Peter A. Singer OC, MD, MPH, FRSC
Chief Executive Officer of Grand Challenges Canada
Dr. Peter Singer has dedicated the last decade to bringing science and innovation to tackle the health challenges of the world’s poorest people. He is well known around the world for his creative solutions to some of the most pressing global health problems. more
Dr. Singer is Chief Executive Officer of Grand Challenges Canada. He is also Director at the Sandra Rotman Centre at University Health Network, Professor of Medicine at University of Toronto, and the Foreign Secretary of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences.
Dr. Singer chaired the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences’ assessment on Canada’s Strategic Role in Global Health. He has advised the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the UN Secretary General’s office, the Government of Canada, Pepsico, BioVeda China Venture Capital Fund, and several African Governments on global health.
Dr. Singer was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2011 for his contributions to health research and bioethics, and for his dedication to improving the health of people in developing countries. In 2007, Dr. Singer received the Michael Smith Prize as Canada’s Health Researcher of the Year in Population Health and Health Services. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences, the U.S. Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, and The Academy of Sciences for the Developing World (TWAS).
Dr. Singer has published over 300 research articles, received over $50 million in research grants, and mentored hundreds of university students. He co-authored, along with Dr. Abdallah Daar, The Grandest Challenge: Taking Life-Saving Science from Lab to Village. He studied internal medicine at University of Toronto, medical ethics at University of Chicago, public health at Yale University, and management at Harvard Business School. He lives in Toronto with his wife, Dr Heather Gilley, and his family, and has served his community as Board Chair of Branksome Hall, an acclaimed and internationally-minded school for girls.
Abdallah S. Daar D.Phil (Oxon), FRSC, FRCP (Lon), FRCS, FRCSEd
Chief Science and Ethics Officer of Grand Challenges Canada
Dr. Abdallah Daar is Professor of Public Health Sciences at the Dalla Lana Faculty of Public Health, University of Toronto, with a cross-appointment in the department of Surgery. He is Senior Scientist at University Health/Toronto General Research Institute, and is Director of Ethics and Commercialization at the Sandra Rotman Centre, University Health Network and University of Toronto. more
At Grand Challenges Canada, in addition to being a member of the Board of Directors, he is the Chief Science and Ethics Officer and Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board. Professor Daar was the founding Chair of the Board of the Global Alliance for Chronic Diseases (2009–2011) and is Chair of the Advisory Board of the United Nations University International Institute of Global Health. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of Genome Canada and a Member of the United Nations Secretary-General’s Scientific Advisory Board.
After medical schools in Uganda and London, England, he went to the University of Oxford where he did postgraduate clinical training in surgery and also in internal medicine, a doctorate in transplant immunology, and a fellowship in organ transplantation. He was a clinical lecturer in the Nuffield Dept. of Surgery at Oxford for several years before going to the Middle East to help start two medical schools. He was the foundation chair of surgery at Sultan Qaboos University in Oman for a decade before moving to the University of Toronto in 2001.
Professor Daar’s academic career has spanned biomedical sciences, organ transplantation, surgery, global health and bioethics. He works in various advisory or consulting capacities with the UN, the World Health Organization and UNESCO; he was a member of the African Union High-Level Panel on Modern Biotechnology, and chaired the 4th External Review of the WHO/World Bank/UNDP/UNICEF Special Program on Tropical Diseases Research and Training.
He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, the Academy of Sciences for the Developing World (TWAS), the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences, The Islamic World Academy of Sciences, the New York Academy of Sciences, and is a Senior Fellow of Massey College, University of Toronto. He is a member of UNESCO’s International Bioethics Committee and was, for many years, a member of the Ethics Committee of the Human Genome Organization.
His international awards include the Patey Prize of the Surgical Society of Great Britain, the Hunterian Professorship of the Royal College of Surgeons of England, the UNESCO Avicenna Prize for Ethics of Science, and the Anthony Miller Prize for Research Excellence at the Dalla Lana Faculty of Public Health, University of Toronto. He holds the official world record for performing the youngest cadaver kidney transplant. His major research focus is on the use of life sciences to ameliorate global health inequities, with a particular focus on building scientific capacity and increasing innovation in developing countries, in addition to studying how life sciences technologies can be rapidly taken from “lab to village”. He has published over 350 papers in peer-reviewed journals and as chapters in various books. He has also published six books, including the latest co-authored with Dr. Peter Singer, The Grandest Challenge: Taking Life-Saving Science from Lab to Village. He is currently working on his seventh book titled Garment of Destiny.
Jocelyn Mackie MSc, JD
Vice President Operations & General Counsel
Jocelyn E. Mackie is VP Operations & General Counsel at Grand Challenges Canada where she oversees the Finance, Operations, Legal, and Communications teams. While providing operations, legal and strategic advice, Ms. Mackie is focused on maintaining efficient and effective operations and mitigating risks facing the organization.more
As part of the senior leadership team, Ms. Mackie also helps support the Stars/Scaling and Targeted Challenges teams in enabling innovators who are focused on Bold Ideas with Big Impact in global health, as well as working with partners to leverage the investments Grand Challenges Canada is making. Ms. Mackie is also Secretary of the Grand Challenges Canada Board of Directors.
Prior to joining Grand Challenges Canada, Ms. Mackie provided legal and strategic advice to pharmaceutical and technology companies at a boutique law firm with offices in Toronto, Washington and New York. She specialized in intellectual property law and litigation, as well as lobbying for legislative change in Washington, Ottawa and Toronto. Ms. Mackie also consulted to the Health Impact Fund, and provided advice to the USPTO on its Patents for Humanity program. She has also worked for a multi-national pharmaceutical company.
Ms. Mackie has a MSc from the University of Toronto, where she jointly authored a book on ethical decision-making and corporate social responsibility in the bioscience industry. She has a JD from the Faculty of Law, University of Toronto, and a business degree from the Richard Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario. She is called to the Ontario Bar and the New York State Bar.
Karlee Silver PhD
Vice President of Targeted Challenges
Karlee Silver is the VP of Targeted Challenges for Grand Challenges Canada. Dr. Silver leads the Saving Lives at Birth, Saving Brains and Global Mental Health programs. She is a member of the Knowledge Exchange Working Group for the Canadian Network for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health.more
Prior to joining Grand Challenges Canada, Dr. Silver trained in the laboratory of Dr. Kevin Kain at the Sandra Rotman Centre for Global Health in Toronto, first as a Canadian Institutes of Health Research postdoctoral fellow, then as a MITACS Elevate postdoctoral fellow, where she helped to identify host responses of malaria infection in pregnant women to harness for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes.
Dr. Silver received her doctorate in 2006 from the University of Oxford, where she attended as a Rhodes Scholar and trained in genetics and immunology under the supervision of Professor Richard Cornall and Professor Sir John Bell. An accumulation of inspirations, including travelling through southern Africa after Oxford, led to a refocus towards global health. Witnessing both the strength of women to sustain their families and communities, and the vulnerability of these same women to the consequences of poverty inspired Karlee to apply herself to health issues of women in developing countries.
Andrew D. Taylor M.Sc.
Executive Vice President
Andrew D. Taylor is Executive Vice President of Grand Challenges Canada and is responsible for the Stars in Global Health and Transition to Scale programs. Leading a team of Investment and Scaling experts, Mr. Taylor is focused on developing and implementing a scaling strategy to translate Bold Ideas into Big Impact. more
The focus on the strategy is to catalyze “smart partnerships” and to leverage private capital and know-how to transition bold ideas along the path to scale towards sustainable impact. Mr. Taylor has been working with Dr. Peter Singer and Mr. Joseph Rotman at the Sandra Rotman Centre and Grand Challenges Canada for the past 10 years. Prior to that, Mr. Taylor worked overseas in the biotech industry with a focus on sales, marketing and business development. Mr. Taylor is a graduate of the University of Toronto and completed his undergraduate studies at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, where he studied Mandarin, Chinese culture and China’s biotechnology industry.
To learn more about how social finance can accelerate health and economic outcomes in developing countries, read a collection of blog posts authored by Mr. Taylor and follow him on Twitter @TaylorAndrew1 and LinkedIn: Andrew Taylor.
Executive Assistant to Dr. Singer, Dr. Daar and Ms. Mackie
Executive Assistant to Dr. Silver and Mr. Taylor
Our Programs / Grand Challenges
- Pamela Kanellis, Program Officer
- Rebecca Lackman, Program Officer
- Dominique McMahon, Associate Program Officer
- Ellen Morgan, Associate Program Officer
- Ken Simiyu, Program Officer
- Kristen Yee, Associate Program Officer
Program and Strategic Support
- Astrid Escrig, Project Coordinator
- Janne Dingemans, Project Coordinator
- Andrea Lesperance, Project Coordinator
- Winnie Luong, Project Coordinator
- Claude Briand, Director of Finance and Administration
- Anuja Dixit, Financial Analyst
- Abong Pie, Financial Analyst and Grant Administrator