CBS Board

Current Members

President: Christy Simpson

 Christy joins us from Dalhousie University, with extensive grounding in the Canadian bioethics community and the CBS.  She is Head and Associate Professor in the Department of Bioethics within the Faculty of Medicine at Dalhousie University. Christy also most recently served as Board Chair for the Canadian Association of Practicing Healthcare Ethicists (CAPHE-ACESS). Her research interests are diverse, including both clinical and organizational issues. For many members, she requires no introduction.



Past President: Eugene Bereza

Eugene Bereza is a family physician and bioethicist with a background in biology, literature, music therapy, and palliative care. He studied medicine and completed his residency in family medicine at McGill University before pursuing a post-doctoral fellowship at the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics at the University of Chicago. Dr. Bereza has extensive experience in health policy development. He has been Chair of the Committee on Ethics for the Quebec Medical Association and the Canadian Medical Association. He has also been a member of the ethics committees of the College of Family Physicians of Canada and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. He has been called to testify before Canadian Senate committees, provincial commissions and the Supreme Court of British Columbia on issues that include physician-assisted suicide, euthanasia, reproductive technologies, and adaptation of health and social services in the context of cultural diversity. In 2001 he was appointed by the federal Minister of Health as ethicist to the Canadian Council for Donation and Transplantation. Dr. Bereza is currently the Director of the Biomedical Ethics Unit, McGill

Treasurer: Priya Somascanthan

Honours B.Sc. Psychology and Biology York University
E-mail: p.somascanthan[at]

Priya completed her Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology and Biology (minor) at York University. Volunteering at hospitals and community organizations for several years now, she discovered her passion for community involvement and volunteerism. She has a passionate interest in Public Health and has pursued opportunities that satisfied her interest in Public Health advocacy. Becoming a member of the Canadian Bioethics Society was one of the steps she took in her search for inspiration and explore new options. Her interest in Bioethics is centered on Public Health and she plans to pursue further education to achieve her goals in Public Health.

Communications Officer: Andria Bianchi

PhD Candidate, University of Waterloo

   E-mail: andriabianchi25[at]   

Andria Bianchi is a PhD Candidate at the University of Waterloo where her research focuses on areas of biomedical ethics. She obtained her MA in Philosophy from Wilfrid Laurier University and holds a Specialized Honours BA from York University. Alongside her academic endeavors, Andria is an ethics committee member at Surrey Place Centre, a research assistant at Mount Sinai Hospital (department of bioethics), a volunteer at Sick Kids Hospital (department of bioethics), and a former volunteer for the Canadian Bioethics Society. Andria is interested in topics of mental health ethics, transplant ethics, and exploring issues of sexual autonomy. She plans to contribute to the field of bioethics as a clinical ethicist in the near future.



Deputy Communication Officer: Phoebe Smith-Chen

Speech-Language Pathologist
D-Wing, Toronto East General Hospital 
825 Coxwell Avenue Toronto Ontario, M4C3E7

Email: phoebesmithchen[at]

Phoebe Smith-Chen is a speech-language pathologist in a hospital setting. She holds a Bachelor degree in psychology, Master's of Speech-Language Pathology and a Master's in Bioethics from the Joint Centre for Bioethics. Specific areas of interest in ethics include transitions in care, consent and capacity and communication, end-of-life feeding and inter-organizational systems.


Diversity Officer: Kimberley Stever

Junior Clinical Ethicist, Alberta Health Services

E-mail: kimberley.stever[at]  

Kimberley Stever is a Junior Clinical Ethicist with Alberta Health Services, based in the Calgary Zone. Prior to this role, she served as an Ethics Education Consultant for the AHS Clinical Ethics Service. Her Master’s work in philosophy at the University of Alberta focused on distributive justice and public health, examining pandemic obligations to the global poor. She received a B.A. in Bioethics from the University of Toronto. Kimberley has worked with a number of international development NGOs on issues of poverty and development, was previously a paralegal in Edmonton, and a teaching assistant for various philosophy and ethics courses. Her primary bioethics interest include end of life ethics, decision-making capacity, public health policy, and resource allocation.



Fundraising Officer: Angel Petropanagos and Agnes Kaufman

Membership Officer: Rosalind Abdool

Clinical Ethicist, Trillium Health Partners

Rosalind Abdool is clinical ethicist at Trillium Health Partners. Prior to this role, she was a clinical ethicist at Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare, Windsor, contracted through the Centre for Clinical Ethics, at St. Joseph’s Health Centre in Toronto. She is also a former ethics committee member at the Waterloo-Wellington Community Care Access Centre. Rosalind completed her PhD at the University of Waterloo with a focus on biomedical ethics. Her research explored the use of deception in health-care and examined both the moral arguments in favor and against deception, as well as considering the strict limitations of its use. Her bioethics interests involve reflecting on the concepts of personal identity and autonomy, the role of personal convictions and values in ethical decision-making, as well as the challenge of balancing conflicting interests and principles in bioethics. She is particularly interested in mental health and end of life ethics. Rosalind has also been a CBS board member in the Fundraising Coordinator position for two years.

 New Initiatives Officer: James Anderson

Ethicist, Trillium Health Partners

Trillium Health Partners
100 Queensway West
Mississauga, ON  L5B 1B8
905-848-7580 x 2370

James Anderson is  an Ethicist at Trillium Health Partners in Mississauga and a member of the Joint Centre for Bioethics at the University of Toronto. Prior to this role, James was a bioethicist for Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital and a Research Bioethicist at the Hospital for Sick Children. Before joining Holland Bloorview, James completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Clinical and Organizational Ethics with the Joint Centre for Bioethics. James holds a PhD in Philosophy (2007), a Master’s in Philosophy (2002) and a Master’s in Health Administration (2001) all from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada. He received his BA (Hons) in Philosophy from McGill University (1998). Previously, James was a Senior Research Associate in the National Core for Neuroethics at the University of British Columbia, a Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Biomedical Ethics Unit at McGill University, and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy at Trent University. James’ research focuses primarily on three areas of research ethics broadly conceived: conceptual foundations of research ethics, translational research ethics, and disaster research ethics.


 Partnerships and Community Relations Officer: Patrick McDonald

Head- Division of Neurosurgery, BC Children's Hospital, Associate Professor, Department of Surgery, Faculty, National Core for Neuroethics

University of British Columbia

4480 Oak Street Room K3-216, Vancouver, BC

Patrick McDonald is the Head of Pediatric Neurosurgery at BC Children's Hospital and Faculty at the National Core for Neuroethics. Previously, Patrick was at the Winnipeg Children’s Hospital. After completing his neurosurgery training, he obtained a Master of Health Science degree from the Joint Centre for Bioethics at the University of Toronto. He is actively involved in teaching bioethics at the undergraduate, graduate and residency level and was a member of the Biomedical Research Ethics Board at the University of Manitoba for 6 years. His research interests centre on ethical issues in surgical innovation, adolescent decision making and conflicts of interest in clinical research.


Graduate Student Member-at-Large: Ruby Rajendra Shanker

Graduate Student, MHSc (Bioethics) Joint Centre for Bioethics, University of Toronto Email:ruby.rajendrashanker[at]

Ruby is an internationally trained physician with a focus in General Medicine and Neurology. She is currently pursuing a Master of Health Sciences degree in Bioethics at the Joint Centre for Bioethics, University of Toronto. Previously, she was a Research Assistant (Memory and Ageing Lab) at the Rotman Research Institute at Baycrest, and has volunteered at several healthcare institutions within the GTA.

As a graduate student of bioethics, she has been involved in ethics-related activities under the supervision of the bioethics department at the University Health Network, particularly at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute. Ruby aims to pursue further training and eventually a career in Clinical Ethics. Her interest and passion lie with rehabilitation ethics, but also include clinical ethics in the acute care setting, ethics education, cultural competency in healthcare, inter-professional ethics education, research ethics and patient education/empowerment via social media.

Originally from India, Ruby was raised in the Sultanate of Oman and the United Arab Emirates. Her life experiences amidst multicultural communities globally have lent her enriched perspectives towards appreciating and celebrating diversity. As a healthcare professional, she believes that bioethics is a medium to not only clarify value-laden questions that arise in healthcare, but also for humanistic solidarity. She hopes to bring more attention to and strengthen the voices of bioethics students from our Aboriginal, LGBTQ and migrant communities. She aims to motivate the student community with opportunities to collaborate and share our collective knowledge for excellence in the field of bioethics.

Administrator: Vaso Rahimzadeh

Vasiliki (Vaso) Rahimzadeh serves as the Administrator for the Canadian Bioethics Society, and supports the Executive Board in its effort to build organizational capacities for the CBS. She is currently pursuing her PhD jointly in the Department of Family Medicine and Centre of Genomics and Policy at McGill University, where her research interests center on ethics governance of research in the data-intensive sciences.