Keynote Speaker


Brigadier General Andrew Downes - Surgeon General of Canadian Armed Forces

BGen Downes is the Commander of the Canadian Forces Health Services Group, the Director General Health Services, and the Surgeon General.  As such, he leads a diverse team of approximately 5500 personnel who provide care and other services to about 100,000 military members in Canada, in the US, in Europe and on deployed operations in multiple locations around the world.  

BGen Downes studied medicine at the University of Manitoba, where he also completed his Family Medicine residency.   He has a Master of Public Health from the University of Texas, which was part of his subsequent residency in Aerospace Medicine with the US Air Force.  He is a Flight Surgeon and Advanced Diving Medical Officer, and has completed both the US Army Medical Strategic Leadership Program and the Canadian Securities Studies Program.  He is also a graduate of the Interagency Institute for Federal Health Care Executives, in Washington.

During his 29 year military career, BGen Downes has served in multiple clinical, administrative and leadership roles, including as Regimental Medical Officer, as Base Surgeon, and as Medical Director for Search and Rescue, Aeromedical Evacuation, and Aeromedical Training. He was also a Regional Surgeon, the Operational Commands Surgeon, the Royal Canadian Air Force Surgeon, and the Director Mental Health.  BGen Downes has deployed on 4 overseas missions - to Bosnia (twice), to Italy, and to Afghanistan where he had several roles including Commander of the multinational Role 3 hospital in Kandahar.


Speaker Sessions


Dr. Philip Wells - Leadership in Medical Research

Dr. Philip Wells is the Chair and Chief of the Department of Medicine at The Ottawa Hospital and The University of Ottawa. He established the Thrombosis Treatment and Assessment Unit at The Ottawa Hospital, now the largest thrombosis clinical practice in the world. He pioneered the concept of clinical prediction rules to assist in the diagnosis of patients with suspected deep vein thrombosis and/or pulmonary embolism. For each of these diseases he embodied these prediction rules in valuable algorithms now known as the “Wells Model for DVT” and the “Wells Model for PE”. They are currently used world-wide in the diagnostic process for these illnesses and are incorporated into many National and Organizational guidelines.


Dr. Radha Jetty - Leadership in Indigenous Health

Dr. Jetty has followed a life passion of advocating for vulnerable and marginalized populations. Her initial interest in working with health disparate populations led her to work as Nunavut’s first full-time pediatrician from 2008 to 2012 where she developed Nunavut’s pediatric program. She is involved with undergraduate and postgraduate Indigenous health medical education while helping to develop the Canadian Pediatric Society’s Indigenous child health curriculum and giving regular lectures to medical students and residents. She strives to advocate for health equity among Canadian Indigenous children through policy development and through developing strong partnerships with academic institutions, governments, national and international advocacy organizations and community partners.



Dr. Vicki LeBlanc - Leadership in Medical Education

Dr. Vicki LeBlanc, PhD, is Chair and Professor of the Department of Innovation in Medical Education at the University of Ottawa, and Director of the University of Ottawa Skills and Simulation Centre. She has over 15 years of experience leading research into a) optimizing the use of simulation in health professions education and b) the effects of emotions and stress on the performance of health professionals and front line workers. She has authored over 100 peer-reviewed publications, and regularly presents her work nationally and internationally. She will describe opportunities for leadership in medical education, as well as highlight various pathways to developing the necessary skills of leadership in medical education.


Dr. Nicole Rouvinez-Bouali - Leadership in Global Health

Nicole Rouvinez-Bouali is an Assistant Professor for pediatrics and neonatologist at the University of Ottawa, and holds a Master of Management - the International Masters for Health Leadership - from McGill University. She is passionate about global health and has a led multiple global health education missions to reduce neonatal mortality in Asia and Africa. In Benin, she has contributed to the creation of a network of perinatal collaborators, from front-line healthcare workers to health stakeholders. As the Clinical Director of a Global Development Alliance, she developed an extensive neonatal education curriculum and contributed to the introduction of nasal CPAP in leading neonatal units in Benin. She is a founding member of the International, Inter-University Diploma in Perinatology.