The SOGC is one of Canada’s oldest national specialty organizations. Established in 1944, the Society’s mission is to promote excellence in the practice of obstetrics and gynaecology and to advance the health of women through leadership, advocacy, collaboration, and education.
The SOGC has over 3,500 members, comprised of obstetricians, gynaecologists, family physicians, nurses, midwives, and allied health professionals working in the field of sexual reproductive health.
A leading authority on reproductive health care, the SOGC produces national clinical guidelines for both public and medical education on important women’s health issues. The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada granted the SOGC full accreditation as a Continued Professional Development provider for physicians and health care providers in Canada. The Society offers an impressive portfolio of professional educational activities including the Annual Clinical and Scientific Conference, Continuing Medical Education Programs, e-learning modules and its trailblazing MOREOB patient safety program.
The SOGC recently celebrated its 70th anniversary. View our video Celebrating 70 years of excellence to learn more about the history of the SOGC.
The SOGC's mission is to promote excellence in the practice of obstetrics and gynaecology and to advance the health of women through leadership, advocacy, collaboration and education.
The SOGC believes that:
- women should have equitable access to optimal, comprehensive, culturally-safe health care provided with integrity and compassion;
- women should have the knowledge they need to make informed choices about their health;
- SOGC members have the right to practice in a safe and supportive environment;
- the practice of obstetrics and gynaecology must be based on the best scientific evidence available;
- the Society has a responsibility to facilitate change in relation to health system issues affecting the practice of obstetrics and gynaecology;
- every woman has the right to optimal care during pregnancy and childbirth to ensure the health and safety of both the mother and her baby.
Dr. Margaret Burnett
Dr. Burnett is a Professor of Medicine at the University of Manitoba in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynaecology and Reproductive Sciences with a cross-appointment in the Department of Family Medicine. She is the Obstetrics and Gynaecology Residency Program Director and Head of Clinical Gynaecology at the Health Sciences Center in Winnipeg. She began her medical career as a family physician, practicing in Winnipeg for seven years before returning to the University of Manitoba to complete a residency in Obstetrics and Gynaecology. She joined the Manitoba Clinic and spent eight productive and happy years in private practice. In 2002, she was invited to join the full-time clinical teaching faculty at the University of Manitoba. Since that time she has enjoyed an ever-increasing role in medical education at that institution.
Her current portfolio includes responsibilities for undergraduate, postgraduate and continuing professional learning. She has a busy clinical practice in general gynaecology with special interests in sexual and reproductive health, vulvar disease and vaginal surgery. Her academic interests include physician assessment, knowledge translation, innovative curriculum development and enhancement of learning through simulation. She holds a Masters Degree in Medical Sociology. Her thesis explored patients’ evaluation of physician role performance. She was an elected councillor at the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Manitoba for 16 years, serving in various capacities including Investigation Chair, Inquiry Chair and President of that organization. This year marks her tenth on the Board of the SOGC.
Board of Directors
The SOGC Board of Directors provides oversight for the governance and strategic planning of the society. The SOGC has a vibrant, multi-disciplinary Board of Directors for 2015/2016 from across Canada:
Dr. Margaret Burnett - Winnipeg (President)
Dr. Diane Francoeur - Montreal (Past President)
Dr. George Carson - Regina (President Designate)
Dr. Baharak Amir-Wornell - Halifax (Vice president)
Dr. William Mundle - Windsor (Vice president)
Dr. Linda Stirk - Toronto (Treasurer)
Dr. Anthony Armson - Halifax
Dr. Hussam Azzam - Thompson
Dr. Jacques Balayla - Côte-St-Luc
Dr. Jon Barrett - Toronto
Dr. Sylvie Bouvet - Bécancour
Dr. Michael Bow - Edmonton
Dr. Krista Cassell - Charlottetown
Dr. Andrée Gagnon - Blainville
Ms. Lisa Morgan - Sudbury
Dr. Ann Sprague - Ottawa
Dr. David John Quinlan - Victoria
Dynamic, skill-based board members are nominated and elected by the membership at large through a transparent voting process. Vacancies are announced each year in October, with a February deadline for applicants to submit their interest.
Chief Executive Officer
Dr. Jennifer Blake
Dr. Jennifer Blake has been an active member of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada since 1982.
Dr. Blake earned her Bachelor of Science degree in biology from the University of Waterloo in 1974. She then studied at McMaster University where she acquired her medical degree in 1977, completed a mixed internship in 1978, completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology in 1982, served as the MRC Fellow in reproductive endocrinology from 1982 to 1984, and earned her Master of Science degree in Health Research Methodology in 2004.
Dr. Blake is an educational leader with a multifaceted understanding of the profession, including the academic, clinical and regulatory perspectives. During her career, she returned to the academic setting assuming a number of appointments. After serving as Assistant Professor for the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at McMaster University from 1984 to 1988, she assumed the same position within the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto from 1988 to 1991 where she was head of the Division of Pediatric Gynecology. Until she returned to Toronto in 1999 to become Professor and Associate Chair from 2003 to 2012, she assumed a number of leadership and management positions.
Between her academic appointments, Dr. Blake served as Chief of Obstetrics and Gynaecology and Head of Women’s Health at the Sunnybrook and Health Sciences Centre, Chief of Pediatric Gynaecology at the Hospital for Sick Children and Undergraduate Dean of McMaster University’s Medical School. She has assumed a variety of other leadership roles within departments and committees since 1988.
Acknowledged as an outstanding obstetrician-gynaecologist both in Canada and abroad, McMaster University formally acknowledged Dr. Blake as the recipient of the Dr. Carr Teaching Award in 1996 and the President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching and Educational Leadership in 1995. The same year, she received the SOGC award for Best Reproductive Endocrinology Research Paper, which followed the SOGC’s first place award for Best Gynaecology Research Paper in 1992. In 1983, she was granted the MOH Scientist Award and the R. T. Weaver Award for Best Resident Paper Presentation in 1980. Accolades for Dr. Blake are not restricted to those within the academic and women’s health sectors. In 2011, Dr. Blake was identified as one of the top 25 women of influence in Canada.
Dr. Blake not only has an impressive research background and an active publication record, she is an experienced leader who has led major organizational change in both the hospital and academic sectors. She brings a national perspective from her work with the SOGC, the Medical Council of Canada (MCC), the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC), the Association of Professors in Obstetrics and Gynaecology of Canada (APOG), and the Canadian Foundation for Women’s Health (CFWH).
In addition to her membership with the SOGC, Dr. Blake is also an active member of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Toronto, the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society, the Society of Canadian Colposcopists, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, as well as the International and North American Menopause Societies.
As a passionate advocate, respected leader, published author, dynamic lecturer, and trusted spokeswoman on issues relating to women’s health, Dr. Blake has assumed a number of consultancy roles on projects pertaining to general obstetrics and gynaecology, continuing medical education, strategic planning, ethics, public affairs, menopause, human sexuality, oncology, as well as pediatric and adolescent gynaecology. She has also been an active member of advisory committees, board of directors, task forces as well as administrative, medical, and perinatal committees.
Dr. Blake’s philanthropic and community service initiatives have included being a member of the Community Advisory Committee for the Junior League of Toronto (2011 to present), serving as Chair of the Canadian Foundation from Women’s Health (2007 to present), as Vice Chair of the Genesis Research Foundation (2003 to present), and as Chair of the National Health Advisory Committee for the Look Good Feel Better/Lives Affected by Cancer Programme.
Dr. Blake enjoys an active home life. Together with her husband, Dr. Denny DePetrillo, they have three children, four grandchildren and a dog. She is an avid reader and writer, enjoys gardening as well as the great outdoors.
Strategic Plan 2012-2016
After extensive consultation with SOGC members, stakeholders, council and executive, the SOGC produced the 2012-2016 Strategic Plan.
The Strategic Plan highlights the society's commitment to its five strategic directions: Aboriginal health, continuous professional learning, international women's health, public education, and promoting the profession.
Read about the practices the SOGC upholds as a not-for-profit organization in women's health.