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2015 Conference Speaker Bios


Marion Cooper is a registered clinical social worker and mental health leader who has worked in the mental health field in various positions since 1992. She has worked as a community developer, child protection social worker, youth development worker, rehabilitation case manager and program manager. She was instrumental in establishing the mental health promotion service delivery unit at the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority and from 2003 till 2014 where she served in a variety of roles including the Program Manager for Mental Health Promotion and Early Intervention.  She is the past president of the Canadian Association of Suicide Prevention.  She is also the co-chair of the Pan-Canadian Committee for Mental Health Promotion and Mental Illness Prevention.  In December 2014 she assumed the role of Executive Director of the Canada Mental Health Association Winnipeg/Manitoba.

M. Cooper post-Polio conference presentation on mental Health - PDF

Dr. Carol Vandenakker is a well known and respected Physical Rehabilitation Specialist, with expertise in Post Polio Syndrome and the needs of patients with disabilities. She is an accomplished and sought-after speaker regarding the topics of Post Polio related conditions and spinal rehabilitation.

Dr. Vandenakker received her degree in medicine in 1986 at Oral Roberts University, School of Medicine. She interned at St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital Centre at Columbia University and completed her residency in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine at New York University Medical Centre.

Presently, Dr. Vandenakker is a Professor in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of California, Davis. As well, she serves as the Residency Program Director for Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at UC, Davis, and is the Medical Director of the UC Davis Post Polio Clinic, which she established in 2001.

Dr. Vandenakker has served as a guest reviewer for a variety of respected medical journals, many of which relate to Post Polio Syndrome. She has authored several peer-reviewed journal publications related to aging with disabilities, spinal rehabilitation and Post Polio conditions. She serves on medical advisory boards for the San Francisco Bay Area Polio Survivors, and Sacramento Post-Polio Support Group. She is on the Board of Directors and Medical Advisory Board for Polio Health International.

Physical Aspects of Aging with Post-Polio Syndrome - PDF


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