Board of Directors

 A volunteer board of directors governs Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada.

Collectively, board members possess a broad range of skills that have been identified as being important to the achievement of the organization's national mission and goals.

Thank you to each of these board members who dedicate their time and passion to the vision of finding the cause of and cure for brain tumours while improving the quality of life for those affected.

Chris Sullivan, Chair

Chris Sullivan member of Board of Directors Brain Tumour Foundation of CanadaChris Sullivan oversees all aspects of finance, accounting, research operations, and human resources at IDC Canada and is a member of the Senior Leadership Team. Chris manages the Survey and Analysis team, which supports IDC Canada's research products with end-user data.

When he joined IDC's Global Channels and Alliances Team in 1999, Chris advised clients all over the world on their partnering strategies, after which he assumed responsibility for IDC Canada's internal operations. Before IDC he managed the Enterprise Products Group at Compaq Canada. Chris holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from the University of Western Ontario.


Phyllis Retty, Vice-Chair

Phyllis Retty, Director

Phyllis Retty is a retired 3M Canada Human Resources Professional in London Ontario. Prior to her retirement, Phyllis held a senior leadership position at 3M in in Human Resources with experience in all areas of Human Resources. Her experience includes international accountability for the Total Rewards function in Latin America as well as Canada. She is currently the Owner of Lift Human Resources Consulting specializing in Total Rewards and HR Policies. Phyllis is currently working part-time as the Finance Director at Pillar non Profit in London, Ontario. 

Phyllis is a Chartered Professional Accountant, CMA with 20 years of experience in Finance at 3M Canada.

Her zeal to help others succeed is illustrated in her decades-long support and leadership engagement in several key community institutions and boards. She is currently on the Board of Directors of London Health Sciences Centre, Wellspring and is the Past Board Chair of Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada and the United Way of London and Middlesex. Phyllis rejoined the Board of Directors in March 2016.

Russell Smith, Chair of Finance

Russell Smith

Russell Smith is a CPA, CGA professional with over 30 years of experience in general and cost accounting, internal audit, financial analysis and people management. Russell was a senior manager with OLG, a provincial crown agency, for over 12 years where he developed a strong understanding of risk and control frameworks and internal audit standards. In early 2018, Russell took on the Director of Internal Audit role with Gateway Casinos.
Russell first became involved with Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada in December 2006 when his four year old daughter Sarah was diagnosed with a rare malignant Brain Tumour; Choroid Plexus Carcinoma. After many adventures and ups and downs, Sarah died peacefully at home on March 1, 2011. Russell remains involved with Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada participating in annual walks and volunteering in several roles, including being a community member on the Finance Committee since June 2018. When not working or volunteering, Russell enjoys travelling with his wife of 27 years, Suzanne, and spending time with his daughter Jillian who attends Waterloo University.

Lynn McRae, Corporate Secretary

Ms. McRae is General Counsel for a private infrastructure firm and was previously in-house counsel for the University of Calgary and a vertically integrated power company with engineering and telecom subsidiaries. 

Ms. McRae holds a Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy and a Juris Doctor from the University of Alberta. Ms. McRae is a member of the Law Society of Alberta.




Ron Craig, Director

Ron Craig is currently Chief Operating Officer for Pizzaiolo Gourmet Pizza with overall responsiblity for brand and business operations. Prior to joining Pizzaiolo, Ron’s 20+ year career has included executive roles in marketing, retail operations and business development at various organizations including Bell Canada, Cara Operations, Ontario Lottery and Gaming and Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation.

Ron is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario.  He resides in Toronto with his wife, daughter and son – brain tumour survivor – Sam the Tumour Man.


Maureen Daniels, BScN. R.N., Director

Maureen Daniels, DirectorMaureen Daniels, a registered nurse, is the Coordinator of The Gerry & Nancy Pencer Brain Tumor Centre at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health Network, in Toronto, Canada. She received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from The University of Western Ontario. Prior to her role at The Pencer Centre she worked as a staff nurse in the Neurosurgical Intensive Care Unit at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto. She has been a facilitator of support groups for patients living with brain tumours and their families for over 25 years. Maureen has been the Coordinator of The Pencer Centre since it opened its doors in 1998. She has been extensively involved in program planning, fundraising, overall development and daily functioning of the Centre, as well as providing education support to those people affected by a brain tumour. 
In addition, over the course of her career, Maureen has worked as an advisor on many educational and advocacy projects with The Canadian Alliance of Brain Tumour Organizations (CABTO), The International Brain Tumour Alliance (IBTA) and Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada at both at a national and international level. 

Danny Mendelsohn, Director

Danny Mendelsohn, DirectorDanny Mendelsohn was born in Toronto to parents who immigrated from Mexico City. He completed his undergraduate degree in Neuroscience at Dalhousie University and a Masters of Neuroscience in the Netherlands at Maastricht University. Danny attended medical school at the University of Western Ontario. He entered a neurosurgery residency at the University of British Columbia in 2011 and completed in June 2017 attaining Royal College Certification in the specialty. For almost 2 years, Danny has been practicing general neurosurgery at Lion's Gate Hospital performing mostly degenerative spine surgery and brain tumour operations. Throughout his postgraduate training, Danny has published 25 peer-reviewed publications. His research has investigated animal models for drug addiction, the role of neurotransmitters in executive brain functioning, the ethics of neurosurgery for psychiatric disease and brain enhancement, radiation exposure in spine surgery, and the impact of work-hour restrictions on resident sleep and burnout during medical training, among other topics. Danny is married to a very supportive and understanding wife and they have two young children. He enjoys skiing, biking and golf in his free-time.

Dr. Thierry M. Muanza, B.A., M.Sc., M.D., FRCP(C), Director

Dr. Thierry Muanza Director at Brain Tumour Foundation of CanadaDr. Thierry Muanza is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Oncology of the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University. He is also the co-Medical Director of the Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology Program. Following a Master’s degree in Biomedical Sciences from Northeastern University in Boston, Dr. Muanza obtained his M.D. from the Université de Sherbrooke. He subsequently pursued a residency at McGill University, as well as a translational research fellowship, ASTRO-NCI, in radiation oncology in Bethesda, Maryland, USA

Major research activities include clinical research in neuro-oncology, breast cancer and Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology Program. Dr. Muanza’s laboratory work focuses on translational research, radio-oncology, molecular targeted therapies, and biomarkers.

Dr. Adrianna Ranger, Director

Dr Adrianna Ranger Director Brain Tumour Foundation of CanadaAdrianna Ranger is a Pediatric Neurosurgeon at the Children’s Hospital, London Health Sciences Center and an Associate Professor in the Department of Clinical Neurological Sciences at the Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry. She completed her medical studies at McMaster University in 1993 and subsequently completed residency training in Neurosurgery at the University of Western Ontario in 1999.

After a Fellowship in Pediatric Neurosurgery at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario in Ottawa, Dr. Ranger returned to London to commence practice in 2000. Dr. Ranger has participated on the Research Committee of Brain Tumor Foundation of Canada since that time. Dr .Ranger’s main area of research and clinical interest is pediatric brain tumours.  

Mary Lou Robertson, BA, BSW, RSW, Director

Mary Lou Robertson, Director

Mary Lou is a registered social worker with more than 20 years of clinical and research experience in health system navigation. From 2005 to 2016 Mary Lou was a Drug Access Navigator (DAN) at the largest cancer centre in Atlantic Canada. She helped thousands of patients coordinate public and private drug coverage options for medicines not covered by hospital budgets. She was an active advocate for more accessible funding for oral cancer therapies and worked with numerous care partners on early screening protocols, patient education and improved coverage coordination methods. 

In 2016, Mary Lou left hospital practice to create M.L. Robertson Consulting, a unique practice that focuses on improving the patient’s experience in drug coverage navigation. She works with a range of stakeholders with the belief that a collaborative approach to drug access navigation is essential to achieving timely and effective access to drug therapies. She is known as a knowledgeable and trusted resource on drug reimbursement policies and the landscape of drug coverage plans in Canada. Mary Lou also is the only independent trainer of drug reimbursement navigation in Canada.

Mary Lou is an avid hiker and dog lover. 

James Scongack, Director

James Scongack, DirectorJames Scongack is the Executive-Vice President Corporate Affairs & Operational Services at Bruce Power. He is responsible for Operational Services including Emergency Protective Services, Information Technology, Waste Management, Environment/Sustainability, Site Support Services and Corporate Affairs including Nuclear Regulatory Affairs, Indigenous and Community relations, Communications, Corporate Social Responsibility and Government/Stakeholder relations. 

James sits on the Board of Life Labs, Canada’s largest independent provider of laboratory services. 

His passion for health extends to the important role Canada plays supplying life-saving isotopes. He serves as Chair of the Canadian Nuclear Isotope Council, an organization formed to ensure the critical supply of Isotopes for health and industrial purposes is secured for the long-term and also as Co-Chair of Ontario’s Nuclear Advantage. 

James is actively involved in many community organizations and charities. James and his family live in Port Elgin, Ontario where he grew up and he is an active runner.

Robin Urquhart, Director

Robin Urquhart, DirectorRobin is an Assistant Professor and Ramia Scientist in the Department of Surgery at Dalhousie University in Halifax. She is also a Senior Scientist with the Beatrice Hunter Cancer Research Institute and an Affiliate Scientist at the Nova Scotia Health Authority. Her research interests relate to understanding and optimizing the movement of research evidence into clinical practice for persons diagnosed with cancer as well as the interface between evidence-based medicine and cancer care policy. Her research has led to real-world changes in the way cancer care is managed and delivered in Nova Scotia. For example, her research has informed provincial clinical standards for rectal cancer and palliative care; a provincial program to prepare cancer survivors for their move from active treatment to follow-up care; and provider education on advance care planning for persons diagnosed with advanced cancer.

Robin resides in Halifax with her two daughters.

 Leaders of Distinction

The dedication and support of these Leaders of Distinction led to the creation of Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada in 1982. Thank you for your commitment to improving the lives of those Canadians affected by a brain tumour. 

Steve Northey Co-Founder
Pamela Del Maestro Co-Founder
Dr. Rolando Del Maestro Co-Founder
Perry Ferguson Founding Director
David Lucy Founding Director
Jane Hauser Leader of Distinction
Phyllis Retty Leader of Distinction
Melodie Northey Leader of Distinction
Dr. Joseph Megyesi Leader of Distinction


Starting in 2014, the governance model of the organization was expanded to include a membership role, read more about this... 


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Upcoming Events

  • 07/Dec/2019: BrainWAVE BC 2019 Peter Pan: Vancouver, BC... Learn more >
  • 10/Dec/2019: Virtual Support Group West: Virtual Support Group for Western Canada... Learn more >
  • 10/Dec/2019: Groupe de soutien virtuel: Un groupe de soutien virtuel pour personnes touchées par une tumeur... Learn more >
  • 10/Dec/2019: Kitchener and Waterloo Support Group: Meets at Christ Lutheran Church, 445 Anndale Rd., Waterloo, ON... Learn more >
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