Hey there. My name’s Geoff and I am the Executive Director at Epilepsy Toronto. It’s my job to ensure that things run smoothly around here, and that people with epilepsy and their families in this community get the support and information they need to live well with epilepsy. I view our agency as a sort of home away from home for its members; a place where one can be loved and accepted unconditionally, connect with others who share a common bond, and turn to for help when needed the most. It’s more than a professional service organization. It’s family. And I’m passionately committed to ensuring that family is as vibrant and strong as it can be. I am blessed with an amazing team of staff and volunteers who share that passion, and honoured to work at their side on your behalf. If there is any way that we can be of service to you and your family, I’d love to hear from you. Perhaps there’s something new or different you would have us provide, or some way that we could improve? I welcome your feedback. And I invite you to get involved. Volunteers and donors are the backbone of this organization. Without their contributions and support, we simply could not exist.
Stephanie Aniol, MSW, RSW
Social Worker, Adult Services
Hi there, I’m Stephanie! I am a Social Worker in Adult Services, here at Epilepsy Toronto. In this role, I have the opportunity to provide counselling, education, resources and advocacy support to people living with epilepsy, and to their partners and families. It’s a privilege to support people as they tap into their resilience! I am committed to working collaboratively and compassionately with clients, in hopes of creating safe, respectful and supportive spaces. I have a Masters degree in Social Work, and belong to the Ontario College of Social Workers & Social Service Workers and Ontario Association of Social Workers. I come to Epilepsy Toronto after having worked with post-secondary students as a mental health counsellor and professor, and managing workshops, and community and fundraising events for not-for-profit organizations. If you have questions about epilepsy, or would like some support to deal with its impact on your life, I hope you’ll reach out!
Katie Armstrong, MSW, RSW
Director of Children & Youth Services (on leave)
Katie is currently on leave, returning June 2024. Hi, I'm Katie Armstrong. As the Director of Children of Youth Services, I am here to provide support, resources and experiences, to any child and youth with epilepsy, and their support system. Here at Epilepsy Toronto, I am committed to creating a safe, inclusive, empowering environment for all clients and their needs, while connecting and educating our epilepsy community as a whole. I've been involved with Epilepsy Toronto for a number of years, through our diverse programs, events and active epilepsy community; each providing new experiences and learning opportunities. I completed a Masters of Social Work degree in 2009, specializing in Children and Families, along with completing a Bachelor of Arts degree, with a Psychology and Sociology focus in 2007. My years of experience in the field of social work and counselling have centered around individuals and families with Epilepsy, Autism, and Mental Health, both in Canada and the United Kingdom. Over the years, I have continued to add to my professional development in order to support my clients more thoroughly, by adding certificates in various programs, including CyberCounselling, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, and Infant Mental Health. I look forward to meeting you and providing the support your family needs, throughout your epilepsy journey.
Co-Director of TAP
Hi, I’m Rindy, the Co-Director of Teaching Awareness through Puppetry (TAP). I joined the team in 2012. Teaching Awareness through Puppetry is an educational outreach program for Epilepsy. We use life size puppets to teach students in grades K-6 about awareness of differences. We could come to your school to teach children about seizure first aid and what is like to be a person living with Epilepsy. Over my career I have worked at Ogilvy & Mather advertising in Toronto and the UK as an Account Director and a Training Leader. At TAP we are always looking for new volunteers and funding ideas. If you would like to volunteer or donate to the program or book a workshop, please email me. I look forward to hearing from you.
Workforce Development Specialist
Hello! My name is Michelle. I have been working with job seekers for over a decade in the areas of job search strategies, work placements and employer outreach. I've worked primarily with Canadian newcomers, youth and persons with disabilities. I find that having a purpose to wake up to every day is so essential. At Epilepsy Toronto my roles are job developer and employer outreach and engagement specialist. I meet with clients and lead workshops on job search and preparation. Plus I organize events for clients and bring Epilepsy Toronto and people together.
Elana Ellison, MA, CCLS
Coordinator of Children and Youth Services
Hi, I’m Elana (rhymes with banana!) and I work with young people and their families at Epilepsy Toronto. As the Coordinator of Children and Youth Services, I am here to develop and provide meaningful programming that facilitates connection and empowerment for youth and families impacted by epilepsy. I also provide education and counselling to young people and caregivers to help foster understanding of their diagnosis, enhance coping, and build confidence in living well with epilepsy. My education and training are focused in child development, family systems, and pediatric psychosocial care. I hold an MA in Early Childhood Studies from Ryerson University and have completed post-graduate diplomas in Child Life and Clinical Behavioural Sciences at McMaster University. Prior to joining the team at Epilepsy Toronto, I worked as a child life specialist at McMaster Children's Hospital.
Director of Development
Hi, I’m Brandon, the Director of Development for Epilepsy Toronto. I first became involved with Epilepsy Toronto when I joined the team at BuskerFest in 2006. Over my career I have worked as the Event Logistics Manger for Pride Toronto, Community Partnership Manager for Pink Triangle Press and as the Executive Director for the LGBT Youth Line. These years in building community engagement programs and strategic partnerships have helped me build relationships with the amazing members at Epilepsy Toronto and corporate partners. In my role as Director of Development for Epilepsy Toronto I am responsible for building strategic partnerships, soliciting donations, organizing some of our fundraising events and finding new and creative ways to increase our funds so that our agency can continue to run our specialized programs and services. If you have fundraising ideas or would like to know how you can help us in a fundraising capacity, please send me an e-mail. I look forward to hearing from you.
Hi, I'm Lucia Gustave, the Communication Specialist on the team. I work closely with the Director of Communications to support all the efforts the communication department makes to positively impact our members' lives. I'm a Marketing and Communications professional passionate about Project Management and making the world a better place. In my previous placements, I managed a Social Responsibility Project in Central America and implemented charity campaigns to assist homeless youth. My interest in the non-profit sector led me to the Epilepsy Toronto family and the mission we support inspires me to give my 100% to help people living with this condition. When we take a positive and creative approach, there is no goal we can't accomplish! If you have any communications inquiries or suggestions, please feel free to email me. I will be happy to connect with you.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Lead
Hello, my name is Noura and I am the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Lead. I work closely with the different teams at Epilepsy Toronto to continue to ensure that all our programs and services are equitable and represent the needs of our diverse clientele. My goal is to establish partnerships with communities of diversity to expand outreach to people living with epilepsy. I hold a Master’s Degree in Epidemiology from Western University. In the past I have worked in patient education at the University Health Network Hospitals and as a researcher in the department of Global Health at the University of Toronto focusing on women’s health in countries in conflict. Looking forward to connecting with every member of our community. Please feel free to reach out to me at email@example.com
Employment Services Manager
Hey, my name's Carter and I'm the Manager of Employment Services. During my time here I've found myself deeply moved by the inspiring stories I've heard: Stories of courage, resilience and hope. Often those stories centre upon the struggle to maintain a livelihood while dealing with the challenges of epilepsy and its related conditions. I'm here to help you plot strategies around issues like disclosure, self-advocacy and accommodations. If you need help with career planning, resume writing, interview skills or job maintenance issues, than I'm your "go-to" guy for those things as well. Together we can identify realistic career goals and the methods of accomplishing those goals. I also offer a broad array of employment related-workshops to both our stakeholders and employers which I'm happy to customize to your individual needs. With over two decades' worth of experience in social work, employment counselling, journalism and adult education across a broad range of sectors, I am also a graduate of Cape Breton University with a degree in Community Studies. I look forward to meeting and working with you!
Facilitator of Lifeskills
416-964-9095 ext. 234
Hello. My name is Danielle, and I am incredibly excited to be in the role of Facilitator of Lifeskills at Epilepsy Toronto. I possess a diploma in Developmental Services and a Specialized Academic Certificate in Indigenous Studies. Prior to my work with Epilepsy Toronto, I worked in the field of Developmental Services for 15 years. I have worked in residential and community participation both in front-line and supervisory roles. I love finding ways to apply my knowledge and values to my role as Facilitator of Lifeskills and having the opportunity to support people living with epilepsy.
Hello there! I am Joanna Kapusta the Office Manager at Epilepsy Toronto. I am usually the first face you see when you enter our office and the first voice you hear when you call, and if it needs to be done, I am probably doing it. I am a true generalist who lives to serve others and I truly believe that there is no job that is too big or too small. As a result, I have done event planning, fundraising, research, knowledge mobilization, database management, business analytics, and even some human resources. I represent Epilepsy Toronto and our community at the Ontario Brain Institute, working to bridge the gap between community need and research. If you need something, give me a call. If I can't help you, I will find someone who can!
Director of Communications / BuskerFest Entertainment & Marketing Director
Hi, I'm Mackenzie and the Director of Communications here at Epilepsy Toronto. That means I'm responsible for all of our materials and newsletters, our visibility in the media, our website, our social media presence and supporting the rest of the team here with their communication needs. Most importantly, I'm here to tell our stories: the stories of the agency and the work that we do; the stories of our members and their experiences living with epilepsy. I am also the Entertainment and Marketing Director for the Toronto International BuskerFest for Epilepsy. I've been working with Epilepsy Toronto on this event since it began back in 2000 and I have watched it grow into the incredible festival it is today, the largest epilepsy awareness event in the world! For the festival, I take care of the performers and many aspects of the promotion and publicity of the event. It makes me very proud to work on such a unique and vibrant arts festival that hosts performers, and spectators from around the world. But it makes me even prouder to know that it's all in support of such a great cause.
Director of Development
Hi, I’m Nicole. I am the Director of Development for Epilepsy Toronto. I have been involved with this fantastic agency since 2002 and I’m inspired each week by our members. I am inspired because so many of them manage the difficult challenges of epilepsy but never seem to lose their dedication or resolve. Epilepsy Toronto is a great place to work and I am honoured to be part of this community. I have worked for over a decade in communications and event management, and several years as a fundraiser, specializing in grants. Overall, I have been involved in the non-profit sector for over 20 years. As the Director of Development, I am responsible for soliciting donations, writing grants and finding new and creative ways to increase our funds so that our agency can continue to run our specialized programs and services.
Eden Peters, MSc, CCLS
Coordinator, Children and Youth Services
Hi there, I’m Eden and I am super excited to be joining the Children and Youth Services team at Epilepsy Toronto. My educational background is focused in early childhood and I am a Registered Early Childhood Educator and a Certified Child Life Specialist with an MSc in Child Life and Paediatric Psychosocial Care. I can’t wait to meet all of you through our programming and continue building the incredible Epilepsy Toronto community!
Hello, My name is Jesse, I am a Job Developer and Retention Specialist. Over the course of my life, I have been inspired by the personal and societal development of people with disabilities. The determination, growth and social advancement has been meaningful. My job involves connecting clients to opportunities for professional growth, assisting with the transition to employment and outreaching to employers to increase accessibility. Mock interviews, marketing, job search skills, networking, job coaching, advocating to employers and training are some of the many ways I can augment your job search. A graduate in Business and Project Management from Centennial College, I have over five years' experience in recruitment, job development and coaching. During the course of my career, I have also been involved in the development of seven companies, programs and social projects, including the successful launch of the Athletic and Wellness Centre at Centennial and the CAN-tastic Food Bank project. I look forward to working with you and making the world more accessible.
Anchugan Sivagnanam, MSW, RSW
Social Worker, Adult Services
(416) 964-9095 ext. 227
Hi, my name is Anchugan. I am a Social Worker for Adult Services here at Epilepsy Toronto. I have my Masters of Social Work. In this role, I have the privilege to work with individuals living with epilepsy and their loved ones. I provide education, counselling and advocacy. I work collaboratively with individuals to develop tools and resources to support them as they continue to work towards their life goals while living with epilepsy. Prior to coming to Epilepsy Toronto, I worked in the social service and mental health field for over eight years with diverse populations. I worked as a crisis worker supporting individuals' mental health. I provided support to newcomers, individuals experiencing homelessness and individuals with developmental disabilities. I am passionate about supporting individuals in their time of need and helping empower them to overcome their challenges. If you or your loved one has been diagnosed with Epilepsy and would like support, please do not hesitate to reach out to our team.
Rosalee (Rosie) Smith, MA, RP
Director of Adult Services
Hi, I'm Rosalee, but you can call me Rosie. Are you living with epilepsy and don't know who to turn to? Don't worry, I am your go-to person! I provide services and run programs for adults living with epilepsy and their families. I am constantly amazed and inspired to witness the resilience and courage demonstrated by our members as they struggle to cope with the impact of epilepsy. If you need support and guidance, then come see me! I am available to assist with counselling for individuals, couples and families. I facilitate support groups, advocate and provide information and epilepsy training to the community. My passion is people and my mission is to empower and make a positive difference in the lives of those I serve. I hold a Masters degree in Counselling Psychology, as well as graduate certification in social work, nursing and midwifery. My years of experience in the field of counselling, social work, teaching and training, has enabled me to work effectively in this role. I am committed to listening and responding to the needs of our adult members and providing the support needed in a warm and caring atmosphere. Call or e-mail me if you are an adult with epilepsy or you know someone with epilepsy. I will be happy to help! Member of the Ontario Association of Registered Psychotherapists and Mental Health Professionals (OACCPP) Registered with the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO)
Co-Director of TAP
HI! I’m Kirsten and I’m an Occupational Therapist who has have been involved with Teaching Awareness through Puppetry (TAP) for over 16 years; first as a puppeteer and currently as Co-Director since 2007. I have been involved in program development, strategic program change, marketing, health promotion, education and research, puppeteer training and disability awareness. Prior to this, I worked at Women’s College Hospital for over 10 years running outpatient orthopaedic clinics. I have a passion for live theatre and education which is why working for TAP, fulfills both areas of interest. If you would like to learn about our educational outreach program & see some puppets, visit our website at www.tap-toronto.com or reach out to us through email, Kirsten- firstname.lastname@example.org or Rindy- email@example.com
Hi, my name is John and I am the Recreation Group Coordinator here at Epilepsy Toronto. In this role, I have the opportunity and privilege of developing and supervising social and recreational activities and events for adults living with epilepsy. A graduate from the University of Toronto, specializing in Biology and Psychology, my background includes years of experience supervising, counselling and motivating children and adults living with a wide range of physical and intellectual disabilities; one-to-one work with children on the autism spectrum; as well as my 10 years of Crisis Intervention experience at Toronto East General Hospital’s Emergency Department, assessing and providing treatment for patients in crisis. All this, in addition to my work as a member of the Risk Management Disability, Diversity, and Inclusion committee while working in the financial industry, have afforded me the ability to create unique experiences for members attending the Recreation Group. I am committed to making sure attending members always feel welcome, feel that they are in a safe, inclusive, empowering environment, find meaning and purpose in the activities they participate in, all while having fun and making friends along the way. If you would like more information or are interested in joining our Recreation group, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Leah Sultan-Khan, EdD, MA, CHES
Director of Community Engagement & Public Education
Hi, I’m Leah and I am a Health Education Specialist & Community Engagement professional with over 15 years combined experience in the community, hospital, government and international development sectors. I’m excited to rejoin Epilepsy Toronto after 5 years away, and look forward to enhancing community relations, engaging clients in shared decision making and providing services that are inclusive and equitable. I hold a Doctorate and certification in Health Education and Masters in Comparative, International, and Development Education. This foundation has provided me with a firm understanding of the social determinants of health and behaviour change models. I am committed to building partnerships and working collaboratively with communities to address the needs of people living with epilepsy across the continuum of care. Please call or e-mail me if you have any suggestions on how we can together support clients throughout their epilepsy journey.
Festival Director, Toronto International BuskerFest
Hi, am Bonnie "Tornado" Taylor the festival director for Toronto International BuskerFest . I have had the great privilege of working with Epilepsy Toronto on this great event since 2005. In addition I help out with Epilepsy Toronto's Christmas Gift Wrap campaign, and many other Epilepsy Toronto events over the years. Looking forward to continuing to bring Epilepsy "Out of the Shadows".
Board of Directors
Daryl Yeo – President
Wende Rapson – Secretary