OncologyEducation.com Faculty Members, Listed by Last Name (click to view bio). For Contributrors, click here.

 

Medical Directors

  • Dr. Scott Berry, BSc, MD, MHSc, FRCPC
    OncologyEducation.com Medical Director
Dr Scott BerryDr. Berry is a medical oncologist at Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Centre and an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto. He completed his general medical training and medical oncology training at the University of Toronto. Dr. Berry is an active participant in clinical research at the National Cancer Institute of Canada (NCIC) Clinical Trials Group and the North American Intergroup. He has been involved in important international trials in colorectal cancer that have been published in journals including the New England Journal of Medicine and the Annals of Oncology. Dr. Berry has also authored several prostate and colorectal cancer guidelines for the Cancer Care Ontario Program in Evidence Based Care and chaired national consensus guideline meetings for the Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada.

Dr. Berry also loves teaching and holds several leadership positions in education. He has won several teaching awards including the University of Toronto Division of Medical Oncology Education Award. He chairs the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada Specialty Committee for Medical Oncology. He is the Program Director for the Medical Oncology Training Program at the University of Toronto and Co-Medical Director of www.OncologyEducation.com.

His other academic interests are the bioethical issues surrounding the care of people with cancer, in particular the ethical issues surrounding funding new and expensive cancer medications. Dr. Berry holds a master's degree in bioethics from the University of Toronto. He has also served on the ASCO Ethics Committee and is the ethics advisor to the pan-Canadian Oncology Drug Review and the NCIC Data Safety Monitoring Committee.

Areas of specialization: Colorectal cancer, GI cancers, medical education, bioethics of cancer care
  • Dr. Sunil Verma, MD, MSED, FRCPC
    OncologyEducation.com Medical Director
Dr. Sunil VermaDr. Verma is a Professor and Head of the Department of Oncology at the University of Calgary. He is also the Medical Director of the Tom Baker Cancer Centre. He completed his medical degree and postgraduate training in internal medicine and medical oncology at the University of Alberta in Canada. Dr. Verma also completed a fellowship in breast cancer at the University of Toronto and a Masters degree in Medical Education at the University of Southern California.

Dr. Verma is internationally recognized for his research and education leadership in breast cancer. His research interests include developing novel therapies for breast cancer, reducing toxicities associated with systemic treatment and medical education. He is the principal investigator for many trials in breast cancer including a number of practice changing Phase III trials in breast cancer. His work has been published in the New England Journal of Medicine, The Lancet, Journal of Clinical Oncology and Cancer. He has led and created numerous innovative educational projects in oncology and has won several teaching and mentoring awards.

Areas of specialization: Breast cancer, lung cancer, development of novel therapies, medical education

 

Associate Medical Director

  • Dr. Sharlene Gill, BSc (Pharm), MD, MPH, FACP, FRCPC
Dr. GillDr. Gill Dr. Sharlene Gill is a medical oncologist specializing in gastrointestinal (GI) malignancies. She received a Bachelor’s of Science in Pharmacy (Honors) and an MD (Doctor of Medicine) from the University of British Columbia in 1996 followed by residencies in Internal Medicine and Medical Oncology. Dr. Gill subsequently completed a fellowship in Gl Oncology at the Mayo Clinic (Rochester, MN) and a Master’s of Public Health from the Harvard School of Public Health (Boston, MA) before returning to Vancouver, Canada where she is presently a Professor of Medicine at the University of British Columbia and staff oncologist at the BC Cancer Agency. Dr. Gill’s areas of expertise are colorectal, pancreatic and hepatobiliary cancers. In addition to her clinical work, she is actively engaged in education and research, with over 80 peer-reviewed publications and book chapters to her credit. She is currently an MBA Candidate at Kenan-Flagler Business School (University of North Carolina, Class of 2017).

 

Senior Faculty

  • Dr. Ronald L. Burkes, MD, FRCPC
Dr. Ronald BurkesDr. Burkes is Professor of Medicine at The University of Toronto and staff medical oncologist at Mount Sinai Hospital/Princess Margaret Cancer Centre/University Health Network in Toronto. He was the program director for the medical oncology training program at the University of Toronto from 1996 to 2005 and director of the Clinical Teaching Unit at PMH from 1999 to 2005. He has won numerous teaching awards including departmental and university wide awards on 17 occasions, the Anderson Award in Program Development and the Hasselback Teaching Award at PMCC. He has presented at many local, provincial, national and international meetings. His research interests include lung and GI malignancies with a primary interest in colorectal and gastric cancers. He has numerous publications including 105 peer reviewed, 138 non-peer reviewed and 2 book chapters.

Areas of specialization: GI cancers, lung cancer
 
  • Dr. Christine Simmons, MD, MSc, FRCPC
Dr. Simmons is a Medical Oncologist at the BCCA Vancouver. She completed her residency training in Toronto, and completed a fellowship in Locally Advanced Breast Cancer at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto. She also completed a Master’s in Clinical Epidemiology at University of Toronto. She is a Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of British Columbia in the Faculty of Medicine. She is past Chair of the Locally Advanced Breast Cancer Canadian National Consensus group, and has a strong research interest in the area of neoadjuvant therapy for breast cancer. In July 2014 she took on the role of Clinical Skills Course Director in the undergraduate medical program at UBC.

Area of specialization: Breast Cancer

 

Faculty

 
  • Dr. Parneet Cheema, HBsc, MD, MBiotech, FRCPC

Dr. Cheema is a medical oncologist at the William Osler Health System at the Brampton and Toronto sites. She started her career as a medical oncologist at the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto, where she continues to hold privileges. She is an Assistant Professor with the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto with a focus in quality improvement. Dr. Cheema completed her undergraduate medical training at the University of Calgary, followed by Internal Medicine and medical oncology training at the University of Toronto. Dr. Cheema also completed a Master’s degree in Biotechnology from the University of Toronto.

Dr. Cheema has been an investigator for numerous immunotherapy and targeted therapy clinical trials in the areas of melanoma and lung cancer, and a member of the steering committee for multiple global lung cancer trials, in addition to contributions to national consensus statements. She is also involved in health technology assessments as a previous voting member for the Ontario Steering Committee for Cancer Drugs and currently a member of the clinical guidance panel for the pan-Canadian Oncology Drug Review. Her research focuses on the safe and efficient implementation of advances in personalized medicine in lung cancer and immunotherapy into day-to-day clinical practice.

Areas of specialization: Lung, thoracic, immunotherapy.
 
  • Dr. Susan Dent, MD, FRCPC
Dr. Dent is a Medical Oncologist at The Ottawa Hospital Cancer Centre and Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Ottawa. She obtained her MD at McMaster University and completed her postgraduate training in Internal Medicine at the University of Ottawa. She continued her training in Medical Oncology in Ottawa, followed by a fellowship year in Clinical Research with the National Cancer Institute of Canada Clinical Trials Group. Presently, she is a member of Cancer Ontario Breast Disease Site Group Practice Guidelines Committee, IND working group for the Breast Cancer Disease Site Committee of the National Cancer Institute for Canada Clinical Trials Group and Grant Review Panel member for the Canadian Institute of Health Research.
 
She is Vice Chair of the Quality & Clinical Services Committee Department of Medicine, University of Ottawa. Her areas of interest include breast cancer, treatment toxicities and cardiotoxicity. She is the founder of the Ottawa Cardiac Oncology Program as well as the Canadian Cardiac Oncology Network, organizations dedicated to improving our understanding of how cancer treatments impact cardiovascular health with the ultimate goal of preventing cardiotoxicity.

Areas of specialization: Breast Cancer, Cardiac Oncology.
 
  • Dr. Alina Gerrie, MD, MPH, FRCPC
Dr. Alina GerrieDr. Gerrie is a hematologist and Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of British Columbia in the Divisions of Hematology and Medical Oncology. She joined the Leukemia/Bone Marrow Transplantation Program of BC and the Lymphoma Tumour Group at the BC Cancer Agency in January 2013. Dr. Gerrie completed her Medical Degree and internal medicine training at the University of Toronto, followed by hematology residency at the University of BC. She then undertook a joint fellowship through the Royal College Clinical Investigator Program with both the Leukemia/BMT Program of BC and the Lymphoma Tumour Group at the BC Cancer Agency from 2010-2012. Dr. Gerrie earned a Master of Public Health degree from the Harvard School of Public Health where her research interests included analyzing the impact of genetic abnormalities on population-level clinical outcomes in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) patients.  Other academic interests include the investigation of novel therapeutics for CLL and lymphoma, as well as analyzing the role of stem cell transplantation for Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphomas.

Areas of specialization: Hematology, genetics of cancer
 
  • Dr. Daniel Heng, MD, MPH, FRCPC
Dr. Heng is a staff medical oncologist at the Tom Baker Cancer Center in Calgary, Alberta and a Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of Calgary. He received his Medical Degree from the University of Calgary and trained at the British Columbia Cancer Agency and Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute. He has a Masters of Public Health from Harvard University and has a keen interest in outcomes, prognostic factors and clinical trials research in metastatic renal cell carcinoma and other genitourinary malignancies. He is the Chair of the International mRCC Database Consortium which includes over 35 cancer centres worldwide.

Area of specialization: GU cancers
 
 
  • Dr. John Hilton, MD, FRCPC
Faculty HeadshotDr. Hilton is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Ottawa's Division of Medical Oncology.

Areas of specialization: Breast cancer
 
  • Dr. Aalok Kumar, MD
Dr. Kumar completed medical school at the University of Toronto, and went on to do his Internal Medicine training at McMaster University. He then moved out west and completed his medical oncology training along with a fellowship in medical gyne-oncology at the BC Cancer Agency. He has also completed his Masters of Health Sciences at UBC. He currently works as a medical oncologist at the BC Cancer Agency Fraser Valley Cancer Centre actively involved in clinical trials and health outcomes research.

Areas of specialization: Gynecological cancers
 
  • Dr. Ravi Ramjeesingh, MD, FRCPC, PhD
Dr. Ramjeesingh is a Medical Oncologist and Assistant Professor at Dalhousie University. He holds an MD and PhD from the University of Toronto where his research focused on cell signaling in cancer cell line models. He completed residency training in internal medicine and medical oncology through Queen’s University. He then undertook a two-year clinical trial methodology and translational research fellowship with the CCTG (formerly NCIC Clinical Trials Group) at Queen’s University. His current work includes health science research in hepatobiliary and colorectal cancers.

Areas of specialization: Gastrointestinal cancers (specializing in hepatocellular carcinoma, pancreatic and cholangiocarcinomas), breast cancer, melanoma, rare tumours, medical oncology education, translational research.
 
  • Dr. Sherry Athena Ruste, MD, FPSMO, MSc (article contributor) 
Dr. Ruste obtained her medical degree from the University of the East and completed Internal Medicine residency and Medical Oncology training at the University of the Philippines. She completed Medical Oncology fellowship at Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Centre in 2014. She holds a Masters in Clinical Medicine from the University of the Philippines and a Masters in Clinical Epidemiology from the University of Toronto. 

Area of specialization: Breast Cancer and Lung Cancer
 
  • Dr. Stephanie Snow, MD, FRCPC
Dr. Stephanie SnowDr. Snow is a staff Medical Oncologist at the QEII hospital in Halifax, Nova Scotia and an Associate Professor at Dalhousie University. After pursuing undergraduate training at McGill, she completed her MD, Internal Medicine and Medical Oncology training at Dalhousie. She treats head and neck, thoracic and GI malignancies. Academically, she has a strong interest in Medical Education, overseeing the Dalhousie Undergraduate Medical Oncology program and contributing to national oncology education initiatives. She participates in clinical research locally in areas relevant to her treatment sites and also supportive care.

Areas of specialization: Head & neck cancers, lung cancer, GI cancers
 
  • Dr. Vincent Tam, MD, FRCPC
Faculty HeadshotDr. Tam is a Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of Calgary and a staff medical oncologist at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre in Calgary. He specializes in the treatment of gastrointestinal malignancies and supervises the general fellows clinic. Dr. Tam studied medicine at the University of Ottawa, completed internal medicine training at McMaster University and medical oncology training at the University of Toronto. Afterwards, he completed a GI medical oncology fellowship at the Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Centre. His academic interests include hepatobiliary cancer, health services research and oncology education for medical students and residents.

Areas of specialization: GI cancers, medical education
 
  • Dr. Brandon Bernard, MD
Faculty HeadshotDr. Bernard is a medical oncologist with a clinical and research focus on genitourinary (GU) cancers. He joined the University of Colorado School of Medicine in November 2016 as an Assistant Professor in the Division of Medical Oncology and Genitourinary Cancer Program. Dr. Bernard obtained his MD from the University of Calgary before completing internal medicine and medical oncology residencies at the University of Toronto and University of British Columbia (UBC), respectively. Thereafter, he underwent subspecialty training in GU malignancies at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, MA. Concurrent with this fellowship, he completed the Clinician Investigator Program from UBC and will receive a Master in Public Health degree from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public health in November 2017. His research interests include the identification and development of novel therapeutics for GU cancers through leading and collaborating on both investigator- and industry-initiated clinical trials, as well as utilizing clinical informatics techniques to interrogate electronic health records for comparative effectiveness and population sciences research. Dr. Bernard is an active member of the University of Colorado Cancer Center and the Colorado Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute. Moreover, he is a group member and investigator of SWOG.

Areas of specialization: GU cancer

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