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Alison Phinney, PHD

Academic Lead, UBC

Dr. Alison Phinney is the Principal Investigator of the Building Capacity. She is a Professor and the Associate Director of Graduate programs at the University of British Columbia, School of Nursing, as well as the Co-Director of the Centre for Research on Personhood in Dementia. She is an expert in dementia, with her work highlighting the potential for people to live well with the disease and as active members of their communities, bringing hope and understanding to families and society. She works in partnership with community leaders and people with lived experience to build knowledge and capacity for supporting personhood and social citizenship of older people, especially those living with dementia and their families. She has demonstrated the importance of social involvement and creative and physical activity for supporting well-being and personhood in dementia.


Andrea Monteiro.png

Andréa Monteiro, PhD

Community Research Coordinator, UBC

Andréa Monteiro is the Community Research Coordinator for the Building Capacity project for the Vancouver site. She supports community organizations to imagine possibilities of inclusion and meaningful participation of people living with dementia and their care partners. Andréa has a PhD in nursing and is a documentary filmmaker, and her scholarship and filmmaking are focused on social justice issues. She has twenty-three years of community leadership and engagement through the nonprofit sector and fourteen years of work between nursing research, education, and clinical practice (palliative care). Alongside her role with the Building Capacity Project, she holds a Research Associate position at the University of British Columbia, in the traditional, ancestral and unceded xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) territory.



Eric Macnaughton, PhD

Project Manager, UBC

Eric Macnaughton is the Research Manager, responsible for overall management of the project, and coordinating the implementation of new dementia initiatives across the two sites, as well as the research and evaluative aspects of the project. He has a Ph.D. from the UBC Interdisciplinary Studies program, has completed graduate training in community psychology, and has twenty-five years of doing community-based research, evaluation, and knowledge translation in the field of community mental health. Most recently he was involved in the At Home/Chez Soi project, an initiative to implement, evaluate and scale out a model for providing housing and supports for previously homeless people who deal with mental health and addictions issues. His interest in dementia stems from his family background and with the similarities in the mental health’s recovery movement and the aims of this project in building social citizenship for people living with dementia.




Ania Landy, MS

Training Coordinator, UBC

Ania Landy is the Training Coordinator for the Building Capacity project, Vancouver site. Ania is responsible for coordinating, and leading training focused on supporting organizations and communities to address inclusivity and stigma related to people with lived experience of dementia and their care partners. Ania has a Master of Science in Health Sciences (Simon Fraser University) and a Bachelor of Therapeutic Recreation (Douglas College). She has over 10 years of experience collaborating with diverse communities on community-based participatory research initiatives. She is passionate about supporting innovative and creative community work that aims at addressing critical social issues, with a specific focus on aging and dementia. Her research interests include an intersectional approach to understanding health inequities and promoting cultural change in the care of older people, within both community and institutional settings. In addition to her role on the Building Capacity project, Ania holds a faculty position at Douglas College in the Department of Therapeutic Recreation.



Elaine Wiersma, PhD

Academic Lead, Lakehead University

Elaine Wiersma is the Director of the Centre for Education and Research on Aging & Health, and an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Sciences at Lakehead University. She has completed her Master’s and PhD at the University of Waterloo. Having spent many years working with older adults in practice and research, particularly individuals with dementia, Elaine’s research aims to tell people’s stories in ways that challenge stereotypes and misconceptions of older people, particularly persons with dementia. Advocacy, inclusion, and rights form the fundamental values underlying her work with people with dementia. Using participatory qualitative methodologies, her research spans community and long-term care, exploring aging and dementia care, contexts of rural and northern communities, and quality of life issues.



Nisha Sutherland, PhD

Co Investigator, Lakehead University

Nisha Sutherland is an Assistant Professor in the School of Nursing at Lakehead University and research affiliate at the Centre for Education and Research on Aging and Health (CERAH). Focusing in the areas of gender, aging, and health, Dr. Sutherland critically analyzes how social relations shape health and health care experiences for people with chronic life-limiting illnesses. Building from her doctoral work, the focus of her research examines how the social determinants of health (e.g. geography, class, age gender, or race) intersect to shape health care experiences, particularly for people who are disadvantaged.


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