Endowed Research Chairs

Through the generous support of donors, Western's Faculty of Health Sciences is home to a number of endowed research chairs. This support allows researchers to dig deep into issues impacting the health of people around globe and search for answers to some of the world's most pressing health issues.

William and Lynne Gray Research Chair in Mobility & Activity

Siobhan Schabrun, PhD (School of Physical Therapy)

Gray Chair

Established in 2020, this is the first chair of its kind in Canada and will play a central role in the Faculty of Health Sciences' signature research theme of mobility and aging, which aims to understand, improve, restore and manage mobility outcomes that affect people throughout all stages of life. Chairholder Sibohan Schabrun will play a central role in the scientific leadership and development of the newly created Gray Centre for Mobility & Activity at St. Joseph's Parkwood Institute.

Supported by: William and Lynne Gray, St. Joseph's Health Care Foundation


Arthur Labatt Family Chair in Nursing Leadership in Health Equity

Abe Oudshoorn, PhD (Arthur Labatt Family School of Nursing)

Nursing Leadership Chair

Established in 2020, this chair will enhance Western's international impact in health equity, with a clear focus on creating a healthier and more equitable society. Health equity research is a distinct pathway to achieving transformative change in health systems and chairholder Abe Oudshoorn will use his experience to examine the rising inequities in the determinants of health, along with how poor access to health services for people marginalized by social and structual inequality is leading to increasingly poor health locally and globally.

Supported by: Arthur and the late Sonia Labatt


Dr. Frank J. Hayden Chair in Sport and Social Impact

David Howe, PhD (School of Kinesiology)

Hayden Chair

Established in 2018 in honour of Dr. Frank Hayden, one of the founders of the Special Olympics movement, and in celebration of Special Olympics' 50th anniversary, this chair will focus on the social impact of sport and physical activity for those with intellectual and developmental disabilities, with emphasis on social inclusion, health and mobility. David Howe will work closely with the Sport and Social Impact Research Group and Special Olympics Canada to mobilize research knowledge.

Supported by: Special Olympics across Canada, affiliated organizations and champions


Arthur Labatt Family Chair in Nursing

Richard Booth, PhD (Arthur Labatt Family School of Nursing)

Richard Booth

Established in 2008, this chair is charged with leading, developing and maintaining a program of research excellence focused on envisioning and addressing pressing individual, family and community health care issues. Richard Booth's work explores the relationships between human and technological interactions within health(care) and educational contexts. .

Supported by: Arthur and the late Sonia Labatt

Women's Health Research Chair in Rural Health

Marilyn Ford-Gilboe, RN, PhD (Arthur Labatt Family School of Nursing)

marilyn ford-gilboe

Established in 2002, this chair was initiated to provide strategic leadership with respect to women's health in rural settings as it relates to health status, health determinants, health care needs, the use of health care resources, and effective models for health care delivery. Marilyn Ford-Gilboe brings a particular focus on understanding health inequities of rural women who have experienced IPV (intimate partner violence) and she is committed to working to reduce such inequities through meaningful practice and policy change.

Supported by: Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care; Arthur and the late Sonia Labatt

Dr. James Roth Research Chair in Musculoskeletal Measurement and Knowledge Translation

Joy MacDermid, PhD (School of Physical Therapy)

joy macdermid

Established in 2015 to honor the late Dr. James (Jim) Roth, founder of the the Hand and Upper Limb Clinic at St. Joseph's Hospital, this chair was developed to examine surgery and rehabilitation of hand and upper-limb disorders. As chairholder, Joy MacDermid, who is a physical therapist and hand therapist, focuses her research on developing, and transferring into practice, the best evidence for prevention, assessment and management of musculoskeletal injuries and disorders.

Supported by: Friends of Dr. James Roth