Dr. Allison Sekuler, President and Chief Scientist
Dr. Allison Sekuler (FSEP, FPsyS, FAPS) is President and Chief Scientist at the Centre for Aging + Brain Health Innovation (CABHI). A graduate of Pomona College (BA, Mathematics and Psychology) and the University of California, Berkeley (PhD, Psychology), Dr. Sekuler is also President and Chief Scientist and the Sandra A. Rotman Chair in Cognitive Neuroscience at the Baycrest Academy for Research and Education, Professor at the University of Toronto, and Professor Emerita at McMaster University. Dr. Sekuler has a notable record of scientific achievements in aging, vision science, cognitive neuroscience, and neurotechnology; and her translational research aims to develop methods to prevent, detect, and treat age-related sensory and cognitive decline. She has won numerous research and innovation leadership awards, including being the first Canada Research Chair in Cognitive Neuroscience (2001-2011) and one of WXN’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Canada (2019). Dr. Sekuler has a long record of executive leadership, and currently chairs the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council’s Public Impact Value Proposition committee; serves on the Board of Governors for Hamilton Health Sciences and BrainsCAN; is a founding Steering Committee member of the Canadian Brain Research Strategy, a Scientific Mentor in CDL’s Neuro stream, and advisor for SXSW Pitch. In her spare time, she is proving that you’re never too old to learn: Dr. Sekuler picked up her first drumsticks a few years ago, and recently earned her Professional Drums Certificate from the Berklee College of Music.
Bianca Stern, BSc.OT, MSc, Executive Director, Health Innovation
Bianca Stern is Executive Director, Health Innovation at CABHI. Her career spans over 35 years in health care within private and public sectors; including community, post-acute and long term care. She has also been involved at university and college levels in curriculum design, research, teaching and student mentorship. Bianca has built on her Bachelor’s Degree in Occupational Therapy and Master’s Degree in Rehabilitation Science, creatively intersecting the art and science of healthcare with innovation, technology, and industry. Bianca is a thought leader in the area of innovation, blending design thinking and arts based tools with an inclusive, participatory user focus, capitalizing on emerging technologies and theoretical knowledge to stimulate innovative solutions for the journey of aging. Bianca currently oversees the innovation team at CABHI including the Design Lab, Seniors Advisory Panel, Innovation Office and project pipeline. She is also actively involved in helping to foster a culture of innovation and knowledge mobilization at Baycrest Health Sciences and across the CABHI network partner sites.
Mel Barsky, MBA, Director, Business Development
Mel Barsky is Director, Business Development at CABHI. He is responsible for developing and identifying new commercial opportunities that will expand the continued Canadian and international growth of CABHI, as well as leading the business development, marketing and communications functions of the organization. Mel brings to CABHI more than 25 years of leadership experience in venture capital, healthcare IT, sales, marketing, operations, financial services and information technology. Most recently, Mel was President, Co-Founder, and Chief Operating Officer of INTERVENT Canada, where he directed all facets of the organization delivering evidence-based health programs via online platforms and health coaches in clinical and corporate settings. Mel has also served as Director, Connected Health at Dynacare Medical Laboratories, Executive Director & Co-Founder of Scotia Private Equity, and Director of Strategy & Business Development at American Express. Mel holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Political Science from the University of Toronto, and a Master of Business Administration, Finance and International Business from Queen’s University.
Shusmita Rashid, BSc., MPH, Director, Knowledge Mobilization and Strategic Relations
Shusmita Rashid is the Director of Knowledge Mobilization and Strategic Relations at the Centre for Aging + Brain Health Innovation (CABHI) and Baycrest Academy for Research and Education. With over 10 years of experience in using KM and Implementation Science to design, implement, and evaluate innovative programs, Shusmita helps move research and innovation from promising ideas to uptake and adoption for real-world impact.
Shusmita leads CABHI’s KM and Community Engagement initiatives, working with health ecosystem partners and the innovation community, to support: Innovators in their journey from innovation development to adoption and scale; Care delivery organizations to build their readiness for innovation adoption; and Innovation end-users to ensure solutions are designed to reflect their unique needs. Shusmita holds an MPH from the University of Manchester and a BSc. from the University of Toronto. She serves as an implementation expert on a number of national and international advisory committees, has provided consultation on various large-scale health service research projects, and delivered global KM training workshops, including WHO-supported workshops in Uganda and Ethiopia.
Ryan A. Webster, CPA, CA, Director, Finance and Performance
Ryan A. Webster, CPA, CA, is an experienced finance and healthcare leader with expertise in hospital, long-term care, community care, research, and innovation settings. Ryan currently holds two roles within Baycrest, a global leader in aging and brain health with over 100 years of excellence in care and research. He is Vice-President, Finance and Business Development of the Baycrest Academy, home to the Rotman Research Institute (RRI), one of the world’s most acclaimed research centres for the study of human brain function, and the Centre for Education & Knowledge Exchange in Aging. He is also Director, Finance and Performance and founding contributor to the first-of-its-kind Centre for Aging + Brain Health Innovation (CABHI), Canada’s premier solution accelerator dedicated to driving innovation in the aging and brain health sector, with a targeted focus on dementia.
Dr. Rosanne Aleong, Director, Research, Innovation, and Translation
Dr. Rosanne Aleong is the Director of Research, Innovation, and Translation at CABHI. She also serves as the Executive Director of Research, Innovation, and Translation at the Baycrest Academy for Research and Education, Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care. She received her MSc and PhD in Neurological Sciences from McGill University, with her research focusing on inflammatory models of neurodegenerative disease; and body image and visual perception among adolescents and young adults. She has 20+ years of experience in neuroscience and brain health research across the lifespan.
In her current role at CABHI, she: (1) manages a support and services hub, enabling healthcare professionals, researchers, educators, not-for-profit organizations, and industry in conducting applied and evaluative research as well as innovation implementation and validation; (2) focuses on CABHI knowledge translation and knowledge mobilization initiatives; and 3) executive produces and co-hosts the CABHI Community of Innovation Podcast.
Dr. William E. Reichman, MD, Founding President
Dr. William E. Reichman is President and CEO of Baycrest, among the world’s premier academic health sciences centres focused on aging and brain function. Dr. Reichman is also professor of psychiatry on the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto. He studied psychiatry at the University of California at Los Angeles Neuropsychiatric Institute and fellowship training in neurobehavior at the Reed Neurological Research Institute.
Dr. Reichman is a former president of the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry and the Geriatric Mental Health Foundation and has been a consultant to the Civil Rights Division of the United States Department of Justice on the quality of dementia and mental health-care delivery within nursing homes. Dr. Reichman also recently served as Chair of the Seniors Quality Leap Initiative, a collaborative of prominent eldercare organizations and affiliated universities in North America working together to advance the effectiveness of long-term care across the globe.