Puja Ahluwalia - National Lead, Rehabilitation, Optimal Health and Wellbeing
Puja is a physiotherapist with a background in disability and rehabilitation. She has extensive experience in the fields of pediatrics, global health, and research. Puja most recently worked in the primary care sector where she was involved in engaging patients and clinicians in the process of determining how to measure quality in primary care. She also has a Masters of Public Health in Health Promotion from the University of Toronto.
Melissa Egan - National Lead, Episodic Disabilities
Melissa has worked in the field of health and HIV for over 15 years as an educator and facilitator, developing and delivering workshops to diverse audiences across Canada. She has worked extensively with marginalized, LGBTQ, and Indigenous people. Melissa’s experience includes front-line work at YouthCO in Vancouver, 8 years at CATIE as Regional Educator for the Prairies, and has helped create online learning courses using her background in curriculum development and adult education.
Cathy Kozuch - Bookkeeper
As a member of the senior management team for a number of organizations, Catharine has been a part of the financial decision making process in companies from both the private and public sectors. After obtaining a degree in Economics from York University, Catharine worked for many years at the original IBM manufacturing plant in Don Mills, Toronto, Ontario. Following her tenure at IBM, Catharine went on to freelance as an accounting advisor at a number of small businesses in various sectors, such as, educational publishing, cellular systems, and group homes. Catherine, a long time social activist, is excited to work with an organization that is committed to improving the lives of people living with, and those affected by, HIV.
Janet London - Manager, Program Support
Janet brings extensive experience in small business management to her role as Manager, Program Support at Realize.
Kate Murzin - Health Programs Specialist
In July 2013, Kate transitioned into the position of Aging Initiatives Lead after joining Realize to work on the Equitable Access to Rehabilitation project and in March 2015, she was promoted to the position of Health Programs Specialist. In this role, her objective is to build and nurture collaborative working relationships between the HIV, aging and/or chronic illness sectors leading to joint initiatives which improve the health and quality of life of people and communities aging with HIV. Kate was previously Group Programs Coordinator at the AIDS Committee of Toronto (ACT) and played an integral role in developing, implementing and evaluating a programing on HIV and aging. Kate has experience in health promotion program planning, health communications and policy advocacy. She is also a trained group facilitator and has experience in adult education. Kate studied biomedical sciences and received her Masters of Public Health degree from the University of Toronto.
Kara Santokie - Program Assistant
Kara has been involved in the non-profit sector since 2004, when she worked for the International Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS. Most recently, she was the Director of Toronto Women’s City Alliance and an Administrator with the Anglican Church of Canada. Kara has extensive experience in gender policy analysis and programming. She received a PhD in Political Science from the University of Toronto, specializing in Women, Gender and Politics. She is also a graduate of the London School of Economics and Political Science, and the University of Oxford. Kara is also a trained Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction Instructor, having qualified at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.
Tammy C. Yates - Executive Director
Tammy joined the Realize Team in January 2013. She has worked for over twelve years in the field of program management. Prior to joining Realize, Tammy was the National Program Manager of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Trinidad & Tobago Branch Office. She has extensive experience in Gender & Development and Sexual & Reproductive Health, including HIV/AIDS, having worked previously as a Program Officer with the Secretariat of the Caribbean Regional Network of Persons Living With HIV (CRN+) and serving as Chair of the Theme Group on Gender of the United Nations System in Trinidad & Tobago. She is a graduate of Wolfson College, Cambridge University, England and the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad.