks, organizational skills, and enthusiasm and dedication. As an MD with a DPhil in modern languages and literatures, I have both studied and practiced the intertwining of SSH with health and health professions education for many years. I first joined CAME’s "Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences in Medicine Educational Interest Group" in 2009; I have attended every Creating Space except 2014 (maternity leave) and presented at many of them. I was part of the group that created the University of Toronto humanities companion curriculum and am involved in multiple initiatives to bring ways of knowing derived from SSH into health professions curricula (some funded by AMS Healthcare, which is funding the CAHH). I have authored many publications and given many talks in this area, including an upcoming keynote at this year's Association for Medical Education in Europe (AMEE) conference. I also teach SSH concepts to all levels of medical trainees and practitioners, including through interaction with texts. In terms of conference organization, I am the Network Lead for Research Papers at the AMEE Conference. In that role I organize the three-stage review process for ~250 abstract submissions in the highly competitive research paper stream and group the ~45 accepted abstracts into coherent sessions. I have been part of the conference organizing committee for a series of Toronto Health History conferences since 2011. I am also comfortable organizing events and managing budgets!, as required.


Andrea Zumrova, MD - University of Ottawa; Family Medicine Resident (YR1)

(Andrea is also running for Vice President; pleased see her statement under that role)



Sarah de Leeuw, PhD - University of Northern British Columbia; Director, Health Arts Research Centre
(Sarah is also running for Vice President; see her statement under that role)


Hartley Jafine, MA - McMaster University; Facilitator, Department of Family Medicine

(Hartley is also running for Vice President; see his statement under that role)


Jan Marta, MD – University of Toronto, Interdisciplinary Researcher

Jan Marta holds a French doctorate in Comparative Literature (English, French, and Spanish), an MD (Specialization in Psychiatry), and a Fellowship in Bioethics and Psychiatry. Her academic work (research, teaching, administration) has focussed on interdisciplinary and inter-professional approaches to topics related to culturally sensitive and ethical health care. She chaired the Cross-Cultural Psychiatry Interest Group at the University of Toronto, an inter-professional group comprised of psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, nurses, and frontline counsellors which met on topics of immediate clinical interest in caring for immigrants, refugees, victims of torture, and Indigenous communities. She also founded and chaired a small inter-professional Spanish-language research group on ethical health care practices in Spain and Latin America. She was an active member of the Society for Health and Human Values (which has since formed part of the American Society of Bioethics and Humanities), and has published on health humanities in Literature and Medicine, Theoretical Medicine, and the Journal of Clinical Bioethics. She has also published in English, French, and Spanish in peer-reviewed journals on more foundational topics related to health humanities, like the nature of the human subject, and the relationships among narrative, metaphor, and health care theory and practice. She would particularly like to contribute to expanding the English-French bilingual nature of the CAHH, encouraging active French-language involvement in the association, and in the Creating Space conferences. Her own contributions to the last two conferences (Winnipeg 2017 and Halifax 2018) have been in English and in French, on using literature to teach health care, (critical thinking, the mind-body relationship), and expanding the literature and medicine canon to include Québécois and Acadian literature. Inspired by her experience at the Winnipeg conference, she would also like to continue outreach to Indigenous communities to bring their knowledge and perspectives into the CAHH.


Brett Schrewe MD PhD (C) - University of British Columbia; Consultant General Pediatrician

It’s an exciting time to be part of the Canadian health humanities community, to say the least! As one of the co-organizers of Creating Space V in Vancouver and as a regular attendee, I have had the opportunity to meet many people in our ever-growing community over the past several years. For those I have not, a little about my background, which sits at the intersection of two worlds. On the clinical side, I am a consultant general pediatrician at UBC, based in Victoria, who also works regularly in Yukon and northern Manitoba. On the academic side, I am a qualitative researcher with a master of arts in interdisciplinary studies and a clinical educator fellowship with expertise in using historical and discursive approaches as lenses upon health professions education. In addition, I am currently a 2017 Trudeau Scholar and second-year UBC PhD student in the department of educational studies, using genealogy to examine the concept of medical citizenship as a basis for re-thinking health professions education, with the goal of realizing the full potential inherent in the Canada Health Act and bringing about greater health equity in Canada. It would be a privilege to serve our community at this time of transition and at a time when a tolerance for ambiguity, strengthening of plurality, and emphasis upon dialogue has never been more important. Over the next two years, I look forward to helping build a vibrant national organization that reflects our bilingual and multicultural traditions, places primacy upon our country’s Indigenous foundations and works to realize the Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, builds sustainable connections with international partners, and advocates for the training and formation of healthcare professionals able to harmonize their expertise to meet the diverse needs of the patients, communities, and society they serve.