Health Co-op director to receive Order of Canada
Thursday, Jan 04, 2018 06:00 am
Dr. Tom Feasby, the medical director of the Airdrie and Area Health Benefits Co-operative (AAHBC) has been chosen to receive one of Canada’s greatest honours – he will be made a Member of the Order of Canada at a ceremony to be held in Ottawa later this year.
“Very gratified – it’s a humbling experience, quite honestly,” Feasby said of the recognition. “I’ve been interested in this award because I take notice and I usually know people on the list, as I do this year. There are always some very well known people on the list – this year is no exception – people like Jann Arden, for instance. I’m very much honoured to be part of it.”
Feasby is being given this honour for “his visionary leadership at multiple Albertan academic and health institutions, notably for fostering excellence in neuroscience,” according to a release issued by the Governor General’s office Dec. 29, 2017.
The Order of Canada was established in 1967 to recognize the outstanding achievements and dedication to the community of Canadians from all walks of life. Anyone can nominate an individual to receive the Order of Canada. Nominations are reviewed and voted on by an advisory council, chaired by the chief justice of Canada.
More than 7,000 people have received the honour to date – along with Feasby, an additional 124 will receive the recognition in 2018.
After initially assuming the role of president and CEO of the AAHBC in Jan. 2017, Feasby took on his current role with the organization in November 2017 and Bruce Graham was appointed the new CEO and president.
Feasby received his medical education specializing in neurology at the University of Manitoba and the University of Western Ontario. He did research training in England for a number of years before returning to Canada to become a member of the faculty of medicine at the University of Western Ontario. In 1991 he was recruited by the University of Calgary to head up the Department of Clinical Neurosciences, a job he held for 11 years.
“What I’m probably most proud of there is firstly the recruits I was able to bring to Calgary and Alberta. A number of them started programs that I thought were important, in particular the stroke program, which we started in the mid-90s,” he said.
“It has become, I think, the top stroke program in the world. Calgary publishes world-leading research on stroke…and has, I would say, the best stroke care anywhere. Survival rates are the best, outcomes are the best in Calgary.”
After moving to Edmonton to work first with Capital Health and then as associate dean of the faculty of medicine and dentistry at the University of Alberta, Feasby returned to the University of Calgary in 2007 to be Dean of Medicine at the Cumming School of Medicine. He held that position for five years and retired from the University of Calgary in June 2017.
This is not Feasby’s first time being honoured for his contributions to the medical fields. He previously received a Medal of Distinguished Service from the Alberta Medical Association and an Honourary Doctor of Science Degree from Western University.
Feasby said he will attend the ceremony in Ottawa to receive his honour – but when that ceremony is to be held has yet to be determined.