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About Us

BEACON™ is developed and operated by the MindBeacon Group of companies, including MindBeacon Software, MindBeacon Health and CBT Associates.

We lead innovation that allows people and populations to access effective mental health care in ways that overcome barriers to care.

Since 2002, we have been a leading provider of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and other evidence-based therapies through our network of clinics across the Greater Toronto Area. BEACON was first introduced in 2016 as an in-clinic innovation to enhance delivery and measurement of CBT. BEACON launched in 2017 as a fully digital experience providing treatment through digitally-delivered CBT with the one-on-one support of a dedicated therapist all along the way.

Management Team

Samuel L. Duboc

Chair & CEO

Mr. Duboc’s career is marked by his passion for entrepreneurship, his ingenuity and corporate and community leadership. He is President & CEO of Elkland Capital Inc., a family-owned investment firm with a current portfolio covering a wide range of industries including, but not limited to, health services, clean energy, marketing services and technology. Mr. Duboc is also the Chair & CEO of CBT Associates and MindBeacon Health, behavioral health companies that deliver evidenced based therapy through clinics and a digital platform. As a co-founder, Sam successfully built EdgeStone Capital Partners, one of Canada's leading private equity firms which has managed in excess of $2 billion for institutional and high-net-worth investors since its inception. Prior to this, he was a managing director at CIBC Capital Partners and co-founder of the Loyalty Group Inc. (now called LoyaltyOne), the parent company of the AIR MILES Reward Program.

In 2013, Mr. Duboc served as the Clifford Clark Visiting Economist and Special Advisor on Venture Capital for the Department of Finance Canada, leading a team in designing and implementing the Government of Canada’s Venture Capital Action Plan. Throughout his career, Sam has served on the boards of numerous companies including, but not limited to, Business Development Bank of Canada (Chair, 2014-2018), Porter Aviation Holdings Inc. and Stephenson’s Rental Services Inc. He currently serves on the board of directors of CBT Associates and its affiliates.

A dedicated and active member of the community, Mr. Duboc is chair and co-founder of Pathways to Education Canada, an internationally recognized and award-winning non-profit organization focused on improving the lives of Canada’s disadvantaged youth and their communities through educational attainment. In addition to his ongoing work with Pathways, Sam is the cofounder of LEAP: The Centre for Social Impact, board member of The Rumie Initiative, former board member of the CAMH Foundation and a member of the World’s President’s Organization (WPO), the Chief Executives Organization (CEO) and Ontario’s Panel on Economic Growth and Prosperity.

Sam holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from Tufts University magna cum laude and Tau Beta Pi and an MBA from Harvard Business School. In 2000, Sam was recognized as one of Canada’s Top 40 under 40 and in 2005 was chosen as one of the ten “most influential” alumni of the program. Mr. Duboc is a recipient of an Outstanding Volunteer Award from the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Greater Toronto Chapter (2013) and Ted Anderson Community Leadership Award from the Canadian Venture Capital Association (2014).

Dr. Peter Farvolden

Chief Science Officer

Throughout his career, Dr. Farvolden has worked as a researcher, clinician and administrator in a wide variety of inpatient and outpatient settings, including the Hamilton Health Sciences Centre, University Health Network (UHN), and the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH). He holds university appointments in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto and the Departments of Psychology at the University of Waterloo and Ryerson University. In 2002 with Dr. Eilenna Denisoff, he founded CBT Associates, a private practice committed to providing evidence-based therapies at a high standard of clinical care and client service.

In his research, Dr. Farvolden has focused on basic processes in personality and psychopathology, as well as the evidence-based treatment of mood and anxiety disorders.

Dr. Farvolden is passionate about making effective, efficient, evidence-based treatment more widely available. He is dedicated to promoting sensitive, compassionate, informed and effective treatment through direct clinical service, the clinical supervision, training and management of a large team of like-minded mental health professionals, and the creation of an internet-based digital therapy solution (i.e., BEACON) that makes effective evidence-based treatment accessible to more people.

Dr. Farvolden is a member of the College of Psychologists of Ontario, Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, Anxiety Disorders Association of America, Canadian Psychological Association, Canadian Association of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, and the Ontario Psychological Association.

Dr. Lori Ann Blessing

Chief Clinical Officer

Dr. Lori Ann Blessing is a clinical, health and rehabilitation psychologist registered in the assessment and treatment of adults by the College of Psychologists of Ontario. Dr. Blessing joined CBT Associates in 2017, as a clinical psychologist. As of October 2019, Dr. Blessing transitioned into the role of Senior Clinical Director, providing clinical oversight to MindBeacon's national team of therapists and psychologists.

She received her PhD in Clinical Psychology from Queen’s University and subsequently completed her pre-doctoral internship at the Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre in Halifax, with rotations in Chronic Pain, Outpatient Mental Health, Insomnia, HIV and Infectious Diseases, Acquired Brain Injury Rehabilitation as well as Family Medicine/Urology.

Dr. Blessing has worked with a myriad of presenting concerns including chronic pain, generalized anxiety disorder, vehicular anxiety, phobias, social anxiety, post traumatic stress, dual diagnosis within the context of developmental disability and depressive disorders among others. Through her work within the Function and Pain Program at the Health Recovery Clinic and Mount Sinai Hospital, she has gained extensive experience in assisting clients in their psychological preparation for returning to work after a period of injury or disability. Utilizing evidence-based, cognitive behavioural approaches, Dr. Blessing strives to create a supportive and collaborative therapeutic relationship with those whom she treats. 

Dr. Blessing is a member of the Canadian Psychological Association, Canadian Pain Society and the Ontario Psychological Association.

Jonathan James

Chief Product Officer

Jonathan James oversees MindBeacon’s product strategy, roadmap planning, and execution. He ensures that MindBeacon continues to deliver on its promise to key stakeholders that include people struggling with mental health and chronic health issues, as well as private and public sector payers, providers and referrers.

Prior to joining MindBeacon, Mr. James was Vice President Product at Influitive, a provider of advocate marketing SaaS services. In 2011 he founded Ironark, a mobile productivity software for small businesses and families, that was acquired by Influitive in 2016. Earlier product management roles were held in global technology companies including Microsoft and AMD. He holds a BASc in Engineering from Queen’s University.

Adam Kelly

Chief Commercial Officer

Adam Kelly oversees MindBeacon Group’s go-to-market strategy and deployment, both broadening and deepening channels to reach and deliver care to people struggling with mental health issues, whether that is through their employers, insurers, or through public sector health organizations.

Adam has over 20 years of experience in health and wellness businesses. Prior to joining MindBeacon Group, he was a Senior Vice President within the Health & Productivity Solutions practice at Morneau Shepell, where he supported hundreds of national and regional clients with health and productivity programs targeting cost reduction, cost avoidance, employee/supervisor engagement, and attendance/absence management. He holds an Honours BA in Economics and International Development from Dalhousie University and has his Group Benefits Associate (GBA) designation.

Colin Andersen

Executive Vice President

Prior to joining BEACON, Colin provided strategic advice to senior public and private sector executives regarding finance, electricity and health system transformation, including climate change leadership, green finance, system sustainability, energy poverty, behavioural economics and digital wellness.

Colin was Chief Executive Officer of the Ontario Power Authority (OPA), responsible for ensuring a reliable, sustainable, cost-effective supply of electricity for Ontario. He led the organization in its efforts to coordinate province-wide conservation initiatives, plan the electricity system for the long term and procure clean supply resources.

Prior to joining the OPA, Colin held a variety of senior financial and policy positions in the Ontario Public Service, including as Deputy Minister of Finance, of Revenue, of Policy, Cabinet Office and Acting Deputy Minister of Health and Long-Term Care; Secretary of Treasury Board; Chair of the Ontario Financing Authority; and Chair of the Ontario Electricity Financial Corporation.

In these and other senior management positions, Colin provided successive governments with advice and assistance on all aspects of fiscal and financial policy and planning, expenditure management and overall stewardship of Ontario’s financial resources. In addition, he has led strategic asset management initiatives, extensive intergovernmental negotiations at the federal and municipal level and large-scale infrastructure and procurement projects.

He has a Master’s Degree in Economics from the University of Toronto and an Honours Bachelor of Arts from the University of Calgary.

Dr. Khush Amaria

Senior Clinical Director

Dr. Khush Amaria joined CBT Associates in 2008 as a Clinical and Health Psychologist in supervised practice, while working full-time at the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids). In Dr. Amaria’s most recent role at SickKids (2010-2018), she served as the Team Lead for the Good 2 Go Transition Program—a hospital-wide consultation and program development service in the field of healthcare transitions. In this position, Dr. Amaria worked to build evidence-based practices that supported the transition and empowerment of youth with special health care needs through, both their own development, and the health care system.

In September 2017, Dr. Amaria increased her time at CBT Associates to serve as the interim Clinical Director of the Child and Adolescent Program. As of September 2018, Dr. Amaria transitioned full-time into the role of Senior Clinical Director, while continuing to lead the Child and Adolescent Program.

Dr. Amaria provides treatment for children, adolescents, and adults with anxiety disorders, depression, adjustment difficulties, parent-child relational difficulties, and other health- and coping-related problems. As part of her interest in community outreach, Dr. Amaria is involved in supporting parents, educators and caregivers on a variety of topics related to general child and adolescent development, mental health in children and youth, social skills and risk-taking behaviours in adolescence. She has been invited to teach workshops on cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) for children, adolescents and adults to mental health care providers across Ontario.

Dr. Amaria is a member of the College of Psychologists of Ontario, Canadian Association of Cognitive and Behavioural Therapies (CACBT-ACTCC) and the Ontario Psychological Association. She is credentialed as a CACBT-ACTCC Certified Cognitive Behavioural Therapist.

Advisory Board

Dr. Michael Apkon

CEO, SickKids Hospital
Professor of Paediatrics, University of Toronto

Dr. Apkon is a paediatric specialist and physician executive, having held senior leadership roles at several top academic hospitals. He has served as President and CEO of SickKids since January 2014.

Prior to coming to SickKids, Dr. Apkon was Chief Medical Officer for the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and Executive Director leading Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital. He is currently a Professor of Paediatrics at the University of Toronto and has held faculty positions at University of Pennsylvania, Yale School of Medicine and Yale School of Management.

As a healthcare executive, Dr. Apkon has led systems’ development and improvement to drive high quality and safe care, improve clinical operations, and promote an integrated approach to health care across a continuum of services.

Dr. Bernard Gosevitz

Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of Rogers Communications

Serving on the Board since 2003, Dr. J. Bernard Gosevitz is Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of Rogers Communications. He holds the Medical Directorship for Barrick Gold Corp. He is Medical Advisor to KPMG, Post Media, National Post, Burnac Corporation, TI Benefits and Hull Insurance. Dr. Gosevitz is Chair of the Canadian Wildlife Federation Foundation and is on the honorary Board of Sheena’s Place. He serves on the Board of Arts for Muskoka Chautauqua.

Dr. Gosevitz is Board Champion for the Arthritis Campaign, the Krembil Neuroscience Centre Campaign, the Brain Campaign, Peter Munk Cardiac Centre Campaign and the Transplant Campaign.

Dr. Heather Hadjistavropoulos

Registered Doctoral Psychologist, Professor & Director of Clinical Training, Department of Psychology, University of Regina

Dr. Hadjistavropoulos is a Professor of Psychology at the University of Regina and Registered Doctoral Psychologist. She has received extensive grant funding and published and presented widely on the assessment and treatment of anxiety and depression and on initiatives to improve healthcare delivery and is a recognized international authority on internet delivered CBT programs and research with a deep understanding of best practices of all aspects of these programs.

In 2010, Dr. Hadjistavropoulos founded the Online Therapy Unit for Service Education and Research (www.onlinetherapyuser.ca) in Saskatchewan, Canada – enabling the delivery of mental health care through the use of Therapist Assisted Internet-based cognitive behaviour therapy (TAiCBT). This unit is focused on researching and improving the reach, adoption, effectiveness, and implementation of TAiCBT in the province, resulting in a substantial impact on mental health care in Saskatchewan and inspiring similar initiatives in other Canadian provinces.

Dr. Hadjistavropoulos’ research has made a significant contribution to understanding best practices for improving the reach, adoption, effectiveness, and implementation of iCBT in routine practice.

Bryan Kerdman

Technology Entrepreneur & Venture Investor & Venture Partner, Leaders Fund

A highly successful technology entrepreneur and venture investor, Kerdman was a founder of Bryker Data Systems, which grew to become Canada’s largest specialized fintech provider to major financial institutions, government and large enterprises. Many of today’s customer-facing banking apps came out of Bryker, including electronic bill payment, payroll and electronic funds transfer.

Following the sale of Bryker, Kerdman went on to run and sell three other technology companies before founding EdgeStone’s Venture Funds, eventually acquired by GMP. Since then, he has been an active investor and advisor to several top performing venture funds.

Kerdman has directly invested in more than 50 companies since 1995 with a specialty in fintech, SaaS and enterprise software.

Brett Marchand

Chief Executive Officer, Vision7 and Cossette

Brett Marchand is President and Chief Executive Officer of Vision7 International and North American CEO and President of Cossette. He has distinguished himself in the Canadian marketing and advertising community as a champion of great advertising and an ardent believer in the power of creative communications to build business.

While at Cossette, Marchand has led the Toronto agency back to international acclaim with several Lions at the prestigious Cannes Advertising Festival and domestic awards shows such as the Marketing Awards.

In addition to his duties as an officer of Cossette, Marchand also led the Canadian advertising industry’s trade association, the Institute of Communication Agencies (ICA), as its Chair for three years. During this time, Marchand sparked a rejuvenation of the ICA, which included the hiring of a new CEO, the launch of Canada’s first-ever Advertising Week, and a landmark new collective agreement with the Canadian actors’ guild, ACTRA.

Brad Markowitz

National Senior Vice President, TeamHealth

Brad Markowitz is an entrepreneur with a diverse background in starting, growing and managing health services businesses.  He currently serves as National Senior Vice President of TeamHealth, where he is responsible for the largest post-acute and long term care facility based medical and behavioral health services organization in the United States.  He previously was a partner in two businesses acquired by TeamHealth: Park Avenue Health Care Management, which managed a post-acute and long term care facility based multispecialty medical and behavioral health practice in New York, Connecticut and Massachusetts, and NCEPS Management, a similar organization specializing in psychology services in Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.  

Mr. Markowitz also is a Managing Member of Hospice of New York, the first investor owned hospice in New York, and a founder and Managing Member of Geriatric Practice Management, which has developed the leading Electronic Medical Record system for medical providers in nursing homes.  Additionally, Mr. Markowitz serves as a member of the Board of Directors of GibLib, an online platform for surgical education.

Joe Natale

Chief Executive Officer of Rogers Communication
Former Chief Executive Officer of Telus

Mr. Joseph M. Natale, is a Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Relay Ventures. Mr. Natale has been Chief Executive Officer, President and Director at Rogers Communications Inc. since April 19, 2017. He is the Founder of Gibraltar Growth Corporation.

Mr. Natale has served as an Executive Officer of TELUS Corporation since August 10, 2015. He served as the President and Chief Executive Officer, and a director, of TELUS Corporation, between May 2014 and August 2015, having joined the company in 2003. Prior to this role, and since May 2010, Mr. Natale served as Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer of TELUS Corporation.

Prior to 2003, Mr. Natale held successive senior leadership roles within KPMG Consulting, which he joined after it acquired the company he co-founded, PNO Management Consultants Inc., in 1997. Mr. Natale served on the board of directors of KPMG Canada in 1998 and 1999. Mr. Natale is a member of the board of directors of Soulpepper Theatre and acted as Technology & Telecommunications Chair for United Way Toronto's 2014 Campaign Cabinet.

He is a past recipient of Canada's Top 40 Under 40 Award and holds a Bachelor of Applied Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Waterloo. Mr. Natale sits on the Audit, Compensation, and Nominating and Corporate Governance Committees.

Peter Osborne

Partner, Lenczner Slaght LLP
Active advisor to College of Psychologists in Ontario

Osborne's advocacy practice includes securities matters, commercial and industrial disputes, cross-border restructuring and insolvency cases, class actions, governance issues as well as professional regulatory litigation and disciplinary proceedings. He appears regularly before a wide range of courts and tribunals across Canada, in cross-border proceedings and in arbitrations in numerous jurisdictions.

Osborne routinely advises shareholders, officers, directors, special committees and boards of public as well as private companies in crisis situations and shareholder and governance disputes – with patients including the Government of Canada, Canwest Global Communications Corp., Air Canada, Hollinger Inc., Teleglobe Inc., and many others.

For many years, Osborne taught trial advocacy at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law and at Osgoode Hall Law School. He is also a regular instructor for continuing legal education programs of The Advocates' Society.

Lori Pearson

Senior Managing Partner and Chief Operating Officer, Brookfield Asset Management

Pearson is a Senior Managing Partner and Chief Operating Officer for Brookfield Asset Management. In this role, she is responsible for Brookfield's asset management operations.

Prior to joining Brookfield in 2003, Pearson was with one of the big-four accounting firms, initially in a patient-facing role and subsequently, as head of human resources for the company’s Canadian tax practice.

Pearson is on the boards of the Brookfield Foundation and Pathways to Education in Canada. She also is a member of the United Way Women Gaining Ground, a group founded in 2007 to make a personal impact in the lives of women facing poverty.

Mary-Alice Vuicic

Chief People Officer, Thomson Reuters

Vuicic has more than 20 years of experience working with large national and international organizations, and family-owned entrepreneurial businesses. She is currently the Chief People Officer for Thomson Reuters, and sits on the BDC Board of Directors.

Previously, she was the Human Resources Officer for Victoria’s Secret – L Brands (Columbus, Ohio global headquarters), Executive Vice President, Human Resources and Labour Relations, at Loblaw Companies Ltd. and the Chief Administrative Officer and Executive Vice President at Shoppers Drug Mart before its acquisition by Loblaw Companies Ltd. in 2014.

Prior to joining Shoppers Drug Mart, Vuicic led the human resources function at Walmart Canada and Chapters/Indigo. She is an active member in the community and supports health and professional causes.