Fall 2017 Speaker Series

& a sample of previous speakers

Dr. Lindy Samson

Chief of Staff CHEO-OCTC

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Title: “Ensuring Kids Are Healthy so They Can Reach Their Full Potential: Why everyone must work together”

Dr. Lindy Samson is the Chief of Staff and Chief Medical Officer at CHEO-OCTC, as well as being a staff physician in the Division of Infectious Diseases.  In addition, she holds an academic appointment as Associate Professor in the Department of Paediatrics at the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Medicine and is a Clinical investigator at the CHEO Research Institute. Her academic and research work is focused on pediatric HIV, the impact of social determinants on the health of children and youth and teaching/evaluating the Health Advocate and Leadership Roles across the continuum of learners.  She recently co-chaired an interdisciplinary initiative regarding the future health needs of children and youth in our region.  Dr. Samson was appointed Chief of Staff in April 2016 and is responsible for organizing the activities of the medical staff and for ensuring the quality of clinical care and patient safety.

Dr. Jacalyn Duffin

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Title: “Stanley’s Dream: the Canadian Medical Expedition to Easter Island”

Jacalyn Duffin, MD (Toronto 1974), FRCPC (1979), PhD (Sorbonne 1985), is a  hematologist and historian who occupied the Hannah Chair of the History of Medicine at Queen’s University from 1988 to 2017. A former President of both the American  Association for the History of Medicine and the Canadian Society for the History of  Medicine, she is the author of eight books and many articles, and holds several awards for teaching and research. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the  Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. Her research focuses on the history of disease, technology, religion and health policy. She runs an activist website for the drug shortage problem and blogs about this issue at CMAJ. https://cmajblogs.com/category/drug-shortages/

Mark O’Neill

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Title: “The Centenary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge: The Importance of Commemoration”

 Mark O’Neill is President and CEO of the federal Crown Corporation that operates the Canadian Museum of History and the Canadian War  Museum, Canada’s largest and most visited museums. He has led the transition in the Canadian Museum of History that opened July 1, 2017.

A native of Toronto, Mr. O’Neill grew up in  Ottawa and attended Carleton University, where he studied political science and Canadian  studies.

He is a community volunteer and was presented with the Mayor’s City Builder Award in 2013 for his outstanding community service and public advocacy leading to the implementation of the 911 emergency phone number, advanced-care paramedic system and the adoption of  mandatory CPR training in local schools in Ottawa. In 2012, he received the Diamond Jubilee Medal for his commitment to the Friends of the Canadian War Museum.

St. Joseph’s Catholic Secondary School Choir

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Title:  Christmas Classics The St. Joseph’s Catholic Secondary School Choir has been performing to packed theatres for over 34 years.  The group changes and evolves from year-to-year, but the school’s commitment to choral music remains steadfast.  Under the direction of their choir director, Mr. Gilles Levac, students from St. Joseph’s Catholic Secondary in Cornwall will perform some seasonal classics as well as a variety of new pieces for all to enjoy. The choir, composed of young men and women ages 14-18, perform annually at various events in Eastern Ontario and also delight audiences each year with their own Christmas Concert and a Spring musical theatre production.  This presentation promises to entertain, to inspire and to “wow” you.  “The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear!

Dr. Peg Herbert

Thursday, January 18, 2018
Title: “Changing 15-20,000 lives isn’t for Wimps”

Dr. Peg Herbert founded Help Lesotho in 2004 after personally witnessing the staggering suffering and bravery of the people of that country. She brings professional expertise to educational programs that heal, build resilience, and enhance participants’ cognitive development. In short, she is an inspiring advocate for marginalized populations. Her Ph.D. is in education specializing in educational and developmental psychology. Dr. Herbert taught graduate courses at the University of Ottawa and has decades of experience with youth leadership programs and vulnerable populations. She has mentored hundreds of young people, both in Canada and Lesotho, to become community leaders. She holds numerous public service awards including the prestigious Meritorious Service Award for her outstanding service to Canada.

A Selection of Previous Speakers

  • Dr. Angel Arnaout,
  • Breast Surgical Oncologist at the Ottawa Hospital, Assistant Professor at the U of O. and an Associate Scientist at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute.


  • BGen Frances Allen,
  • Director General-Cyberspace at the National Defence Headquarters

  • BGen Jennie Carignan,
  • Chief of Staff, Army Operations, DND

  • Senator Nancy Greene,
  • O.C., OBC

  • Lucy van Oldenbarneveld,
  • CBC Newscaster

  • Sam Poole,
  • Shepherd’s Fashions

  • Mayor Jim Watson


  • Craig Oliver,
  • Canadian Journalist


  • Giuliano Zaccardelli,
  • former RCMP Commissioner


  • Rosemary Thompson
  • Director of Communications and Public Affairs, National Arts Centre


  • Joel Haslam
  • CTV News


  • Don Newman,
  • Day-Newman Network Inc.


  • Alex Neve,
  • Secretary General of Amnesty International


  • Per Sjögren,
  • Ambassador of Sweden to Canada


  • Julie Nesrallah,
  • Canadian mezzo-soprano and CBC radio host


  • Sharon Johnston,
  • wife of Gov. Gen. David Johnston, Rehabilitation Science Therapist, author


  • Denise Chong,
  • Canadian economist and writer


  • Carol Ann Meehan,
  • 1310 News broadcaster


  • Vicky Heyman,
  • wife and partner of US Ambassador to Canada, Bruce Heyman


  • Michelle Valberg,
  • globally recognized and celebrated photographer


  • Julie Jacobson,
  • wife of former American ambassador to Canada, David Jacobson


  • Charles Bordeleau,
  • Ottawa Police Chief


  • Frank O’Dea,
  • Canadian Entrepreneur – co-founded the Second Cup


  • Tony Greco,
  • Leading Fitness Specialist & Radio Personality