OTRU Scientific Advisors are senior tobacco control researchers. They are called upon from time to time to offer scientific advice to OTRU on specific areas of research and on general approaches to fulfilling OTRU’s mandate of developing, synthesizing and providing knowledge in support of tobacco control efforts in Ontario and beyond. Activities include responding to methodological and substantive queries about measurement, data collection, analysis, knowledge synthesis, interpretation of results and knowledge transfer and exchange. Scientific advice will be provided as needed through email, telephone and ad hoc in-person meetings.
Susan Bondy is an Associate Professor in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. She is also Program director for the MPH in Epidemiology. Dr. Bondy received her MSc in Epidemiology and Biostatistics from the University of Western Ontario and PhD in Epidemiology from the University of Toronto. Her areas of research include: monitoring of alcohol and tobacco use and public opinions on tobacco control policies; psychoactive substance use and associated health problems; and health services research, particularly in the areas of mental health and addiction, as well as cancer detection and treatment. She has experience training graduate students and public health professionals in the analysis and use of survey methods and data in population health. Her research activities related to tobacco include the Ontario Tobacco Survey (a cross-sectional survey and panel study of smokers), as well as policy intervention studies and research on the impact of pharmaceutical therapies for cessation.
Joanna Cohen is the Bloomberg Professor of Disease Prevention and the Director of the Institute of Global Tobacco Control at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She also holds an appointment in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. Dr. Cohen obtained her PhD in Health Policy and Administration from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill and her MHSc in Community Health and Epidemiology from the University of Toronto. She has been involved in tobacco policy research for 20 years. Trained in epidemiology and health policy, her research interests focus on the factors that affect the adoption and implementation of public health policies and on evaluating the beneficial effects and the unintended consequences of such policies. She is a Senior Editor of Tobacco Control and on the Editorial Board of the Canadian Journal of Public Health, and has been appointed to the Food and Drug Administration’s Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee (2013-2017).
John Garcia is the MPH Program Leader and Associate Professor at the University of Waterloo, Department of Health Studies and Gerontology. Dr. Garcia has held several senior positions over the years at the Ontario Ministry of Health, Cancer Care Ontario, Health Canada, OTRU and at Prospect Associates in the United States as Technical Vice President, and Project Director of the American Stop Smoking Intervention Study (ASSIST) Coordinating Center, a multi-state tobacco control program. He was instrumental in the development of the original Ontario Tobacco Strategy (OTS) at the Ministry of Health in the early 1990s. His training in evaluation, knowledge exchange and his lengthy involvement in comprehensive tobacco control programs equip him well for his role as Principal Investigator at OTRU. Dr. Garcia holds a MSc in Health Behaviour and a PhD in Health Promotion from the University of Waterloo.
Peter Selby MD is the Chief of Primary Care, Director of Medical Education, and a Clinician Scientist at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH). He is a Professor in the Departments of Family and Community Medicine, Psychiatry, and the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. He is also a Clinician Scientist in the Department of Family and Community Medicine. Dr. Selby is the Executive Director and creator of the TEACH project – a continuing education certificate program in Applied Counselling for Health with a focus on smoking cessation, through the University of Toronto. Dr. Selby’s research, as a Principal Investigator at the Ontario Tobacco Research Unit, includes smoking cessation especially in smokers with co morbid conditions. As the Principal Investigator of the STOP Study, he investigates the effectiveness of NRT and counselling in different types of intervention settings. He is also the PI of CANADAPTT- a unique Canadian Smoking Cessation Guideline development and dissemination project. Dr. Selby also continues his clinical research with pregnant women who use substances and is the PI of a knowledge translation program (PREGNETS) to increase the adoption of evidence-based interventions with pregnant smokers.