Public talk examines how to lead change in mental health, addictions, education, and other public service programs

Todd Leader is the author of “Not About Us: The Secret to Transforming the Mental Health and Addiction System in Canada”
Monday, September 18, 2017
Todd Leader

UPEI’s Faculty of Education and the Applied Communication, Leadership, and Culture program are hosting a public talk by Todd Leader, a transformational leader in health services and health promotion, particularly in the areas of mental health, addictions, and primary health care. Leader’s talk is titled “Transformational Leadership in the Public Sector: how to lead change in mental health and addictions, education, and other public service programs.” The event begins at 7:00 pm, Wednesday, September 27 in the Alex H. MacKinnon Auditorium, room 242 of Don and Marion McDougall Hall.

Leader will examine the role and ideal nature of transformational leadership in the public sector. He will describe a principle-based way of leading improvement in public services. The approach he will outline is built specifically from the perspective and best interests of the clients, students, families, or public being served. He will discuss ways in which our public systems often maintain the status quo and resist change. He will illustrate, through examples, that much of the frustration with public programs (health, education, community services, etc.) is not the fault of the people providing the services, but instead is caused by the way administrative systems have evolved (rather than being intentionally designed) over time. Leader will provide practical tips for effective leadership and advocacy that move toward truly client-centered, student-centered, or public-centered systems.

Todd Leader, an alumnus of Cape Breton University and Memorial University of Newfoundland, is a registered psychologist and a registered social worker. He has spent 27 years working as a transformational leader in health services and in health promotion, particularly in the areas of mental health, addictions, and primary health care. He has also been teaching in the Faculty of Science at Saint Mary’s University for the same 27 years. Leader has twice earned awards for his teaching, including the Overall Excellence in Teaching Award, the highest award presented by the Saint Mary’s University Students’ Association. Health services under his leadership have earned two international best practice awards and a leadership award for excellence in women’s health.

Leader was appointed by the Nova Scotia Minister of Health and Wellness to the Ministerial Advisory Panel on Innovation in Mental Health and Addictions. Todd has been the president of the Public Health Association of Nova Scotia and a member of the board of directors of the Canadian Public Health Association. He is currently both the president of the Association of Psychologists of Nova Scotia and the Vice President of the Nova Scotia College of Social Workers. Leader is the lead for year-three of the SEAK Project (Socially & Emotionally Aware Kids), up-scaling the integration of social and emotional learning in schools and communities across Atlantic Canada.

Leader has spent his career working as an advocate for client-centered health services and evidence-based healthy public policy. His most recent accomplishment is a book called It’s Not About Us; The Secret to Transforming the Mental Health and Addiction System in Canada. He currently works as a consultant and speaker helping to lead client-centered system improvements.

All are welcome!

The University of Prince Edward Island prides itself on people, excellence, and impact and is committed to assisting students reach their full potential in both the classroom and community. With roots stemming from two founding institutions—Prince of Wales College and Saint Dunstan’s University—UPEI has a reputation for academic excellence, research innovation, and creating positive impacts locally, nationally, and internationally. UPEI is the only degree granting institution in the province and is proud to be a key contributor to the growth and prosperity of Prince Edward Island. UPEI is located on the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq People.

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