Linda Varangu – Executive Director
Linda Varangu has been helping health care go green for the past 20 years. She is currently the Executive Director for the Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care.
Linda has delivered workshops and training sessions across Canada on pollution prevention and sustainability issues including several health care related sessions for organisations such as Natural Resources Canada, Environment Canada, Canadian Administrative Housekeeping Association, Canadian Hospital Association, Ontario Hospital Association, Alberta Hospital Association, Nova Scotia Department of the Environment and Labour, Atlantic Support Services Alliance, and the City of Toronto.
She has written several pollution prevention plans for health care facilities, is the primary author of the first Canadian hospital waste audit guide – Hospital Waste Audit Manual, and instructed a core course for a Certificate in Environmental Management at Dalhousie University for five years. Authoring over 50 manuals and research documents on waste minimisation, waste management and pollution prevention, Linda has also undertaken over 100 waste assessments and detailed audits for various industry sectors including health care facilities.
Over her career Linda has spent: six years as senior advisor at a national organisation focused on pollution prevention; seven years as Executive Director of a newly minted organisation which supported municipal waste reduction and recycling staff during the rise of municipal recycling and other waste reduction programs; three years at a provincial research organisation working on waste minimisation programs and two years at a municipal government, where she initiated the first municipally based industrial and institutional waste reduction program in Canada.
Her education background includes a Bachelor of Science degree (Chemistry and Biology) and a Masters in Environmental Engineering (Biochemical Engineering/Environmental Engineering). Linda and her husband Rob designed and built their environmentally friendly home from the stone and timber off their 93 acre organic farm. They currently have virtual offices at their home, which they share with their son Valen (our in-house techy), 28 chickens and two roosters.
Kent Waddington – Communications Director
Kent Waddington, a freelance environmental coach and communicator, is a co-founder of the Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care and is currently the Coalition’s Communications Director. An environmentalist since high school, Kent has spent much of the past fifteen years engaged in coaching members of the Canadian health services sector as they develop and adopt more environmentally responsible practices within their organisations.
For seven years he developed programme content and educational collateral for the Canadian government’s Energy Innovators Initiative (NRCan) from within a health care framework as the Energy Efficiency Coordinator for the Canadian College of Health Services. Throughout that time, Kent created sector-specific initiatives related to environmental sustainability including National Health Care Energy Efficiency Awareness Week, Energy Perspectives, the sector’s first energy management newspaper, A Resource Guide for Energy Efficiency Awareness Champions, the CCHSE/OEE National Energy Management Award, and coordinated and assisted in the design, deployment and analysis of the first national research study to assess energy efficiency practices and awareness levels in the Canadian health services sector.
He has also developed materials and written for the Canadian Healthcare Engineering Society, the Canadian Council on Health Services Accreditation, the Royal Ottawa Hospital, and Natural Resources Canada’s CBIP Programme. Kent continues to author newsletters, web content and develop environmental stewardship Initiative materials for one of Canada’s largest Fortune 500 companies supporting health care sites across Canada. He has spoken on energy efficiency and the greening of health care at conferences across Canada and his writing and photography have appeared in local, national and foreign publications/websites including Healthcare Forum, Hospital News, Canadian Society of Nutrition Management News, Senor Care Canada, Canadian Property Management, Stride, Air Canada’s Enroute magazine, and Substance (UK).
Kent is also a past research team associate with Royal Roads University’s School of Environment and Sustainability and a founding Board member of the National Environmental Treasure, a people’s trust fund devoted to the exclusive funding of Canadian environmental organizations.
Neil leads the Green Health Leader’s Initiative, a program of the Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care that focuses on enabling executive leaders, physician leaders and board members to become better environmental stewards. Neil is an experienced health care executive who has worked as a CEO, Chief Operating Officer and Vice President of large, multi-site academic teaching centers, regional health authorities and community hospitals in Canada. Neil has also worked with several health technology start-ups and investment funds who want to change the world of health and health care through innovation. He currently is President of Invicta Health, a contract management company focused on improving performance and sustainability in health care. Neil holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from Dalhousie University and a Masters in Health Services Administration from the University of Alberta.
JJ Knott – Healthcare Energy Leaders Ontario (HELO) Program Lead
JJ works tirelessly to inspire colleagues in health care facilities across Canada to embrace energy efficiency practices and to incite them to make energy management an integral part of their facility management protocols.
He helped develop the concept, framework and delivery model of the HealthCare Energy Leaders Ontario (HELO) program. JJ worked within the HELO framework to identify energy conservation measures, deliver training, and follow‐up on opportunities for sites across Ontario, ensuring that projects were planned and budgeted for, as well as implemented. For over 2 decades he served as the Director of Plant Operations, and Project Manager at Norfolk General Hospital. JJ also played an instrumental role in helping Norfolk attain the 2012 OHA/Coalition Green Award for Overall Leadership and the 2008 Wayne McLellan Award from CHES for energy and environmental stewardship accomplishments.
J.J. helped develop the Green Revolving Fund (GRF) pilot initiative so that healthcare facilities across Ontario could benefit from funds raised through the carbon cap and trade program. JJ has taught hospital building performance courses (such as the Building Operators Certification Course though the Canadian Institute for Energy Training) and is actively involved in improving the sustainability of Ontario Hospitals. In recognition of his accomplishments he was the recipient of the 2014 Green Health Care Individual Leadership Award.
Between 2011-2013, JJ acted as President for the Canadian Healthcare Engineering Society (CHES) involving over 1000 members across Canada. JJ has remained a dedicated member of CHES for over 2 decades, and is also a member of the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE). He is Vice‐chair of the Canadian Coalition for Green Health Care (CCGHC) and a member of the CCGHC’s National Energy Advisory Committee. He has also assisted the Coalition, and their partners, in the lobbying of senior levels of government to look at alternatives to conventional financing models that bring an environmental stewardship slant to the funding of energy and infrastructure renewal projects. Furthermore, he has helped create awareness with decision makers across Ontario and Canada, including the Ontario Environment Commissioner, Energy Canada, and others.
JJ was also past Chair of a local distribution company where he provided guidance which he has now brought to his position as HELO Project Lead, where he is an authority on hospital power needs and how health care facilities interact with energy supply companies.
Linxi Mytkolli – Sustainable Programs Manager
Linxi is currently pursuing her MSc. in Sustainability Management at the University of Toronto after completing her BSc. in Biopharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Ottawa. Throughout her undergraduate degree in Biopharmaceutical Sciences, she was able to sharpen my perception of the healthcare sector as well as enhance her quantitative and communication skills by producing high quality work that was recognized in the Women in Science and Engineering National Conference and published in The Ottawa Citizen, as well as the University of Ottawa undergraduate science journal.
She believes that sustainability is the capacity to endure over time and healthcare is the field that aims to maintain and improve mankind’s health. They share the goal of improving quality and longevity of life. There are still many persistent challenges in directing the healthcare sector to commit to sustainability goals. As a research student for the CCGHC, Linxi is excitedd to support the healthcare sector’s transition to a greener future. She will be applying her passion for wellness and dedication to sustainability by researching current best practices and trends for greening the OR initiatives.
Chehalis is an Honours Specialization student at the University of Western Ontario completing her bachelor’s degree in English Language and Literature and Creative Writing. She is experienced in the healthcare sector in a variety of roles, including as a medical translator in Haiti and as both writer and editor for various medical presentations and internal communications. She is particularly interested in healthcare education, with ambitions to involve herself in hospital outreach programs in the future. When her fingers aren’t glued to her keyboard, Chehalis can be found at the barn riding or getting lost in the woods.
Michael Perryman – Sustainability Intern
Michael is currently pursuing his MSc. In Sustainability Management at the University of Toronto after completing his BHSc. In Health Promotion at the University of Western Ontario. Throughout his undergraduate degree in Health Sciences he completed various research projects and worked with the non-profit Partners in Health to acquire a deep understanding of Canadian health policy, legislative frameworks, and intellectual property and patent knowledge. While working at the University’s Wellness Education Centre, he also became well versed on student health needs and resources. He believes that sustainable healthcare can be achieved through the balance between social, environmental and economic considerations and that through innovation, health outcomes can be improved, the value of the healthcare dollar can be optimized, and the environment can be safeguarded to meet current and future health needs. As a research Coordinator for the City of Toronto he led a research team to support funding for development proposals in the city, with the goal of enhancing youth spaces and associated programs. He will be applying his passion for health system remodeling and environmental conservation by researching health and climate change policies across Canada, uncovering environmentally impactful health care problems, studying how well current policies are working and recommending changes to such policies.