Five outstanding Canadians are being recognized for their contributions to improving the lives of resident doctors in Canada.

The RDoC Puddester Award for Resident Wellness recognizes individuals who work to improve the wellness of residents across Canada.

Dr. Erene Stergiopoulos is a second-year psychiatry resident at the University of Toronto whose passion for the improvement of resident wellness is expressed in many facets of her work. As the co-designer of faculty development training, Dr. Stergiopoulos has collaborated with the Center for Faculty Development to design faculty development workshops on identifying and supporting medical trainees who are in crisis or would benefit from accommodations. As the co-lead on the Resident Wellbeing Committee, Dr. Stergiopoulos collaborates on policy development with Department leadership based on identified resident needs. She is known for mentoring and promoting the needs of medical learners with disabilities, and for the past two years, she has been a participant at the annual Symposium organized by the Coalition for Disability Access in Health Science Education. These leadership roles are informed by Dr. Stergiopoulos’ extensive research and writing on physician wellness, cultural barriers to help-seeking and disclosure, and the experiences of physicians with disabilities. Her other achievements include two Mary Cassidy Awards for extracurricular contributions (2015, 2018), a Mary Seeman Humanities Award for contribution to humanities and mental illness (2016), and a Dr. V. Rambihar Diversity and Health Award for contributions to diversity in the Faculty of Medicine (2018).

Dr. Sarah Manos is Program Director and Associate Professor at the Department of Pediatrics at Dalhousie University, and a fierce advocate for resident physicians. In 2015, Dr. Manos co-led the Dalhousie Resident Wellness Task Force, a group that advised on how to ensure that the physical, emotional and mental health of Dalhousie’s residents were prioritized by the medical faculty. This work resulted in the establishment of the Dalhousie Office of Resident Affairs in July 2017. Dr. Manos’ work included ensuring that all first-year pediatrics residents in Dalhousie participate in Resident Doctors of Canada’s Resiliency Curriculum Workshops. In 2018, Dr. Manos worked with residents to establish the Resident Peer Support Person, a role dedicated to discussions about resident wellbeing. Most recently, she took on many roles addressing the needs of residents during the COVID-19 pandemic, conducting virtual check-ins and ensuring that learning objectives were achieved. During an uncertain time, Dr. Manos has been a source of security and assurance for the residents around her.

The RDoC Mikhael Award for Medical Education honours individuals who have contributed to improving undergraduate and postgraduate medical education in Canada.

Dr. Malika Ladha is a fifth-year dermatology resident at the University of Calgary whose work has had profound positive impacts on undergraduate and postgraduate medical training in Canada. Dr. Ladha is known as an advocate and mentor for many medical learners who have had the experience of being unmatched in the Canadian Residency Matching Service (CaRMS). Working with the Undergraduate Medical Education and Student Advising Wellness offices, Dr. Ladha has provided and advocated for academic, social, emotional, and psychological support for unmatched medical students in Calgary and across Canada. Dr. Ladha has also promoted resident interests throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. As Co-Chairperson of the Canadian Dermatology Association (CDA) Resident Fellow Society, Dr. Ladha developed two virtual national lecture series that provided residents with additional teaching from faculty. In collaboration with the CDA Education Committee, she created an educational program to support junior residents entering the specialty of dermatology. Dr. Ladha also served as resident liaison for the Women’s Dermatologic Society, and was previously the junior representative for the University of Calgary’s Dermatology Residency Planning Committee (RPC). She received the 2020 Resident Physician Mentorship and Teaching Award from the Professional Association of Residents of Alberta.

Dr. Terri Aldred is an outreach primary doctor with Carrier Sekani Family Services and Site Director for UBC’s Indigenous Family Practice Program, serving 12 Indigenous communities in Northern BC. She is Dakelh from Tl’Azt’En on her mom’s side and mixed European and Metis Cree on my dad’s side, a member of the Lysiloo (Frog) Clan traditionally known as the voice of the people. Her dedication to medical education has helped to change the landscape of Indigenous health in Canada. Dr. Aldred is known for mentoring residents who have a special interest in Indigenous health, and helping residents to learn how to provide culturally safe care to Indigenous people, families and communities. Her work addresses the historical, sociodemographic and political contexts for the health of Indigenous communities in Canada, as she helps residents to build strong relationships with these communities while demonstrating respect for their cultures. In 2019, Dr. Aldred developed the BC Indigenous Medical Education Gathering, a network of current and future physicians dedicated to improving Indigenous health in the province. She has previously been the recipient of the College of Family Physicians of Canada First Five Years of Practice Award – BC (2018), the John J. Zack Award for Excellence in Family Practice (2013), and the Darcy Tailfeathers Memorial Award in Medicine (2009-2010). She recently took on a new role as the Medical Director for Primary Care for FNHA.

The RDoC Ross Award for Service to Resident Doctors recognizes non-physician staff members who have contributed to the enrichment of resident life in Canada.

Jordan Sinnett is the Program Manager of Postgraduate Medical Education at Queen’s University. Ms. Sinnett works closely with the Associate Dean of Postgraduate Medical Education and the Director of Resident Wellness to address the diverse needs of the program’s residents, and has earned a reputation for fairness, compassion, and empathy. In 2014, her work with the Queen’s Foundational Leadership Program contributed to the creation of the Graduate Diploma and Master’s degree in Medical Sciences, which addresses the needs of International Medical Graduates who have had the experience of being unmatched in the Canadian Residency Matching Service (CaRMS), by providing them with the opportunity to enhance their clinical and research skills before future residency applications. Her work supporting residents has included influencing such initiatives as the National Resident Transfer Guidelines, provincial and national guidelines and processes for application to residency programs, and best practices regarding resident wellness. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ms. Sinnett led the development of online programming including orientation for incoming residents, a virtual conference for first-year residents, and professional development opportunities.