Speakers

Raposa, Karen A, RDH, MBA

Karen is currently clinical education manager with Hu-Friedy Manufacturing Company. She has authored articles on a variety of dental subjects and has co-edited a textbook titled Treating the Dental Patient with a Developmental Disorder. She is a former assistant professor in Boston University's Department of General Dentistry and was also recognized as one of the "Top 25 Women in Dentistry" by Dental Products Report.


Acker, Amanda, RDH

Amanda has spent over 15 years in the dental hygiene profession. When she is not working as CDHA’s independent practice advisor, she is developing her multidisciplinary private practice in Ottawa. Her primary focus is increasing access to care for the public and more specifically for vulnerable populations. Through her community partnerships and work with CDHA she continues to promote independent dental hygiene and accessible dental care nationwide. Amanda is a proud member of both the national dental hygiene service code and independent practice advisory committees.


Al-Hashedi, Ashwaq, PhD

Ashwaq graduated as a dental surgeon in 2002 from Sana’a University where she held a teaching assistant position in different faculty departments (2003-2005). She finished her master’s degree in prosthodontics dentistry in 2008 and then participated in a clinical trial to evaluate the success and survival of short dental implants in Malaysia, where she obtained her first PhD. Ashwaq finished her second PhD at McGill University in the field of dental implantology and is currently a postdoctoral fellow there. She is also the founder of INViCARE, a medical company that is developing new technologies and products for treating dental implant infections.


Alshatrat, Sabha Mahmoud, PhD, RDH

Sabha holds a master’s degree in dental hygiene and a doctorate in health service research from Old Dominion University (Virginia, USA). She is currently assistant professor in the Department of Applied Dental Sciences at Jordan University of Science and Technology.


Battrell, Ann, MSDH

Ann serves as the chief executive officer of the American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA). She holds a bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene from the Northwestern University School of Dentistry and a master’s degree in dental hygiene from the University of Missouri. Ann has held dental hygiene faculty positions at Northwestern University’s dental school in Chicago and Palm Beach College, Florida. While working as a dental hygiene clinician and educator, Ann also advised a variety of dental corporations as a consultant.


Collins, Fiona M, BDS, MBA, MA, FPFA

Fiona has presented and published on tobacco cessation, e-cigarettes, oral health and prevention, infection control, and other topics. She has lectured in North America, Europe, the Pacific Rim, and the Middle East. Fiona is also a consultant and trainer, editor of Dental World, continuing education editor for Dental Learning, and the American Dental Association representative to the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation. During her career, Fiona has lived and worked in five countries.


Davidson, Dianah, BS, RDH, COM®

Dianah is a registered dental hygienist with over 40 years in clinical practice, and is an active member and instructor with the International Association of Orofacial Myology. She keeps a very busy schedule treating clients with orofacial myofunctional disorders (OMDs) and offering introductory courses internationally. Dianah developed a therapeutic guideline to offer treatment options for OMDs and shares her passion for her work and her extensive experience in treating clients as well as in habit elimination programs in all of her courses.


Donley, Timothy, DDS, MSD

Tim currently practises periodontics and implantology in Bowling Green, Kentucky. After graduating from the University of Notre Dame and Georgetown University School of Dentistry he practised general dentistry. He then returned to Indiana University where he obtained his master’s degree in periodontics. Tim lectures internationally and has co-authored the first-ever comprehensive textbook on periodontal debridement. His forte lies in taking the latest research and packaging it in a way that makes sense.


Doucette, Heather, DipDH, BSc, MEd

Heather is an associate professor in the School of Dental Hygiene, Faculty of Dentistry, Dalhousie University. She has 25 years of clinical dental hygiene experience and 13 years of experience in education of both dental hygiene and dentistry students. She has served as a content knowledge expert for national clinical competencies and has published papers and presented research findings at national and international conferences.


Dubreuil, Nadia, RDH, Cert. FPT

A dental hygienist (graduated in 1994), Nadia works in periodontology and as a professor at Cégep Garneau. President of the Group for Research and Education in Dental Hygiene, she ensures the continuation of research on toothpastes, mouthrinses, moisturizers for dry mouth, prophylaxis pastes, and beverages. She is co-author of the chapter on dentifrices in the 3rd, 4th, and 5th editions of Darby and Walsh’s Dental Hygiene: Theory and Practice.


Fambely, Christine, Cert. in Health Ed., BA, MEd, HD

Graduating from John Abbott College with a Diploma in Dental Hygiene in 1980, Christine enjoys working in family practices, creating positive experiences during continuing-care appointments. She joined the Dental Hygiene Department at John Abbott in 1996 and currently teaches dental anatomy and head and neck examination to first-year students. Christine sees dental hygiene students becoming more confident, experienced future professionals while in clinic with them during their last three semesters, and looks forward to more rewarding years in this profession.


Farmer, Julie, RDH, MSc

Julie is a practising registered dental hygienist in Ontario and a doctoral student at the Faculty of Dentistry, University of Toronto. She completed her dental hygiene diploma in 2012 and obtained a Master of Science in dental public health from the University of Toronto in 2015. Her areas of research include oral epidemiology, health services, professionalization of dental hygiene practice, and oral health inequalities.


Greene, Michelle, MSW

Michelle is a proud Newfoundlander with a master’s degree in social work from Memorial University and a wealth of experience in the public and not-for-profit sectors. She spent 15 years as executive director of the St. John’s Military Family Resource Centre and has worked with the Canadian Forces Speakers Bureau on Mental Health at a national level, has been an instructor with the Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) in mental health first aid, and is an instructor, master trainer, and mentor with The Working Mind and Road to Mental Readiness (R2MR), two education-based programs offered by MHCC.


Harris, Marilyn, BDH

Marilyn Harris lives in Prince Edward Island with her husband, Nick, and daughter, Sadie. Marilyn worked in private practice until experiencing an occupational injury that ultimately ended her career in dental hygiene. Last year, Marilyn moved to Nova Scotia and spent long stretches away from her family to complete her bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene at Dalhousie University. She and her research partner, Savanna Sentner, decided to focus their research on occupational injuries.


Hasko, Anila, BSc, MEd, RDH

Originally from Albania, Anila was awarded a Doctor of Dental Surgery from the University of Tirana Faculty of Dentistry in 1992. In 2002, she obtained her Diploma in Dental Hygiene from John Abbott College and later joined the college’s dental hygiene faculty in winter 2008. Anila also completed a Master of Education in College Teaching in October 2018 from the University of Sherbrooke. During her career as an educator at John Abbott College, she has brought her expertise and experience to many courses in the dental hygiene program. She anticipates many more years of enjoying this rewarding profession.


Iancu, Irene M, BSc, RDH, CTDP

Irene obtained her Bachelor of Political Science from Florida State University in 2005 and graduated with honours from Oxford College in 2007. Today, Irene is a Toronto-based independent dental hygienist who owns her own practice. She is a dental hygiene instructor at Oxford College, quality assurance mentor and peer mentor with the College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario, key opinion leader, international speaker, and item writer for the National Dental Hygiene Certification Board while enrolled in the Harvard MHX Fundamentals (online learning) program at Harvard Medical School.


Lavigne, Salme, PhD, RDH

Salme was appointed scientific editor of the Canadian Journal of Dental Hygiene, effective December 1, 2015. She holds a diploma in dental hygiene from the University of Toronto, a bachelor’s degree in biomedical anthropology from Lakehead University, a master’s degree in dental hygiene education from the University of Missouri-Kansas City, and a doctorate in community health sciences from the University of Manitoba. Salme was the founding director of the dental hygiene program at Confederation College, Thunder Bay, and served as director of the School of Dental Hygiene, University of Manitoba, for 13 years where she developed and initiated the first BScDH program at that institution. An internationally recognized researcher and educator, Salme has received Alumni of Distinction awards from the University of Toronto and the UMKC School of Dentistry, and a Life Membership Award from the Canadian Dental Hygienists Association.


Lin, Iris, BDSc, RDH

Iris is a PhD student in the Faculty of Dentistry at the University of British Columbia and is conducting her research at the British Columbia Cancer Research Centre. As part of the British Columbia Oral Cancer Prevention Program, her work focuses on the development of techniques for early detection, risk assessment, and management of potentially malignant oral diseases. Her specific interests involve the immune microenvironment of potentially cancerous lesions of the mouth and malignant transformation.


Martin, Melanie, RDH, MA

Melanie began her career in the dental field as a dental assistant, graduated from the dental hygiene program at Cambrian College, and holds a master’s degree in leadership from Royal Roads University. She has 26 years of experience as a dental hygienist and has worked in a family practice, as an educator, and as an independent dental hygienist. Melanie is the director of dental hygiene practice at the Canadian Dental Hygienists Association.


Nippard, William, RDH

In addition to practising dental hygiene, William is a premier speaker and authority on job satisfaction, leadership, and teamwork. Having authored an international bestselling book, he is currently writing a second book and works regularly as a consultant to Canadian businesses and professional groups. The recipient of several awards, William is actively involved in humanitarian efforts to provide homes, food, and shelter to victims of extreme poverty and works part time as a certified life coach.


Parbhakar, Kamini Kaura, MSc, RDH

Kamini Kaura Parbhakar is a registered dental hygienist with specialty training in dental public health from the University of Toronto. With a passion for preventive care and chronic disease management, Kamini wrote her master’s thesis on chronic disease complications among people with diabetes who reported poor oral health. She hopes to shed light on the oral–systemic link and the need to invest in disease management among Ontario residents while also addressing the social determinants of overall health.


Pratt, Rachelle, BScDH, RDH

Rachelle graduated from the University of Alberta with a Diploma in Dental Hygiene in 1997 and a Master of Education in Health Science Education in June 2019. She has been teaching in the Dental Hygiene Program and various continuing dental education programs at the University of Alberta since 2002. Her recent educational study focuses on the scholarship of teaching and learning and specifically on curriculum design using educational technology in distance education.


Reynolds, Betsy, RDH, MS

Armed with degrees in dental hygiene and oral biology, Betsy presents scientifically based dental and dental hygiene continuing education programs nationally and internationally. Avidly committed to making the dental sciences understandable and relevant, Betsy devotes time and energy to developing courses designed to enlighten and inspire clinicians. Betsy lives in her home state of Idaho where she enjoys hiking, biking, gardening, and taking in the breathtaking view with loved ones.


Sentner, Savanna, BDH

Savanna is a registered dental hygienist at Alliance Dental and a clinical instructor at Dalhousie University. She received her Diploma in Dental Hygiene in 2016 and her Bachelor of Dental Hygiene in 2019. Savanna is currently enrolled in a Master of Education program. She is dedicated to lifelong learning and has a strong interest in the musculoskeletal health of dental hygienists. Savanna is committed to furthering research on prevention of musculoskeletal disorders in dental hygienists.


Shahab, Mahnoor

Mahnoor is a fourth-year BSc dental hygiene student at the University of Alberta. She began post-secondary studies in general sciences but her interest in health care motivated her to pursue a career in dental hygiene. She has had an interest in oral health related research since she started her dental hygiene studies in 2017. Mahnoor aspires to further her dental hygiene education by obtaining a master’s degree.


Sheppard, Alexandra, BA, MEd, RDH

Alexandra Sheppard is the assistant director of dental hygiene clinical education and a clinical professor in the Dental Hygiene Program at the University of Alberta. She is the Canadian Dental Hygienists Association (CDHA) board director for Alberta, as well as CDHA representative and chair of the dental hygiene committee for the Commission on Dental Accreditation of Canada. Alexandra is the 2018 recipient of the Gibb Teaching Scholar Award and the WW Wood Award in Excellence in Dental Education, and the 2015 recipient of the Marilyn Pawluk Mabey Award from the College of Registered Dental Hygienists of Alberta.


Spolarich, Ann Eshenaur, RDH, PhD, FSCDH

Ann is an internationally recognized author and speaker on pharmacology and the care of medically complex clients. She has presented over 950 lectures and has over 125 professional publications. She is professor and course director of clinical medicine and pharmacology, and director of research at the Arizona School of Dentistry and Oral Health, where she also teaches part time in the Special Care Clinic. In addition, Ann serves as associate director of the National Center for Dental Hygiene Research & Practice.


Stechey, Frank M, BA, DDS, FAAFS

Frank’s forensic dental experiences cover more than 40 years of civil and criminal cases, product liability, homicides, domestic violence, partner/spousal, senior, and especially child abuse, as well as mass disaster training and response (including the September 2001 World Trade Center terrorist attack). A fellow in seven dental organizations, Frank served as a forensic dental consultant and expert witness for McMaster University’s Children’s Hospital, Hamilton’s police service, and many other municipal, provincial, national, and international police services and Children’s Aid societies.


Taverna, Melanie, MSDH, RDH

Melanie is the director of dental hygiene online graduate programs and assistant professor/clinical faculty in the Division of Dental Hygiene, Department of Periodontics, UT Health San Antonio, School of Dentistry. She is assistant director of the South Texas Oral Health Network (STOHN), which is the local practice-based research network of oral health providers. She is a mentor and researcher with a history of presentations, publications, and projects on oral health care topics, such as iatro-compliance in long-term care, oral care practices of caregivers for elderly clients, sleep apnea, xerostomia, e-cigarettes, and elder abuse.


Tolan, Anna Louise, RDH, FADIA

A clinician, educator, and lecturer, Anna Louise has three decades of experience in dental hygiene practice, specializing in advanced non-surgical periodontal therapy, dental implant therapy, and the medically compromised client. She is a fellow of the Association of Dental Implant Auxiliaries and serves on several industry advisory committees as a key opinion leader and educational consultant. Her passion and expertise in using evidence-based protocols in the process of care make her a popular master clinician and lecturer.


Wooley, Christine, BSc, RDH

Christine graduated from John Abbott College in dental hygiene in 1983. She has practised dental hygiene in private practice, long-term care (LTC) facilities, and in a hospital setting. Christine has also taught at McGill University School of Dentistry and is currently is a co-researcher in oral care for patients with dementia in LTC through Mount Allison University. Christine is an independent practitioner at three LTC facilities and a dental hygiene faculty member at Oulton College.


Zwicker, Denise, DipDA, BDH, MEd

Denise is an instructor with the School of Dental Hygiene, Dalhousie University. Denise has worked in the dental field for 27 years, completing a Diploma in Dental Hygiene in 2004 and Bachelor of Dental Hygiene in 2012. While working as a preclinical/clinical instructor, she completed a master’s degree in education (curriculum studies) for health interprofessionals in 2014. Her current teaching responsibility is clinic coordinator for the first-year dental hygiene program.