Professionally-led online support
groups for Canadians affected by cancer

About Us

Background and History Facilitators


Advisory Group

The Advisory Group provides clinical and research oversight for Cancer Chat at de Souza Institute and ensures that all of the counselors who work as facilitators are well-prepared for leading online support groups. 

Advisory Group Members

Mary Jane Esplen, PhD, Chair
Executive Director, de Souza Institute
Professor, Department of Psychiatry,
Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto,
Clinician-Scientist, University Health Network

Michael Speca, Ph.D., Co-Chair
Clinical Psychologist
Department of Psychosocial Resources, Tom Baker Cancer Centre

Jill Taylor-Brown, MSW, RSW, Co-Chair
Director, Patient and Family Support Services
Cancer Care Manitoba

Sylvie Aubin, PhD, M.A.
Assistant Professor, Oncology
Louise Granofsky Psychosocial Oncology Program
Segal Cancer Centre
Jewish General Hospital

Deb Bulych
Provincial Leader, Supportive Care
Saskatchewan Cancer Agency

Kate Collie, MFA, PhD, ATR
Clinical Psychologist and Registered Art Therapist
Cross Cancer Institute

Karen Fergus, Ph.D. (Clinical Psychologist)
Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Centre

Lise Fillion, Ph.D. (Clinical Psychologist )
Research Cancer Center of Laval University

Dr. Carole Mayer PhD, RSW
Director of Research and Regional Psychosocial Clinical Lead for the Supportive Care Oncology Program
Regional Cancer Program of the Hôpital régional de Sudbury Regional Hospital

Deborah McLeod, R.N., Ph.D.
Clinician Scientist
QE II Health Sciences Centre
School of Nursing
Dalhousie University

Anubha Prashad
Specialist, Person-Centred Perspective
Canadian Partnership Against Cancer (CPAC)

Heather Rennie, M.A.,M.Sc.
Clinical Coordinator- Provincial Psychosocial Oncology
BC Cancer, Abbotsford Cancer Centre

Scott Sellick, Ph.D
Director of Supportive & Palliative Care
Thunder Bay Regional Health Science Centre

Jill Turner, Ph.D.
Cross Cancer Institute

Jiahui Wong, PhD
Scientist and Manager, de Souza Institute
Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry,
Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto,


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