Lupus Ontario is governed by a 12 member volunteer board to provide governance, set the strategic plan and execute on major initiatives. The board members are located throughout the province and supported by our staff members.  We work with Lupus Canada to advocate for improved access to information, health services, and research.

We wish to thank present and past members for their outstanding service.

Cathy Ferren

Cathy Ferren RHN is a registered holistic nutritionist, life skills and health coach and instructor, certified Personality Dimensions® instructor, relaxation techniques coach and prayer minister working across Canada. As a lifelong volunteer in many non-profit organizations, she brings her experience, compassion and focus to her clients. Furthermore, she is passionate about helping people improve their wellness in all areas: body, mind and spirit and intends to incorporate these in her work with Lupus Ontario


June Alikhan

Ms. June Alikhan was elected to the Board of Lupus Ontario in 2016 and subsequently re-elected in April 2017 to a 2 year term as Treasurer. June joined Lupus Ontario in order to combine both her personal and professional interests as well as contribute her financial skills and insights to the organization.

Ms. Alikhan has over 35 years of experience in the accounting field; with over 25 years in the real estate industry. At Tricon Capital Group, June was CFO responsible for the Company’s overall financial management including information technology, reporting and administration before taking retirement at the end of a fourteen year career with the company.

Prior to joining Tricon in 2001, June led her own consulting company providing financial management, process re-engineering, and systems assessment and implementation services within the real estate industry. Prior to starting her own company in May 1999, she held a controllership position in the real estate division of The Oshawa Group Ltd., a large national retail / wholesale grocery company. June graduated from the University of Toronto with a Bachelor of Commerce degree and subsequently received her CPA, CA designation from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario.


Director at Large
Kuljit Bhogal

Ms. Kuljit Bhogal is deeply motivated to use her experience and expertise to help others and is passionate about Lupus Ontario’s mission to spread awareness and to improve the lives of those who have been diagnosed with the disease. As a Board Member, Kuljit’s focus is to steer the Governance Committee and to develop new policies and procedures to enable Lupus Ontario to achieve its mandate.

Furthermore, Kuljit was recently called to the Ontario Bar and her current practice is focused in the area of corporate law. Kuljit enjoys meeting new people and learning about their cultures which has led her on a quest to travel the world, her latest count reveals that she has travelled to over 30 countries.


Director at Large
Tanya Mahadeo Connacher

Tanya was diagnosed with lupus 18 years ago. She has experienced the challenges of the disease and has the knowledge and experience to help other lupus patients. Tanya has had a successful career as an Executive Assistant to the senior management team in several large Canadian corporations. Tanya brings the following skills to the Board: fund raising, event management, social media, writing and speaking, knowledge of the manifestations and impacts of lupus. As a volunteer, she has organized the Toronto Walk for Lupus for the past 2 years and has taken on organizing the Nathan Philips Square Walk in 2018. She is also the Toronto Downtown Support Group Leader. By being on the Board of Directors, Tanya will provide input and direction to the initiatives of Lupus Ontario to improve service to the lupus community and raise more money for lupus research.


Director at Large
Miguel Morris

Miguel made a commitment to his wife Celia, who passed away from lupus complications, that he would work to raise money for lupus research. He is a senior executive at a Canadian Based Contact Centre Company which provides services to several Fortune 500 organizations. Miguel is responsible for both short and long term strategy for the organisation. He heads up all functional departments including operations, facilities management, client relations, HR, sales, and IT.

Miguel has lead several strategic planning initiatives and has developed high performance teams. He has an excellent network of senior contacts in large Canadian corporations. Miguel has recently recruited a provincial corporate sponsor. As a member of the Board of Directors Miguel will help develop our future direction and will continue his fundraising and awareness efforts.


Director at Large
Bindu Kovvuru

Bindu wants to contribute to a non-profit specializing in health care. Bindu’s has seen and worked extensively with children with chronic illnesses, so she has a good understanding of the challenges faced in receiving the required support and services.
Her work experience has been in a variety of industries including health care and social services. She has participated in marketing, process improvement and financial analysis projects. In addition, Bindu has previously worked as a volunteer Canadian leader for an international non-profit and has experience in fundraising and campaigning. Bindu has graduated with an MBA, specializing in Health Management from the McMaster DeGroote School of Business.
Bindu has been volunteering for Lupus Ontario for the past year in developing sponsorship materials. She would like to be involved in advocacy to transform the Ontario healthcare system to better support people with chronic illness. A Board position gives her a better platform to do this. She resides in Niagara Falls, an area which needs Lupus Ontario representation.

Secretary                                           Gloria Checkley

Director at Large
Jillian Cooper

Medical Advisory Board

Dr. Murray Urowitz, Toronto Western Hospital Lupus Clinic
Dr. Dafna Gladman, Toronto Western Hospital Lupus Clinic
Dr. Janet Pope, St. Joseph’s Health Care Centre, Arithritis Institute
Dr. Judah Denburg, Hamilton Health Sciences, McMaster Division
Dr. C. Douglas Smith, The Ottawa Hospital
Dr. Earl Silverman, Hosptial for Sick Children
Dr. Derek Haaland, Barrie and the North
Dr. Mark Matsos, Hamilton Health Sciences McMaster Div and St. Joseph’s Hamilton Healthcare
Dr. Amanda Steiman, Rheumatologist
Dr. Zahi Touma, Rheumatologist, Toronto Western Hospital