Board of Directors
Get to know our Board of Directors — volunteers charged with setting directions and policies, overseeing their implementation, and controlling operations of the Patient Alumni Association.
Board Member Since: 2010
I have been a patient of the UOHI for over 32 years. I received my pacemaker then and I am now on my fifth. Now that I’m completely I retired I wanted to give something back to the organization that has given me so much. I work as an auxiliary volunteer once a week and since have become involved in the Patient Alumni as a Board Member.
I’ve always taken great pleasure from working and I continue to do so through my volunteer work. I strongly believe that being intellectually active has a direct positive impact on my physical health. I really enjoy my work with the UOHI.
Board Member Since: 2014
Steven is a career executive with more than 30 years’ management experience gained from working with several national non-profit organizations and a federal Crown corporation. He joined the Patient Alumni in 2012 after receiving an aortic valve replacement earlier that year. Following treatment, he wished to maintain a close connection with and contribute to the essential work of the Heart Institute. In the fall of 2014, he joined the Patient Alumni Board to help provide support to patients and their families on their journey through heart disease diagnosis, treatment, recovery, and living a healthy lifestyle afterwards. He was elected Vice President of the board in December 2015.
Board Member Since: 2016
I have been involved and working with the public throughout my career: initially as a nurse, and secondly as a real estate agent. My focus has been in areas of health, sales, management, business development, coaching, training, communications, and charity work.
I am currently a sole proprietor of my own coaching company. The main focus of the company is Business Coaching and helping others to achieve their goals.
In 2008, while in my 50’s, I developed Sudden Onset Complete Heart Block and required a permanent pacemaker. Needless to say, I am grateful to the Heart Institute. This gratitude has inspired me to focus my efforts on giving back.
In 2007 I became involved with fund raising for the University of Ottawa Heart Institute Foundation. I served as co-chair for a charity fund raising event called the Jeanne Fuller Red Dress Golf Classic. This all female golf charity tournament raises awareness of heart disease in women and has raised $1,000,000 for the Canadian Women‘s Heart Health Centre (CWHHC) at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute.
I am involved with the Women@Heart Champion Advisory Committee for the Heart Institute’s Prevention and Wellness Centre.
I am also a Peer Support Leader with the Women@ Heart Program. This is one of the programs offered by the CWHHC.
It gives me great pleasure to be part of the Patient Alumni’s Board of distinguished individuals. Throughout my career I have been fortunate to work with the public and in the community. The Heart Institute is a world renowned institution, and it gives me great pleasure to help in the capacity of women’s heart health.
Board Member Since: 2018
Angela Peterson is an academic leader and educator at Algonquin College. Her current role is Associate Chair, Manager of Part-Time Faculty, in the Faculty of Technology and Trades, a position that builds on her progressive development from Advisory Committee member to Field Placement Officer, to Coordinator, to Course Developer and Professor.
Angela started her career working in criminology and corrections. In fact, she still sits on the Program Advisory Committee for the Community and Justice Services Program at the College. Her background includes over 20 years working in non-profit organizations and she has a special passion for social justice and women’s issues. For more than 10 years, Angela served on the Board of Directors with the Elizabeth Fry Society of Ottawa, which included a two-year term on the Executive Team as Treasurer.
20 years ago, Angela was diagnosed with having Bicuspid Aortic Valve Stenosis so her history includes regular visits to the University of Ottawa Heart Institute. Her connection to the Institute became more intimate three years ago, when she had open-heart surgery, specifically the Ross Procedure. Since her surgery and rehabilitation, Angela has been a positive advocate of the UOHI, including sharing her story in a few outreach campaigns. As a younger heart patient, Angela has a unique perspective on the work and mission of the Institute and wants to give back to a community that saved her life. Angela is married and has two young daughters who are also big supporters of the Heart Institute.
Board Member Since: 2017
I had my second catheter ablation at the Heart Institute to address atrial fibrillation in November 2017; my first was about 5 years before. The care provided by the Institute was critical in keeping me active, healthy and living the kind of life that is precious to me.
It is a great pleasure for me to have an opportunity to give back to this important and world class institution, which we are so lucky to have here in our city, through my contribution on the Board of the Patient Alumni. As a career executive with the federal public service, with a background in communications and engagement, my efforts are focused on strengthening and supporting the alumni community – patients and their family members.
Stephen B. Sharp, CPA, CA
Board Member and Treasurer: since 2014
I have been an Alumni for a life-time (since November 2013). That is when I walked into the UOHI and they saved my life. Healthy, active, no symptoms, I needed a simple test and then they informed me that my aorta was torn from top to bottom. Two brilliant surgeons performed an emergency open heart surgery for 7.5 hours. Not only did I join the 3% club of those who lived with what I had for almost three weeks but I also joined the Alumni in recognition of how special this place truly is.
A CA for over 28 years, I am self-employed and provide Chief Financial Officer services to a variety of clients. I am proud to serve my community, alongside this wonderful group of individuals collectively called the University of Ottawa Heart Institute Alumni Board. It is an honour to give back to this incredible Institution.
Nancy Lawson – Ex Officio on Executive Committee
Board Member Since: 2010
I am a female who experienced a major heart attack before the age of 60. It caused me to become acutely aware first hand that heart disease is not just a man’s disease. It can happen to anyone. In my case, heredity also played a major role. At that point I knew I wanted to give back in some way to the Heart Institute, which literally saved my life.
As a member of the Funding Committee, I help prioritize funding projects that directly affect the patient. An ideal example of this funding is the cough pillows which are given to open heart patients to aid in their recovery.
I am also editor of the alumni publication “The Bulletin”, which I enjoy tremendously. It allows me to serve the Patient Alumni by providing timely information and news about all matters of the heart.
Being a board member is a perfect compliment to my career in the telecommunications industry for thirty years. It is an honour to be able to represent the Alumni of the Heart Institute.
Board Member Since: 2012
David Brisco was born in the Bahamas, and immigrated to Canada with his parents in 1949. Mr. Brisco grew up in Chatham, Ontario and graduated from the University of Western Ontario in 1970. After post-graduate studies in Montreal and Ottawa, in 1973 he joined the federal Department of External Affairs as a Foreign Service Officer. Mr. Brisco spent his career in alternating postings in Ottawa, and at Canadian diplomatic missions in Peru, Brazil, Barbados, Italy and the United Kingdom. While serving in the department’s Human Rights Division, Mr. Brisco was a regular delegate to the United Nations in New York and Geneva. Following bypass surgery at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute in 2000, Mr. Brisco retired from the Public Service. He spent many years studying Philosophy and Economics via on-line courses. Seeking new challenges, Mr. Brisco joined the Board of the Heart Institute Alumni in December 2012. The opportunity to become part of Ottawa’s world-leading Heart Institute was too good to be missed. In addition to serving on the Alumni Board, Mr. Brisco is also a community member of the Heart Institute’s Human Ethics Research Board.
Board Member Since: 2010
Carolyn completed 10 years in the Military as a military nurse, specializing as an Oncology Nurse and then as a Intensive Care Nurse at the National Defence Medical Centre in Ottawa. She was deployed to Bosnia in 1994, in the role of a military ICU nurse. Her other role was to co-ordinate and assist as a nurse in a clinic in the community for the civilians in Bosnia. On return she was responsible for coordinating and implementing medical services in the Ottawa Ice Storm in 1998.
Carolyn began her career at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute in 1995 as a staff nurse. She has been a Coordinator, and Educator for the wards H-3, H-4 and H-5. Presently, she is the Clinical Manager for H-4.
She has been a Board member of the Patient Alumni since 2010, providing medical knowledge and guidance to the Board as required.
As a former senior executive, recently retired from the federal public service, I am happy to now have the opportunity to do some volunteer work. I have been concerned with heart health since I lost my father to heart illness many years ago, and subsequently other members of my extended family. This is why I feel it is so important to emphasize good health practices, and find the University of Ottawa Heart Institute Patient Alumni is providing me a chance to contribute to this important cause, amongst others.
As a member of the Board, I am charged more specifically with coordinating the events in which the Alumni participate, in order to more increasingly support the objectives of the Ottawa Heart Institute. I feel fortunate to be able to work with great Board colleagues, and to benefit from their life experience. On a personal note, one of my goals is to work towards providing a better chance for my grandchildren to live a healthy life.
Board Member Since: 2016
Mrs. Murphy-Walsh studied Political Science at the University of New Brunswick and subsequently obtained a Master of Public Administration degree from Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia. She joined the federal public service in 1981 where she held positions of increasing responsibility until her retirement from the Public Service Commission of Canada where she occupied the post of Vice-President of Audit and Data Services. During her public service career, she has acquired expertise in human resource management, internal and legislative auditing, policy development and analysis, information management and data analysis. She has previously served on the Board of Directors for PPX, the Performance and Planning Exchange, a non-profit Canada-based international centre of excellence for learning, sharing and developing expertise in performance and planning – including its measurement, implementation, public reporting and management. Elizabeth is married and has two adult daughters; she has been a volunteer for the Ottawa Hospital Foundation, Canadian Cancer Society and the Kidney Foundation.