Board of Directors
The Board is a governing Board under the Bylaws of the Alberta College of Family Physicians. The ACFP Board ensures that:
- the association is properly managed;
- its property and assets are suitably cared for; and that
- high quality services are provided to all its members.
The ACFP President is also the Board Chair and is the official spokesperson on issues that arise during and between Board meetings.
The Board consist of nine Directors. Director terms of office are three years, beginning at the Annual Meeting of Members (AMM) held each year in March, with the option of a second three-year term.
Non-Voting Board Liaisons
In January 2016, the structure and mandate of the ACFP Board was changed from a representative governance board to a smaller skills based governing board. At that time, the Board adopted a new recommendation to invite Medical Student Liaisons and Family Medicine Resident Liaisons from the University of Alberta and the University of Calgary to attend all of the meetings of the Board as contributors without voting privileges.
2021-2022 Board of Directors
I’m Dr. Sudha Koppula and I was born at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton, where I also completed my family medicine training. I now enjoy a broad range family practice located at the MacEwan University Health Centre.
I have benefitted from knowledge and mentorship from many sources. These have been instrumental in inspiring my academic career at the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Alberta, and my interest in medical education, especially faculty development.
In addition to my work in Edmonton and teaching in rural Alberta communities, I serve on committees with the College of Family Physicians of Canada, and present at national and international conferences.
My experience as a Board member
I’ve learned about how innovative Alberta family physicians are and the positive impacts they can make. I enjoy being a Board member because we do meaningful work while enjoying ourselves at the same time.
Vishal Singh Bhella
I’m Dr. Bhella and I completed a PGY 3 Academic Fellowship in Family Medicine at Western following my residency. During my early practice, I worked in Ontario in various capacities including clinic, hospitalist and ER work.
I relocated to Alberta to join the University of Calgary Department of Family Medicine as a Clinical Assistant Professor and Lead Preceptor at the South Health Campus Family Medicine Teaching Clinic in 2013.
As an ACFP Board member, I am proud of the commitment to Family Medicine shown by members of our board, staff, committees and membership. It is important to have a strong Family Medicine voice and there are many initiatives that the ACFP is involved in and many people behind the scenes to move these initiatives forward and it is inspiring to see the hard work and dedication of so many members in supporting and promoting the role of primary care in our health care system.
I’m Dr. Douglas Tuck and I’m a family physician who attended Medical School at Dalhousie (‘11), Halifax NS, and Residency at U of A (‘13). I’ve been living and practicing in Alberta ever since. Concurrently serving in the Canadian Armed Forces until July of 2019, I practiced in both the federal and provincial healthcare systems. This afforded me the opportunity to deploy and practice in the United States (RIMPAC), Jordan (Syrian Refuges), and Ukraine. I also served as the Senior Medical Authority in a multidisciplinary facility for 18 months prior to his retirement from the CAF. During this time, I assisted in the development of Quality Assurance initiatives and the adaptation of a care delivery systems.
Giving back to the community has always been a priority for me. There has rarely been a period in my life where I have not volunteered in some capacity. I’ve served as a coach, student politician, and as a board member at both Mount Allison University and the Alberta College of Family Physicians (ACFP) while a Resident at U of A. I firmly believes one should endeavour to work to improve the lot of those who follow behind us.
I’m Dr. Noel DaCunha and I live and work in Westlock, a small town an hour north of Edmonton. I have practised rural family medicine in Alberta for thirty-two years, having previously trained in London, England. Teaching students and residents is one of my greatest joys and I embrace all that rural Alberta has to
My experience as a Board member
Since joining the board I have grown to appreciate the challenges facing family medicine in Alberta and Canada and the need for strong leadership, advocacy, as well as well directed professional development programs and research.
I am proud of the leadership role that our board has taken with respect to the opioid crisis and our active engagement with the developing and rapidly changing primary care landscape in Alberta.
I enjoy being a board member because it is very gratifying being a member of a team that supports our family physicians and is committed to improving the lives of all Albertans.
I joined the board because I felt I had accumulated sufficient knowledge and experience to add to the perspective of the board and hopefully make a positive contribution.
I’m Dr. Sonya Lee and I’m a Family Physician who trained at the University of Toronto, where I completed my residency, a Women’s Health Scholarship and a Masters of Health Science.
I currently work as an Academic Family Physician at the University of Calgary and practice broad scope Family Medicine, with clinical interests in Women’s Health, and Sexual and Reproductive Health. I’m highly involved in teaching and education at all levels.
Since joining the Department of Family Medicine, I have held various administrative and leadership positions. I’m married with 3 children, and enjoy running, skiing and other outdoor activities, as well as watching my children play soccer.
My experience as a Board member
Through the board I most enjoy contributing to the future of family medicine by helping family physicians provide the best care to their patients and their families and being able to work with the other board members and the ACFP staff, who are all wonderful and amazing people!
I’m Dr. Donna Mumert and I’ve been a family physician for over 20 years, currently practising in Beaverlodge, a small town in northern Alberta very close to where I grew up. I attended the University of Alberta for my undergraduate and medical degrees, as well as residency.
After only 2 years practicing in Alberta I moved to the US, finally returning back home 15 years later. Since returning to Alberta, my focus has been on outpatient practice. Actively involved in my PCN, I often act as a mentor to other family physicians and am eager to bring the voice of rural and remote physicians to the ACFP Board.
In addition to my medical experience, I have spent several years as a board member of a local charter school, a non-profit organization. I’m currently serving in my second year on the ACFP Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Advisory Committee.
I’m married with 3 children, and when I’m not working I can be found in my garden during the summer months. If it’s too cold to play in the dirt, I’ll be inside playing piano or knitting Norwegian sweaters for my family.
I’m very new on the board; I got involved with the ACFP by volunteering on the CPD Advisory Committee, which gave me a chance to get to know the other board members and the ACFP staff, and I’m excited to have the chance to work with these awesome people who are so committed to supporting family physicians, and improving the health of all Albertans.
I’m Dr. Anila Ramaliu. I’m a practicing Family Physician in Calgary, and since patient care and teaching are both passions of mine, I recently joined the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Calgary. I’m a graduate of training programs in Family Medicine and Public Health and Preventive Medicine from the University of Calgary. I hold a Master of Sciences in Health Research and have been involved in applied research with the University of Calgary and Alberta Health Services. My prior experiences include work with international, national and local government and non-government organizations, leading various health and social programs. Prior to joining the ACFP Board in March 2018, I served as Director of the Board of Calgary West Center PCN.
My experience as a Board member
Our health care system and the primary health care, in particular, are enjoying a transformation that calls for a contribution of all its members. Within this context, I decided to join the Alberta College of Family Physicians. There is a significant amount of work that ACFP faces – from being at the center of the efforts to manage the opioid crisis to effectively engaging the membership and working with multiple stakeholders, while also advocating for family physicians and their patients to jointly continue to build the patient’s Medical Home. In the course of past year, I have had the honour to participate in processes that support the advancement of all of the above. As a member and a board member, I feel proud to have been part of that, and I look forward to continued successes and achievements for ACFP as an organization.
I’m Dr. Dinesh Witharana and I’m a family physician based in Spruce Grove who primarily focuses on community primary care of palliative patients. I often bring residents with me to my hospice rounds and home visits. I also enjoy participating on the Provincial Palliative Tumor Group as an Executive Member, the AMA Section of Palliative Care Fee Committee, and the Core Committee for Cancer Strategic Clinical Network. I am the family physician representative on the Edmonton Zone PCN Sub-Committee for improving transitions of care, and previously served as a member of the ACFP First Five Years in Practice Committee.
I am a strong supporter of the ACFP Vision of advancing health for patients, their families, and communities where every Albertan has a patient-centred medical home, and believe that providing more support and resources for primary care will be essential to achieving this vision.
What I value the most about the ACFP is it’s very member focused. When you meet the staff, their sole interest is how to better support family physicians in Alberta, and they quickly feel like family.
I’m Everett Zdrill and I’m a family physician practicing in Edson for about five years. I grew up in Edmonton and my undergraduate and medical degrees are from the University of Alberta. That’s where I found my niche in rural medicine via the Integrated Community Clerkship (ICC) program. I went on to family medicine residency based in Grande Prairie, and then training in Family Practice Anesthesiology (FPA).
Since settling in Edson I’ve joined a dynamic group and practiced a full scope including teaching students and residents on a regular basis. I try to expose them to the joy of a varied and fulfilling practice, walking with patients through every stage of life and care setting. The COVID-19 pandemic led to my site being designated as a ‘Respiratory Hub’ and in my role as an FPA I have become more connected to my colleagues elsewhere in the AHS North Zone, accepting referrals/transfers of patients with increasing oxygen requirements. This connection between colleagues who are not in regular, direct contact is often missing across the profession and specialty. I hope to bring a rural perspective to the board, and work to connect colleagues who may not otherwise get to know each other. Though I’ve had a taste of board experience in our group practice in Edson, I have much to learn and look forward to the opportunity to become a contributing member of the ACFP Board of Directors.
My interests outside of work are broad and general, much like my work I suppose. I enjoy bits of seasonally appropriate outdoor recreation like running, skiing, cycling, fishing, and hunting. I am married and our three children are coming to the ages where we don’t pack diapers for the above mentioned activities.
I am Terri Potter, the Executive Director for the Alberta College of Family Physicians. My training and experience over the course of my career has provided me with a broad set of skills that support my role as ED. I thoroughly enjoy supporting teams to be effective and efficient in their work. I have a background in project management, training and facilitation, resource development and association management. My recent area of interest to read and learn about is “systems”.
On a personal note, I am a mother of 4 adult children and married to an avid farmer and heavy equipment mechanic. We live in Onoway (a small community northwest of Edmonton) where we enjoy our free time with life-long friends and new community members alike. I enjoy all things outdoors, travelling and music. I just recently joined a big band to play my trumpet (a little rusty).
My Board Experience
The ACFP Board of Directors are my “bosses” and I respect and appreciate their leadership and experience and depend on them everyday in the work that we do as a staff team and in the interactions with our members and partners. ACFP members are well represented and the strategic leadership of the specialty of family medicine is their primary concern. It is through dynamic discussion, thoughtful assessment, and consistent action the Directors of the Board and staff of ACFP have been able to achieve so much in the past, and into the future.
Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations. The best is yet to come.
My name is Matt Machan, and I am a first-year medical student at the University of Alberta. I grew up rurally in Cold Lake, Alberta, then moved to Calgary where I completed my undergraduate degree in Biomedical Health Sciences. After graduation, I worked as a Research Coordinator in the departments of Community Health Sciences and Clinical Neurosciences. Apart from academics, I love engaging with the community through various volunteer opportunities such as coaching lacrosse and working in an elderly care home. In my spare time, I enjoy playing sports, spending time with friends and family, and any outdoor activities like camping, hiking, and fishing to name a few.
Growing up in a rural community, I was especially able to observe how family physicians are relied upon, and experience the integral role they play in the health and vitality of individuals, families, and their community. I have always been inspired by the patient-centered focus of family medicine, the holistic goals of care, and the ability to form meaningful connections. These are just a few of many reasons that motivated me to pursue this position.
I am honoured to be a part of an organization that is dedicated to creating healthy Albertan communities. I admire the ACFP’s focus on the role of a family physician as not just a doctor, but also an active community member and advocate for local health. I am very excited for the opportunity to work alongside the board and to represent my class. I look forward to learning more about the ACFP and family medicine in Alberta, and sharing this information to inspire and inform future family physicians!
My name is Hania Aamer and I am a first year medical student at the University of Calgary. I grew up in Edmonton and completed my Bachelor of Science from the University of Alberta before starting medical school. I enjoy spending time with my family. We enjoy traveling, trying new food together, and taking lots of photos! I also absolutely love movies. You can always find me at the movie theatre watching the latest movies! One of my favorite things is teaching others. I have been a debate and speech teacher for over 5 years and also own a tutoring business called Toon Tutors through which I express my entrepreneurial spirit!
My interest in family medicine stems from the desire to be a healthcare advocate for patients and their communities. Specifically, I am passionate about the importance of advocating for underserved populations. I have previously been involved in advocacy for underserved populations through serving as an appointed youth councillor with the City of Edmonton Youth Council. I believe that family medicine is the backbone of our healthcare system and I am excited to be involved in the area that directly supports the rest of our medical field. These attributes of family medicine inspired me to serve as the Medical Student Liaison with the ACFP Board.
I am excited to share my passion for family medicine with my fellow students by serving on the ACFP board. I value how ACFP brings together family physicians from across the province and strives to highlight the importance of patient-centred care and advocacy. I am looking forward to working closely with the board to represent my medical school class and facilitate initiatives and conversations about family medicine!