Facilitating Change for Women’s Health at the US Embassy in Ottawa

In early April 2023, Alberta Women’s Health Foundation President and CEO Sharlene Rutherford made a special trip to Ottawa.

She was personally invited to the US Embassy in Ottawa by David Cohen, the US Ambassador to Canada, as Organon Canada was hosting their first Women's Health Policy Roundtable.

As a summit consisting of key stakeholders from across the country, the Women's Health Policy Roundtable facilitates important discussions about the most pressing needs in women’s health across Canada.

Sharlene was invited to present findings from the AWHF’s most recent thought leadership paper, Surveying the Silence: Exploring the Impact of Taboos in Women’s Health, to lead the group into more in-depth discussions. Released in early 2023, the Surveying the Silence report shares the major health concerns of women based on responses from more than 2,220 people across the province, many of which topics or concerns are considered ‘taboo’ by society.


Describing the invitation as “a career highlight,” Sharlene expressed her gratitude to US Ambassador Cohen saying, “I wish to extend a sincere thank you to US Ambassador David Cohen for inviting me to present at this important summit on women's health.”

She also saluted Organon Canada, a cherished partner of the AWHF as well as sponsor of the Surveying the Silence report, for their efforts to improve the well-being of women, their families, and their communities:

“Thank you, Organon Canada, for bringing thought leaders from across Canada together under the banner of progress in women's health access and outcomes. When one considers that women represent half the population of Canada, we know that access plus outcomes equals economics.”

On behalf of the Alberta Women’s Health Foundation, and the Royal Alexandra Hospital Foundation, and Sharlene herself, we would like to extend a sincere thank you to David Cohen and to Mike Casia, the President and Managing Director of Organon Canada, for organizing and supporting this roundtable, and for bringing together leaders from across the nation under the banner of progress in women’s health equity.


PHOTO CREDIT: Organon Canada, see post here.

Front row/avant: Kelly Bowden (ACTION Canada), Janet Ko (Menopause Foundation of Canada), Dr Rupinder Toor (IUD & Women Health Clinic), Sharlene Rutherford, MBA (AWHF), Carolynn Dubé (Fertility Matters), Mike Casia(Organon Canada), Dre Diane Francoeur (SOGC) and Dr Liisa Galea (Women’s Health Research Cluster).

Back row/arrière: Geneviève Gauthier (Organon Canada), US Ambassador David Cohen, Jim Rigassio (US Commercial Affairs), Hugues Poulin (Organon Canada) and Jeffrey Malawski (Organon Canada).