Dr. Douglas B. DuVal

Anesthesiology, Edmonton 

REFLECTIONS ON SERVICE: I have served the AMA for more than 30 years, beginning in 1986 as a member of its committee reviewing anesthetic and operative deaths. Since then, I’ve been a representative and executive officer of the Section of Anesthesia and worked on committees focused on physician remuneration, such as the Committee on Fees and the provincial Schedule of Medical Benefits Sub-Committee, where I learned much about the complexities and impediments inherent to attempts to define and address intersectional fee relativity. In these roles I helped to enhance fees for many specialties that had been historically undervalued, including family practice, psychiatry, pediatrics and general internal medicine.

Within my specialty, I have contributed to provincial and national organizations, serving as President of the Canadian Anesthesiologists’ Society, which I also represented on the CMA Specialist Forum (which no longer exists), and I attended several CMA General Councils as an Alberta delegate or interested observer.

Serving one’s professional association yields immense satisfaction, with the hope of benefitting patients, the public and the profession. It has also given me the opportunity to know, understand and appreciate my outstanding colleagues. We are better physicians when we feel connected to our medical community.

PERSONAL INTERESTS: My wife Monique and I have four amazing adult children, two wonderful daughters-in-law and four delightful grandchildren. We try to stay physically active, and have participated in endurance sports such as triathlon and long-distance running. We like to hike, cycle and paddle, and enjoy time in Canmore and Northern Ontario. In our remaining years of working life and our anticipated retirement, we hope to visit places on our growing list of exotic destinations, and nurture a few embryonic and theoretical hobbies.

Dr. Steven M. Edworthy

Rheumatology, Calgary

REFLECTIONS ON SERVICE: Alberta physicians have been at the forefront of technology advances, particularly in the use of electronic medical record systems. Through Alberta Medical Association leadership, we have been able to work with Alberta Health and Alberta Health Services to develop appropriate legislation for health information and standards of information that improve the care of patients in a safe, secure manner. We also worked with colleagues across Canada through the Canadian Medical Association, learning from the experience of others and sharing our work with other Provincial and Territorial Medical Associations (PTMA).

Through the AMA and the CMA, I have met and worked with many colleagues across Alberta and Canada. It has been my pleasure over the past 30 years to work with colleagues on many committees, both provincial and national, dealing with the momentous changes electronic medical records have made in our care processes, including presentations on Canada Health Infoway, Physician Office System Program (Alberta) and the CMA regional technology forums.

The AMA has provided leadership at critical times by negotiating with government, explaining to members, pushing ahead with technology and offering support to decision makers. It gives physicians a voice that articulates their need for functional records that interface with provincial repositories and the ability to run the business of their clinics. Despite some of the recent challenges physicians have faced, we can still advance the optimal care of patients through our national organization, the CMA. I highly recommend that new physicians participate in efforts that will affect the future of medicine in Canada.

PERSONAL INTERESTS: My wife, Shawna, and I enjoy our outdoor pursuits with friends. We intend to continue hiking, skiing and canoeing for a few years yet! Yoga is another interest we share, and it has been my pleasure to introduce many patients to the practice of yoga through my clinical area of rheumatology.

Dr. Brent T. Friesen

Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Calgary 

REFLECTIONS ON SERVICE: I have enjoyed being a member of the CMA and the AMA. Serving on Representative Forum has been both a privilege and a challenge as I try to represent the perspectives of my colleagues. I particularly enjoyed being a member of the Health Issues Council, which works to promote wellness and develop collaborative partnerships through initiatives such as Finding Balance and the Youth Run Club, and which has made recommendations to the CMA on issues of potential national interest. 

I am especially proud of how the AMA and the CMA have adopted a broad perspective on health and well-being in their advocacy and community outreach activities, using their credibility and national voice to address the broad determinants of health. They have played an important role in advocating effective policies and interventions at the national and provincial levels to improve health and well-being. The current opioid and vaping epidemics reinforce the importance of this ongoing commitment to protect and promote public health. 

Participation in the AMA and CMA offers the opportunity for a much greater collective impact than any individual physician could hope to have. My involvement has created opportunities for interactions with colleagues across Alberta and Canada, giving me a better understanding of their challenges and successes as they respond to the needs of their patients and their communities.

PERSONAL INTERESTS: I enjoy spending time with my wife Denise and family gatherings with our children and their spouses – Ashley (Mark), Sarah (Jack), and Nicholas (Shalane) – and our three granddogs Rogan, Kira and Keisha 2.0. I like assisting Denise with gardening in our backyard, and I continue to be optimistic that we can have a Japanese Maple tree survive a Calgary winter.

Dr. Gordon H. Johnson

Cytopathology, Edmonton

REFLECTIONS ON SERVICE: My recollection of dates is hazy, but my involvement with the AMA began in the early 1980s when I worked with the Fees Committee of the Alberta Society of Laboratory Physicians (back when there was a Pathology Fee Schedule). This led to becoming a member of the AMA Fees Committee, and I continued with this group for many years. I will not forget the many challenges we dealt with, including the early efforts to deal with intersectional fee disparities. While I was on that committee, we initiated efforts to make the fee schedule more equitable and introduced the use of a relative value guide to enable this.

Working with the AMA provides the opportunity to become familiar with all of the non-medical aspects of our work and to develop contacts and friends across the province. I have always been impressed with the superb abilities of the AMA staff on the committee. Their skills made the very large amount of work involved manageable.

PERSONAL INTERESTS:  I will leave clinical practice at the end of October this year, after which I may continue to do some consulting work. My wife and I plan to continue to work our way through our travel bucket list. We have a beautiful home in Vernon, BC, next to two wonderful golf courses. We enjoy kayaking and hiking in the area as well. We have one delightful granddaughter, and we hope to spend time with her and with any others that arrive, if we are so blessed.

Dr. Gerhard (Gerry) N. Kiefer

Pediatric Orthopedics, Calgary 

REFLECTIONS ON SERVICE: Over the years, I  have been involved in a wide range of AMA and CMA committees, including their respective Boards and a term as AMA President. This experience has enhanced my professional and interpersonal skills, offering insight through interacting with and learning from a diverse group of physicians and staff members within the organizations. 

My involvement in the CMA has allowed my participation in advocacy, governance and multiple committees over the years. In my personal and corporate involvement, I have always emphasized the need for transparency and honesty.

Involvement in these professional organizations gives individual physicians the opportunity to influence the decision-making process, health care resources and the entire health care system. The collective wisdom of the group, combined with physician professionalism, honesty, transparency and passion creates the foundation for our strength. Working together strengthens professional skills, provides insight into health care administration and patient advocacy, and offers leadership opportunities in both academic and hospital settings. 

PERSONAL INTERESTS: My family time is precious and rejuvenates my passion and enthusiasm for work and play. My wife and life partner has not only been extremely supportive of all my efforts, but also provides sage advice in everything we do. Spending time with extended family, especially my grandchildren, helps focus me on what’s important. I enjoy music, reading, gardening and a variety of sports, although these have become less competitive over time, transitioning to tennis, hiking, cycling and spin classes. 

In addition, I have always enjoyed community service and take every opportunity within the corporate community to emphasize the need for philanthropic support of the Alberta Children’s Hospital and the ACH Foundation in our pursuit of excellence in both clinical care and research.

Dr. Dale C. Lien

Pulmonary Medicine, Edmonton 

REFLECTIONS ON SERVICE: I first became involved with the AMA in 1986 when I joined a Toward Optimized Practice (TOP) committee on respiratory infection. I became the AMA Pulmonary Representative and delegate to the Representative Forum, a position I held until 2015. I’ve served as fees representative for our section, was involved in the Relative Value Guide process, served a term on the Physician Compensation Committee, and was involved in several other projects. It was a privilege to represent my section colleagues and to contribute to this outstanding organization.

Working for improvement in patient care, for fee equity and in government negotiations gave me the opportunity to work with AMA members of great vision and determination. During my time with the AMA, I witnessed tremendous growth and many remarkable projects that have helped make the AMA the effective organization that it is. 

Being a member of the AMA has offered me the chance to work on interesting projects and with exceptional and talented people, and to learn about things I wouldn’t have learned about otherwise. The strength of the AMA lies in its members and their willingness to champion the interests of our profession and our patients through both good and difficult times. Participating in the AMA is a way to promote real change in Alberta.

PERSONAL INTERESTS: Lung transplantation remains my passion, and I plan to continue my involvement for as long as possible. I enjoy spending time with my wife of 44 years, Maureen, who has been my greatest support. We have been blessed with four children and 10 grandchildren. Being involved with them and watching them grow is my other great passion. 

Dr. Roger C. Rampling

Psychiatry, Lethbridge

REFLECTIONS ON SERVICE: I have been fortunate to serve with the Alberta division of the Canadian Medical Association and as psychiatry section representative to the 1991-92 and fin de siècle versions of the Relative Value Guide and the current equity initiative ANDI (Adjusted Net Daily Income), respectively. I’ve felt honored to represent the entire profession on the AMA Fees Advisory Committee and have enjoyed participating and watching as our Representative Forum evolved and grew into an honorable, collegial and remarkably effective organization. I am truly proud of its national reputation.

In my own specialty, we developed fee items to better include families, and provide timely and cost-effective second opinions and conference services to coordinate care between family physicians, hospital and community-based treatment teams. Our AMA has built a successful, effective and credible Physician and Family Support Program for our colleagues and their loved ones.

PERSONAL INTERESTS: Outside of medicine, I am a second-generation Rotarian; I’ve been part of my club for 32 years! Our club hits well above its weight. We’ve built a hospital in India, an early childhood school in Mexico, a country-leading girl’s school in East Africa and an annual program to deliver recycled emergency vehicles to Mexico. Our club maintains a special focus on youth development with local, national and international exchanges, enrichment, leadership and scholarship programs. The international initiative to eradicate polio began with Rotarians who have donated many hundreds of millions of dollars to this end. You too could be part of Rotary!

Dr. Fredrykka D. Rinaldi

Family Medicine, Medicine Hat 

REFLECTIONS ON SERVICE: I have had the privilege of working with the most talented and dedicated physicians and AMA staff. My service on the AMA Board of Directors, Section of General Practice Executive, Representative Forum (Deputy Speaker, Speaker and Member), and President of the South Zone Medical Staff Association has reaffirmed for me the power of a united and engaged professional voice in advancing the working environment of physicians and their ability to provide and define excellent patient care. My tenure on the Canadian Medical Protective Association General Council and my term as Chair of Palliser PCN have enabled me to engage with the AMA on strategic issues facing our profession.

I encourage all physicians to look beyond the walls of your practice setting for ways of advancing your profession. Never sacrifice your professional autonomy; it is what enables us to put patients first.

PERSONAL INTERESTS: In my other life I am committed to two rescue dogs, both nine years old and 65 pounds, with tons of attitude and boundary issues. I love fashion and gardening. I grow flowers and veggies, and I even preserve what I grow. I bike (on a GSXR 1000). My newest – and growing – passion is for wine. 

Dr. Peter M. Venner

Medical Oncology, Edmonton 

REFLECTIONS ON SERVICE: I served on the Toward Optimized Practice in Screening for Prostate Cancer committee for nine years, during which time we came up with evidence-based guidelines. I was on the Board of Directors and worked on the Relative Value Guide for remuneration of physicians. Some years ago, I served on the Committee on Ethics discussing Medical Assistance in Dying. Our early discussions at the provincial level helped to guide the CMA when it worked on later legislation.

Involvement with the AMA early on taught me that my seniors were tremendous mentors, and gave me the courage and support to take on more demanding roles. There will always be criticism, but if it’s constructive and offered in an attempt to improve outcomes, especially in patient care, then it should be gratefully received and built upon. 

At the end of your career you want to be able to say that you were involved. Working with provincial and national medical organizations allows your voice to be heard, and will help you develop skills and build confidence to take on leadership roles in areas related to your practice and professional development. Ultimately, it leads to better patient care.

PERSONAL INTERESTS: Having grown up in Jasper, I have a lifelong appreciation of the outdoors. I love the liquid water of our lakes, rivers and oceans, and the solid water in our mountains. I enjoy the short grass on the links and the tall grass of the prairies and foothills. 

Without the support of family, colleagues and friends, I would not be able to look back on such a successful and rewarding career. I was fortunate to have been able to pursue a career in medicine that involved clinical care, research, teaching, and administration. My patients and their families had faith in the care I was providing, and I hope I didn’t let them down.