President and CEO
Dr. Linda Stirk, President
Dr. Linda Stirk was born in Montreal and did her undergraduate BSc in Genetics, her PhD in Biochemical Genetics, and medical school all at McGill University. Her PhD thesis was entitled, "Biochemical and Ultrastructural Studies in Dominantly Inherited and Drug Induced Cataracts". She graduated with her medical degree in the class of ’81 at McGill.
Dr. Stirk then did her residency in Ob/Gyn at Dalhousie University, and received her FRCSC and FACOG in 1986. She was on active staff at the Victoria General Hospital and Grace Maternity Hospital in Halifax, Nova Scotia from 1986-1993, while caring for her two young children.
Dr. Stirk moved to Toronto in 1993, and holds a university appointment at University of Toronto, and a hospital appointment at North York General Hospital. She had a busy office clinical practice until 2009 and now works entirely at the hospital, where they deliver just under 6,000 babies per year, with a level 2 nursery.
Dr. Stirk has given many invited talks on various topics in Ob/Gyn, including Menopausal Symptoms and Hormone Replacement Therapy, Pap tests & LEEP, Post Partum Hemorrhage, Contraception, Management of Fibroids, Obstetrical care at High Altitude in Nepal and Tibet, and Gynecological Care of the Breast Cancer Patient. She is involved in teaching undergraduate and postgraduate medical students, doing amniocenteses, and sits on various hospital committees.
Dr. Stirk regularly attends SOGC meetings in both English and French. She has been a regional committee member for the Ontario region since 2007 and a member of the SOGC Finance Committee since 2010, and was treasurer from 2014-2017 before becoming President.
Dr. Jennifer Blake, CEO
Dr. Jennifer Blake has been an active member of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada since 1982.
Dr. Blake earned her Bachelor of Science degree in biology from the University of Waterloo in 1974. She then studied at McMaster University where she acquired her medical degree in 1977, completed a mixed internship in 1978, completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology in 1982, served as the MRC Fellow in reproductive endocrinology from 1982 to 1984, and earned her Master of Science degree in Health Research Methodology in 2004.
Dr. Blake is an educational leader with a multifaceted understanding of the profession, including the academic, clinical and regulatory perspectives. During her career, she returned to the academic setting assuming a number of appointments. After serving as Assistant Professor for the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at McMaster University from 1984 to 1988, she assumed the same position within the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto from 1988 to 1991 where she was head of the Division of Pediatric Gynecology. Until she returned to Toronto in 1999 to become Professor and Associate Chair from 2003 to 2012, she assumed a number of leadership and management positions.
Between her academic appointments, Dr. Blake served as Chief of Obstetrics and Gynaecology and Head of Women's Health at the Sunnybrook and Health Sciences Centre, Chief of Pediatric Gynaecology at the Hospital for Sick Children and Undergraduate Dean of McMaster University's Medical School. She has assumed a variety of other leadership roles within departments and committees since 1988.
Acknowledged as an outstanding obstetrician-gynaecologist both in Canada and abroad, McMaster University formally acknowledged Dr. Blake as the recipient of the Dr. Carr Teaching Award in 1996 and the President's Award for Excellence in Teaching and Educational Leadership in 1995. The same year, she received the SOGC award for Best Reproductive Endocrinology Research Paper, which followed the SOGC's first place award for Best Gynaecology Research Paper in 1992. In 1983, she was granted the MOH Scientist Award and the R. T. Weaver Award for Best Resident Paper Presentation in 1980. Accolades for Dr. Blake are not restricted to those within the academic and women's health sectors. In 2011, Dr. Blake was identified as one of the top 25 women of influence in Canada.
Dr. Blake not only has an impressive research background and an active publication record, she is an experienced leader who has led major organizational change in both the hospital and academic sectors. She brings a national perspective from her work with the SOGC, the Medical Council of Canada (MCC), the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC), the Association of Professors in Obstetrics and Gynaecology of Canada (APOG), and the Canadian Foundation for Women's Health (CFWH).
In addition to her membership with the SOGC, Dr. Blake is also an active member of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Toronto, the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society, the Society of Canadian Colposcopists, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, as well as the International and North American Menopause Societies.
As a passionate advocate, respected leader, published author, dynamic lecturer, and trusted spokeswoman on issues relating to women's health, Dr. Blake has assumed a number of consultancy roles on projects pertaining to general obstetrics and gynaecology, continuing medical education, strategic planning, ethics, public affairs, menopause, human sexuality, oncology, as well as pediatric and adolescent gynaecology. She has also been an active member of advisory committees, board of directors, task forces as well as administrative, medical, and perinatal committees.
Dr. Blake's philanthropic and community service initiatives have included being a member of the Community Advisory Committee for the Junior League of Toronto (2011 to present), serving as Chair of the Canadian Foundation from Women's Health (2007 to present), as Vice Chair of the Genesis Research Foundation (2003 to present), and as Chair of the National Health Advisory Committee for the Look Good Feel Better/Lives Affected by Cancer Programme.
Dr. Blake enjoys an active home life. Together with her husband, Dr. Denny DePetrillo, they have three children, four grandchildren and a dog. She is an avid reader and writer, enjoys gardening as well as the great outdoors.