Suzanne Stewart
(Photo by Nick Iwanyshyn)

Suzanne Stewart recognized with Minister of Colleges and Universities’ Award of Excellence

Suzanne Stewart, an associate professor in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health and director of its Waakebiness-Bryce Institute for Indigenous Health, has received a Minister of Colleges and Universities’ Award of Excellence for assisting with Indigenous-led COVID-19 vaccination efforts.

"Dr. Stewart and the University of Toronto have made important contributions to Ontario’s successful vaccination effort,” said Adalsteinn (Steini) Brown, dean of the Dalla Lana School of Public Health. “Her work helping organize a vaccine powwow and clinic [at U of T’s Varsity Stadium] helped redress the inequities in health-care delivery revealed by the pandemic. We are proud that she is continuing her commitment as the leader of the university’s Indigenous Research Network.”

Stewart said she was grateful for the award and recognized the students, colleagues, Elders and community partners who played a big role in the Indigenous-led clinics’ success.

“The work our group does in public health is about changing the system to better meet the needs of Indigenous peoples to close the gap in health outcomes among our peoples both on and off reserve; this is especially challenging because the colonial systems thrust upon us are created to oppress and prevent healing,” she added.

“Our work is also about creating system change in health generally that is centered in cultural safety and Indigenous knowledges to improve the lives of all Canadians as we begin to move on and heal, both individually and in community, from the global pandemic experience.”