Charlie Fischer (Vice-chair)

Charlie has extensive leadership experience in both the energy sector and the voluntary sector. He retired as President and CEO of Nexen in 2008. His previous work in the energy sector included senior roles with Bow Valley Industries, TransCanada Pipelines, Encor Energy Corporation Inc. Since then he has served on the boards of Pure Technologies Ltd., Enbridge Inc., Enbridge Income Fund, the Climate Change and Emission Management Corporation (CCEMC) and Alberta Innovates – Energy and Environment Solutions. He is very active in the voluntary sector, with current roles including Chair of the Hull Child and Family Foundation, Chair of the Honorary Patrons’ Council for the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation, Chair of the Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute, and Vice-Chair of the Canada West Foundation.

Judy Birdsell (Chair)

Judy is retired as principal of On Management Health Group, a company that consults across Canada on organizing and policy in health care, health care research and the voluntary sector. She has held more than 20 leadership positions in health and research organizations, and has recently completed a term on the board of the Health Quality Council of Alberta. She has received three national awards that recognize her achievements in the voluntary sector including the Queen’s Gold Jubilee Medal. As a result of family experiences in the health care system, Judy now devotes most of her volunteer time to enhancing patient/family voice in safety and quality discussions. She is an active member of Patients for Patient Safety Canada and a Patient Safety Champion (Canada).

Annamarie Fuchs (joined June 2016)

Annamarie is a healthcare consultant with 30 years of diverse healthcare experience.  She holds a diploma, Bachelor’s and Masters Degree in Nursing along with credentials as a Project Management Professional (PMP) and certificates in Enterprise Risk Management, Appreciative Inquiry, and Media relations.  Her professional focus for the past 15 years has centered around governance, strategic planning, policy, and project management.  As a governor, she has served two terms on the Board of Directors for the Health Quality Council of Alberta where she was Vice-Chair.  She is also currently a member of the Board of Directors for Alberta Benefits Corporation.  In her role as a Project Management consultant, she has led large information management/technology projects in hospitals and more recently co-led Primary Care transformation strategies across Alberta (PCN Evolution) from 2014 through 2016. 

Annamarie has personally experienced the unfortunate consequences of a medical error and has supported other patients and their family members as an advocate in their efforts to navigate the health system.  Her passion is to contribute to initiatives that will enable Albertans and their families to be true partners in all decision making associated with health and wellness across the life span. 

Donna Angus (until October 2016)

Donna is a semi-retired consultant in strategic communications and knowledge translation. Donna has worked in most sectors of the healthcare system including government, health services, the not-for-profit sector, and health research. Her volunteer experience began at the University Hospital when she was 16. Her most recent ‘real’ job was with the Alberta Innovates – Health Solutions as Director of Knowledge Translation from 2006 to 2014. Healthcare is a complex world. Her passion is to make that world understandable and accessible to everyone and to help bring the best possible knowledge to bear on making healthcare better.

Gail MacKean

Gail has a longstanding commitment to patient and family engagement in health care stemming from varied experiences with health, illness and the healthcare system: as a daughter of a mother living with a chronic disabling condition, as a practicing physiotherapist and healthcare planner working in the Ontario healthcare system, and as a parent of two children – one born with complex medical problems requiring ongoing, intense interactions with the healthcare system, as a family member working collaboratively with health professionals on a variety of health care committees, and as a health services researcher and educator.

Joanna Price

Joanna grew up in the country near Acme, Alberta. Following the loss of her brother Greg Price due to multiple health system failures, and her sister’s experience with multiple gaps in care, Joanna works to support patient engagement and quality improvement in healthcare in Alberta. In addition to IMAGINE, Joanna is involved with Health Arrows and sits as a Patient/Family Representative on the Site Leadership Council at the Rockyview General Hospital. While Joanna remains very closely tied to her rural roots, she currently lives in Calgary and works for Sunterra Markets.

John Cuthbertson (until March 2017)

John is the father of a young woman with multiple acute and chronic illnesses and the son of a dementia patient. John knows firsthand how important engagement with healthcare providers is and what a difference it can make to the quality and safety of patient care. Over the years John has given much of his free time to advisory volunteer work in the healthcare sector – with the Kids Cancer Care Foundation, and as a patient/family advisor on committees with the former Calgary Health Region Patient/Family Safety Advisory Council, the Alberta Children’s Hospital Family Advisory Committee, Alberta Health Services Patient/Family Advisory Group, and the Patient/Family Advisory Panel of the Health Quality Council of Alberta.

Kelly Mendes

Kelly has a passion for patient safety and quality improvement. As advisor to the Patients Voices Network within Impact BC, she helped bring about improvements through engaging patients and family members and enabling them to work with healthcare providers, the B.C. Ministry of Health, other not-for profits, universities, and non-governmental organizations to promote the patient voice in health care improvement. A mother of three girls, Kelly’s experience of the BC healthcare system with a daughter diagnosed with cancer at age 14 has strengthened her commitment to improving patient and family centred care through collaboration. Kelly currently works full-time as a consultant in physician compensation.

Leslie Ayre-Jaschke

Leslie is a recently retired community-based researcher and evaluation consultant in Peace River, Alberta where she has lived, worked, raised a family and volunteered for over 35 years. She was formerly a certified lactation consultant and also worked for the former Peace Health Region as the health research and information officer. Leslie has a long history of governance, including 10 years on the La Leche League Canada board, a term on Peace River Town Council, and served on the library board for 9 years, including six as Chair. She is also a member of the Health Quality Council of Alberta’s Patient/Family Safety Advisory Panel.

Sharon Nettleton

Sharon has worked for more than 25 years in the healthcare sector, and for the last ten years has worked extensively in patient safety and engagement. She served as Liaison of Calgary’s first Patient/Family Safety Advisory Committee and since then has contributed to multiple initiatives, speaking passionately about the safety and quality of our care and how together with healthcare planners and providers we can be and need to be more engaged. Sharon brings her own experiences as a patient and those of her family – her two children and husband and four 80+ parents – into the mix. She is one of the founding members and current Co-Chair of Patients for Patient Safety Canada and is a WHO Patient Safety Champion.

Stephanie Montesanti (joined November 2016)

Stephanie is an Assistant Professor of Health Policy with the School of Public Health at the University of Alberta. Her research focus includes policy intervention and analysis; the design and evaluation of public, patient and community engagement processes to inform health services planning and decision making; partnership development in the health system; and primary care practice transformation in Alberta. She has been working with the Primary Health Care Strategic Clinical Network at Alberta Health Services to engage primary care providers, the public and the research community to  support research relevant to the primary health care system and Albertans. Stephanie’s commitment to patient engagement stems from family experiences in the healthcare system, and is passionate about enhancing patient voice and their healthcare experience. 

Teri Price

Teri was born and raised in Acme, Alberta. After obtaining her Bachelor of Science in Global Resources Systems, she continued on to complete a Masters in Disaster and Emergency Management. Teri worked on Disaster Management Programs in Quito, Ecuador and Toronto before returning to her Alberta roots to do emergency response planning in the Oil and Gas industry. Greg Price was Teri’s brother and the impact of Greg’s journey combined with her own negative experience in the health care system one month after Greg’s death has led to Teri’s commitment, along with her family, to drive improvements in care through the development of the website and involvement with IMAGINE.

Ward Flemons (until October 2017)

Ward is a medical advisor to the Health Quality Council of Alberta, former Board member of the Canadian Patient Safety Institute, a respirologist at the Foothills Medical Centre and a Professor of Medicine at the University of Calgary.  At the U of Calgary he is the Quality and Safety Education lead for the W21C and chairs two certificate courses on Patient Safety and Quality.  Ward lectures widely within the province and nationally on these issues.  He has led and participated in several large reviews both of Alberta’s and other province’s health systems.

Thank you!

Many other Albertans have assisted us in some of our early discussions. Their ideas, comments, and suggestions have also helped shape our thinking. These individuals are community members, patients, families, friends of patients, and users of the health care system. We have also had some preliminary discussions with health providers and managers, and other strategic thinkers and change agents.