Staff

OGI is made up of a dynamic and highly experienced team. Our staff brings deep expertise across the life sciences sector, with backgrounds in public and private sector research spanning academic settings, upstart biotechnology companies and major pharmaceutical corporations, finance and commercialization, bioethics, education and communications.


Mark J. Poznansky, C.M., O.Ont., Ph.D.

Mark PoznanskyPresident and CEO
mpoznansky [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6598

Mark J. Poznansky has been at OGI since 2010.

His role at OGI draws on his substantive experience in the life sciences and in running institutes and businesses, as well as his knowledge of government affairs and business development.

Previously he ran his own consultancy group offering a range of services including program reviews, strategic planning, change management and leadership training to clients in government, hospitals, universities and the private sector. Before that, he was President and Scientific Director of Robarts Research Institute (London, Ontario), where during his tenure, from 1993 to 2007, the institute increased its staff from 100 to over 600, increased its annual research funding from $10 million to over $40 million, and developed a reputation for business development spinning out seven different companies, including Viron Therapeutics, where Dr. Poznansky served as President and CEO. He also served on the Merck USA Scientific Advisory Leadership Team for three years. Prior to that, he was Associate Dean of Medicine for Research at the University of Alberta. He has held faculty positions at University of Western Ontario, University of Alberta and was a lecturer at Harvard University.

Dr. Poznansky has published over 50 research papers. He serves as Chair of Let’s Talk Science, until recently served as Chief Science Advisor to the CEO of the Thunder Bay Regional Research Institute and is a board member of the Innovation Institute of Ontario. He was a founding member and past chair of the Council for Health Research in Canada, and also chaired the Scientific Advisory Boards of the Canadian Medical Discoveries Fund and MDS Capital Corp. He has also served as a member of numerous science-related committees including the Science Advisory Committee of the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada and the Medical Research Council of Canada Grants panel. Dr. Poznansky was made a member of the Order of Ontario in 2004 and the Order of Canada in 2005.

Earning his bachelor’s degree and PhD at McGill University, Dr. Poznansky completed postdoctoral training at Harvard Medical School.

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Mahima Agochiya, Ph.D., MBA

Mahima AgochiyaManager, Business Development & Research
magochiya [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6592

Mahima Agochiya joined OGI in May 2013. In her current role, she is responsible for developing partnerships between industry and academic scientists to bring new discoveries to market through various initiatives.

Mahima has a PhD in Cancer Research from University of Glasgow, Scotland and a MBA from The Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto, majoring in Healthcare and Entrepreneurship. She has over seven years of postdoctoral experience, developing expertise in the fields of molecular biology, data analysis, and bioinformatics. In addition, she developed technology commercialization experience through her position as Business Development Advisor with McMaster University, and management experience as Business Development Officer at the Foundation Fighting Blindness, a research based not-for-profit in Toronto.

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Farzian Aminuddin, B.Sc., MBA

Farzian AminuddinBusiness Analyst
faminuddin [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6581

Farzian Aminuddin joined OGI in May 2013. As a business analyst, he provides support to the OGI Business Development team. His role includes performing research and analyses for various projects, as well as business case development and cost-benefit analyses.

Prior to joining OGI, Farzian worked as a laboratory researcher at the University of British Columbia (UBC) James Hogg Research Centre, with a research focus on the genetic basis of obstructive lung disease. He also has consulting experience working at BC’s Provincial Health Services Authority, a public health authority, and InnoGuidance, a life sciences consulting firm. Farzian holds a BSc (Honors) from UBC, as well as an MBA from the Beedie School of Business at Simon Fraser University.

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Elaine Corbett, Ph.D.

Elaine CorbettManager, Business Development & Research
ecorbett [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6569

Elaine Corbett joined OGI in July 2014. In her current role, she is responsible for developing partnerships between industry and academia with the aim of bringing new genomic-derived discoveries to the marketplace through a variety of programs and initiatives.

Prior to joining OGI, Elaine was a Project Manager at SQI Diagnostics, a Toronto-based biotech company, where she managed multidisciplinary programs for advanced microarray diagnostics. Previously, she was a Senior Field Application Scientist at Axela, a biotech company which develops diagnostic platforms and applications, where her focus was on client management, technical sales and product development.

She received her PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Alberta and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Cell Biology Program at the Hospital for Sick Children. Elaine received her Honors B.Sc. in Biomedical Science from University College Cork, Ireland.

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Kathryn Deuchars, Ph.D.

Kathryn DeucharsDirector, Ontario Personalized Medicine Network & Senior Manager, Business Development & Research
kdeuchars [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6593

Dr. Deuchars joined OGI in September, 2011. Previously Dr. Deuchars was President and CEO of Attodyne Inc., a start-up medical/industrial device company based on technology from the University of Toronto.

Before that Dr. Deuchars was Chief Operating Officer of University Medical Discoveries and MedInnova Partners, technology development corporations that focused on the development and commercialization of early-stage biomedical innovations. She joined UMDI/MedInnova in 2000 and garnered experience at all stages of the investment process including acting on the boards of several companies.

While at UMDI, Kathy was a member of the Technology Investment Group of MDS Capital, where she participated in the research and analysis of later-stage investment opportunities. Previously, Dr. Deuchars spent 6 years in the biotechnology industrial sector as a research scientist at NPS Allelix Inc., where she supported or led various drug discovery programs.

Dr. Deuchars earned her PhD from the Ontario Cancer Institute, The University of Toronto, in the area of the molecular biology of cancer chemotherapy resistance.

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Jason Dubé, M.Sc., MBA

Jason DubéBusiness Analyst
jdube [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6580

Jason joined OGI in July 2014. As a member of OGI’s Business Development team, he focuses on developing feasibility studies, business cases, and market analysis while also supporting initiatives for the Ontario Personalized Medicine Network.

Previously, Jason spent six years at Biogen Idec in Boston developing novel biopharmaceuticals including Amevive¼ and the blockbuster drug Tysabri¼. He also has experience in technology commercialization at Dalhousie University’s Industry Liaison and Innovation office.

Jason earned an MSc in Biochemistry from Dalhousie University as well as an MBA in Health Industry Management and Strategic Management from the Schulich School of Business at York University.

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Kim Flock, Ph.D.

Kim FlockManager, Research & Business Development
kflock [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6595

Kim Flock joined OGI in May 2014. In her current role, she is responsible for sourcing and developing large scale scientific projects involving an industry or sector need and guiding the development of business cases and grant applications.

Prior to joining OGI, Kim managed research training programs at STEMCELL Technologies, one of Canada’s largest biotech companies, and the Centre for Drug Research and Development (CDRD), where she also assisted with IP due diligence. Previously, Kim worked in medical device patents at Baylis Medical and in pharmaceutical patents at Lang Michener LLP where she provided support as a Scientific Consultant. Kim was formerly the Director of Pharmacogenetics for a biotech start-up in Montreal.

Kim holds a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Western Ontario. Her graduate research focused on protein structure and interactions.

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Christy Hockley

Christy HockleyProject Coordinator
chockley [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6584

Christy Hockley joined OGI in September 2013. In her current role, she is responsible for coordinating and managing all research projects here in OGI. Most recently, Christy was Administrative Coordinator of Bioscience Education Canada (BEC), where she was the point of contact for all regional coordinators on the Sanofi BioGENEius Challenge Canada competition. She has also coordinated and supported administrative duties on projects including lectures, workshops, and the Lab Tools for Schools program.

Prior to that, she worked at Experchem Laboratory Inc. as a pharmaceutical analyst. With over seven years of laboratory experience, she has worked extensively on gas chromatography, QA/QC, method development, and analytical testing.

Christy studied chemistry, biology, philosophy and abnormal psychology at Trent University and obtained a Diploma in Chemical Laboratory Technology - Pharmaceutical Co-op Program at Seneca College.

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Sugy Kodeeswaran, M.H.Sc.

Sugy KodeeswaranSenior Manager, Business Development & Research
skodeeswaran [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6583

Sugy Kodeeswaran joined OGI in June of 2013. In her current role she develops new business initiatives and helps scientists and companies find paths to the marketplace for their discoveries through various programs and initiatives. Her years of experience in research program management and working with stakeholders in the hospital, academic and industry sectors helps her to develop successful funding applications, monitor project progress and impact, seek project investments, and to aid in the translation of scientific discoveries to the market place.

Prior to joining OGI, Sugy was at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research where she was Director of the Ontario Tumour Bank, and managed a province-wide biorepository and data bank. Prior to that, Sugy worked at Apotex Inc. within the departments of Quality and Regulatory Affairs.

Sugy earned her BSc in Chemistry from McGill University and her MHSc in Health Administration in the Department of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto.

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Les Kondejewski, Ph.D.

Les KondejewskiDirector, Research Programs
lkondejewski [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6588

Les Kondejewski joined OGI in April 2013 where he is responsible for all research programs. His experience in management of cross-functional scientific teams, both in academia and industry, helps him to manage OGI-funded programs, seek project investments, and monitor projects’ accountability and progress. Les also aids in the identification of commercialization avenues for scientific discoveries.

Les has an extensive background in research and project management, particularly in personalized medicine.  Previously, he held research and program management responsibilities at Caprion Proteomics. Later, at Diaceutics Inc., he worked with client teams to facilitate the creation of integrated development and commercialization plans for targeted therapies.

He received his BSc from Carleton University and his PhD in biochemistry from Dalhousie University. Les carried out postdoctoral research and a research fellowship at the Protein Engineering Network of Centres of Excellence at the University of Alberta.

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Dennis McCormac, Ph.D.

Dennis McCormacSenior Science Advisor & Director Genomics Services
dmccormac [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6590

Dennis McCormac joined OGI in June 2006. His role promoting OGI-funded genomics and proteomics Science and Technology Innovation Centres (STICs) benefits from his extensive experience with product marketing at several start-up companies. Dr. McCormac’s current focus is on marketing “omics” and informatics services to both academic and commercial researchers, acquiring these leading-edge technologies, and expanding the support base in Ontario.

Previously, he was a marketing manager with San Diego-based Stratagene, which acquired Iobion Informatics (Toronto) during his tenure there. Dr. McCormac’s relationships with opinion leaders in both industry and academe and his approach to educating researchers on pathway analysis expanded the company’s product user base. He had also been product manager with Imaging Research in St. Catharines, where he helped its profitable genomics software business to grow, ultimately leading to its acquisition by GE Healthcare.

Recently, Dennis has become interested in the intersection of science and art.  You can usually find him running around fostering art collaborations to promote his passion for life science and genomics.

He received his BSc, MSc, and PhD at the University of Waterloo in plant-cell and molecular biology. He undertook related postdoctoral research at the University of Oregon, the State University of New York (Buffalo), and Arizona State University. His work has resulted in a number of scientific publications.

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Tina McDivitt, Ph.D.

Tina McDivittSenior Strategist
tmcdivitt [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6587

Tina McDivitt joined OGI in March of 2012. In her current role she supports the organization in developing strategic plans and implementation road maps for cornerstone initiatives in research and business development.

Prior to joining OGI, Tina was a Consultant with SHI Consulting−a life sciences-based management consulting firm−where she focused on business case development, business planning for new ventures and creation of research, corporate, communication and partnership strategies.

Tina received her Bachelor’s degree at the University of Waterloo and completed her PhD in molecular mechanisms of infectious disease in the Department of Molecular Genetics at the University of Toronto.

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Meredith McLaren, Ph.D.

Meredith McLarenManager, Research & Business Development
mmclaren [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6562

Meredith McLaren joined OGI in July 2014. In her current role, she supports and guides academic and industry partners in the development of grant applications, and in the management and successful completion of large scale genomics projects.

Meredith was a Research Scientist at Luminex Molecular Diagnostics in Toronto prior to joining OGI. In this position, she worked with her Marketing colleagues to develop new product ideas into business cases, gained extensive experience in the various stages of molecular diagnostic product development – from prototype development to regulatory clearance and market launch, and collaborated with clinical partners to ensure product alignment with end user needs.

Meredith earned her PhD in the Department of Molecular Genetics at the University of Toronto, where she studied the molecular pathways of HIV infection.

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Kajal Palan, MBA

Kajal PalanDirector, Finance
kpalan [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6585

Kajal Palan joined OGI in July of 2013. He oversees accounting and finance, and monitors the compliance of funded projects with the financial terms of the agreements. He has 12 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, and an extensive background in finance and project management.

Kajal is a member of the Certified General Accountants of Ontario, and most recently earned an Executive MBA from Queen’s School of Business.

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Helen Petropoulos, Ph.D.

Helen PetropoulosSenior Manager, Business Development & Research
hpetropoulos [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6591

Helen Petropoulos joined OGI as a Research Program Manager in 2005 and transferred to Business Development in 2006. In her current role, she develops new business initiatives and helps scientists and biotech companies find paths to the marketplace for their discoveries through various programs and initiatives.

Before joining OGI, she worked as an analyst with SHI Consulting, a life sciences strategy consulting firm based in Toronto. She holds a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Western Ontario, and completed an industrial postdoctoral fellowship at Wyeth Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts (now part of Pfizer).

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Shobha Ramsubir, Ph.D.

Shobha RamsubirSenior Manager, Business Development & Research
sramsubir [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6589

Shobha Ramsubir joined OGI in February 2014. She is responsible for building partnerships between industry and academia, with an end to developing new business initiatives that translate genomics-derived discoveries to commercial applications. She helps stakeholders create successful grant applications, secure project investments and monitors the progress of funded projects.

Previously, Dr. Ramsubir worked as an Account Manager for StemCell Technologies Inc., one of Canada’s largest biotech companies. She received her Honors BSc in Molecular Biology and Genetics from the University of Guelph and earned her PhD in gene therapy from the Department of Medical Biophysics at the University of Toronto.

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Christine Scaramuzzo

Christine ScaramuzzoDirector, Operations
cscaramuzzo [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6596

Christine Scaramuzzo joined OGI in November 2007, and has over 20 years experience as a senior administrator in both the corporate and the not-for-profit sectors. Supporting OGI’s President and CEO, her duties also include; to develop, implement, integrate and maintain policies, processes and systems that support the overall corporation, including: facility management, information technology, human resources, administrative and contract management and board governance.

Christine has a secretarial diploma in business administration and has studied administrative management, human resources, communications, and time management. Prior to joining OGI Christine worked in broadcasting, investment management and consulting.

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Alison Symington, Ph.D.

Alison SymingtonVice President, Research & Corporate Development
asymington [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6594

Dr. Alison Symington joined OGI in 2010 and is Vice President, Research and Corporate Development. Her responsibilities include the research portfolio at OGI as well as OGI's relationships with external stakeholders.

Alison has experience in pharmaceutical development at Sanofi Pasteur, where she was a research scientist working on a variety of novel vaccines. In addition she has provided consulting advice to several biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies on the drug discovery and regulatory approval process for Health Canada and the FDA. Alison was also a professor and program coordinator at Seneca College's School of Biological Sciences and Applied Chemistry, where she developed and taught curriculum in virology, biochemistry and biopharmaceutical development.

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Rhonda Tannenbaum, M.Sc., MBA

Rhonda TannenbaumVice President, Business Development
rtannenbaum [at] OntarioGenomics [dot] ca
416.673.6586

Rhonda joined the Ontario Genomics Institute in 2003. She currently spearheads the commercialization of OGI-funded projects, provides seed funding to pre commercial investments and identifies strategic initiatives in the biotech sector. Rhonda’s years of experience in business development and development of strategic alliances in the high tech and biotech sectors are key to her current role at OGI.

Previously she was a consultant with a biotech company where she worked with the scientist founders to close a series A financing. Prior to that, Rhonda worked in a business development capacity for a start up Internet Company during the dot com boom.

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