Toronto Biography

Michael Brudno
Scientific Director

Michael Brudno is a Professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Toronto and the Chief Data Scientist at the University Health Network (UHN). He is also a faculty member at the Vector Institute for Artificial Intelligence and the Scientific Director of HPC4Health, a private computing cloud for Ontario hospitals.

Amanda Silva, PMP, CSM
Program Manager

While working with a clinical research team, Amanda quickly became fascinated with the intricacies of project development and project management and obtained her CSM and PMP. With an interest in clinical workflows and enabling digital technology, she works with the DATA-PRO team helping clinicians, scientists and hospital directors to standardize the use and implementation of patient reported data across UHN.

Dorin Manase
Software Dev manager

Dorin’s passion is to pursue a career at the intersection of computer science and biology. He joined the DATA Team in 2016 where he combines his aptitude for genetics and genomics research, with a desire to continue to further his computational skills on a variety of patient facing applications geared towards connecting and supporting patient needs to improve clinical care.

Jonathan Dursi
Staff Scientist II

Jonathan Dursi leads the CanDIG effort, building a federated health research data platform to connect Canadian research genomics data across the country. Before joining the DATA Team, Jonathan worked at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research for the ICGC/TCGA PanCancer Analysis of Whole Genomes and nanopore sequencing.


Justin Foong, M.Sc., MBA
Health Research Informatics Manager

Justin received his masters in computer science and MBA from the University of Toronto. He is currently a Health Research Informatics Manager at the University Health Network for the DATA Team. He is interested in software development and computational analysis and their application to improve clinical datasets and healthcare.

Krista Pace, CSM
Product Manager

Krista works as a product manager for the DATA Team, focused mainly on the CARDs platform and helping to define its future. She works across a number of different software products, using her knowledge of existing software and expertise to try and bring people and their code together to use toward new projects. She loves meeting with users to figure out ways to put their vision into action and feels pride when someone is thrilled with features they hadn’t even considered.

Martha Girdea
Senior Manager

Marta began her journey with the DATA Team as a Post-doctoral fellow for Michael Brudno; her area of specialty was the standardization of clinical data. As a postdoc, Marta developed the initial versions of both PhenoTips and PhenomeCentral. Today, she is a Senior Manager for the DATA Team leading the development of the CARDS platform. Marta is responsible for writing specs, reviewing code, designing workflows, setting team objectives and priorities, and when time permits, writing code too.

Amanjeev Sethi, M.Sc.
Senior Application Development Specialist

Aman is a science enthusiast who has over ten years of experience in software development, infrastructure and automation engineering. He previously worked in the area of bioinformatics infrastructure at NCBI in Bethesda, Maryland USA. Aman joined the team in July 2019 to focus on the CanDIG project. These days he is interested in privacy.

Andrew Crowther, B.Eng
Software Developer

Andrew graduated from the University of Waterloo in spring 2020 with a degree in computer engineering. Since joining the team, he has been responsible for front- and back-end development on the CARDS projects.

Francis Nguyen
Web Developer

Francis joined the team in May 2019 following the completion of his Master’s in Medical Biophysics at the University of Toronto. He is a web developer by trade and spends a majority of his time working on frontend work for the CARDS project.

Haochi Zhang
Software Developer

Haochi joined the team as a software developer in 2019 to work on the PhenoPad project. Since then he has worked on various projects on processing medical documents and images using machine learning.

Jaryd Hunter, B.Sc., B.F.A
Machine Learning Specialist

Jaryd joined the DATA Team in the fall of 2021 as an application development specialist. His work is centred around applying ML solutions to healthcare problems. He holds a B.Sc in Computer Science from the University of Toronto, and a B.F.A. in theatrical production from York University. When he isn’t thinking about data sampling bias, he enjoys seeing local theatre.

Jagdeep Singh, B.Eng
DevOps Engineer

Before joining the DATA Team, Jagdeep worked as a DevOps System Administrator with Western University in Software Configuration Management and Software Release Engineering. His work on the team is focused on developing, automating, scaling and optimizing deployments, leveraging configuration management and DevOps processes. He is motivated by helping teams succeed by delivering well-designed applications.

Justin Bimbrahw, M.Eng, B.Eng
Software Developer

Justin joined UHN late 2020 as a software developer, working on the PATH project. Justin holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering sciences and a masters in electrical engineering from the University of Toronto. Before joining the team, he worked as a software developer in the urban rail industry and has also taught math and C++ programming at Loyalist and Durham College.

Kelly Bell, B.Sc.
Software Developer

Kelly holds a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from the University of Toronto and a Bachelor’s degree in Biological Science from the University of Guelph. She joined the DATA team in Spring 2021 as a software developer, eager to contribute to the development of software that promotes better health outcomes for patients. Before joining the DATA team, she was a full-stack developer at a security software company.

Martin Pham
Application Development Analyst

Martin joined the DATA team in 2018. He spends his time focused on
full-stack development and web technology requirements gathering. Most of his work involves consolidating different data sources and compute onto a user-friendly interface respecting the constraints of various stakeholder-networks.

Michael Lescisin, MASc, B.Eng
Application Development Analyst

Michael Lescisin holds a Master of Applied Science degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering at UOIT researching the use of machine learning for improving computer/network security and reliability. Currently, Michael implements application features, administers servers, and integrates academic research projects with production systems.


Nebiyou Petros
Clinical Research Data and Regulatory Coordinator

Nebiyou obtained a Masters of Public Health from Bahir Dar University in Ethiopia. Before joining our team, he worked as a surveillance officer for communicable diseases. Today his work involves understanding clinical datasets and mapping representations to different data models. He is interested in applying technology to connect siloed systems and streamline clinical workflows to improve the patient experience.

Parisa Osivand
Senior Privacy and Governance Analyst

Parisa is a health informatics professional with a strong interest in digital health. She received her Bachelor of Health Informatics at York University. She started her career as a network specialist and eventually moved to the data space in healthcare. She loves data and has worked on different aspects of it such as governance, quality, and privacy for several years. Some of her favourite topics center around data ethics, responsible AI, and Privacy Enhancing Technologies (PETs).

Peter Maksymowsky
Full Stack Developer

Peter is pursuing a B.A.Sc in Computer Engineering at the University of Toronto with a focus in software, machine learning, and engineering business. He is also a full-stack JavaScript developer with the DATA PRO team, helping build a number of clinical and research applications used across Canada.


Pouria Mashouri, M.Sc., BASc
Machine Learning Engineer

Pouria is committed to creating global impact in the way healthcare is delivered through collaboration and AI. He has had various occupations in this space including time spent as a system administrator, a bioinformatician, a full-stack web developer, and now as a machine learning specialist where he brings his breadth of experience to his work on the DATA team.

Samantha Palmer, M.Sc.
Health Data Policy and Communications Specialist

Samantha holds a Master of Science in Health Policy & Law from the University of California. Her passion is rooted in disseminating innovative methods of care delivery to optimize the healthcare journey. Samantha joined the team to utilize her experience in stakeholder communications and development of health data policies across the team’s project portfolio.

Sasha Andjic, B.Eng
Quality Assurance Analyst

From a very young age, Sasha knew she had a passion for IT. She pursued a degree in electrical engineering, with a major in computer science. Her professional career includes time spent as a software developer, business analyst and a project manager. Today, she continues to share her passion with the DATA team as a Quality Assurance Analyst.

Siyue Wang

Siyue is currently pursuing her MScAC degree in Computer Science at the University of Toronto. She joined the team as a co-op student to work on a project that enables cross-service queries using GraphQL.

Shaikh Rashid
Senior Application Development Specialist

Shaikh is a Senior Application Development Specialist at the University Health Network for the CanDIG project where he focuses on systems architecture, cloud/HPC, and variant analysis. Shaikh is also heavily involved in the application of GA4GH Cloud API standards and actively participating in discussions and working groups with international collaborators.

Sian Brooks
Administrative Assistant

Sian graduated from the University of Portsmouth, UK, with a BA Hons in Politics and International Relations. Since joining the team in November 2018 she continues to provide administrative support to Michael Brudno and the team at large.

Veronika Koltunova, M.Sc.
Senior Programmer/Analyst


Veronika holds two Master’s degrees in Pure Math and Computer Science from the University of Waterloo. Currently, she acts as a Sr. Programmer/Analyst at the University Health Network as part of the DATA Team developing a complex of software tools for phenotypic and genotypic matchmaking of patients with rare genetic diseases.

Yuriy Pavlov, H.BSc
Technical Analyst

With a shared interest in computer science and biology, Yuriy brings an unwavering passion for this space as a Technical Analyst for the DATA team. They lead design and development on dynamic consent and federated learning on the CanDIG project, while also helping the team by synthesizing ethical, regulatory, mathematical, and technical approaches to data privacy and security.

Zi Yi Chen, M.Sc.

Zi graduated from the University of Toronto with a Master of Science degree in Applied Computing. With an interest in machine learning, software development and all things loT he was a perfect fit for the DATA Team. Zi has been with the team since June 2020 as a software developer working on contact tracing applications.

Aryan Arbabi
PhD Student

Aryan is a Computer Science Ph.D. student at UofT where he is particularly interested in obtaining clinically important information from medical notes and medical graphs. His ultimate research goal is to develop Machine Learning and AI methods that can improve accessibility, affordability and accuracy in health care.

Arij Al Chawaf, Ph.D., H.BSc
MSc Student

Arij joined the team in 2021 as a Master’s student in Health Systems Artificial intelligence with the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation. She previously earned a PhD in neuroscience researching the role of a novel family of neuropeptides on emotionality circuits. Arij is also Executive Director, Strategic Initiative Development at the University of Toronto, overseeing the launch and growth of interdisciplinary research and training initiatives.

Fateme Sadat Haghpanah, M.Sc.
PhD Student

Fateme completed her MSc at Columbia University where she focused primarily on brain imaging and MRI modalities. Fateme has since begun her Ph.D. in Computer Science at the University of Toronto under Michael Brudno’s supervision given her strong inclination for medical imaging and machine learning. Her aspirations include improving health care quality provision, beyond any one image modality.

Kevin Faust
Undergraduate Student

As a 4th year undergraduate student at the University of Toronto, Kevin is interested in computational medicine and using machine learning to advance care delivery opportunities. In his role on the DATA team, he helps model EEG signal data using various machine learning models.

Jixuan Wang, M.Sc., B.Sc.
PhD Student

Jixuan is a Computer Science Ph.D. candidate at the University of Toronto investigating AI-enabled note-taking interfaces for patient encounters. He is interested in conversational understanding using deep learning and few-shot/transfer learning in general.

Nicole Sultanum, M.Sc.
PhD Student

Nicole is a Computer Science Ph.D. student at the University of Toronto, working with Fanny Chevalier and Michael Brudno. Her thesis research is on facilitating clinician access to information stored in medical text using data visualization. Prior to joining UofT, she was a Research Software Engineer for the Natural Resources group at IBM Research – Brazil.

Michael Cooper, M.S.
PhD Student

Michael is a Computer Science Ph.D. student at UofT, co-advised by Michael Brudno and Rahul Krishnan. His research is focused on leveraging machine learning to augment human intelligence in the practice of medicine, with the aim of improving the quality and accessibility of medical care. Prior to his doctoral studies, he earned B.S. and M.S. degrees in Computer Science from Stanford University, and worked in Program Management at Microsoft.


Sophie Liu
MSc Student

Sophie is a Computer Science Master’s student at UofT, working on bringing machine learning and mobile health together to help children and young adults manage chronic pain conditions. Her ultimate goal is to improve patient care and outcomes by helping to bring research results and innovation to the clinic.

Ian Ruffalo
MSc Student

Ian is a MSc student at the University of Toronto, interested in using machine learning with mobile sensing to improve treatment and outcomes for patients. He is also interested in the intersection of ML in health and safety-critical system design. Prior to joining UofT, he was a research Software Engineer working with autonomous vehicles at Thales Canada.

Sergey Protserov
PhD Student

Sergey is a PhD Direct student at the University of Toronto, his bachelor’s degree is in Applied Mathematics and Computer Science from Lomonosov Moscow State University. He joined the team in Fall 2021 as a machine learning specialist to work on medical applications of AI. In his free time Sergey likes to read different ML- and math-related stuff on the Internet.