A mission-driven team with the skills and experience to open the doors of Eli’s Place.

Our highly accomplished team includes an Executive Director with a proven track record in the development of innovative mental health programs; a committed Board of Directors bringing diverse and highly relevant skills and experiences to the table; and, a Professional Advisory Committee made up of pre-eminent healthcare leaders and practitioners in the area of mental illness.

Now is the time, with your support, to create Eli’s Place and change the future forever for young adults 19 to 35 years of age struggling with serious mental illness, young people like our son Eli.”

Meet our Board of Directors

David L. Cooper
Founding Director

David is a business owner with extensive corporate and non-profit experience. Founder of STUFF Canada, a non-profit created in 1999 to reduce homelessness and poverty in Toronto. 2004 recipient of the New Spirit of Community Award, Canadian Centre for Philanthropy, and the Peter F. Drucker Award for NFP Innovation in 2003.  David also co-authored, with his wife Deborah, a guide for parents who have lost children to suicide, entitled Bridge over the River Why.

 

Carol Cowan-Levine
BA, MSW, RSW, RP
Chair

Carol is a Registered Psychotherapist in private practice with extensive experience in the field of mental health. Her commitment to community has been reflected in the numerous Boards of Directors on which she has served–most recently as President of the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO) (2015-2017). Currently, she sits as an Honourary Member of the Board at Women’s College Hospital, a Member of the Advisory Board of the Child Development Institute, Chair of the Advisory Council of the Women’s College Hospital Foundation and the all-Ontario elected member of the College of Registered Psychotherapists and Registered Mental Health Therapists of Ontario. Carol remains a passionate advocate for excellence in healthcare.

 

Susan Rabkin
BFA, MA, JD
Vice-Chair

A passionate business leader and lawyer, with broad-based experience across diverse industries in the private sector, as well as board leadership roles in the post-secondary and child welfare public sectors.

 

 

Dr. Howard Hamer
MD, FCFP, MSc(A), FCBOM

Secretary and Communications Committee Chair

Has been a Family & Occupational Physician for many years. He is an experienced Board Member of the former Humber Memorial Hospital. He is past president of the Occupational & Environmental Medicine Association of Canada running their Board for 2 years. He was the Medical Director of the Function & Pain program at Altum Health, a division of the University Health Network. Presently he is semi-retired having closed his Family Practice in 2010. He now works part-time at various industries pursuing his interest in worker health and safety.

 

Zuzana Glatzova
MA
Treasurer and Finance Committee Chair

Over 15 years’ experience in Finance; analysis, risk, and, control management. 5 years as a Corporate team captain for Princess Margaret Foundations’ One Walk; Field Service Finance Controller at Schneider Electric Canada.

 

 

Arla Hamer
MSW  
Board Member, Models Committee Chair

Masters of Social Work with over thirty years’ experience in the field of mental health. Developed the Understanding Stigma Program, a project funded and evaluated by the Mental Health Commission of Canada and being implemented in sites across Canada.

 

 

Erin Johnston Board Member Eli's Place

Erin Johnston
Board and Finance Committee Member

Erin is a CA, CPA with over 12 years of experience in both Corporate and Operational finance roles, with the majority of her experience in corporate controllership roles at George Weston Limited and Loblaw Companies Limited. Erin is currently the finance lead for Loblaw Digital.

 

 

 

Prakash Narayanan
B.A., LL.B., LL.M.
Board Member, Governance & Nominating Committee Chair  

Corporate, commercial and regulatory lawyer with over 13 years of experience, currently as Director, Legal Services for Bombardier Commercial Aircraft and previously at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP.

 

 

Joel Shapiro
MD, FRCPC
Board Member

Outpatient psychiatrist with the Medical Clinic for Person-Centred Psychotherapy; special interest in long-term psychotherapy and educating physicians about mental health.

 

 

Brenda J. Spiegler
PhD, CPsych, ABPP(cn)
Board Member

Past Director of Psychology, Hospital for Sick Children
25 years’ experience as a paediatric neuropsychologist, serving children with cancer and traumatic brain injury.  Board Member of POGO, a consortium of organizations treating childhood cancer.

 

Shannon_Craig_Eli's_Place_Board_MemberShannon Craig
BA, MBA
Board Member

A career marketer who has helped leading brands and large high-tech disrupters including LEGO, FedEx, WIND Mobile and Kobo. In 2013, Shannon fulfilled a long-time desire to work in the charitable sector joining CanadaHelps to lead its marketing, product and customer care teams.

 

Lorne Zon
BA, MES
Ex-Officio Board Member

An experienced health care executive and consultant with national, provincial, regional, and community health and mental health organizations.  An Adjunct Professor in the Faculty of Health at York University.

Deborah Cooper
BScN, RN
Board Member Emeritus

Recently retired from 30 years in the family office furniture business, Deborah was formerly a Toronto Public Health Nurse & Nurse Educator at Seneca College.  She has been a community volunteer and advocate for over 45 years. Becoming a suicide loss survivor following her son, Eli’s death in 2010, she is dedicated to the establishment of Eli’s Place.  Deborah is a Founding Board Member of Eli’s Place. She also co-authored, with her husband David, a guide for parents who have lost children to suicide, entitled Bridge over the River Why.

Meet our Executive Director

Ellis Katsof 
MSW 
Executive Director

A highly accomplished visionary Executive, Ellis Katsof enthusiastically provides leadership to not-for-profit organizations that are in transition. Ellis, recently CEO of Pathstone Mental Health, brings 38 years of proven success to the leadership role with skills in strategic visioning and business planning, enhancing organizational effectiveness, financial management and influencing the external environment.

As an MSW, Ellis is a results-oriented, decisive leader with proven success in strategic thinking and innovation. He has a proven track record in development of innovative programs, union relationships, governance, building effective and dynamic teams, acquiring new funding and foundation management. Ellis is also the author of Life 3.0: Protirement NOT Retirement, an enlightening book that describes how Baby Boomers have reinvented retirement.

 

Meet our Professional Advisory:

Karen Goldenberg, C.M., former CEO of JVS and Leave Out Violence International, Interim CEO Ve’ahavta. In 2014 Karen received the Order of Canada for her leadership in Rehabilitation Services and leadership in health and social services. Karen was also the co-founder and long-standing leader of Community Occupational Therapy Associates (COTA), the first community-based not-for-profit occupational therapy organization in Canada.

Dr. Joanna Henderson is Executive Director of Youth Wellness Hubs Ontario and Director of the Margaret and Wallace McCain Centre for Child, Youth & Family Mental Health at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH). She is also a Senior Scientist in the Child, Youth, and Emerging Adult Program at CAMH and an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto. Her work aims to improve access to high quality, integrated services for youth with substance use and/or mental health concerns and their families.

Daniel Hoffmann, BSW, Social Worker, Organic Farmer, Community Developer, Food Programmer, Community Gardening Specialist. Manages The Cutting Veg Organic Farm, a social enterprise to cultivate personal, social, environmental and economic health through organic agriculture

Dr. Sidney H. Kennedy, MD, FRCPC  Professor of Psychiatry U of T,  Arthur Sommer Rotenberg Chair in Suicide & Depression Studies, St. Michael’s Hospital Principal Investigator, Canadian Biomarker Integration Network for Depression, UHN

Dr. Anthony Levitt, Director of Research, Department of Psychiatry at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, former Psychiatrist-in-Chief at Toronto’s Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

Ann Marie McDonald, current Executive Director of Mood Disorder Association of Ontario (MDAO); former Chair of the MDAO Board of Directors; former owner of a human resources consultancy which provided organizational development, human resources, and management counsel to senior executives in a variety of leading Canadian companies.

Karen Minden, C.M., PhD, founder Pine River Institute, advisor and consultant in the field of social entrepreneurship and philanthropy with extensive leadership experience; special expertise in youth mental health. Karen was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2010, for her contributions to addiction treatment programs for adolescents in Ontario, and for building closer economic partnerships between Canada and the Asia Pacific region.

Dr. Ari Zaretsky, Psychiatrist-in-Chief and Vice President Education at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre; Full Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto

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