The primary purpose of the Clinical Trials BC Advisory Council is to be a source of expert advice by providing input, validation, and recommendations to support the successful achievement of the strategic priorities of the unit.

Council members represent academia, health research organizations, patients, professions and related stakeholders.

Read more about the the 2019-2020 advisory council below:

  Rob McMaster (Council Chair)

Dr. McMaster’s research interests are in the areas of molecular immunology, parasitology and transplant immunology He is actively involved with national and international granting agencies including the World Health Organization, Canadian Institutes of Health Research where he serves as a Member on the National Advisory Committee for Strategies on Patient-Oriented Research, and the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research, having served as Chair of the Research Advisory Council. Dr. McMaster is a member of the Health Research Council of BC, a member of the Board of Directors of Transplant Research Foundation of BC, a member of the Board of Medical Device Development Centre, a member of the Board of Directors for HealthCareCAN and is the Executive Associate Dean, Research for the Faculty of Medicine of the University of British Columbia.

     Tania Bubela

Dr. Bubela is Professor and Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University. Previously she was a Professor in the School of Public Health and Adjunct Professor in the Alberta School of Business at the University of Alberta. Her research program in intellectual property and health law related to translational biomedical research brings together her legal training and a PhD in biology and expertise in genetics and molecular biology. She provides advice for Government Health and Science agencies as well as life sciences research communities, and patient organizations. Her research is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Canadian Stem Cell Network, Genome Canada, and Alberta Innovates, among others. She co-leads the PACEOMICS program on the development of cost-effective personalized medicine and the Alberta Ocular Gene Therapy Team, which is developing novel gene therapies and conducting a phase I clinical trial of the NighstaRx AAV2-REP1 product for choroideremia.

  Scott Garrison

Dr. Garrison spent the first 20 years of his professional career as a full-time fee-for-service family physician in Richmond, BC. He returned to UBC during the latter years of his clinical practice to pursue a PhD in Experimental Medicine and he is now the Director of the Pragmatic Trials Collaborative – a network of Canadian family physicians coming together to conduct large multi-provincial pragmatic trials. His collaborative’s first trial, INRange, engaged 236 family physicians in 54 distinct BC and Alberta communities. Their second and current (hypertension) trial, known as BedMed, is working with primary care practices in five Canadian provinces.

  Kendall Ho

Dr. Ho is an emergency medical specialist at the Vancouver General Hospital in Vancouver, a professor in the UBC Faculty of Medicine Department of Emergency Medicine, and a member of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. He leads the Digital Emergency Medicine Unit. Provincially, he is a member of the BC Ministry of Health provincial home health monitoring joint management committee, Ministry of Health Patients as Partners provincial working group, BC Emergency Medicine Network Management Committee, and the Rural Patient Transport and Transfer Working Group. He is the executive director of the inter-Cultural Online health Network (iCON), a unit within the Department of Emergency Medicine funded by the BC Ministry of Health to support the multicultural community members in preventing optimizing self-management of chronic diseases.

  Margaret MacDonald

Margaret’s academic background is in sociology/social psychology. Her career in social services included working in public health, corrections and child welfare in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. She retired as CEO of Child and Family Services of Western Manitoba. Subsequently she became a member of the Board of Brandon Regional Health Authority, becoming Chair one year later. She continued as Chair through a series of amalgamations, stepping down prior to her move to New Westminster in 2016. In the interim she became involved with the Manitoba Institute of Patient Safety as a volunteer and member of the Patient Advisory Committee. At the personal level, she lost both parents, her only sibling, and most recently her husband, all to cancer. She has a strong interest in promoting patient safety. Having become interested in palliative care, she currently serve on the Board of Crossroads Hospice Society. She also volunteers with Battered Women’s Support Services on a casual basis at My Sister’s Closet.

  Stephania Manusha

Stephania has more than 15 years of experience in clinical trials and research administration within the private and public health care sectors. As Director, Clinical Trials Administration, Stephania is responsible for clinical trials and research oversight, contract negotiation, issues and risk management, policy and business development, and strategic planning for clinical trials at Vancouver Coastal Health Authority. Stephania’s credentials include a Bachelor of Science degree (Simon Fraser University) and a Master of Science in Health Sciences degree (George Washington University), as well as certificates in Risk Management (University of Toronto) and Clinical Risk, Negligence and Claims Management in Health Care (York University). She also holds the Canadian Risk Management (CRM) Designation from the Global Risk Management Institute and is currently completing a Master of Laws degree (Health Law).

Srinivas Murthy

Dr. Srinivas Murthy is co-chair of the World Health Organization’s clinical research committee on COVID-19. He is an associate professor in the Faculty of Medicine at University of British Columbia, as well as a critical care and infectious diseases physician at B.C. Children’s Hospital in Vancouver.

Murthy’s research focuses on infectious disease, clinical practice and clinical trials, and global health.

Murthy grew up in St. John’s, attended Prince of Wales Collegiate, and completed his undergraduate degree at Memorial University. He was awarded the University Medal for Academic Excellence in Biochemistry. Murthy completed his Doctor of Medicine at McGill University in Montreal and his residency at Boston Children’s Hospital through Harvard Medical School. He has also worked on the frontlines for a number of infectious disease outbreaks, including work on Ebola in Liberia, West Africa.

Currently, Murthy is leading the Canadian contingent of the World Health Organization’s recently launched Solidarity trial, which recruits COVID-19 patients for anti-virals in clinical settings. Some 83 countries are involved in this project. (Biography text courtesy of Jon Parsons, CBC Newfoundland & Labrador)

  Robert Olson

Dr. Olson is a Radiation Oncologist at BC Cancer, and the provincial Division Head of Radiation Oncology at UBC. Clinically, he specializes in head & neck, breast, and lung cancer, and his practice is located at BC Cancer – Prince George. His clinical trial focus is on measuring the efficacy, cost effectiveness, and side effects of precision radiotherapy techniques in metastatic cancer. He has a special interest in measuring and improving access to cancer treatments and trials for patients in traditionally underserviced populations.

  Geoff Payne

Dr. Payne is currently the Vice President of Research & Graduate Programs for the University of Northern British Columbia. Previously he served 7 years as Assistant Dean for both Education & Research with the Northern Medical Program, one of the sites for the UBC distributed MD program. Dr. Payne currently is a Professor in the field of vascular physiology at the University of Northern BC (UNBC). Dr. Payne came to UNBC in June 2004 as founding faculty of the medical school following a post-doctoral fellowship at Yale University in the Department of Cellular and Molecular Physiology and the John B. Pierce Laboratory. Dr. Payne holds a Ph.D. from Memorial University of Newfoundland in the field of cardiovascular and renal physiology. In addition to his biomedical research, Dr. Payne has an active research program in medical education in which his interests include curriculum, assessment and admissions.

  Melanie Reid

Melanie is a retired university instructor of English language and literature, a parent of three adult children, and a BC native who is currently living in Vancouver with her husband and needy cats. Complex health issues and a desire to participate in improving public health care led her to become a committed volunteer with public health initiatives and research. Melanie’s transplant in 2008, occasioned by a toxic reaction to a common antibiotic, and family members with Parkinson’s Disease, tuberculosis, CVID, and Alzheimer’s sparked her involvement. For more than 10 years, she has been a patient volunteer for Clinical Skills sessions and a mentor with the Health Mentors program, both through UBC’s Faculty of Medicine. Melanie is an ongoing participant on the Ethics committee for Providence Health Care and a patient-reviewer for the Emergency Medicine Network. She has been involved in numerous short-term projects, primarily with initiatives at Women’s and Children’s and Providence Health Care. She is committed to promoting public health and to health initiatives designed to improve patient outcomes.

  Gavin Stuart

Dr. Stuart is a professor in the Department of Obtetrics/Gynecology, University of British Columbia. He served as the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at that institution from September 2003 through to September 2015 and UBC’s Vice-Provost Health from 2009 to 2016. Dr. Stuart presently is an active teacher, clinician and researcher at UBC as a member of the outstanding gynecologic oncology team based at Vancouver General Hospital and the BC Cancer Agency. He has led many large clinical trials. His publications have been focused on the methodology of and the conduct of clinical trials within the domain of gynecologic cancer. Dr. Stuart currently is member of the Board of Directors of several public entities including Life Sciences BC, Life Labs Inc. and Genome BC.

  Cindy Trytten

Cindy started her career in clinical research in 1988 after graduating with an MSc from the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Manitoba.   She’s held advancing leadership/executive positions as clinical research professional, spanning the biotechnology sector, a global clinical research organization, and the public sector.  Her breadth of experience in clinical trials leadership roles includes phase I to IV clinical trials, inclusive of medical devices, biologics and pharmaceuticals across diverse therapeutic areas. In 2012 Cindy joined Island Health as its first Director of Research, which included building capacity and infrastructure for an embedded clinical trials unit within the health authority.  She has been a strong proponent of integration of research into practice and is also responsible for creating an environment in which all forms for health research, including clinical trials, can thrive.   In 2017, she obtained her Certified Health Executive designation from the Canadian College of Health Leaders and is a standing member of the Vancouver Island Chapter Executive Team.  Cindy is also a board member for the Umbrella Society for Mental Health and Addictions, a vibrant non-profit organization based in Victoria.

     Wendy Hurlburt

Wendy is President and CEO of LifeSciences BC, a career executive with more than 20 years of Global Finance, Operations and Compliance experience in the healthcare and technology sectors. She has held leadership positions at Johnson & Johnson, the Heart & Stroke Foundation, LIFESCAN Canada and Lexmark International. She is a certified Data and Privacy Professional and has managed Privacy and Healthcare Compliance programs both here in Canada and in the US, for the better part of her career. Wendy has a Master of Business Administration, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario and a Bachelor of Arts, Administrative & Commercial Studies (Finance & Economics), University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario.


Ex-Officio members include Alison Orth,  Unit Director and Jean Smart, Regulatory Affairs and Quality Officer of Clinical Trials BC , Terri Fleming, Unit Director of Research Ethics BC and Danielle Lavallee, Scientific Director of the BC AHSN / BC SUPPORT Unit.

We acknowledge that our Vancouver offices are located within the ancestral, traditional, and unceded territory of the Coast Salish Peoples, including the territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (TsleilWaututh) Nations.