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Presenters

Paul Stamets

Paul Stamets, speaker, author, mycologist, medical researcher and entrepreneur, is considered an intellectual and industry leader in fungi: habitat, medicinal use, and production. He lectures extensively to deepen the understanding and respect for the organisms that literally exist under every footstep taken on this path of life.

Paul is the author of six books (including Mycelium Running: How Mushrooms Can Help Save the World, Growing Gourmet & Medicinal Mushrooms, and Psilocybin Mushrooms of the World), he has discovered and named numerous new species of psilocybin mushrooms. Paul has been awarded more than 40 patents with several patent applications in queue for unexpected activity of psilocybin analogues stacked with other substances.

He has received numerous awards, including: Invention Ambassador (2014-2015) for the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the National Mycologist Award (2014) from the North American Mycological Association (NAMA), and the Gordon & Tina Wasson Award (2015) from the Mycological Society of America (MSA).  Paul’s extensive work in the field of mycology has earned him an official induction into The Explorers Club (2020).

His work has entered into the mainstream of popular culture. In the new Star Trek: Discovery series on CBS, the Science Officer is portrayed by an Astromycologist…. a Lt. Paul Stamets. Paul’s work with mycelium is a central theme of this series.</span>

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Paul Stamets

Paul Stamets

Duncan Grady

Duncan Grady, D Min, MS, Elder

Dr. Duncan Grady’s professional experience includes over 20 years of post secondary education and 36 years of psychotherapy in addictions, trauma, death and dying. He has a Masters Degree in Counseling Psychology and a Doctorate of Divinity specific to Creation Spirituality. He is retired from professional work and is an elder of the Circle of Indigenous Nations Society, West Kootenays, BC. He currently co-leads retreats, works with communities impacted by lateral violence and provides training and consultation using western and non-western approaches to health, well-being, spirituality, trauma, dying and death. During the past year he has met with communities in BC and Alberta to assist health care teams experiencing the overwhelm of working with suicide, fentanyl overdose and death. This work has primarily been with care providers who provide services, but has also included community presentations as well.

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Duncan Grady

Duncan Grady

Valorie Masuda

Valorie Masuda, MD, FCFP(EM)(PC), GPO

Dr. Valorie Masuda is a palliative care physician and general practitioner in oncology working in the Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island.  Certified in psychedelic medicine through the California Institute of Integral Studies, Valorie was also trained through Therapsil and the Roots to Thrive program. She has been working in the psychedelic space since 2020 using psilocybin-assisted therapy for palliative patients, navigating the Section 56 Exemption and later, the Special Access Program to support patients with distress secondary to their serious cancer diagnosis.  So far, 17 patients have been supported through the Roots to Thrive psilocybin-assisted therapy program. In addition, Valorie has been supporting patients with both independent and group psilocybin-assisted therapy, and is currently working in the Cowichan Valley supporting palliative patients at home, in hospice and hospital, as well as working in the community oncology clinic. Valorie’s other interests include sustainable food production, and playing music including the viola in two community orchestras.

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Valorie Masuda

Valorie Masuda

Tarzie McLean

Tarzie McLean, MC, RCT

Tarzie McLean has a Masters in Counseling Psychology, is a Registered Counseling Therapist, and has been working in counselling, mental health, community development and systems transformation for over 20 years. Tarzie works from a holistic model of health and recognizes the interplay between biology/physiology, psychology, social supports, and spiritual wellbeing. She is passionate about helping people get informed about psychedelic-assisted therapy. She provides individual counseling support through her private practice, Soul Compass Therapy, www.soulcompass.info

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Tarzie McLean

Tarzie McLean

Crosbie Watler

Crosbie Watler, MD, FRCPC;

Dr. Crosbie Watler is the lead psychiatrist for the Roots to Thrive Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy Programme and an emerging thought leader, forging new pathways to alleviate suffering related to mental distress. He completed his MA in Psychology at Lakehead University, before going to Medical School at McMaster in 1988. Following medical school, Dr. Watler completed his residency in psychiatry at Dalhousie University. Upon completion he worked in Kenora, Ontario from 1995-2001, where he was Chief of Psychiatry at the Lake of the Woods District Hospital. In 2001 Dr. Walter relocated to Duncan BC with his wife and their three children, working within Island Health and served as Medical Director and the Department Head for Psychiatry. Dr. Watler has practised in multiple settings including, tertiary, inpatient, outpatient and ACT. Dr. Watler’s current interests focus on incorporating the best of modern medicine with holistic/integrative health.

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Crosbie Watler

Crosbie Watler

Geraldine Manson

In my role as a VIU Elder-in-Residence, I work directly with students and Faculty/Professors in Health and Human Services programs at VIU and the Shq’apthut/Gathering Place. I share my Traditional Knowledge to work with all programs within the Health & Human Services and within the Shq’apthut programs. I am a member of the Snuneymuxw First Nation and I am married to Earl Manson. I have worked for my community since 1980 and I must credit my cultural wisdom and education to my Elders, present, and Elders who have passed on. As the Elders’ Coordinator for Snuneymuxw First Nations, I carry many other responsibilities that relate to culture and traditions in the community. I served 12 years as an elected council-member and I continue to be mentored in the traditional cultural practices of the Snuneymuxw people. I am excited to be part of this journey, working with medicines that can provide healing for those who continue to suffer, despite trying traditional treatment methods.

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Geraldine Manson

Geraldine Manson

Devon Christie

Dr. Devon Christie is a medical doctor and registered counsellor with a focused practice in chronic pain and trauma. She is trained to deliver both MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD and ketamine-assisted psychotherapy, and she serves as Senior Lead of Psychedelic Programs with Numinus Wellness. Devon is also a certified Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction teacher, Functional Medicine practitioner, and clinical instructor with UBC Family Medicine. She is currently Co-Investigator and study therapist for a Canadian MAPS-sponsored trial investigating MDMA-assisted therapy for PTSD, and co-investigator on a pilot study investigating MDMA-assisted therapy for fibromyalgia.

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Devon Christie

Devon Christie

Pamela Kryskow

Pamela Kryskow, MD

Dr. Pamela Kryskow is a medical doctor with a strong interest in chronic pain, mental health and psychedelic medicine.

She is a clinical instructor at UBC and adjunct professor at VIU.

She is one of the founding board members of the Canadian Psychedelic Association and the medical chair of the Vancouver Island University Post Graduate Certificate in Psychedelic Medicine assisted Therapy.

Dr Kryskow is actively involved in research related to psilocybin, MDMA, ketamine, front line health care workers and first responders mental wellness. She is co-investigator on the largest microdosing study Microdose.me which is ongoing with 17000+ enrolled participants.

She is the medical lead on the Roots To Thrive Ketamine and Psilocybin Assisted Therapy Programs that treats health care providers and first responders with PTSD, depression, anxiety, addiction and people with end of life distress. In real life she loves hiking in the forest, ocean kayaking, growing kale and daydreaming in the hammock. Her heritage includes Polish, Ukrainian, and German.

She currently resides in the traditional unceded territory of the Klahoose First Nations.
Pronouns: She/her.

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Pamela Kryskow

Pamela Kryskow

Jean Paul Lim

Jean Paul Lim, MD, FRCPC

Jean Paul grew up in Toronto, Ontario before moving to Vancouver, BC to complete a Bachelor of Science Degree in Microbiology on an academic scholarship, a 4 year Medical Degree, a 3 year residency in Internal Medicine, a one year fellowship in General Internal Medicine, and finally a 6 month Echocardiography fellowship to obtain a level 2 Echocardiography certification, all done at the University of British Columbia (UBC). He is a USA Board Certified Anti-Aging Specialist with specialty in bioidentical hormone balancing as well as a certified neuromodulator and dermal filler practitioner. He is also a leader in the medical cannabis space, creating one of the only medical cannabis data companies and leveraging this information to advance the practice of prescribing cannabis as a medicine. He prides himself in exploring innovative medical therapies that push the boundaries of conventional health care systems, with the goal of achieving a more natural and holistic patient journey to well-being. His vision is to refocus the expectation and treatment of human health to look at the person as a whole rather than simply a sum of their parts, as the body is designed to live in balance and harmony. In his free time, Jean Paul most enjoys spending time with his wife and young children and playing a variety of sports.

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Jean Paul Lim

Jean Paul Lim

Shannon Dames

Shannon Dames, RN, MPH, EdD 

Dr. Shannon Dames serves at Vancouver Island University as a nursing professor and resilience researcher. She collaboratively spearheaded the development of the theoretical framework for Roots to Thrive.  As a byproduct of her doctoral work, which focused on the core factors that promote human flourishing, and as a Health Professional Investigator for the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research, Dr. Dames is now overseeing the ongoing development and research components of Roots to Thrive (RTT) combined with medicine-assisted therapy.

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Shannon Dames

Shannon Dames

Holly Bennett

Holly Bennett 

Holly Bennett is the Communications Director at TheraPsil. She lives, works, and plays on the unceded Anishinabewaki & Haudenosaunee Territories in Toronto, ON. She has over 8 years of experience in the Canadian cannabis industry including communications, and patient education and holds a special interest in bioethics and drug policy and is passionate about mental health, harm reduction, and compassionate patient care. She is dedicated to helping change public perception and policy regarding psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy and ensuring that this treatment option becomes safe, sustainable, and equitably accessible in Canada.

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Holly Bennett

Holly Bennett

Bryce Koch

Bryce Koch is a harm reduction nurse who focuses on person-centered care and community development. Five years ago, he co-founded Project Safe Audience, a peer-based harm reduction program that targets high-risk behaviours in the rave/music festival population. PSA provides harm reduction supplies, onsite drug checking, and psychedelic/mental health crisis intervention for their target population.  Bryce has completed his Masters of Nurse Practitioner with a research focus on the therapeutic use of psychedelics, such as Psilocybin, MDMA, and LSD.  He completed his final practicum at Insite Safe Injection Site doing Safer Supply Prescribing

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Bryce Koch

Bryce Koch

Carmen Ostrander

Carmen Ostrander MA, RTC, MACA

Carmen is a psychedelic fringe dweller engaged in independent co-research and practice in Vancouver. Her community centered practice (Square Peg Therapy) works in service to artists, queer and gender diverse peers, informed by training and experinece in Narrative Therapy (Dulwich Centre) & Transpersonal Art Therapy in addition to a long history of enagement with the arts and substance use in naturalistic, ceremonial and therapeutic contexts.

She is currently a graduate student at the University of Ottawa in Psychedelics and Spirituality, and an associate and adjunct trainer with TheraPsil. Her deliberately secular approach has developed as a grass-roots collaborative response to unprecedented social suffering, specializing in relational psycholytic protocols with entactogens and cannabis.

Her practice straddles the considerable gap between medicalized and neo-spiritual approaches to substance assisted therapies.

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Carmen Ostrander

Carmen Ostrander

Scott Bernstein

Before joining MAPS Canada as Executive Director in September 2021, Scott Bernstein worked as Director of Policy with Canadian Drug Policy Coalition, where he led the organization’s work on decriminalization and the legal regulation of drugs. Through his own legal practice and with Vancouver-based Pivot Legal Society, Scott litigated cases advancing human rights of people who use drugs, including fighting for access to prescription heroin treatment, and defending Insite, North America’s first sanctioned injection site at all levels of court. Previously, Scott was a program officer with the Global Drug Policy Program of Open Society Foundations in New York, where he supported a global collection of organizations advocating for drug policy reform at the United Nations and a nascent drug policy movement in Africa. Scott has a MSc from the University of Wisconsin and a J.D. from the University of British Columbia.

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Scott Bernstein

Scott Bernstein

Joshua White

Joshua White is the Founder and Executive Director of Fireside Project. Joshua believes deeply in the power of peer support and in the role of support lines as foundational elements of an equitable mental-health ecosystem. Prior to founding Fireside Project, Joshua spent more than a decade representing the City of San Francisco in lawsuits against businesses exploiting vulnerable communities and co-teaching a nationally renowned clinic at Yale Law School. Joshua fell in love with the power of peer support during his many years volunteering on a helpline in San Francisco and as a Zendo Project volunteer at Burning Man.

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Joshua White

Joshua White

Todd Haspect

Todd Haspect, M.Ed., RCC
Todd is the facilitation lead with Roots to Thrive Society for Psychedelic  Therapy. He is of Mi’Kmaq and European ancestry. Todd brings 25 years of mental health and substance use experience, working as a therapist, educator, and system advocate.
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Todd Haspect

Todd Haspect