Frank Telfer, Co-President
Frank is a graduate student in the Department of Medical Biophysics at the University of Toronto, studying Genetics and Genome Biology at the Hospital for Sick Children. Frank’s research focuses on identifying and characterizing novel modalities for reducing cancer risk/preventing cancer in children and young adults who are at increased risk due a mutation inherited from their parents. Outside of the lab, Frank works on expanding and improving science culture in his local community and throughout Canada through his leadership of and participation in a variety of education and advocacy initiatives. Frank is highly passionate about evidence-informed decision-making, especially in the sphere of health policy, and has been a member of TSPN since its first year.
Isabella Lim, Co-President
Isabella Lim is a third year PhD student in the Department of Psychology at the University of Toronto. Her research lies within visual attention and memory, specifically how visual attention is guided by categorical information. Through the TSPN she hopes to foster a community enthusiastic for evidence-based policy issues, both within and outside of academia. Outside of school she enjoys horror movies and going to concerts.
Kaitlin Kharas, Treasurer
Kaitlin is PhD candidate in the department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology at the University of Toronto. Her research, at the Hospital for Sick Children, focuses on the role of immune cells in the growth and progression of pediatric brain cancers. Kaitlin is excited to join TSPN as she has a strong interest in promoting public scientific literacy, as well as an interest in how science can inform thoughtful policy.
Dawn Bannerman, External Affairs Director
Dawn Bannerman is a PhD student at the University of Toronto in Chemical Engineering with a collaborative specialization in Biomedical Engineering. Her research focuses on cardiac tissue engineering approaches to improve heart function after a heart attack. She joined TSPN in its first year because she cares about the use of scientific evidence to inform decisions that lead toward a healthy population and environment.
Leanna Kalinowski, Internal Affairs Director
Leanna Kalinowski is a PhD candidate in Behavioral Neuroscience at the University of Toronto, where she studies the neurobiology of social behavior and stress in eusocial naked mole-rats. She is currently completing an internship focused on evaluating and optimizing strategies for incorporating scientific evidence into public policy. Outside of the lab, you can find her engaging in science outreach at local schools, advocating for issues related to mental health, and cheering for the Buffalo Bills. She is particularly excited to join the TSPN team and share her passion for science advocacy with the UofT community.
Rebekah Reuben, Executive-at-Large
Rebekah Reuben is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Psychology at the University of Toronto. Her
research investigates the role estrogen loss contributes to sex differences in cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s
disease. Rebekah is passionate about research and evidence-informed approaches for science and health policy.
Committee Members & Volunteers
Raphaella is a PhD candidate in Biochemistry at the University of Toronto. She uses mouse models to study how structural differences in protein clumps found in the brain cells of people with Parkinson’s or other related diseases can lead to differences in clinical outcomes like symptoms and progression rate. Apart from research and science policy, Raphaella is also passionate about singing, dancing, seeking out good food in the city, and talking about the TV shows she binge-watched in her free time.