About the Board
What makes the Coalition tick? Thanks to our dedicated volunteer Board of Directors we’re able to help facilitate change. The Coalition is comprised of:
- A Board of Directors who volunteer their time and effort to provides organizational leadership and direction
- A Membership who elect the Board of Directors
We have two mandatory committees—the Executive and the Nominating Committee, but we often divide up our core functions of the OWHC into standing committees such as: Communications, Governance, Education & Networking, Membership, and Sustainability.
- With the assistance of members and healthy workplace stakeholders, the Coalition has prepared a Healthy Workplace Handbook intended for use in all Ontario workplaces. It was developed to assist Ontario organizations in initiating and sustaining their own healthy workplace programs. As well, the Coalition has developed a Proposal for an Ontario Comprehensive Workplace Health Strategy. The Proposal supports the development of a strategy for comprehensive workplace health (CWH) at the provincial level and aims to establish a common guideline by which Ontario organizations can integrate CWH into their core business plans.
Who else is a part of our Coalition?
Stakeholders and partners involved include: Public Sector; Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO); Private Sector; Large Business Employers (100 employees+); Small Business Employers (less than 100 employees); Union/Organized Labour; Workplace Health Service Providers; Ontario Occupational Health and Safety System Partners; Public Health; and Workplace Health Academia/Research, etc.
Terms of Reference
What makes us tick? Other than great coffee, a fabulous book and a passion for workplace wellness? Our Terms of Reference of course! The Terms of Reference provides insight to our structure and outlines the elected positions on the Board of Directors. It took a lot of sweat and coffee refills to craft this masterpiece so please take a read to really understand our framework.
Annual General Meeting (AGM) – Minutes & Reports
We talk a lot! Our minutes and reports keep us on track and ensure everyone stays in the loop. So feel free to cruise the latest to gain a fly on the wall perspective of our top secret, not so secret, meetings.
Every November we conduct our AGM. Open to everyone this is an excellent meeting to hear what we’ve been working on and what our sights are set on for the coming year. In addition, those who are members are authorized to vote and help influence the actions we take and put priority on.
History – How We Evolved
What came first the chicken or the egg? Well one thing we do know is the OWHC has been in development since the beginning of 2005. What started with a spark become a flame thanks to the incredible workplace wellness visionaries the Coalition was ignited by.
We give special thanks to visionaries like Joan Burton, one of the founding members of the Coalition, a lead author of the World Health Organization’s Healthy Workplace Framework and recipient of the prestigious Canadian Workplace Wellness Pioneer Award in 2003 for her thought leadership in propelling this vision for Ontario workplaces. Tragically, cancer took Joan’s life too early passing away in 2014, 69 years young. To honour true change agents like Joan, we host an annual Joan Burton Day of Learning event each May to bring together like-minded professionals to share what’s trending in organizational health and how we can continue to influence stakeholders and government in making measurable changes towards our goal.
A copy of one of Joan’s insightful presentations “What in the World is a Healthy Workplace?” can be viewed here.
If you’re not familiar with us, many milestones have happened since 2005 and the OWHC continues to progress and grow as a provincial Coalition. To explore our evolution further feel free to peruse our timeline.
Meet Our Board of Directors
Allan Smofsky is Managing Director of SSP, a workplace health strategic planning consultancy. Allan has extensive experience in many facets of workplace health and consults on issues across the spectrum of organizational health. A fluently bilingual native of Montreal, Allan founded SSP in 2004 following several years in senior-level leadership and consulting positions. Allan is active in several workplace health organizations. He also teaches at Centennial College’s (Toronto) Community and Health Studies Workplace Wellness & Health Promotion post-graduate program. Allan has demonstrated leadership in advocating for a comprehensive and integrated approach to organizational health. He is a past winner of the Benefits Canada Workplace Benefits Award and is a frequently invited speaker and writer.
Danielle completed both her Undergraduate degree and Masters degree in Kinesiology at Wilfrid Laurier University. While studying Danielle founded Laurier’s first mental health awareness program entitled “Burst Your Bubble”, which she later adapted to apply to workplace mental health settings. Danielle currently works as a Consultant for Workplace Safety and Prevention Services where she is a member of the Organizational Health Team and a trained Mental Health First Aid Instructor.
Industry Partner Relations
Desiree D’Souza is a Health & Safety professional working with Workplace Safety & Prevention Services (WSPS) since 2008. She is a Community Outreach Coordinator and has worked with a number of employers across the province. Desiree is also involved with providing Health & Safety awareness sessions to young workers at high schools in the GTA and facilitates various health and safety trainings include the Certification Part 1 sessions. Desiree holds an MBA degree, an Adult Education Training certificate, and certification in Occupational Health & Safety.
Manager, General Health & Safety Services
Gerry Culina is Manager, General Health and Safety Services, at the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS). In his capacity, Gerry leads a unit that provides a comprehensive service of information and supports 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. Gerry has been a Health and Safety professional for over 34 years in both the private and public sectors.
Senior Health Management Consultant
Having worked within various sectors performing workplace wellness consultation and human resource functions, Lindsay’s passion is organizational well-being. Her educational background includes an Honours Bachelor of Arts Psychology Degree, her post graduate in Workplace Wellness & Health Promotion, and has received her Mental Health First Aid Certificate from the Mental Health Commission of Canada. As a Consultant, Lindsay gets to live her passion every day, helping other organizations enhance their employees’ well-being.
Monica A. Szabo
Executive Director, Government, Municipal and Public Safety
With over 25 years of experience in environment, health and safety, Monica is a senior leader who has built a reputation for developing progressive and results-oriented health and safety solutions. In her role as Executive Director, Government, Municipal and Public Safety, Monica was responsible for ensuring the quality and effectiveness of product and service delivery with a focus on broad strategic goals and objectives. She is currently on the Executive Team of the Board of Canadian Registered Safety Professionals.
Health and Safety Coordinator
Graduated from the University of Guelph with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1989. Went on to pursue a career in Health and Safety and graduated from Ryerson with a diploma in Health and Safety. Wrote my BCRSP exam and became a certified member of the Board. Greatest achievement in Health and Safety was leading our business unit to 10 years without a lost time. Within the last couple of years, I have really become interested in Wellness and that is why I volunteered for this great organization.
Corporate Wellness Manager
Coming from a kinesiology and research background, when Nathan reflects on how he believes is the most effective way to improve the well-being of others, targeting well-being to workplaces is how he does just that, along with volunteer work in the athletic space for special youth populations. In doing so, he bridges the gap between research and application. By following this passion, Nathan leverages employee data housed by medical insurance companies to strategize and implement sticky workplace well-being initiatives for employees.
Sarika currently leads Deloitte Canada’s wellness and benefits program including their mental health strategy. She formally pioneered the development of a national workplace mental health program at the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), National Office called the Workforce Mental Health Collaborative. She currently is a technical committee member for the National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace via the Canadian Standards Association (CSA). Sarika has held previous board positions including board director for Links2Care and vice chair for the Canadian Mental Health Association (Halton Branch). She holds a Master of Science in Health Services Administration and a Bachelor of Psychology.
OPSEU Health & Safety Officer
In addition to being the Chairperson at the Ontario Workplace Health Coalition, Terri Szymanski helps improve workplace health and safety for all Ontarians through her work as a Health and Safety Officer at the Ontario Public Services Employees Union (OPSEU). Terri co-chaired the Hazard Prevention and Control Working Group for the Workplace Violence Prevention in Healthcare Leadership Table and also spearheaded the development and creation of the Mental Injury Tool Kit which is offered through the Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario Workers (OHCOW). The toolkit was developed by workers, unions, and other organizations to help identify and address psychosocial hazards in the workplace. In addition to her B.A. in Employee Relations from the University of Toronto, Terri holds a Master’s Degree in Work and Society from McMaster University.
Tracey Poulin Dun
OHS and H.R. Consultant
Tracey Poulin Dun has been involved with the Ontario Workplace Health Coalition since 2015 and became a member of the Executive Board in 2018 serving as the Coalition’s Co-Chair. Tracey passionately helps organizations create workplaces which are free from physical and mental injury for a healthier and stronger Ontario. Besides being a friend, mother, wife, daughter and sister; Tracey is an inspirational Health and Safety and Human Resources Business Leader with over 25 years of exceptional leadership serving the manufacturing, service, health and community care sectors.