TCU Place 35 -22nd St. East, Saskatoon, SK    

<< return to program
Dr. David Butler-Jones
Canada's Chief Public Health Officer, Public Health Agency of Canada
Diseases and Pandemics
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
10:30 - 11:00 am

Abstract:  Understanding interactions between animals and humans is critical in the prevention of disease outbreaks, including pandemics of influenza. From his unique perspective as Canada's first Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. David Butler-Jones will provide important information on the importance of emerging diseases and pandemics, and on the related priorities and roles of the Public Health Agency of Canada as they relate to the agricultural biotechnology sector.

Dr. David Butler-Jones is Canada’s first Chief Public Health Officer. He heads the Public Health Agency of Canada which provides leadership on the government’s efforts to protect and promote the health and safety of Canadians.

He has worked in many parts of Canada in both public health and clinical medicine, and has provided expert advice to a number of other countries.

Dr. Butler-Jones has taught at both the undergraduate and graduate levels and has been involved as a researcher in a broad range of public health issues. He is a Professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Manitoba as well as a Clinical Professor with the Department of Community Health and Epidemiology at the University of Saskatchewan’s College of Medicine.

His research work has included a mix of primary research design, implementation, reviews, advice and commentary and publications. He is a member of the Institute Advisory Board, Population and Public Health, of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, sits on the Canadian Population Health Initiative Governing Council and reviews articles for the Canadian Journal of Public health. He has also advised the Chilean Ministry of Health on how to utilize a national health survey and other data in influencing the development of policy and programs.

Dr. Butler-Jones has undertaken research that includes the examination of adverse effects of marketed drugs, and promotion of heart health. He has written on various topics, including epidemiology, obesity and breast cancer, for a number of scientific journals.

In 2008, Dr. Butler-Jones released his first annual Report on the State of Public Health in Canada. This report takes a broad look at the overall health of Canadians, as well as disparities in health and other issues. The report can be found at

Dr. Butler-Jones’ second Report, Growing Up Well – Priorities for a Healthy Future, is expected to be released in fall 2009. This Report focuses on the importance of the early years on the long-term health of individuals and communities.

From 1995 to 2002, Dr. Butler-Jones was Chief Medical Health Officer and Executive Director of the Population Health and Primary Health Services Branches for the Province of Saskatchewan.

Dr. Butler-Jones has served with a number of organizations including as: President of the Canadian Public Health Association; Vice President of the American Public Health Association; Chair of the Canadian Roundtable on Health and Climate Change; International Regent on the board of the American College of Preventive Medicine; Member of the Governing Council for the Canadian Population Health Initiative; Chair of the National Coalition on Enhancing Preventive Practices of Health Professionals; and Co-Chair of the Canadian Coalition for Public Health in the 21st Century. From 1995 to 2002, Dr. Butler-Jones was Chief Medical Health Officer and Executive Director of the Population Health and Primary Health Services Branches for the Province of Saskatchewan.

In recognition of his service in the field of public health, York University’s Faculty of Health bestowed on Dr. Butler-Jones an honorary Doctor of Laws degree. The father of three children, Dr. Butler-Jones lives in Winnipeg and Ottawa.