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Nutrition Project Team

Dr. Janet Madill, Co-Chair, SWAHN Nutrition Project Team; Professor, Division of Food & Nutritional Sciences, Brescia University College, Western University

Dr. Janet Madill is an Associate Professor at Brescia University College (BUC), Western University. Throughout her career, Janet has provided inspiring and passionate leadership and mentorship of many dietitians and students, and has actively pursued research endeavours that have achieve global impact.  Janet has presented and published nationally and internationally and has received several grants to complete her research.  Janet is a passionate educator and advocate for nutrition as therapy and is actively engaged in research in malnutrition in the elderly population as well as in chronic disease conditions. Janet has recently been awareded a Fellowship of Dietitians of Canada.

Ms. Christine Wellington, Co-Chair, SWAHN Nutrition Project Team; Registered Dietitian, VON Nurse Practitioner-Led Clinic, Belle River; Lecturer, Department of Nutrition, Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine & Science, College of Health Professions; Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Family Medicine, Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, Windsor Campus; Sessional Lecturer, School of Nursing, University of Windsor Group

Christine M. Wellington, BSc, MS, RD is a registered dietitian in both the United States and Canada with over 35 years of experience in both clinical and community nutrition. Christine is currently employed by the VON Nurse Practitioner Led Clinic-Lakeshore in Belle River, Ontario where she works part-time as a community dietitian. Christine also works as a lecturer for the Department of Nutrition teaching fourth year medical students nutrition elective courses at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, College of Health Professions teaching online since 2007. She is also an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry for whom she acts as a facilitator for the medical students. Christine is also employed as a sessional lecturer in the School of Nursing at the University of Windsor teaching in the nutrition course since 2004.

Christine earned her undergraduate degree in nutrition at the University of Western Ontario in 1977 and then her Master of Science in Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics from then-named Finch University of Health Sciences/The Chicago Medical School in 2004 where she won the Award for Outstanding Nutrition Education Module. Christine has also earned awards for her professional services including a Canadian Diabetes Association Regional Award in 2011 as an Outstanding Healthcare Professional; a Community Health Promotion Award from the Bulimia Anorexia Association in 2006, and an Epic Award from the Association of Ontario Health Centres in June 2006.

An active researcher, Christine has co-authored eleven publications. In her lifetime she has publishing credits in eight journal articles and two book chapters. Christine has made nine poster presentations at the American Dietetic Association annual conference resulting in nine published abstracts. She has also presented to the Canadian Dietetic Association Annual Conference where she has one published abstract and the Canadian Diabetes Association where she has four published abstracts.

The Nutrition Project Team falls under the direction of the SWAHN Co-Lead who is overseeing the Knowledge Generation & Translation Stream.

The purpose of the Nutrition Project Team is to engage health/human service providers and academics from different professions, students, and service users from across Southwestern Ontario in the development and implementation of interdisciplinary initiatives that address nutrition-related concerns in the region. Specifically the role nutrition can play with respect to prevention and management of chronic diseases or conditions prevalent in the area (i.e., diabetes, obesity, hypertension and cardiovascular diseases) will be explored as will nutritional issues concerning vulnerable populations (e.g., those living in poverty).

The Nutrition Project Team will accomplish this by:

1. Ensuring that Project Team activities are aligned with the goals of SWAHN (i.e., to transform health in Southwestern Ontario through integrated excellence in research, education and clinical practice);

2. Liaising with and reporting to the SWAHN Co-Lead who is overseeing the Knowledge Generation & Translation Stream concerning matters related to its areas of focus;

3. Developing short and long term goals in collaboration with the SWAHN Co-Lead who is overseeing the Knowledge Generation & Translation Stream which will be specific, measurable, and achievable in one-to-two years (short term) and three-to-five years (long term);

4. Identifying appropriate performance measures to monitor progress and performance;

5. Focusing on initiatives and the development of knowledge products that encourage cross-sector collaboration among academics, researchers, health/human services workers, students and service users.

6. Developing strategies and projects that create awareness and stimulate positive change related to issues involving nutrition and health promotion in Southwestern Ontario.

2018 Projects

Knowledge Translation Workshop: Assessing Nutrition Risk in Seniors in the Community Pharmacy - March 2018

Developed by SWAHN’s Nutrition Project Team, this pilot workshop took place at the University of Waterloo’s School of Pharmacy. The objectives of this event were as follows:
  • To increase awareness of the prevalence and impact of malnutrition in seniors;
  • To increase knowledge of the existence and use of nutrition screening and assessment tools;
  • To increase awareness of available community resources for patient nutrition support;
  • To encourage the use of nutrition screening and assessment tools for seniors in community based pharmacies;
  • To provide an opportunity for interprofessional collaboration between registered dietitians and pharmacists.
The workshop helped to increase awareness among community pharmacists concerning the impact of malnutrition and offer ways in which these health professionals can contribute to improving the health of their senior patients through implementing validated nutrition screening tools like the SCREEN II AB. This event also fostered new connections between registered dietitians and pharmacists in Waterloo Region.

Dr. Cynthia Richard from the School of Pharmacy took the lead on this study. In addition to Dr. Richard, featured speakers at the workshop included SWAHN Nutrition Project Team Co-Chairs, Dr. Janet Madill (Brescia University College) and Christine Wellington (University of Windsor; VON NPLC, Belle River). Michele MacDonald Werstuck, Chair of the Dietitians of Canada Ontario Primary Health Care Action Group and an Assistant Professor within the Department of Family Medicine at McMaster University also presented, highlighting various malnutrition screening initiatives happening across Ontario in primary care.

Several positive outcomes resulted from the pilot workshop:
  • This project allowed SWAHN to connect with registered dietitians in the community who work in corporate environments. One of the participants indicated after the event that she had taken the screening and assessment tools back to her company to share with her colleagues, including those who work in the company’s pharmacy.
  • The Project Team developed a model that can be replicated in other locations. The group is currently exploring the possibility of holding a workshop in the Sarnia area.
  • Dr. Cynthia Richard, project lead, will present the pilot project and its outcomes at the Waterloo-Wellington Clinical Research & Quality Improvement Symposium on May 30, 2018. This event is hosted by the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine, McMaster University - Waterloo Regional Campus. The presentation may be found here.

Classroom Presentation on Senior Malnutrition & Nutrition Screening/Assessment Tools

Based on the information shared in the professional workshop above, Dr. Janet Madill presented similar content to a group of University of Waterloo School of Pharmacy students in March 2018. As part of her visit, Janet also included various technology demonstrations for the students including an ultrasound machine to measure QMLT (quadriceps muscle layer thickness) and LBM (lean body mass), as well as hand dynamometers. 

Next steps

In addition to exploring future workshops focused on nutrition screening and assessment tools, the Project Team is considering a new research project focused on anemia and frailty as well as B12 deficiencies in seniors as elements of malnutrition and the impact upon both pre- and post-elective surgeries.


2015 Projects

Breaking Bread with SWAHN: Nutrition Research & Innovation Symposium Planning Committee

  • Dr. Margaret Steele, Co-Chair
  • Dr. Jack Scott, Co-Chair
  • Dr. Alicia Garcia
  • Kay Hickey
  • Dr. Melanie Katsivo
  • Naomi Mudachi
  • Dorian Murariu
  • Kathryn Nicholson
  • Gina Uppal
  • Ronna Warsh
  • Dr. Marnie Wedlake
  • Catherine Joyes

The SWAHN Nutrition Research & Innovation Symposium was held on April 10, 2015 at Brescia University College. Approximately 75 people were in attendance. Six oral and seven poster presentations were offered by both academic and community researchers representing London, Chatham, Windsor and Waterloo. The presentations focused on nutrition projects that respond to the needs of either children/youth or adults/seniors. Four critical listeners including Dr. Marlys Koschinsky (University of Windsor), Professor Pat Bethune Davies (Fanshawe College), Professor Barbara Dobson (Lambton College) and Lauren Kennedy (a graduate student from Brescia University College) provided feedback on the oral presentations which was later incorporated into group discussion sessions. At the close of the event, ballots were distributed to engage participants in voting for the top two research projects that SWAHN could partner with to assist in their advancement (e.g., by providing guidance on the research and support in uncovering funding opportunities). The two projects that were selected include:

  • Stephanie Segave, Manager, Ontario Student Nutrition Program, South West Region, VON
    The Ontario Student Nutrition Program – exploring innovations to strengthen access, delivery, and health outcomes related to a universal student nutrition program. (Windsor, children/youth, community entry)
    To see the presentation video, click here. To see the PowerPoint, click here.
  • Susan Bird (graduate student at Brescia University College)
    Inadequate Access to Registered Dietitian Services for a High-risk, Vulnerable Patient Population - A Situational Assessment. (London, children/youth, academic entry)
    To see the presentation video, click here. To see the PowerPoint, click here.

Speaker Biographies

  Keynote speaker:

Dr. Jason Gilliland – Keynote Speaker

Dr. Jason Gilliland is Director of the Urban Development Program and Professor of Geography, Health Sciences, and Paediatrics at Western. He is also a Scientist with the Children's Health Research Institute and the Lawson Health Research Institute. Dr. Gilliland is known internationally for his award-winning research on planning and public health issues such as ‘food deserts’, and is also well-known in the community, having served on dozens of boards and committees working to strengthen the local economy, environment, food security and children’s health. His research has appeared in leading journals such as the American Journal of Public Health, Health & Place, and Preventive Medicine, and is currently funded by organizations such as the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Canadian Cancer Society, and the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada. Dr. Gilliland is also Director of the Human Environments Analysis Laboratory (HEAL), a state-of-the-art, interdisciplinary research and training environment specializing in the production, evaluation, synthesis, dissemination and mobilization of evidence to support effective policies, programs and professional practice aimed at creating healthy and vibrant communities.


Oral presentations:

Susan Bird

In 2011, after evaluating her personal goals, Susan decided to change professional direction and left a successful career in the agricultural industry as a Certified Crop Advisor. She also ran her own Personal Chef business where she provided nutritious meal options to busy families. Helping people develop healthier eating options sparked her interest in becoming a registered dietitian. She finished her BSc. in Foods & Nutrition at Brescia University College and began the MScFN program in the fall of 2014. Currently, she is looking forward to beginning the challenge of a dietetic internship in May.

Charlotte Elizabeth Mahon Coleman

Charlotte Coleman is currently completing her Bachelor of Medical Sciences (BMSc) at Western University. This year, as a participant in the Scholars Elective program, Charlotte has conducted individual research under the supervision of Dr. Gregor Reid into the implementation of a probiotic-yogurt kitchen in London, Ontario. She is looking forward to continuing in research over the summer term as a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellow in the department of Microbiology and Immunology. At Western University, Charlotte has assisted in the development of the Women in Science (WiS) student group as a member of the original executive team and participated in two Alternative Spring Break expeditions. Outside of academia, Charlotte works part-time at the Stoney Creek branch of the YMCA teaching ballet to aspiring dancers.

Dr. Cynthia Richard

Cynthia completed her undergraduate degree in pharmacy at Dalhousie University, and has experience in community pharmacy. She completed her PhD in Pharmacology at Dalhousie University, and then studied vitamin D’s anti-cancer activity during a post-doctoral research fellowship at the University of Guelph. She was an Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of Waterloo School of Pharmacy from 2009-2013, where she has taught courses related to natural health products, nutrition, pharmacology, self-care, and drug analysis, and is now a Clinical Lecturer. Dr. Richard has responsibility for the oversight of the Professional Practice series of courses and labs. Her main areas of interest are nutrition and natural health products.

Karen Bellemore

Karen is a proud resident of Windsor Ontario. She started to recognize her drive for population health and nutrition while working at the local YMCA as a teenager. After completing a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences at the University of Windsor, Karen realized that becoming a Registered Dietitian would be the best step to take to start achieving her career goals. In September of 2009, Karen started her Bachelor of Science, Honours Specialization in Food and Nutrition at Brescia University College. After graduation, Karen was accepted into the Masters of Science Food and Nutrition, Internship stream, once again at Brescia. Karen successfully completed the program, and graduated as class magisterial speaker in June of 2014. Karen also received full membership status to the College of Dietitians of Ontario in January 2015. Since May 2014, Karen has been employed at the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit. Her role as a member of the Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention team as a Public Health Nutritionist is to help build healthy public policy for all members of the Windsor-Essex Community. This role continues to challenge Karen in positive ways, and she hopes to continue to make positive changes to the food environment and overall food system in Windsor-Essex.

Heather Nadon

Although born and raised in London, Ontario, Heather has lived in Windsor-Essex County for the past 8.5 years. After graduating from Brescia University College in 2003, Heather took a year off to work and travel to Costa Rica where, in a mission through World Vision Canada, she assisted a team of dietitians and nurses in educating a local village about diabetes. Heather completed her dietetic internship at the Ottawa Hospital in 2005, and after gaining some experience as a clinical dietitian, accepted a position at the Six Nations of the Grand River Native Reserve in Ohsweken, Ontario. Here, Heather worked in prenatal nutrition at a First Nations Birthing Centre. In November 2006, Heather moved to Windsor to work for the Windsor-Essex County Heath Unit as a public health dietitian. Currently, Heather works on the Comprehensive Workplace Wellness Team, where she focuses on population health and policies to promote healthy eating environments.

Dr. Tamison Doey

Dr. Tamison Doey has held numerous leadership positions over the years and recently assumed the position of Medical Lead, Outpatient Services for Hotel Dieu Grace Hospital. As the former Chief of Psychiatry at Windsor Regional Hospital, and as the current Psychiatry Lead for the Erie St. Clair LHIN, Dr. Doey brings with her a system wide approach to health care delivery in our region. Dr. Doey was recently appointed the Chair of the Professional Advisory Committee (PAC). In this important role, Dr. Doey will oversee medical quality of care through the Professional Advisory Committee, and provide leadership to each of the HDGH Department Chiefs.

Stephanie Segave

Stephanie has worked for the Victorian Order of Nurses for over a decade. She is currently the Manager of the Ontario Student Nutrition Program, South West Region and is the past Co-Chair of the OSNP Provincial Network. Stephanie is a mother of three young boys and a passionate advocate in the area of food security and student nutrition. She is currently completing her MBA and has chosen to focus her thesis work on a strategy to promote federal funding for a national school food program. Stephanie sits on a number of committees and community boards relating to children and youth.


Critical Listeners:

Professor Pat Bethune-Davies

Pat Bethune- Davies is a Professor of Nursing at Fanshawe College and an Adjunct Assistant Professor at The Arthur Labatt Family School of Nursing at Western University. She has an extensive teaching background in medical-surgical nursing, mental health, and family and community care. She has served as a member of several community Boards of Directors including VON Middlesex- Elgin, LUSO Community Services and The Centre for Research and Education on Violence Against Women and Children at Western University.

Professor Barbara Dobson

Barbara has a bachelor's degree in Chemistry from the University of New Brunswick, a B.Ed. from Western University, and a master’s degree in Chemistry from Guelph/Waterloo. She has been on faculty at Lambton College in Sarnia since 1995 and is also the coordinator of pre-health and pre-nursing programs at the college. Prior to joining Lambton College, Barbara worked in the RCMP crime laboratory in Edmonton Alberta as a forensic drug analyst and as a quality control chemist in the pharmaceutical industry. Barbara enjoys fitness and all manner of outdoor activities.

Lauren Kennedy

Lauren Kennedy is a student in the dietetic internship stream of the Masters of Science in Foods and Nutrition program at Brescia University College, and is a recent graduate of Ryerson University. Her passion for nutrition stems from her diverse experiences in diabetes prevention, critical care research, and delivering nutrition education in South Asia. Lauren’s current research is in evaluation tool validation and food skills in student populations.

Dr. Marlys Koschinsky

Dr. Marlys Koschinsky is the Dean of Science and Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Windsor. She is also an Honorary Professor in the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology at the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry at Western University. Dr. Koschinsky is a Heart and Stroke/CIHR-funded researcher whose interests include studying the contribution of emerging risk factors to the development of coronary heart disease. She actively collaborates with pharmaceutical companies as well as basic and clinical research groups throughout the world. In addition to her research program, Dr. Koschinsky has served in many administrative capacities including membership on the Advisory Board for the CIHR Institute of Circulatory and Respiratory Health. Most recently she has been appointed to the Advisory Board for the Cardiovascular Research Institute at Wayne State University in Michigan and to the Steering Committee of SWAHN (Southwestern Ontario Academic Health Network).

Symposium Documents


Speaker Presentations

The following links to PDF documents contain the various presentations offered at the SWAHN Nutrition Research & Innovation Symposium held at Brescia University College on April 10, 2015.


Nutrition Symposium Videos and Slidedecks

Breaking Bread with SWAHN Nutrition Symposium - #1 Introduction

Breaking Bread with SWAHN Nutrition Symposium - #2 Keynote: Dr. Jason Gilliland

Breaking Bread with SWAHN Nutrition Symposium - #3 Susan Bird

Breaking Bread with SWAHN Nutrition Symposium - #4 Karen Bellemore and Heather Nadon

Breaking Bread with SWAHN Nutrition Symposium - #5 Dr. Cynthia Richard

Breaking Bread with SWAHN Nutrition Symposium - #6 Dr. Tamison Doey

Breaking Bread with SWAHN Nutrition Symposium - #7 Charlotte Coleman

Breaking Bread with SWAHN Nutrition Symposium - #8 Stephanie Segave

Breaking Bread with SWAHN Nutrition Symposium - # 9 Critical Listeners