Heather Harris
Heather HarrisExecutive Director

Heather Harris has more than 25 years of experience in clinical research, spanning pharmaceutical and biotech companies, non-profit organizations, and academic centres. Most recently, Heather worked with BC’s SPOR SUPPORT Unit to build and enhance BC’s clinical and health research enterprise. She also served as inaugural Director of Operations for the British Columbia Clinical Infrastructure Network (BCCRIN).

As Executive Director of Can-SOLVE CKD, Heather acts as the primary liaison for the network and oversees the core operations team. She is responsible for monitoring network performance and activities to ensure the work is within scope and budget. She also facilitates communication within and outside the network, engages stakeholders, and facilitates development of knowledge translation products and reporting on network achievements.


Selina Omar Allu
Selina Omar AlluKnowledge Translation Broker

Selina Allu is a Knowledge Translation Broker with a Master’s degree in Health Geography. She has almost a decade of combined experience in knowledge translation, knowledge management, and outreach (provincial and national). Selina has led the development and delivery of comprehensive knowledge outreach plans, including the design, planning, and execution of targeted knowledge dissemination while building strong and collaborative working relationships with stakeholders and end-users to broaden research reach and impact.

As KT Broker for Can-SOLVE CKD, Selina ensures that research findings are applied in real world settings through effective knowledge translation strategies and collaborations with end-users.


Chantal Boucher
Chantal BoucherCoordinator, KRESCENT

Chantal Boucher has worked with the Kidney Foundation of Canada in the National Marketing and Communications department for 18 years. She was initially in project coordination for the department but in 2014 she began to provide support to the Kidney Foundation’s KRESCENT program. This included the coordination of bi-annual workshops and working directly with the KRESCENT awardees and managers of the programme.

Kelley Dennis
Kelley DennisKidney Check Nurse
Kelley was born and raised in Tofino and comes from the Ahousaht Nation, which is on Vancouver Island and part of the Nuu-Chah-Nulth territory.
Kelley’s mother was able to donate her organs 4 years ago.  Each of her kidneys was donated to a person on dialysis. This got each person off of dialysis, extending their life expectancy.  It is for this reason that this research project and clinics that are held within rural and remote communities, is so dear to her heart.
Kelley looks forward to being part of the team and being able to see the First Nations rural and remote communities throughout BC. She is also honoured to be able to assist communities in preventing kidney disease by testing and running clinics. She will also be able to assist the communities in training health care members within the communities to carry on testing of its members.


Linnea Franson
Linnea FransonPatient Partnerships and Training Manager


Leah Getchell
Leah GetchellPatient Partnerships and Training Lead

Leah has held numerous leadership roles and has been facilitating groups for more than 20 years. Her training as an Anthropologist coupled with her natural ability to connect with people makes her a relationship builder extraordinaire. In her current role as Patient Partnerships & Training Lead for the Can-SOLVE CKD Network, Leah uniquely combines her academic & professional training with her lived experience with chronic kidney disease (she lost her mother to the illness in 2014).  She supports patient partnerships throughout the network and leads the Training & Mentorship committee, tasked with developing and implementing renal focused POR tools and resources.  Fun Fact: Leah wanted to be an astronaut when she was little and went to Space Camp when she was 12yrs old.


Amanda Green
Amanda GreenCommunications Coordinator

Amanda looks forward to supporting the network in her role as Communications Coordinator. Her partner is a living kidney donor for his younger brother. She is originally from Winnipeg, Manitoba and currently resides in Vancouver, British Columbia.


Michelle Hampson
Michelle HampsonMedical Writer

Michelle Hampson is a science writer with a background in journalism. She has spent more than ten years communicating the complexities of scientific research for the public, including information about disease pathology and treatment options for patients. At Can-SOLVE, she collaborates extensively with researchers, medical professionals, visual storytellers, patients, and others to produce content, ensuring that it remains clear, concise and accessible.


Grace Jauod
Grace JauodFinance Manager

Grace is a Chartered Professional Accountant with more than 20 years of experience in various fields of accounting and audit. Prior to joining the Can-SOLVE CKD team, she held financial and operations management roles at the University of British Columbia.

As Finance Manager for Can-SOLVE CKD, Grace provides financial management and strategic support. She is responsible for financial reporting to various stakeholders and budget management for the Network. She oversees the general ledger and accounts payable functions; interpretation of UBC, tri-council and funders’ financial policies and procedures; systems and internal controls design and implementation.


Umair Khan
Umair KhanProvincial Coordinator – BC COVID-19 Immunization in CKD Patients Study
Umair Khan is a Provincial Coordinator with a degree in Medicine and Surgery. He has almost 6 years of combined experience in Clinical Research, Pharmaceutical and Hospital setting. Currently, he has been working on government sponsored province-wide research
study. Umair also holds the membership of Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP).


Cynthia MacDonald
Cynthia MacDonaldProject Manager

Cynthia MacDonald has recently joined Can-SOLVE CKD as Project Manager and has over 10 years of research experience. Her past roles have allowed her to work on various academic studies with a large patient engagement. More recently, she has been working on industry sponsored Clinical Trials (Phase 1 – 4). Her background is in Human Kinetics, and Exercise Science. Fun fact: Cynthia was a competitive figure skater for many years and wanted to go to the Olympics. When her skating career ended, she went into coaching and coached hockey players throughout university!


Alicia Murdoch
Alicia MurdochProject Manager

Alicia is a certified Clinical Research Professional (ACRP-CP) with over 12 years of clinical research experience. Prior to joining Can-SOLVE CKD, she worked as a research coordinator, review manager at a Research Ethics Board (REB) and ethics and regulatory coordinator. Her past employment experiences have given her a wide breadth of knowledge about the research process. In her current role as a Can-SOLVE CKD Network project manager, she is responsible for the Canadian Nephrology Trials Network and Can-SOLVE CKD Network Pediatric Committee, helping these core infrastructures move their initiatives and ideas forward in the pursuit of improving the lives of those affected by chronic kidney disease.


Beth Neilson
Beth NeilsonKidney Check Nurse

Beth Neilson is a Registered Nurse and Certified Diabetes Educator. She is passionate about patient-centric care, public health interventions, and rural and remote healthcare issues. 

Beth brings over ten years of nursing experience to the Can-SOLVE CKD Network, specifically in the areas of public health, primary care, remote nursing, and health education. Although she is based in BC, Beth recently spent over five years providing nursing care in some of the most remote regions of northern Canada. 

As the Kidney Check Project Nurse, Beth works collaboratively with local community-based teams to provide kidney health screening and education. 

When she’s not traveling, Beth enjoys spending time on hiking trails and at the beach with her husband and dog. 


Graham Pollock
Graham PollockCommunications and Stakeholder Engagement Lead

Graham Pollock is a health research communications professional with a background in journalism and digital storytelling. Prior to joining Can-SOLVE CKD, he was Senior Communications Specialist for the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research. In this role, he led the development of content across a wide range of digital and print channels to communicate the impact of health research projects.

As Communications Manager for the Can-SOLVE CKD Network, Graham leads the implementation of a strategic communications plan to ensure the organized flow of information. He develops communications materials such as newsletters, progress reports, and website content in partnership with patients, researchers, and other network members.


Vaishali Sharma
Vaishali SharmaAdministrative Assistant

Vaishali Sharma has over 3 years of experience as administrative assistant. She came to Canada from India in 2018 as International student and recently graduated from her Associates in general Science majoring in Biology. She has keen interest in research and hoping to be a research scientist one day. Her areas of curiosity are Neuroscience, Genetics, Microbiology and Cell Biology. She looks forward to supporting the Discreet Choice Experiments (DCEs) project.


Craig Settee
Craig SetteeIndigenous Peoples Engagement and Research Council (IPERC) Coordinator

Craig Settee is Anishinaabe and Néhinaw (Swampy Cree) from Fisher River Cree Nation and grew up in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He is a living kidney donor to his brother and previous patient partner with the Network. He brings this lived experience to his role as Coordinator of the Indigenous Peoples’ Engagement and Research Council (IPERC).

Craig has several years of experience working as a cultural support worker, Action Therapist and community organizer with First Nations and inner-city community-based organizations. He is passionate about increasing Indigenous representation and amplifying Indigenous voices to foster more collaborative working relationships. He is a strong believer in patient-oriented research and provides support to Indigenous patient partners, projects and partnerships within the Can-SOLVE CKD Network.


Mila Tang
Mila TangProject Manager

Mila Tang has been working in the kidney research field for 10+ years in various capacities from clinical trials and national network coordination, database management, bio-banking and grant writing. Her background is in molecular biology, biochemistry and health informatics.

As the Sustainability Planning Project Manager, for the Can-SOLVE CKD Network, Mila facilitate strategic planning with all stakeholder groups for a meaning, feasible and sustainable organization.


Catherine Turner
Catherine TurnerIndigenous Liaison Manager

Catherine Turner is a Métis woman whose family originates from the historic Red River Settlement in Manitoba. She is the Indigenous Liaison Manager of the Kidney Foundation of Canada BC & Yukon Branch and will be working with Can-SOLVE CKD to support the Indigenous Peoples’ Engagement and Research Council. She will work with the project leads to explore how best to enable Indigenous and non-Indigenous patient engagement in each of the network’s research projects.

Catherine is the past Chairperson of the National Aboriginal Diabetes Association and has been a member of their executive board since 2004. Catherine has worked in health and primary prevention programs with Aboriginal and First Nations communities for the past two decades, including administering an Aboriginal diabetes initiative for eight years.