Speakers


Health Talks Student Contest Winner

Stay tuned! We’ll be announcing the winner of the Health Talks Student Contest in December.


Barbara Alink
Chief Executive Officer, Alinker Inventions

Barbara is a Dutch designer, project manager, architect and mentor. She is the inventor of the Alinker – a ‘walking-bike’ that challenges assumptions about people with disabilities and is designed or everybody who wants to stay active, regardless of mobility challenges. Read Barbara’s full biography.


Colin Easton
Creator, The Stranger Project

After being diagnosed with clinical depression, Colin decided to do what he could to break his pattern of isolation. Wandering Vancouver, he met one stranger a day and explored that person’s story. Then he blogged about each encounter. Read Colin’s full biography.


Devin Harris
Chief of Medical Staff, Kelowna General Hospital

Devin has been an emergency physician for 15 years, and has experience in research, health care leadership, and teaching. He is also an Assistant Professor in the University of British Columbia’s Department of Emergency Medicine, the Associate Director of Research for Interior Health, the Stroke/TIA Clinical Lead at the BC Patient Safety & Quality Council, and Medical Advisor at Stroke Services BC.


Kasim Al-Mashat
Registered Psychologist, Meditation and Yoga Teacher

Kasim is a Registered Psychologist working in private practice to promote positive change, well-being, and mindful living. He is also a Hatha Yoga, Laughter Yoga, and Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) teacher. Kasim has also presented at a TEDx event about the subject of mindfulness. Read Kasim’s full biography.


Ray Markham
Rural General Practitioner

Ray has worked in rural family practice for over 20 years. He has had a remarkably diverse and productive medical career that has taken him across the globe. He is also the Executive Director of the Rural Coordination Centre of BC and intends to practice rural family medicine in Valemount for the rest of his career. Read Ray’s full biography.


Syexwáliya / Ann Whonnock
Council Co-Chair, Councillor, Skwxwu7mesh Uxwumixw (Squamish Nation) Council

Syexwáliya has served as an elected member of the Skwxwu7mesh Uxwumixw (Squamish Nation) Chiefs and Council for 23 years. As taught by her late grandparents, she supports families and shares cultural teachings and protocols. Her passion is to see that Squamish culture, language and ceremonies continue to be the cornerstone of the Nation for future generations. Read Syexwáliya’s full biography.


Valerie Pagdin
Occupational Therapist, St. John Hospital

Valerie is a wife of a wonderful man, the mother of two fascinating young teens, a farmer and gardener, and most recently, a really mean chicken who falls passionately in love in a community musical production called “Chickens.” She was proud to be the founder of the Occupational Therapy Department at St. John Hospital in Vanderhoof in 2001. Read Valerie’s full biography.