Governance Committee

The Governance Committee oversees and provides direction to the development, implementation, and evaluation of Health TAPESTRY projects.

David Price, MD, CCFP, FCFP

Professor and Chair, McMaster Department of Family Medicine (DFM)

Dr. David Price is Professor and Chair of the Department of Family Medicine at McMaster University.

Dr. Price is the Provincial Primary Care Lead and Chair of the Provincial Expert Advisory Panel on Primary Care. As the founding director of the Maternity Centre of Hamilton, Dr. Price has created a multidisciplinary centre that cares for prenatal and intrapartum patients. The Maternity Centre’s model of care is replicated across Canada and has been the subject of several national presentations and publications. He is also the Medical Director and co-investigator of the Quality in Family Practice program; a six year undertaking of four concurrent projects focusing on the development and implementation of continuous quality improvement initiatives.

Dr. Price is the administrative lead for OSCAR (Open Source Clinical Application Resource), an Electronic Medical Record (EMR), and MyOSCAR Personal Health Record. OSCAR was developed at McMaster and is now utilized across Canada by more than 1500 family physicians and is the fastest growing EMR in Ontario.

Locally, Dr. Price was instrumental in helping to create the academic Family Health Team at McMaster University, an interprofessional team consisting of physicians, nurse practitioners, social workers, dieticians, occupational therapists, physician assistants, pharmacists, and psychiatrists. The McMaster Family Health Team currently serves over 29,000 patients in the Hamilton area.

Doug Oliver, MSc, MD, CCFP

Associate Professor, Family Physician, Medical Director - McMaster Family Practice, DFM

Dr. Oliver is an Associate Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at McMaster University. He joined the Department in 2004 and took on a full-time faculty position in 2007.

Dr. Oliver’s passion for elder care lead him to take on the position as Care of the Elderly Curriculum Coordinator in 2006. This role has allowed him to develop many innovative programs for the Department, including a Long Term Care clinical rotation for residents and a successful annual CME event entitled "Care of the Elderly: Perspectives for Primary Care". His clinical commitment to this patient population continues with weekly nursing home rounds and house-calls to frail elderly patients.

Dr. Oliver’s interest in improving access for patients in primary care resulted in the development and implementation of an “Advanced Access” booking model in the McMaster Family Health Team. This model allows patients better access to their primary care team by having the majority of booking spots available for same day appointments. Dr. Oliver is the Principle Investigator on a research project designed to better understand how and why patients make the choices they do, when calling in to book an appointment with their family doctor.

On the academic front, Dr. Oliver is assisting the Department with several educational leadership roles including Co-Education Coordinator at McMaster Family Practice (2011), Hamilton Site Director and CBRT Education Coordinator (2012-2013) and Behavioural Sciences Co-Coordinator (2013-).

Dee Mangin, MBChB, DPH, FRNZCGP (NZ)

Associate Chair Research, Professor, Family Physician, McMaster DFM

Dr. Dee Mangin is the David Braley Chair and Professor in Family Medicine at McMaster University. Her interests are rational prescribing, polypharmacy, patient centred care and innovative models of primary care. She has wide experience in clinical research in primary care including pragmatic randomized trials. She is a Fellow of the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners. In 2011 she received their Distinguished Service Medal.

Dr. Mangin sits on the Section of Researchers' Council with the College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC) and is a member of the Integrated Patient Safety Action Plan Medication Safety Leads Group, Patients for Patient Safety Canada. She is the Director of MUSIC, the McMaster University Sentinel and Information Collaboration practice-based research network, and the Medical Director and cofounder of a website for consumer information and reporting of drug adverse reactions.

Tracey Carr, RN, MBA

Executive Director, McMaster Department of Family Medicine

Tracey Carr is the Executive Director of the Department of Family Medicine at McMaster University, a capacity in which she provides leadership in the strategic and operational management of education, research, clinical services and e-health innovations of the Department. Tracey is also Executive Director of OSCAR EMR, a not-for-profit organization established to facilitate the design, development and dissemination of a comprehensive, open-source, scalable eHealth solution (OSCAR) with the goal of promoting best practices and delivering improved, integrated patient care from individual to population health levels while reducing overall costs.

Tracey is a Registered Nurse with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master of Business Administration in Health Services Management from McMaster. In her career, Tracey has collaborated effectively with diverse stakeholders and demonstrated skill in facilitating changes in process across systems, academic institutions and health care organizations. She was a founding member of the Senior Executive Team of the Trillium Gift of Life Network, an agency established by the Province of Ontario to promote and facilitate increased organ and tissue donation. As Administrative Director of McMaster’s School of Nursing, she was instrumental in strengthening collaboration within the Nursing Education Consortium comprised of McMaster University, Mohawk College and Conestoga College.

Since joining the Department of Family Medicine in 2010, Tracey’s leadership has been integral to its success. Most recently, she led McMaster’s team as a lead partner in the Connected Health and Wellness Project funded by the Federal Economic Development Agency of Southern Ontario (FedDev). This Project enabled substantial investment in enhancing OSCAR, in further developing McMaster’s electronic Personal Health Record (PHR), and in creating a collaborative decision support tool (Know2Act). Tracey also fulfills an executive oversight role for McMaster’s TAPESTRY initiative, and is a core member of the leadership team for the Hamilton Central Health Link. Tracey believes passionately in the transformative potential of people working together for a common purpose. Her professional background in health and business administration, her leadership experience, and her skill in conceptualizing and implementing solutions to health and health system needs have, together, enabled her success in these roles.

Cathy Risdon, MD, DMan, CCFP, FCFP

Professor & Vice Chair, Director of Health Services, Family Physician, McMaster DFM

Dr. Cathy Risdon is a Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at McMaster and was the first holder of the David Braley-Nancy Gordon Endowed Chair in Family Medicine. Her mandate was to develop innovations in education, clinical service and research relating to the doctor-patient and interdisciplinary team relationships. Following the ten year term of her Endowed Chair, she became Associate Chair, Academic within the Department of Family Medicine, as well as the co-lead for the Academic Family Health Team.

She has completed a Doctorate of Management in Organizational Change and the University of Hertfordshire where her research explored themes of excellence and improvisation within curriculum design and implementation. Dr. Risdon draws upon principles of complexity and organizational change in her work within the faculty to create excellence in interprofessional care and education within clinical and academic settings. Her leadership in the field of interprofessional collaboration has resulted in over 2.5 million dollars in recent grants to promote effective health care on interprofessional teams. She has conducted training and consultations across North America for primary care and community based agencies wishing to improve their capacity for effective team and interprofessional collaborations.

Dr. Risdon graduated from McMaster's MD Programme in 1992. Her clinical practice is located at the McMaster Family Practice Unit where she is also serving as the Unit Co-Director with Dr. Dale Guenter.

Ruta Valaitis, RN, PhD

Associate Professor, School of Nursing, McMaster University

Ruta Valaitis joined McMaster University in 1987 as a part-time Lecturer in the School of Nursing. She is presently an Associate Professor in the School and the Dorothy C. Hall Chair in Primary Health Care Nursing.

Ruta has a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Windsor; a Master of Health Science from McMaster University; and a Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Toronto.

Her primary research interests are in health services research; primary health care; public health nursing (youth health and school health); interprofessional and intersectoral collaboration; computer applications in health promotion; participatory research; e-health and health promotion; e-learning in health sciences education; qualitative research methods; Photovoice; Q-methodology; case study; and use of NVIVO 8 and 9 for cross case comparisons. Currently, Ruta is a Principal Investigator for a CHSRF funded multisite program of research exploring collaborations between primary care and public health. For more information, see She is also the ON academic lead on a CIHR funded Emerging Team exploring public health services renewal in BC and ON. This program of research aims to use novel research methodologies, such as social network analysis and concept mapping, to explore the processes and impact of public health policy renewal. For more information, see Ruta is also a co-PI on a project evaluating a campus-community partnership aimed at enhancing community development in three Hamilton neighbourhoods.

Lisa Dolovich,  PharmD, MSc

Professor(PT), McMaster DFM; Professor, Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Toronto

Her research interests include the patient perspective about using or deciding to use medications, pharmacist integration into primary care practice, continuity of healthcare, pharmacy and health services practice research, and evaluating the clinical and policy relevance of interventions that can improve prescribing and patient medication taking behaviour. She holds research grants mainly from government and academic sources, including the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Canadian Health Services Research Foundation and the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care.

Pamela Forsyth, MPH, RD

Managing Director, Research Enterprise, DFM

As the Managing Director, Research Enterprise, Pam Forsyth provides strategic oversight, financial management and operational planning to the Department’s research initiatives.

Pam’s expertise is in planning and evaluating strategic health initiatives, facilitating systems change and managing teams to maximize their potential. She has held senior management positions in health promotion, health communications and knowledge translation. Before joining McMaster DFM, Pam was the Managing Director of the National Collaborating Centre for Methods and Tools, a federally funded organization with a mandate for building capacity for Knowledge Translation in Public Health across Canada. Prior to that, Pam Managed the Community Relations Division with Halton Region and the Health Promotion and Communications program with the Halton Region Health Department.

Pam is a Registered Dietitian and holds a Master’s degree in Health Promotion from the University of Toronto.

Larkin Lamarche, PhD

Research Associate, DFM

Larkin Lamarche came to the Department of Family Medicine in 2015 after completing a PhD in exercise sciences at the University of Toronto and post-doctoral work at Brock University. She is a Research Coordinator for Health TAPESTRY and is also an Assistant Professor (part-time). Larkin brings her experience in exercise and health psychology, specifically her expertise in exercise and older adults, to the department and TAPESTRY team. Her research also focuses on body image, coping, and health-related behaviours from a biopsychosocial perspective. When Larkin is not trying to understand how to get more people active through research, she is being active herself – weight lifting, hiking, biking and enjoying all physical activities outside. She will seek adventure in any corner of the world in her attempt to channel her inner travel writer and photographer. She is a softie for animals, especially those furry ones called bunnies, and is a dedicated listener to CBC radio, having been on herself talking about swimsuits and body image. Larkin is known to have a few green things and look for a few good giggles through the day. If she could wear shorts year-round, she would.

Julie Datta, MSW, RSW

Program Manager, DFM

As a Program Manager, Julie Datta provides operational oversight to the Health TAPESTRY program and is the primary liaison for implementation sites across Ontario.

Julie brings over ten years’ experience in health promotion, volunteer engagement, and community development to the Health TAPESTRY team. Prior to joining the Department of Family Medicine in 2017, Julie was a Program Manager at the Canadian Cancer Society, where she oversaw the delivery of a peer-education program promoting cancer screening within under-served communities across Ontario. Julie was also a Health Promoter at the Halton Region Health Department where she implemented and evaluated health promotion strategies to achieve chronic disease prevention.

Julie holds a Bachelor of Social Work from York University and a Master of Social Work from the University of Waterloo.

Samina Talat, MSc, MHSc, CHE

Associate Vice President, Health Innovations, Canadian Red Cross

Samina Talat has over 20 years of international and local experience across a variety of health sectors. Samina received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Education & a Masters of Science in Psychology from Pakistan. After completing her education, she worked in the acute and community health sectors, across rural and urban Pakistan, prior to immigrating with her family to Canada in 1998.

In her initial years of settlement in Canada, Samina worked and volunteered in the community and social sectors. Upon completion of a 3-year term at Victorian Order of Nurses, Samina pursued a Masters of Health Sciences in Health Administration from the University of Toronto and achieved her Certified Health Executive from the Canadian College of Health Leaders. She subsequently completed a Diploma in Advanced Health Leadership from the Rotman School of Management, at the University of Toronto and a Diploma in Clinical Services Management from Schulich School of Business at York University.

Samina’s journey across the Canadian Healthcare system has led her through gaining valuable experiences at GTA hospitals, LHIN, grassroot organizations, CHC and CCAC. Samina is currently appointed as the National Senior Director, Community Health and Wellness at the Canadian Red Cross.

Health TAPESTRY McMaster Department of Family Medicine Staff

Jessica Gaber, MSW, RSW

  • Health TAPESTRY Research/Program Coordinator

Fiona Parascandalo, MA

  • Health TAPESTRY Research Assistant

Stephanie Di Pelino, MPH

  • Health TAPESTRY Research Assistant

Lynda Nash

  • Health TAPESTRY Administrative Assistant
Health TAPESTRY McMaster University Family Medicine Staff Team.