Two years ago, I left my role in the federal government and jumped head first into the non-profit space. After following E4D’s work for a number of years I couldn’t believe that I was getting the chance to contribute to an organization that inspired me, and whose mission I so deeply believe in. As the Research and Policy Director at E4D, I got to do my two favourite things: conducting research dedicated to improving the use of science in government, and work directly with government and policy officials to work towards the organization’s policy goals. Getting to use my background in science and policy so synergistically felt like a dream and I couldn’t wait to dive in!
I was immediately brought into the fold. E4D’s incredible team made me feel at home right away, and in that first year I got to work on some amazing projects. I attended my very first federal Budget stakeholder lockup! I helped coordinate a large federal election campaign around making science a priority (thanks Vote Science partners!). I got to run educational programming around fighting misinformation and communicating science for our community. I attended climate rallies. I learned how to fundraise (which I was terrified to do!). I got to engage with leaders across the country. What I’m most proud of that first year is getting to lead on E4D’s “Evidence in Action” research project, conducting interviews with Canadian Members of Parliament about how they find and use evidence in practice.
Over the past year, I was proud to support the organization as Interim Executive Director during Katie’s maternity leave. This year was made especially challenging by COVID-19, but it also highlighted the importance of E4D’s mission, to demonstrate just how important science, evidence, and transparency are in government decisions. While the year presented new challenges, I’m so proud of the work I got to contribute as Interim ED, including hiring three fantastic new staff members, helping E4D obtain two new government grants to work on misinformation and science communication, completing work on science integrity in provincial governments and developing new training materials and events to help our community navigate COVID-19. It was a big year, but our community, and the staff made it really incredible.
While I’m leaving a job I love, I’m also so excited about what lies ahead. I’m thrilled to be returning to the federal government as a Senior Analyst in the Office of Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam. As a part of a new Science Policy Unit in her office, I’ll be helping Dr. Tam navigate the rapidly growing evidence around COVID-19 and working on policy solutions, specifically around long term impacts of COVID-19 and health equity. It’s a great opportunity for me to use my skills as a scientist and policy specialist, and although I will miss E4D deeply, this will be a chance for me to take evidence-informed policy-making and put it into practice in a critical field.
I want to say a deep thank you to everyone who made these two years at E4D amazing. I’ll miss you all tons, and please say in touch!