Our strategic advisory council (the Council) provides us with advice, direction and input on strategic plans, partnership initiatives and other high-level operations that advance our work toward achieving our vision, mission and strategic goals.

Member responsibilities

The Council meets four times a year, often in person. Members are committed for a two-year term.
Council duties include:

  • working with our leadership team to set strategic priorities and directions
  • contributing to generative discussions to advance the relevance and impact of our work
  • reviewing and advising on our annual operating plans and budgets
  • reviewing quarterly performance reports
  • providing input into our executive director's performance appraisals

Meet the Council

Council members include:

  • young people with lived experience with mental health challenges or mental illness
  • parents or family members of a child or youth with mental health challenges or mental illness
  • organizational decision makers from the child and youth mental health sector
  • individuals with relevant experience in finance and management

 

Portrait of Louis Doyle

Louis Doyle (Chair)

CHEO Board of Directors

Louis Doyle is retired from the federal government, with more than 30 years of experience in marketing, policy and program development related to regional economic development, infrastructure and official languages. He has served on multiple school councils, the School Board Parent Involvement Committee and the boards of directors for a local treatment centre for addictions and concurrent disorders and the Ottawa Children’s Treatment Centre. Since his retirement, Louis has been actively involved with CHEO’s board of directors and several of its committees.

Placeholder portrait

Alisha Tharani

Chief Executive Officer, 
Addictions and Mental Health  Ontario 

Coming soon!

Portrait of Andrea Roberts

Andrea Roberts

Chief Executive Officer, Hands TheFamilyHelpNetwork.ca

Andrea Roberts is a collaborative, results-based leader with more than 30 years of experience in public health. This includes two decades of senior-level management and participation in several local, regional and provincial initiatives. Andrea holds a BSc in nursing and a master's degree in personal, social and health education. She brings a demonstrated passion for system change, valuable skills in systems leadership and governance, and extensive knowledge related to mental health promotion, social determinants of health, early years and complex special needs.

Portrait of Anvita Desai

Anvita Desai

Youth Representative

Anvita Desai is studying knowledge integration and cognitive science at the University of Waterloo. She is passionate about working in the mental health sector and has volunteered with us since she was 15! After graduating, Avita plans to pursue a master’s degree in social work and hopes to continue to dedicate her time and efforts to initiatives that value youth engagement, health equity, harm reduction and accessibility. In her free time, Anvita enjoys reading, swimming and listening to true crime podcasts.

Portrait of Amanda McGraw

Christina Robert

Youth Representative

Christina Robert is studying kinesiology at Laurentian University and hopes to become a dermatologist. She has been involved in student council and peer mentoring in university and worked with organizations like the Track North Athletic Club. As a competitive athlete, Christina experienced her own mental health challenges and witnessed how mental health concerns impacted other young people in school, sports and day-to-day life. She is now passionate about helping friends, peers and family members become the best version of themselves. As a hobby, Christina likes capturing beautiful moments through photography.

Portrait of Ekua Asabea Blair

 Ekua Asabea Blair

Chief Executive Officer,
Massey Centre for Women

Ekua Asabea Blair is the chief executive officer of the Massey Centre for Women, a client-centred infant and early childhood mental health organization providing support for pregnant and parenting adolescents and their children. Prior to joining the Massey Centre, Ekua worked as the executive director of the Rexdale Community Health Centre for nine years. She also worked as the interim executive director of the Davenport-Perth Neighbourhood Centre, where she was instrumental in establishing the Nighana African-Centered Program in partnership with the Toronto District School Board. Her work with low-income women in Rexdale was recognized by the City of Toronto in 2002, when she received the Constance E. Hamilton Award.

Portrait of Joanne Lowe

 Joanne Lowe

Vice-President,
Mental Health and Addictions, CHEO

Executive Director,
Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa

Joanne holds a BSW from Laurentian University and an MSW from Wilfred Laurier University and has extensive experience in the field of mental health. Prior to joining YSB, Joanne spent nearly a decade each as manager of the community division of CHEO’s specialized psychiatric and mental health services and executive director of the Canadian Mental Health Association Ottawa Branch.

Joanne’s impact — locally, provincially and nationally — is astounding! In recent years, she has co-chaired or chaired the cross-sectoral committee in mental health and education, the provincial framework advisory committee for child and youth mental health, the Ottawa Suicide Prevention Network, the Provincial Lead Agency Consortium and the Provincial Priorities Standing Committee.

A big believer in continuous quality improvement, Joanne is currently working on her LEAN black belt certification.

Portrait of Joe Holubowich

Joe Holubowich

Family representative

Joe Holubowich works as a peer support facilitator for Parents’ Lifelines of Eastern Ontario (PLEO), does contract work for Able2 and is on his way to becoming a counsellor and psychotherapist. As a foster parent for two children who came into his care with undiagnosed mental health challenges, Joe has first-hand experience of navigating the mental healthcare system and advocating for services through the education system. He also currently sits as a board member for the Royal Ottawa Volunteer Association.

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 Dr. Jude Mary Cénat 

Academic researcher and clinical psychologist,
University of Ottawa 

Coming soon!

Portrait of Kelly-Lynn Musico

Kelly-Lynn Musico

Family representative

Kelly-Lynn Musico is a physiotherapist, yoga teacher and mom to three young adults. Along with her lived experience as a family member in the child and youth mental health sector, Kelly-Lynn brings extensive experience in the hospital, home care, school and private sectors and a long track record as a dedicated volunteer. She currently contributes her voice to a national mental health research project and several family advisory councils at both the local and provincial levels.

Portrait of Kirsten Dougherty

Kirsten Dougherty

Chief Executive Officer, 
ROCK Reach Out Centre for Kids

Kirsten Dougherty is a change leader with over 25 years of experience in the child and youth mental health sector. She’s the CEO for ROCK, Reach Out Center for Kids — lead agency for the Region of Halton — and co-chair of both the Lead Agency Consortium and One Stop Talk, the provincial walk-in service. Kirsten specializes in organizational behaviour and negotiations. She’s completed seven successful mergers or acquisitions and led multiple executive teams through re-branding, strategic planning and concept execution for innovation acceleration.

Portrait of Lori Kempe

 Lori Kempe

Executive Director,
Children First in Essex County

Lori holds a BSW from University of Windsor and an MSW from Eastern Michigan University. She is also an alumna of St. Clair College, sign language communicator and interpreter training programs.

Lori has held a variety of positions in children’s mental health, developmental services and child welfare in Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent Communities. She has also been employed with the provincial government and conducted compliance and licensing reviews for both adult and children’s service agencies within southwestern Ontario. Lori currently enjoys the learning and networking opportunities as an accreditation reviewer with the Canadian Centre for Accreditation.

Lori has extensive governance experience having been on the St. Clair College board of governors for six years including serving as vice-chair in her final year. In 2020 Lori was one of six St. Clair College Alumni of Distinction award recipients.

Lori spends her free time cheering on her two boys either on the soccer field or at the swimming pool. The entire family is active with Epilepsy Southwestern Ontario – Windsor Region to raise awareness about epilepsy.

Portrait of Michael Hone

 Michael Hone 

Executive Director,
Crossroads Childen’s Mental Health 

Michael has been working in child and adolescent services since 1988 in a variety of settings, including child welfare, youth justice, education and child and youth mental health. He has been with Crossroads Children’s Mental Health Centre (CCMHC) since 1996, and has been the executive director since January 2015. Michael has completed his Black Belt in Lean and continues his Lean journey at CCMHC.