CAOT-North Advisory Committee

The CAOT-North Advisory Committee:

  • provides consultation, advice, and support to CAOT with respect to provincial issues related to occupational therapy, to advance excellence in the profession, and
  • promotes information sharing and coordinated planning on provincial issues related to occupational therapy to further the development of the profession.

Advisory Committee:


Cathy McNeil (acting Chair)
Cathy McNeil is currently the Manager of Community Care with the Yukon Government.  In this role she provides leadership, direction, and support to the Yukon Community Care Program.  Prior to her move to the Yukon, Cathy spent over 7 years in Iqaluit, Nunavut working as an occupational therapist and as the Territorial Rehabilitation Coordinator. In November 2014, Cathy completed her Master of Adult Education through St. Francis Xavier University. Her research focused on exploring community development as a model of practice for rehabilitation professionals in Iqaluit. Since moving to the Yukon, Cathy has been a member of the Association of Yukon Occupational Therapists and, while in Nunavut, participated in the Northern Association of Occupational Therapists based in Yellowknife. Cathy has a keen interest in Rural and Remote Practice and previously chaired the CAOT Rural and Remote Practice Network. In the past she also worked with the CAOT Aboriginal Health Network. Cathy continues to encourage occupational therapists to explore the concept of cultural safety in their Northern Practice.

 nathalie doucet  

Melissa Croskery
Melissa Croskery graduated from the University of Ottawa with a B.Sc. in Occupational Therapy in 2000. She started her career working at various Children's Treatment Centres in southern Ontario. In 2004, she decided to embark on an adventure and drove across the country, landing in Whitehorse, Yukon for a one-year position working for the Department of Education as a school-based OT. Over 14 years later, the adventure continues! After spending some time working at the Whitehorse General Hospital, and in long-term care, Melissa settled back into a permanent position with the Department of Education, providing consultation to teachers and students in order to increase their success in the school environment both in Whitehorse as well as in the communities across Yukon. As a "jack of all trades" in OT, Melissa has recently focused on several areas of practice including assistive technology, trauma-informed care and self-regulation, and has been able to share this knowledge through consultation with Education colleagues in Northwest Territories and Nunavut. In her "downtime", Melissa balances playdates, hockey practices, ballet rehearsals, and other mom duties out in the beautiful community of Marsh Lake, enjoying the recreational opportunities and the quiet lifestyle it provides. In recent years, she feels she has rediscovered her passion for occupational therapy and wants to help spread the good news about how OT can help people engage meaningfully in life through connection and occupation.

anita gagnon

Heidi Croucher
Heidi graduated from the School of Occupational Therapy at Dalhousie University in 2003.  She has worked with clients across the life span in multiple practice settings in rural and remote communities in Northern Alberta and Newfoundland and Labrador.  Heidi gained over 9 years experience in a homecare setting with community clients on the west coast of Newfoundland prior to retuning to her hometown of Whitehorse, Yukon, and is currently in a term position as Supervisor of Therapeutic Services with the Yukon Government.

Heidi is a former member of the Alberta Association of Occupational Therapists, the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Occupational Therapists and the Yukon Association of Occupational Therapists. She looks forward to collaborating with occupational therapists from across the North to further promote and advocate for the profession of occupational therapy as a member of the CAOT-North advisory committee.

 isabelle matte

Darlene de Leon
Darlene graduated from Occupational Therapy at the University of Toronto. She is primarily a community occupational therapist in Rankin Inlet, although she serves three other Nunavut communities: Arviat, Whale Cove and Naujaat. Darlene works with all ages with various diagnoses. Prior to moving to Nunavut, Darlene worked as an occupational therapist at the University Hospital of Northern British Columbia (UHNBC) in Prince George. Her passion as an occupational therapist is driven by her commitment as a life-long learner, to embrace challenges, to be open to new opportunities and to make a positive difference everywhere she goes. Being a part of CAOT- North, she hopes to contribute to the development of the chapter and advocate for the unique needs and issues that affect the profession and services offered to this northern population.


marc rouleau

Kaitlynn Dewhirst
Kaitlynn currently works at the Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) with the Government of the Northwest Territories as the Clinical Mental Health Program Specialist.  Her role is to assist with the implementation of Bill 55; the new Mental Health Act in the NT.

Kaitlynn graduated from Queen’s University with an MSc OT in 2011.  Since then she has enjoyed broad practice experience including inpatient acute, community health, outpatients, hand therapy, residential care and a private practice (medical legal, return to work, case management and school health.) Her passion throughout has been mental health, as it touches all people across practice settings.  Kaitlynn moved to Yellowknife in 2015 and worked at Stanton Territorial Hospital as both an inpatient and outpatient therapist.  Prior to transitioning to the DHSS she was the inpatient psychiatry and community mental health OT.  

Looking forward, Kaitlynn is excited to be a part of this new CAOT chapter.  Therapists in NT and Nunavut have not had the benefit of a formal association for some time and she looks forward to connecting with colleagues across the North (in all three territories!)

 martine robin

Linsey Doucette
Linsey is an occupational therapist who works with the Northwest Territories Health and Social Services Authority. Linsey has been working in the pediatric school-aged service area for seven years and, as of September 2018, moved into the role of an ASD Occupational Therapy Consultant. She is passionate about consulting with teachers and families to better understand their child and promote the child’s successes in all capacities. Most of her work is in Yellowknife however she also provides outreach travel services in other regions of the NWT and Kitikmeot region of Nunavut.

Linsey graduated with a MSc Occupational Therapy degree from Dalhousie University and a BSc degree in Kinesiology from the University of New Brunswick. She moved to Yellowknife in 2009 from Prince Edward Island and has been trying to figure out how to make the two places closer together ever since.

michelle belanger

Arielle Meynen-Boyd
Arielle chose occupational therapy as a career when she was at the end of her psychology undergrad. She loved studying about the brain, consciousness, and neuroplasticity but was craving something applied and hands on.

Arielle completed her masters at Dalhousie and worked in Halifax for a year in private practice, but then the mountains called her back home to the Yukon. Working in the north at a general hospital has given Arielle the opportunity to work in a broad variety of practice areas and cultivate a diverse skillset. She is still very passionate about neuro and takes every opportunity to continue her education in order to better assist clients with stroke, brain injuries and other neurological conditions.

Outside of work, Arielle’s interests are also very “generalist”. She loves dabbling in all the outdoor activities the Yukon has to offer and most recently, sharing the incredible outdoors with her brand new daughter.

 melissa lalande

Johanna Paquin
Johanna looks forward to collaborating with the team!  She lives in Iqaluit, Nunavut and was born in Toronto.  She is a pediatric OT, working for the University of Manitoba and servicing schools in the Qikiqtani region, which involves fly-in communities on Baffin Island with mostly Inuit students.  Johanna is a yoga teacher at the local yoga studio.

Johanna studid at McGill University and obtained her Masters at the University of Ottawa in 2014.  Areas of work experience include pediatrics, mental health, general rehabilitation and private practice.  She has worked in urban and rural settings including Ottawa, Whitehorse YT, and Iqaluit NU.  She was a volunteer consultant in Lviv, Ukraine and is a member of the Ukrainian Society of Ergotherapists. She is involved with the Sensory-Enhanced Yoga Institute®, which applies techniques from sensory-based OT practices, neurobiology and trauma psychology. 

 geneviere larrivee

Kate Williams
Kate graduated in 2007 from the University of Alberta and worked eight years in northern Alberta primarily in acute care, inpatient rehab program and outpatients. She then moved to Whitehorse in 2015 and has been busy at home with children for a few years. As Kate considers options for building OT time back into her life, she is excited to be a part of the development of the profession in the north.




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