Bios for OWHC Website – April 2015
- Allan Smofsky, Smofsky Strategic Planning (SSP)
- Gerry Culina, Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety
- Ivian Tchakarova, Trillium Health Partners
- Janet Baker, RN, BScN, MEd, COHN(C), Elgin St. Thomas Public Health
- Lisa van der Vinne, HKPR District Health Unit
- Roslyn Wright, Transcontinental
- Sabrina Arvanitis, High Point Wellness Centre
- Susan Fuciarelli, Hamilton Health Sciences
- Terri Aversa, Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU)
- Tim Fleming, Innovation Works
Allan Smofsky is the Managing Director of Smofsky Strategic Planning (SSP), a strategic planning consultancy dedicated to measurably improving health, engagement and performance, primarily in the workplace environment. Allan consults on issues – and to stakeholders - across the spectrum of organizational health
A fluently bilingual (French & English) native of Montreal, Canada, Allan founded SSP in 2004 following several years in senior-level leadership and consulting positions with global health/ human resources and benefits consulting firms, as well as workplace health service providers. He is currently based in the Toronto, Canada area.
Allan is an active member of several organizations, and has demonstrated leadership in advocating for a comprehensive and integrated approach to organizational health. Allan Smofsky is a 2008 winner of the Rogers Media (Canada), Working Well Who’s Who in Workplace Health award and is a frequently invited speaker and writer in Canada and internationally on benefits, organizational health & well-being issues.
Gerry Culina is Manager, General Health and Safety Services, at the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) since 2010. In his capacity, Gerry leads a unit that provides a comprehensive service of information while supporting work-related health and safety initiatives on all areas of workplace health and safety to improve the total health of the individual – mental, physical and psychosocial. Additional responsibilities includes the promotion, collaboration and cultivation of effective relationships with organizations throughout Canada and abroad to advance CCOHS’s impact and effectiveness, to gain added value through mutually beneficial ventures.
Gerry has been a Health and Safety professional for over 30 years. He first worked in the private sector then spent 13 years in Municipal Government as Manager, Health & Safety. In 2001 Gerry joined the Municipal Health and Safety Association (MHSA) as Operations Manager and in 2008 moved to the Education Safety Association of Ontario (ESAO) as Director Prevention Services.
In addition to his MBA Gerry has a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Health & Safety. Since 2001, Gerry has been a part time instructor at McMaster Continuing Education Centre teaching in Human Resources. He sat on the Vulnerable Workers sub-committee as part of Ontario Premier’s Expert Panel Advisory Council in 2010, Gerry is current on the Board of Directors of the Ontario Healthy Workplace Coalition.
Ivian Tchakarova is the Wellness Specialist at Trillium Health Partners and is working to implement healthy workplace initiatives that enable organizations to create supporting and innovative approaches to information and services that empower employees to self-actualize their full potential.
Janet Baker, RN, BScN, MEd, COHN(C)
Janet Baker has worked in the field of Workplace Health Promotion since 1990. Janet currently works at Elgin St. Thomas Public Health promoting and supporting workplace good health in the county of Elgin and the city of St. Thomas.
On the OWHC Janet strives to be a strong voice for both Public Health and workplaces in Southwestern Ontario. Through an interview in the 2013 Sanofi Canada Healthcare Survey, she was able to advocate for Ontario Public Health, workplace wellness programs and the Ontario Workplace Health Coalition. Janet is passionate about fair, safe and healthy workplaces and believes that the OWHC can contribute to a positive difference for workplaces in Ontario.
Workplace Safety and Prevention Services (WSPS)
Krista Schmid is an account manager at Workplace Safety and Prevention Services (WSPS). She works with organizations to provide Health and Safety consulting and prevention strategies. With a background in educational psychology, human resources and counselling, she encourages a comprehensive approach to health and safety that includes psychosocial hazards. Krista is also an instructor of Mental Health First Aid
Lisa van der Vinne
Lisa van der Vinne is Workplace Liaison at the HKPR District Health Unit, where she has worked for the past 12 years. Lisa supports workplaces in implementing comprehensive workplace health programs and policies
Roslyn Wright is a Health, Safety and Wellness Advisor at Transcontinental. She is excited to be a Board Member of the OWHC as promoting wellness in the workplace is the next “frontier” in truly providing employees with a healthy and safe working environment.
Sabrina Arvanitis started her career working with elite level athletes in sports nutrition. Currently she is the Operations Managers for High Point Wellness Centre and is responsible for their worksite wellness programming, supporting such clients as The Globe & Mail and General Mills. Sabrina has been a member of the Ontario Workplace Health Coalition since 2012.
Susan is the Director of Health, Safety and Wellness at Hamilton Health Sciences and has extensive experience leading programs to promote health, safety and wellness in the workplace. Susan is passionate about creating inclusive and healthy work environments where employees can thrive and is thrilled to be a member of the Board at the Ontario Workplace Health Coalition.
Terri Aversa currently works as a Health and Safety Officer at the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU). Her role includes providing health and safety assistance and advice to OPSEU's 130,000 members and participating with other stakeholders to improve workplace health and safety in Ontario. Prior to coming on-staff at OPSEU in 2005, Terri was an OPSEU member employed in Correctional Services.
Altogether, Terri brings over 25 years of experience in the labour movement dealing with various issues and including her current focus on occupational health and safety. Most recently, Terri spearheaded the development of the 2012 Mental Injury Tool Kit, a resource tool developed by unions, workers, and organizations to identify and address organizational factors that may cause or contribute to mental distress for workers.
Terri has completed a Specialist B.A. in Employment Relations at University of Toronto and is pursuing a Masters in McMaster University’s Work & Society program.
Tim Fleming is a Certified Professional Facilitator and Stakeholder Engagement Specialist and Owner of Innovation Works, a firm designed to help clients solve pressing challenges through managed innovation processes – by systematically ‘colliding ideas and sparking action’ toward the future. He has a particular interest in working with employers to create the organizational climate conditions for high innovation and worker well-being. Tim joined the OWHC out of his belief that the workplace is one of the most significant institutions in our society, and that it is through this institution that greater social change can be inspired. If workers can thrive in the environment where they spend the majority of their waking hours, then this experience will invariably spill over into other areas – the community, the family, and society as a whole. Tim is currently the Co-Chair of the OWHC.
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