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Our Board

William James (Jim) Emmerton, BA LLB, is a Director and Treasurer of Family Councils of Ontario.  He retired in June 2015 having served as the Executive Director of the British Columbia Law Institute (BCLI) and the Canadian Centre for Elder Law, from 2007.

He received an LLB from the University of Western Ontario Law School, in 1973 and was called to the bar of the Law Society in Ontario in 1975. Prior to joining BCLI, Mr. Emmerton served in senior management positions with Canadian public companies, John Labatt and Methanex Corp., and as a mediator.

Jim is also a Director and member of the Finance and Audit Committee of the Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments, a Director of Sources Foundation, and serves on the Participant Funding Program for the National Energy Board (Canada).  He is also a member of the National Seniors Council (Canada). Jim is married with a blended family of 6 children, and enjoys reading, tai chi, travel and bridge.

Robert Gadsby has been Chair of the Family Council at Extendicare Hamilton since 2003, and Chair of Family Council Network Four (FCN-4) since 2006. (which includes Hamilton, Niagara, Haldimand, Brant, and most of the County of Norfolk and the city of Burlington).  In terms of Long-Term Care, LHIN-4 is the largest region in the province of Ontario, with 86 LTC homes (about 10,000 residents).

Although Robert’s family members who were residents in LTC have now passed away, he continues to be actively involved with long-term care issues and he serves on a variety of regional and provincial committees, helping to present the views of family members, friends and caregivers.

David Harvey, Chief Public Policy and Program Initiatives, Alzheimer Society of Ontario, works to improve opportunities for persons with dementia and families to live well and to strengthen the supports available to them.

David also works with the brainXchange, a national knowledge translation and exchange service available. He has nurtured innovations such as First Link, behavioural Supports Ontario and most recently, Minds in Motion.

Raza M. Mirza, PhD, recently completed a two-year post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Toronto's Institute for Life Course & Aging and is currently the Network Manager for the National Initiative for the Care of the Elderly (NICE;, a knowledge transfer network in the field of aging. 

Dr. Mirza received his MSc and PhD degrees from the Graduate department of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Toronto's Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy. His areas of research and teaching interest include the socio-behavioral determinants of health in persons aging with a chronic illness, and factors influencing late-life social, mental and physical well-being.

Doreen Rocque is a retired Human Resources Senior Executive with over 35 years’ experience. She is a Member of the Family and Friends Council at the Perley Rideau Veterans’ Health Centre in Ottawa from 2009 to present and is currently the Vice Chair. 

Doreen was elected in 2010 to the Executive of the Champlain Region Family Council Network [CRFCN], whose mandate is to support families in establishing and maintaining Family Councils, as well as, to advocate for improvements to the Long Term Care System. She was elected Chair of the CRFCN in 2014. In this capacity, Doreen sits on the LHIN’s Emergency Department/Alternate Level of Care (ED/ALC) Steering Committee and the Champlain Dementia Network Steering Committee. 

Laura Tamblyn Watts is a lawyer and researcher who focuses on elder law, long-term care issues, law reform and social inclusion. She is Senior Fellow at the Canadian Centre for Elder Law and its past National Director.  With broad expertise in the fields of law, finance, strategic development and capacity-building, Laura serves on a number of several community organization Boards or Advisory Committees, including Family Councils of Ontario, the National Initiative for Care of the Elderly, the Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments and the Law Commission of Ontario.

Laura is passionately committed to aging issues, and in particular in working to ensure our Ontario long-term care home experience is the best it can possibly be.