Featured Speakers

Dr. Jean Clinton

Dr. Jean Clinton is a Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences at McMaster, division of Child Psychiatry. She is on staff at McMaster  Children’s Hospital with cross appointments in Pediatrics and Family Medicine, and an Associate in the Department of Child Psychiatry, University of Toronto and Sick Children’s Hospital. She is also a senior scientist at the INCH (INfant Child Health) Lab at McMaster University. In addition, she is a Fellow of the Child Trauma Academy, as well as a Zero to Three Academy Fellow since 2013. She has been a consultant to children and youth mental health programs, child welfare, and primary care for almost 30 years. Dr. Clinton was recently appointed as an education advisor to the Premier of Ontario and the Minister of Education. Dr. Clinton is renowned locally, provincially, nationally, and more recently internationally as an advocate for children’s issues. Her special interest lies in brain development, and the crucial role relationships and connectedness play therein. Jean champions the development of a national, comprehensive child well-being strategy including a system of early learning and care for all young children and their families. She is equally committed to ensuring that children’s and youths’ needs and voices are heard and respected.


Dr. Amy Cheung

Dr. Amy Cheung is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto and is on staff at the Mood and Anxiety Disorders Program at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre. Dr. Cheung is an adolescent psychiatrist and works clinically with youth with mood and anxiety disorders. Dr. Cheung conducts research in the management of mood disorders in adolescents and young adults by primary care providers, and the transition between high school and post-secondary education for youth with mental illness. Dr. Cheung holds the Bell Canada Chair in Adolescent Mood and Anxiety Disorders. She is currently heading a North American collaborative examining barriers to the appropriate diagnosis and treatment of adolescent depression in the primary care setting. This collaborative project includes the development and dissemination of guidelines for the management of depression in this population. Dr. Cheung is also examining the prevalence of adolescent depression and suicide in the Canadian population and factors influencing service utilization.


Dr. Kwame McKenzie

Dr. Kwame McKenzie is CEO of the Wellesley Institute. He is an international expert on the social causes of mental illness, suicide and the development of eff ective, equitable health systems. As a physician, psychiatrist, researcher and policy advisor, Dr. McKenzie has worked to identify the causes of mental illness and in cross-cultural health for over two decades. He is an active, funded researcher of social, community, clinical and policy issues and has nearly 200 academic publications including four books. In addition to joining the Wellesley Institute as CEO in March 2014, Dr. McKenzie is Medical Director responsible for Dual Diagnosis, Child Youth and Family and Geriatric Services and Director Health Equity at CAMH. Dr. Kwame is a full Professor and the Co-Director of the Division of Equity Gender and Population in the Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto. Dr. McKenzie is President of the Canadian Mental Health Association, Toronto, and sits on the Board of the United Way Toronto.


Dr. Kathy Short

Kathy Short is a Clinical Child Psychologist with research and practice interests in school mental health promotion, knowledge mobilization, and implementation science. She is Director for School Mental Health ASSIST, a provincial implementation team supporting the uptake and sustainability of evidence-based promotion and prevention programming in schools. Dr. Short has served on several provincial advisory groups, including the Student Well-Being Advisory Committee for the Ministry of Education, and the Mental Health and Addictions Leadership Advisory Council for the Ministry of Health and Long-term Care, and is involved in several national projects. She co-chairs the School Mental Health International Leadership Exchange (SMHILE), a network of global leaders focused on key themes in mental health promotion.


Benny Michaud

Benny Michaud is an ayahkwew (Two-Spirit), Eagle Clan, Michif person currently living in Ottawa and working as Acting Assistant Director for Carleton University’s Center for Indigenous Initiatives. Originally from Winnipeg, her families’ traditional territory extends from St. Boniface to Qu’Appelle Valley, Saskatchewan. Having worked in both education and mental health sectors she has worked throughout her career to support Indigenous youth. She is a skabewus, President of the Ottawa Region Metis Council, a community organizer and committed to creating safer spaces for Two-Spirit youth in ceremony.